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Career Venue => Contract, and Job Related Issues => Topic started by: seligamon22 on April 06, 2010, 07:35:40 am

Title: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: seligamon22 on April 06, 2010, 07:35:40 am
Who's eligible for Korean tax exemption?

To be exempt from paying Korean taxes, you need to employed by the government (e.g., public school teachers). Thus, private-sector workers (e.g., hagwon teachers) must still pay Korean taxes. However,  private-sector employees CAN still be exempt from paying AMERICAN taxes (more details further down).

Remember the Korean tax exemption isn't forever--it lasts TWO YEARS.

 How to apply for Korean tax exemption?

In order to be exempt from paying Korean taxes (for two years), you need to give your school the 6166 form.  However, you must first fill out the 8802 form in order to get the 6166. Please be aware that the 8802 is NOT the residency certificate, it is the application for the residency certificate (6166).
 
Here are the steps.


1. I had to purchase the number of 6166 copies I wanted to have PRIOR to sending the 8802 to the IRS.

Here is the link for payment https://www.pay.gov/paygov/forms/formInstance.html?agencyFormId=12164322.

You'll have to go on to the website, purchase the copies, and you'll receive a confirmation number. You can get up to 20 copies for $35. I'd say to shoot for at least 5-6 just in case your school needs extras. If you want to be really safe order all 20!


2. Fill out the 8802. I've attached it and the instructions below. Make sure to put that confirmation # on the 8802 form before sending it (I promise this will make more sense once you get down to paying for and filling out the forms). If you are having the form mailed to someone besides yourself (which is probably the case since many of you are already here in Korea),  you'll have to name an appointee.


3. After filling out the 8802 form, you can fax or mail it to the IRS. Make sure that you mail the form to the correct place. If you pay for the 6166 via the link that I've given above, then you'll have to send it to one address. If you pay by check, the address is different. Just so you know, I faxed mine and it was kind of a huge deal because they have two different fax numbers, so I had to send it twice. My point is, call if you are unsure! 

4. After the IRS gets your 8802, they'll send a letter telling you that they've received it and are processing your 6166. They will send it to a US address only, so send it to a family or friend. The letter will say that they'll respond to you within 30 days, but that's a lie. I had to call a few times. It took THREE MONTHS to get my 6166 and that was only after calling.  It'll take time, but it should work out.



How long does it take to get 6166?

The IRS claims they will contact you within 30 days after processing form 8802, but that doesn't generally happen. It would be prudent to call the IRS to remind them; people typically wait three to five months, sometimes LONGER.  Constantly remind the IRS about it.

But what if I've already started paying Korean taxes, will I get my money back once my school gets 6166?

Yes. If not, contact the tax office directly.  Please be aware that the refund won't  get handed back to you in cash--it will most likely come in the form of a tax credit at the end of the financial year.


Do I have to pay US taxes?

Unlikely. If your contract is one year, you become a "bona fide resident" of Korea the day your contract commences and hence qualify for the exclusion. However, there is one exception to this rule: if you make more than $92,900 USD (2011 figure), but since EFL teachers in Korea typically don't make that much, you probably don't have to worry. Also, if your contract is less than a year (e.g., six months), then you don't qualify for avoiding US taxes. However, you can still apply for Korean tax exemption.

Is the foreign income tax exclusion automatic? Do I still have to file my tax return with the IRS every year in Korea?,

The exclusion is not automatic as you must submit form 2555 along with form 1004 (NOT 1004A or 1004EZ).  You can request your school to give you a document showing your yearly earnings around tax time (late Jan.) as the IRS may require proof of foreign income.   Say/write to your school's administration office:


"원어민교사 급여지급내역"

This means "Foreign teacher's salary payments".

If your school refuses to give it to you, showing your bankbook (or a printout of your deposits via online banking) should suffice.  You should convert your salary to USD for each month; one member used the Bank of CANADA's web site (yes, Canada) because it conveniently lists montly historical exchange rates. The IRS will likely take your word for it as they're aware the overwhelming majority of EFL teachers don't make  close to the foreign income exclusion threshold.

