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IRS Tax Foreign Income Exclusion 2555-EZ - eligibility

Discussion in 'Tax, Social Security and Fin' started by abumiqdad, Jan 20, 2018.

  1. abumiqdad

    abumiqdad Member

    Hi all.

    I am preparing to file my tax for 2017.

    I recently became a US Permanent Resident in 2016.

    Activated my GC by entering the USA back in 2016 (towards the end of 2016)

    Then left the USA.

    Entered the USA again in 2017 (towards the end of the year 2017).

    All my income were derived from out of the USA.

    Days in the USA:

    2016 (8 days )
    2017 (50 days) - around 9 months after my exit in 2016

    I have been approved of my re-entry permit that covers end of 2017-2019 (though i have not received the physical permit but case check shows it had been approved).

    For 2016, i filed with Foreign Income Exclusion 2555-EZ (though i had not checked the status of the filing, but it was clear cut that I was qualified for the exclusion).

    Now i want to file my tax in 2017 and I got confused by the "Physical Presence Test" considering in 2017, i stayed for 50 days in the USA.

    IRS link: https://www.irs.gov/help/ita/can-i-exclude-income-earned-in-a-foreign-country

    IRS guidance:

    Physical Presence Test
    Note: For the question below there are four rules you should know when figuring the 12-month period.

    1) Your 12-month period can begin with any day of the month. It ends the day before the same calendar day, 12 months later.
    2) Your 12-month period must be made up of consecutive months. Any 12-month period can be used if the 330 days in a foreign country fall within that period.
    3) You do not have to begin your 12-month period with your first full day in a foreign country or end it with the day you leave. You can choose the 12-month period that gives you the greatest exclusion.
    4) In determining whether the 12-month period falls within a longer stay in the foreign country, 12-month periods can overlap one another.

    Were you physically present in a foreign country or countries for at least 330 full days during a period of 12 consecutive months STARTING OR ENDING ON ANY DAY WITHIN 2017? (my emphasis)

    MY QUESTION: In my case, to get no less than 330 days, I will have to start the counting of the days from a period in 2016 that covers the 8 days I was in the USA, and the period ends in BEFORE my stay in the USA in 2017 (so that the total of the stay would just be 8 days).

    So for example, I entered the USA in 2016 in November, and I entered the USA again in 2017 in September, so my period would be from September 2016 - August 2017 - which shows I was in the USA for just 8 days).

    Is this what the guide wanted to say? (just checking if my understanding is correct - mainly point 3 and 4 and I am unsure what IRS meant by period overlapping one another).

    The IRS foreign income exclusion guide also had other questions like abode in the USA (which i would answer as NO, - and a bit concerned of this somehow would jeopardise my LPR status)


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