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US tax forms

Old Dec 28th 2017, 4:46 pm
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Default US tax forms

Hi all!
Not sure if this is the right place for this- but my husband and I are currently in the midst of our CR1 visa process to bring him over to the states. We got married in October, sent in our petition shortly after, and now I'm in the process of changing my name and all of that fun stuff (groan). With that, I'm having to fill out my W-4 at work again. How did you guys all handle this? Did you file as single or married? My husband is a UK citizen living in the UK, and doesn't have a social security number yet. He's working over there until our paperwork goes through and he can move over here. He has no US income, and has never lived in the states. So I wasn't sure how to file it, or what to choose on the W-4. Any insight?

Thanks!
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Old Dec 28th 2017, 4:52 pm
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Default Re: US tax forms

Now that you are married, you must file taxes as either Married Filing Jointly or Married Filing Separately.

Since he's not resident in the USA and can't get a SSN yet, you'll probably want to file Married Filing Separately.

Filing Married Jointly might give you a tax break, but runs into complications of having to report his UK income, etc. Probably not worth the headache.

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Old Dec 28th 2017, 4:56 pm
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Default Re: US tax forms

Bear in mind that the W-4 form is not a big deal. It sets out your tax with-holding for each pay period. The amount you owe the IRS is all re-adjusted when you do your 2017 tax return in a couple of months.

Personally, I would change it to married with-holding, with the same number of exemptions as before. The amount of withholding is going to change in February anyway, once the IRS gets guidance for the new tax laws out to employers.
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Old Dec 28th 2017, 5:00 pm
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Default Re: US tax forms

Thanks very much, Rene! The W-4 form is giving me the biggest headache. Question B and C in particular:
For B, it says to enter 1 if you're single and have one job, if you're married with one job and your spouse doesn't work, or if your wages from a second job or your spouse's wages are $1,500 or less.
For C, it says to enter 1 for your spouse, but you can enter 0 if you have a working spouse .

My spouse has a full-time regular job in the UK- but because he's not working in the in the US, I wasn't sure how to answer those?
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Old Dec 28th 2017, 5:00 pm
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Default Re: US tax forms

Thanks, Owen! Ugh, I'm not a financial person at all- all of these forms are so daunting to me.
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Old Dec 28th 2017, 5:20 pm
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Default Re: US tax forms

The problem you will have if your husband is not in the US at the time of filing your 2017 on April 15, 2018 is that he will not have a social security number. You will have to also include the form with your filing for his independent taxpayers identification number (ITIN) since until he enters the US with a valid IR-1/CR-1 visa he is not eligible for a social security number.

As for the W-4, I always chose single - 0 regardless of my husband's ability to work or not and whether or not he had a job. I am one of the few here that prefer a larger sum of money returned by the US government after filing than having an extra $5-$10 in my paycheck each pay period.
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Old Dec 28th 2017, 7:03 pm
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Default Re: US tax forms

Originally Posted by Rete View Post
The problem you will have if your husband is not in the US at the time of filing your 2017 on April 15, 2018 is that he will not have a social security number. You will have to also include the form with your filing for his independent taxpayers identification number (ITIN) since until he enters the US with a valid IR-1/CR-1 visa he is not eligible for a social security number.
Does he need an ITIN though? As he will not have been a US resident at any point in 2017, I think all OP needs to do is enter his name as "Non-Resident Alien". This is what my wife did when filing back returns prior to sponsoring me as an immigrant.

As for the W-4, I always chose single - 0 regardless of my husband's ability to work or not and whether or not he had a job. I am one of the few here that prefer a larger sum of money returned by the US government after filing than having an extra $5-$10 in my paycheck each pay period.
We too always put 0 for our deductions as we found that anything more would result in us under-withholding which leads to a risk of a penalty. As our high state and local taxes will lead us to be losers under the Trump tax plan, we'll probably have to withhold even more next year.
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Old Dec 28th 2017, 7:07 pm
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Default Re: US tax forms

Thanks, Roy and Rete for your feedback! Guess it's better to be safe by claiming no deductions.

And I hear that about the new tax plan, Roy- ugh.
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Old Jan 24th 2018, 1:25 pm
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Default Re: US tax forms

Hi again, everyone!
I'm working on my taxes this week, using the TurboTax site. Since my husband is living in the UK while we go through the CR1 visa process, I'm checking the box for married but filing separately. Still though, it asks for his name and social security number. or individual tax ID number. He doesn't have either one, as he's a British citizen who has never lived in the US. Did any of you initially encounter this problem- and if so, what did you put in that box? Thanks!
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Old Jan 24th 2018, 1:47 pm
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Default Re: US tax forms

Originally Posted by bg1109 View Post
Hi again, everyone!
I'm working on my taxes this week, using the TurboTax site. Since my husband is living in the UK while we go through the CR1 visa process, I'm checking the box for married but filing separately. Still though, it asks for his name and social security number. or individual tax ID number. He doesn't have either one, as he's a British citizen who has never lived in the US. Did any of you initially encounter this problem- and if so, what did you put in that box? Thanks!
You should put his name as "Non-Resident Alien" and if it lets you leave the SSN box blank, do so, otherwise put in 000-00-0000.
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Old Jan 24th 2018, 1:54 pm
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Default Re: US tax forms

Thanks very much, Roy!
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Old Jan 24th 2018, 2:07 pm
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Default Re: US tax forms

Last year, my wife tried to do this, but her version of TurboTax wouldn't allow this, but we did have the option of delaying filing until October, since I had expected to be in USA in summer and receive my SSN shortly after arrival.
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Old Jan 24th 2018, 2:12 pm
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Default Re: US tax forms

I think I might just end up going to a tax preparer, to be on the safe side. If you don't mind me asking- how long did your CR1 process take? We're 3-months in, and hoping he'll be here by October- but unsure if that's realistic. Thanks!
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Old Jan 24th 2018, 4:07 pm
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Default Re: US tax forms

Originally Posted by bg1109 View Post
I think I might just end up going to a tax preparer, to be on the safe side. If you don't mind me asking- how long did your CR1 process take? We're 3-months in, and hoping he'll be here by October- but unsure if that's realistic. Thanks!
If the I-130 was filed in the USA, the entire process from filing I-130 to Immigrant Visa interview is roughly 12 to 14 months.

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