Submitting 2555  with 1040 obviously means you're filing your tax return. But, you don't have to do it every year; you can file three years later . For example, a 2011 return can be filed in 2014 without applying for an extension.

Form 2555 or 2555-EZ?

If you're exempt from paying Korean taxes, you must submit the 2555, NOT 2555EZ.

So, what's the diff between form 1040, 2555, 8802, and 6166?


Form 8802 is the application to get 6166, the latter is what you need to submit to your school to avoid KOREAN taxes. So, 8802/6166 is so you avoid paying KOREAN TAXES.

Form 1004 is the income tax return filing document.

Form 2555 (which you must submit when you file your US tax return using form 1004) is so you don't have to pay AMERICAN taxes.
Title: Re: American TAXES
Post by: krb974 on September 30, 2010, 04:29:44 pm
Although I am not American, I believe that you are to get some kind a form from America that states you are exempt from paying taxes - in America - on your wage from Korea for 2 years.  Your place of employment in Korea should be taking off taxes - Korean Tax - on the wage you earn here.

I'm not too sure what the name of the form you need is.  I'm sure there is some official American government website that can give you an answer.
Title: Re: American TAXES
Post by: sheila on October 01, 2010, 09:06:44 am
If he's only staying for a year or two, then yes, he paid taxes unnecessarily. But, the sooner you get it taken care of, the better.  If you or he are planning on staying for a longer time, it doesn't really matter because you will have an opportunity to do it eventually for two years.  It's a money saver for us so get on it right away as the process takes about a month to six weeks to get the proper forms and everything going through with  your paychecks. However, I don't think 'your friend' will be able to get back the money that he's paid already. Ciao!~
Title: Re: American TAXES
Post by: jglide on October 14, 2010, 06:06:04 am
I have been in Korea over a month now but I do not have my tax exemption form with me (I'm an American).  I mailed in the 8802 form just before I left, but it was sent to my house in the States.  If a friend mails it to me here in Korea it will cost another 56 dollars.

Is it possible to have the form scanned or faxed?  Do they need the original copy?

The 2555 form seems to me to be something I do when I file taxes back in the States in April.  I am only on a six month contract here in Korea (yes its legal).  Am I correct in thinking that my school only needs the 8802 form at this time?

Thanks

Title: Re: American TAXES
Post by: rainesbaines on October 14, 2010, 07:59:40 am
Why is it so expensive?  Did you try FedEx or UPS?  Regular US Postal Service mail should only cost a few dollars and should be reliable.  Should take about 10 business days or less to arrive.

It would, of course, be tragic and annoying if it got lost in the mail, but that's pretty unlikely.
Title: Re: American TAXES
Post by: aramella on October 14, 2010, 03:37:03 pm
I have things mailed here all the time. Use the USPS... it shouldnt be very expensive... it is very reliable.  Fedex and UPS are very expensive to mail things here.
Title: Re: American TAXES
Post by: joejn on October 26, 2010, 09:37:51 am
All i did was fill out form 8802 to get my residency certificate.  Once that was completed I gave it to my school and now I pay neither the Korean or US income tax.  BUT...... it took the IRS 5 months to send me my paperwork thus I was paying US and Korean taxes for that amount of time which amounted to nearly $1500 dollars.  Does anyone know if I can claim that money back from the IRS, do public schools provide a version of  W-2 to teachers?
Title: Re: No taxes for Americans?
Post by: jdaigle05 on November 04, 2010, 12:12:33 pm
Hi, all:

So I have my residency certificate. Do I just hand it to my co-teacher? Do I have to send it to the GEPIK office? Back to my recruiter? I've looked and looked, but can't seem to find an answer on this. I just want to make sure I am putting it into the correct hands.

Thanks.
Title: Re: No taxes for Americans?
Post by: sheila on November 04, 2010, 12:21:59 pm
Give it to your coteacher and then they will give it to your admin. office at your school.  They'll deal with it from there.
Title: Re: No taxes for Americans?
Post by: jaysig on November 05, 2010, 02:14:31 pm
I was under the impression that we will get a refund at the end of the contract. I've had my residency certificate for 4 months now. Am I just loosing out on that money the longer that I hang on to it?
Title: Re: No taxes for Americans?
Post by: Morticae on November 05, 2010, 02:35:45 pm
Give it to them now. After it is processed,  you will no longer have the taxes deducted from your paycheck.

