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May 8, 2012

2012 Foreign Earned Income Exclusion Increased By IRS

The IRS for 2012 has increased the Expatriate Foreign Earned Income Tax Exclusion to $95,900.  This could save single person (without any available tax credits)  up to an additional.$616 in US taxes on their 2012 return over what they might pay on the same foreign earned income on their 2011 return.

Remember an an expatriate living abroad on 4/17/12 you got an automatic extension to file your return until 6/15/12.  You can get a further extension to file the return until 10/15/12 by filing form 4868 prior to 6/15. If you owe any taxes at that time  interest and penalties will continue to accrue (at a rather low rate) until those taxes are paid. Remember form TDF 90-22.1 (FBAR) must be filed to report your foreign financial accounts by 6/30/12 for 2011. It cannot be extended for any reason.

This combined with the fact the IRS increases the foreign housing exclusion or deduction each year for expats will provide additional benefits to those who live and work abroad for 2012.  It just keeps getting better for expatriates so long as all of the special reporting forms (with high penalties for not filing) such as TDF 90-22.1, 8938, 3520, 8865, 5471, etc. are all filed in a timely manner. It is noteworthy that none of these forms are actual forms that produced more taxes, they are strictly informational and if filed, will result in no adverse consequences to the expat taxpayer.  Read more on our website at 

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