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February 14, 2012

IRS issues housing cost allowances for those working abroad in high-cost areas in 2012

Notice 2012-19, 2012-10 IRB   This new Notice provides adjustments to the limitation on housing expenses under the Code Sec. 911 housing cost exclusion for specific locations for 2012.


SEE TABLE WITH ALLOWABLE HOUSING DEDUCTION/ALLOWANCE FOR YOUR COUNTRY OF RESIDENCE.
Background. A qualified individual may elect to exclude from U.S. gross income his foreign earned income and housing cost amount. (Code Sec. 911(a)) Under Code Sec. 911(c)(1), the maximum excludable housing cost amount is calculated by way of a complex formula.
The excludable housing cost amount is the excess, if any, of (1) the individual's allowable housing expenses for the year (i.e., the housing expense limitation) over (2) a base amount. For 2012, a taxpayer's allowable housing expenses, assuming he is eligible for the entire year, generally can't exceed $28,530; subtracting the base amount of $15,216 yields a generally applicable maximum housing amount exclusion of $13,314.
IRS may issue regs or other guidance providing for the adjustment of the maximum allowable housing expense limitation on the basis of geographic differences in housing costs relative to housing costs in the U.S. (Code Sec. 911(c)(2)(B))
Increases for high-cost areas. Notice 2012-19, makes adjustments for housing costs during 2012 in high-cost foreign areas. Specifically, it contains a table that (1) identifies locations within countries with high housing costs relative to U.S. housing costs, and (2) provides an adjusted annual maximum and daily housing expense limitation for a qualified individual incurring housing expenses in one or more specified high-cost localities in 2012 to use (instead of the otherwise applicable annual housing expense limitation of $28,530, or the prorated daily amount) in determining his housing expenses. A qualified individual incurring housing expenses in one or more of the high-cost localities identified in the table for the year 2012 may use the adjusted limit provided in the table (in lieu of $28,530 or the prorated daily amount) in determining his housing cost amount on Form 2555, Foreign Earned Income.
Illustration: A U.S. taxpayer is posted to Hong Kong, China, for all of 2012. His maximum housing cost exclusion is $99,084 ($114,300 full year limit on housing expense in Hong Kong minus $15,216 base amount).
NOTE: For some locations, the limitation on housing expenses provided in Notice 2012-19, Sec. 3, may be higher than the limitation on housing expenses provided in Notice 2011-18 (for 2011). A qualified individual incurring housing expenses in such a location during 2011 may apply the adjusted limitation on housing expenses provided in Notice 2012-19, Sec. 3, in lieu of the amounts provided in Notice 2011-18 (and as set forth in the Instructions to Form 2555 (2011)).
IRS anticipates that future annual notices providing adjustments to housing expense limits will make a similar election available to qualified individuals that incur housing expenses in the immediately preceding year. For example, when adjusted housing expense limitations for 2013 are issued, it is expected that taxpayers will be permitted to apply those adjusted limitations to the 2012 tax year.

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2 comments:

Offshore Software Development said...

You made some decent points there. I looked on the internet for the issue and found most individuals will go along with with your blog.

Leonard Vice said...

They should really point on some adjustments. This will help other individuals to have a better on housing costs and allowances for them to be able to have a decent understanding as well on the importance of their taxes.california real estate licensing