In addition, you are not losing out on money. They will refund you the 4 months that you paid taxes, because you don't owe that money... so it is given back to you.
Title: Re: American TAXES
Post by: ml on November 05, 2010, 05:23:49 pm
Quick question....

So I've finally decided I need to figure this "TAX" stuff down...(I've just been lazy...and not wanted to think about taxes in general)

So I've only been here in Korea since the middle of Sept...so I'm thinking I won't need to file my taxes for 2010. But, I do for 2011...(am I right? or am I just hoping thats true?)

On to my question, so I got paid last month, and got my earning statement for October. BUT I don't see anywhere on my paper about any tax-deduction stuff, I only see pension/health insurance and a security deposit deductions. Are they taking taxes out without telling me on the form? Does Korea automatically just deduct taxes, so thats why I don't see it on my paper?  I just wanted to ask, because I am/should start on my 8802 form...but if I'm not paying Korean taxes right now, then I'm good.

Title: How to file taxes in the U.S. this year?
Post by: Busan33 on November 26, 2010, 10:22:19 am
So, I have been teaching in Korea for 9 months now and I turned in the correct paperwork to be tax exempt when I started.  However, I am guessing that I will have to file some kind of tax form for the work I did here during 2010.  Does anyone know anything about how to do this or what to look to for?
Title: US Taxes, new year 2011?
Post by: sdizzle08 on December 02, 2010, 02:10:59 pm
I just realized the tax year for 2010 is about to end.  Do I need to get a new 8802 (i think thats what it is) to turn into my school in January for 2011? (to be exempt from Korean taxes).  Also, do I need to get two copies of this form...since I will be switching schools mid February?

Thanks =)
Title: US TAX questions
Post by: Joshteacher on December 05, 2010, 02:58:41 pm
I'm trying to do my taxes *from last year*   I'm filing a 1040
I'm wondering if any of you can help me with these questions:

Income 8a: Taxable Interest.   I didn't receive a W2 while working in a Hagwon.
What is the taxable interest? Do I file an exemption?

Can we, as teachers in Korea, use the Educator Expenses deduction?  Do we need receipts?

Can we use the FOREIGN TAX CREDIT?   

On line 61 it asks me about Federal Income tax withheld.  What do I put?  0? 


Thanks in advance and hopes this helps others when they file for this year.

Title: Re: US TAX questions
Post by: JZakutni on December 05, 2010, 06:06:16 pm
Hey Josh, when you file taxes there is a special form you have to fill out called the Foreign income exclusion form. It is IRS form 2555. If you google it, it will pop up. Additionally, as long as we make under 91,000 USD a year, we are exempt from paying taxes while working abroad. You will need to file that form 2555 with form 1040. The only reason I know this is because I haven't filed for 2 years, and I just started to talk to an accountant about all of this. If you have any questions beyond this, shoot me an email. jzakutni@kent.edu


Title: Re: US TAX questions
Post by: torstrom on December 08, 2010, 10:22:06 am
My understanding is that you are only eligible for the foreign earned income exclusion if you are in the foreign country for 330 of the 365 days of the year. I arrived in April so I guess I'm hosed for this year. 
Title: Re: US TAX questions
Post by: atlantic81 on December 08, 2010, 01:05:31 pm
You're not hosed... You can just file an extension if you haven't met the time criteria of 360 days. I didn't know that last year and did my taxes incorectly. I am still hoping I don't get audited for it, but if I do no big deal because I didn't make over 80K.

So no worries if you screw up your taxes. If they audit you and do everything right they'll most likely find out that they owe YOU money. Although being audited is a pain in the ass, it's nothing to fear.
Title: Re: US TAX questions
Post by: togetbex on December 08, 2010, 06:56:02 pm
I asked my accountant before I came over here about this stuff. He said that the first 200k (US dollars) is tax exempt. Also, I really really recommend just getting this stuff done by an accountant. You will significantly decrease your odds of being audited, and even if you are, the accountant deals with it.  Also, an accountant can even save you money because they know about any deductions you are eligible for.
Title: Re: US TAX questions
Post by: Morticae on December 08, 2010, 08:02:20 pm
I'll give you some shady, underhanded advice. Just don't declare the income you make in Korea if you aren't eligible for it to be tax free. They will never know what you made or what you didn't. The governments do not coordinate this information with each other.
Title: Re: No taxes for Americans?
Post by: kate.d on December 17, 2010, 02:15:57 pm
When we got to Korea, my husband and I gave them that paper, they looked at it, asked around (I guess) and said they couldn't do anything about it.  We have been having taxes taken out for 10 months.  Is there any way we can get this to stop? Any advice? We are at public schools.
Title: Re: No taxes for Americans?
Post by: sangamania on December 17, 2010, 02:24:10 pm
I am wondering for more clarification.

I am in SMOE. If you get the residency certificate, then you get your korean taxes exempt and given back to you. What about US taxes? Do you have to pay them? Whats the procedure?

I have been here for 1.5 years. It would be a nice chunk of change to get the taxes back. But I didnt do it because I thought you would have to report to US taxes. A big headache and cost more money down the line. Why pay close to 30% when you are paying 3% in korea?

Any enlightenment? and how easy is it to get the residency cert if you are in Korea? With no one to get anything done in the States?
Title: Whose responsibility is it to get the Residency Certification
Post by: divine on December 21, 2010, 12:17:39 pm
Hi! The Office Manager and the teacher are threatening to begin taking taxes from my pay, because they have not received the Residency Certificate.
When I applied for this job, I was not told that I need to have the residency certificate. I wrote a letter to the IRS and they said I have to fill out form 8802 and submit a $35.00 fee for processing. Anyone knows what's the fastest way to get the RC ? Is this my responsibility, or the teacher?

Thanks
Divine
Title: Re: Whose responsibility is it to get the Residency Certification
Post by: jinfang520 on December 21, 2010, 12:21:04 pm
That's your responsibility. You have to fill out the form and send it to IRS, and they will send the residency certificate(s) to you. You can request up to 20 copies, from my memory.
I had them send it to my home in the States, and had my sister Fedex it to me.
But maybe they can send it to you directly, to Korea.
 
Title: Re: Whose responsibility is it to get the Residency Certification
Post by: sheedi on December 21, 2010, 12:28:50 pm
Yep your responsible. Mine took about 2 months as well and my mom shipped it to me. It says it takes 35, or 40 days, but then my mom got a letter saying that it will take a bit longer.
Title: Re: Whose responsibility is it to get the Residency Certification
Post by: techteacher on December 21, 2010, 12:31:54 pm
Make sure you call about a month after you apply for it.  They will be able to tell you the status.  When I called they said it was set to be printed on Saturday and mailed on Monday.
Title: Re: Tax Exemption Information for Americans: Residency Certificate
Post by: emwsu on December 21, 2010, 12:52:40 pm
I mailed it in, I don't think you can email it. My first copy got lost in the mail somewhere, so I had them resend one to my parent's house in the states. My dad scaned and emailed it to me, I printed that off and so far my school is happy with that.
Title: Re: Tax Exemption Information for Americans: Residency Certificate
Post by: sheila on December 21, 2010, 01:05:56 pm
Here is the IRS website regarding this http://www.irs.gov/instructions/i8802/ch01.html as well as the e-pay website http://www.irs.gov/efile/article/0,,id=97400,00.html if you're concerned about getting a money order.  This made things go much faster for me. Good luck with your forms.
Title: Re: Tax Exemption Information for Americans: Residency Certificate
Post by: carlita on January 18, 2011, 07:19:40 am
I am filling out the 8802 form.  What is the U.S. taxpayer identification number (TIN) - I am not sure where to find it - is it your social security number.

Also, if I just pay Korean taxes, can I get/apply for a tax refund at the end of the tax year here in Korea?????

Thanks :)
Title: Re: Tax Exemption Information for Americans: Residency Certificate
Post by: crjumjr01 on January 18, 2011, 07:45:05 am
TIN is your Social Security number.
Title: US Residency Certificate for tax exemption in Korea- What do we do with it?
Post by: ewkbruin on January 24, 2011, 08:41:17 pm
This question is for anyone from California doing their taxes. My income earned in Korea, by federal standards is excluded from taxation. So, my income made here is excluded on my federal taxes. However, that is not the case for my taxes in California. California is taxing all of my income, including my money made here. I owe taxes to California. Is this happening to you? I'm paying taxes in Korea, and according to the U.S. Korea tax treaty, I am not supposed to be double taxed. I'd appreciate your comments.
Title: Re: CALIFORNIA TAXES Question
Post by: mr sam teacher on January 24, 2011, 10:20:40 pm
Wow that sucks. I'm doing mine right now...for Michigan income taxes they just have you carry over your AGI from the federal 1040, which already has foreign income excluded. But it looks like California uses the amounts directly off of your W-2s. Unfortunately the relief from double taxation only applies to the federal government...
Title: Re: Tax Exemption Information for Americans: Residency Certificate
Post by: carlita on January 25, 2011, 06:43:52 pm
thank you for the TIN number info... :)
Title: Re: CALIFORNIA TAXES Question
Post by: ewkbruin on January 25, 2011, 08:32:44 pm
Originally, when my Korean income was not reported, California was owing me about 300 bucks, since I had made some money back in Cali before coming here. AFTER, I inputted the amount I made here, California wants about 900 bucks from me!

Seriously, no Californians out there? All accounting forums say California will take the tax from your foreign earned income. But there is got to be someone with a better answer to my problem... Please let me know.
Title: Re: CALIFORNIA TAXES Question
Post by: singletrackmind on January 25, 2011, 09:09:18 pm
I would assume if you are not a resident of California (living in Korea) and you are not earning money there, you should have no liability at all.  If you were working this tax year in California you would only need to pay taxes on that income.
Title: Paying taxes to the good ol' US of A
Post by: Scott2hotty on February 07, 2011, 03:24:18 pm
Okay, so I am American here and I need to pay my taxes. Mind you, I have completed the steps for 'Double-taxation Exemption'.

I asked my school administration to print out of summary of my monthly payments for the year of 2010.

I am told this information is sufficient enough to fill out the tax form for this year.

Can anyone tell me if this is right or not, or what I need to do further?

Any help is greatly appreciated! Thanks :))
Title: Re: Paying taxes to the good ol' US of A
Post by: hahoffmann on February 08, 2011, 12:15:29 am
turbo tax has a free efile thing with steps :).  check it out.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: drkhv7 on February 08, 2011, 12:32:25 pm
JGlide, it appears that 1040A is a simplified 1040 and 1040 EZ is super simple version of 1040.  There are filing restrictions and deduction restrictions.  I'll paste the wikipedia link and paste below:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IRS_tax_forms#1040A


1040A

The 1040A ("short form") is a shorter version of the Form 1040 U.S. individual income tax return. Use of Form 1040A is limited to taxpayers with taxable income below $100,000 who take the standard deduction instead of itemizing deductions.

A taxpayer who uses the 1040A tax return can only have income from the following sources:

    * Wages, salaries, and tips.
    * Interest and ordinary dividends.
    * Capital gains distributions.
    * Taxable scholarships and fellowship grants.
    * Pensions, annuities, and IRAs.
    * Unemployment compensation.
    * Taxable social security and railroad retirement benefits.
    * Alaska Permanent Fund dividends.

[edit] 1040EZ
1040EZ from 2005

The Form 1040EZ ("easy form"), Income Tax Return for Single and Joint Filers With No Dependents, is a simplified, six-section Federal income tax return, issued by the United States' Internal Revenue Service. Its use is limited to taxpayers with taxable income below $100,000 (as of tax year 2011[update]) who take the standard deduction instead of itemizing deductions.

Other restrictions include:

    * Filing status must be single or married filing jointly.
    * Filer must be under age 65 and not blind at the end of the tax year.
    * Filers must not claim any dependents (other than themselves).
    * No adjustments to income can be claimed.
    * The only credit that can be claimed is the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC).
    * The only income to report for the tax year consisted of wages, salaries, tips, taxable scholarship or fellowship grants, unemployment compensation, or Alaska Permanent Fund dividends, and filer's taxable interest was not over $1,500. But if the filer earned tips, including allocated tips, that are not included in box 5 and box 7 of your Form W-2, filer may not be able to use Form 1040EZ.
    * Filer did not receive any advanced EIC payments.

Form 1040EZ was introduced by the Internal Revenue Service for the 1982 tax year. The title of the 1982 form was "Income Tax Return for Single filers with no dependents."
Title: Re: Tax Exemption Information for Americans: Residency Certificate
Post by: jejusiii on February 08, 2011, 07:24:23 pm
Has anyone been denied this before?  After sending the fine folks at the IRS my 8802 (along with my $35) and waiting for several months they sent me a letter saying...

"We regret to inform you that we were unable to process your request without additional information"

I filled out everything I had to on the form.  I remember checking it over several times thinking of how inconvenient it would be if I forgot something.

No where on the letter they sent does it specify what "information" they need from me.  There is no telephone/fax number nor website/email address written on the letter to inquire about this.

Any recommendations as to where I should go from here?  Send in another 8802?  By the time I would even get my residency certificate back (assuming it meets their standards... still have no idea what I did wrong on the 1st one) it's going to be May/June-ish.  I get done working in October.  Is it even worth it at this point?

At the end they thanked me for "my cooperation".  No problem guys.
Title: Re: Tax Exemption Information for Americans: Residency Certificate
Post by: eveliens on February 08, 2011, 07:37:49 pm
Has anyone been denied this before?  After sending the fine folks at the IRS my 8802 (along with my $35) and waiting for several months they sent me a letter saying...

"We regret to inform you that we were unable to process your request without additional information"

I filled out everything I had to on the form.  I remember checking it over several times thinking of how inconvenient it would be if I forgot something.

No where on the letter they sent does it specify what "information" they need from me.  There is no telephone/fax number nor website/email address written on the letter to inquire about this.

Any recommendations as to where I should go from here?  Send in another 8802?  By the time I would even get my residency certificate back (assuming it meets their standards... still have no idea what I did wrong on the 1st one) it's going to be May/June-ish.  I get done working in October.  Is it even worth it at this point?

At the end they thanked me for "my cooperation".  No problem guys.

They did the same things to me. Did you designate someone in the States to take care of things on your behalf? I had to have my Mom call their office and get things sorted out. Basically, they want a statement that you lived in the States and paid taxes for the last two years or something to that effect if your "additional information" is the same as mine!

This was the number my Mom called (267) 941-1000

Good luck.
Title: Re: Tax Exemption Information for Americans: Residency Certificate
Post by: mr sam teacher on February 08, 2011, 08:43:51 pm
"We regret to inform you that we were unable to process your request without additional information"

Have you filed taxes in the US for the last few years? If you haven't, then the IRS has no way to judge whether or not you have been a US resident. I believe that in that case they require a sworn statement under penalty of perjury.
Title: Re: Paying taxes to the good ol' US of A
Post by: javdek1 on February 09, 2011, 08:07:33 am
so, i do not have the double exemption status. i was not able to file before i left.
i am not aware of weather my school is paying taxes, i am sure they are do as my pay is lower than what i should be getting.
yet my questions are; what if i do not file taxes? will they stop me and make me pay and fine me before i leave the country (such as at the turnstyle in the airport) and just pay lump sum then? is there a contact to see the amount of taxes i owe before i leave? are these childish attempts to skirt the responsibility of paying taxes?
Title: Re: Paying taxes to the good ol' US of A
Post by: glim67 on February 09, 2011, 08:57:24 am
In order to submit my foreign earned income to the IRS, I would have to fill out a FORM 2555(EZ) and 1040, right? Could I use this on Turbo Tax? The tricky part is that I also have interest income from my savings account in America & interest payments on education expenses (student loan).  Could I do this on my own? 

How have you guys gotten your FORM 1040 professionally done, or did you do it by yourselves?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: duchessrachel on February 09, 2011, 11:51:29 am
In addition to the required 1040, I would prefer to use 2555-EZ form since it's much shorter. HOWEVER, my big question is: Must we claim our foreign housing allowance as income? If so, I guess we have to fill out the full 2555 and not the 2555-EZ. I'd have to ask my school to tell me how much they pay each month for my officetel (I'm curious to know this anyway).

I found this information here (http://www.missouribusiness.net/irs/taxmap/pubs/p54-013.htm) You can use the 2555-EZ form if all seven of the following apply.

You are a U.S. citizen or a resident alien. (Yes!)
Your total foreign earned income for the year is $85,700 or less. (Yes!)
You have earned wages/salaries in a foreign country. (Yes!)
You are filing a calendar year return that covers a 12-month period. (Yes!)
You did not have any self-employment income for the year. (Yes!)
You did not have any business or moving expenses for the year. (Yes!)
You are not claiming the foreign housing exclusion or deduction. (????)
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: mr sam teacher on February 09, 2011, 12:06:49 pm
In addition to the required 1040, I would prefer to use 2555-EZ form since it's much shorter. HOWEVER, my big question is: Must we claim our foreign housing allowance as income? If so, I guess we have to fill out the full 2555 and not the 2555-EZ. I'd have to ask my school to tell me how much they pay each month for my officetel (I'm curious to know this anyway).

I found this information here (http://www.missouribusiness.net/irs/taxmap/pubs/p54-013.htm) You can use the 2555-EZ form if all seven of the following apply.

You are a U.S. citizen or a resident alien. (Yes!)
Your total foreign earned income for the year is $85,700 or less. (Yes!)
You have earned wages/salaries in a foreign country. (Yes!)
You are filing a calendar year return that covers a 12-month period. (Yes!)
You did not have any self-employment income for the year. (Yes!)
You did not have any business or moving expenses for the year. (Yes!)
You are not claiming the foreign housing exclusion or deduction. (????)

From what I understand, the foreign housing exclusion or deduction is used to reduce your income that IS subject to tax (ie any foreign income over $80,000 or $90,000 or whatever the current limit is). So if you need to claim that one, I'd really like to know what school you work at  :)
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: duchessrachel on February 09, 2011, 12:32:07 pm
I don't know if we need to claim the housing allowance as part of our foreign income or not. That was my question. This would have nothing to do with my school in Korea. It would have to do with the IRS in the US wanting to know exactly, down to the penny how much money I am making abroad- salary AND housing allowance. If it's not required by the IRS for me to declare the value of the housing allowance that the Koreans give me, I will simply file the 2555-EZ form.
Title: Would it be illegal? Tax question.
Post by: helloana on February 17, 2011, 10:57:32 am
Does anyone know if it would be illegal to file my taxes from 2010 up until I came to Korea (in August) but didn't claim my foreign income until the following year? I am supposed to get a huge chunk of money from when I worked January-July but as soon as I put in my income from Korea, I ended up only getting $20 bucks back.

I hope that makes sense? I noticed that my vocabulary and sentence structure has gone down the drain after being here for awhile.
Title: Re: Would it be illegal? Tax question.
Post by: terrateacher on February 17, 2011, 11:01:17 am
Are you from the US?  If yes you would be excluded from claiming foreign income up to ~$91K.  You'll just need to wait until you have been here for 330 days to file. 
Title: Re: Would it be illegal? Tax question.
Post by: strawberry on February 17, 2011, 11:06:25 am
I thought because I was exempt it didnt matter, so I ticked the "no income" box when filing my taxes earlier in the year... only to find out there's a place where I was supposed to write down my "non-taxable" income.. my bad.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: moonhaus on February 22, 2011, 12:49:00 pm
Hey guys

My contract started in April, so I don't qualify for the physical presence test. But I did turn in the f8802 form shortly after my arrival.

So even though I've been working in Korea for almost a year, would I still have to pay taxes in the states?

thanks!
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: gwiffey on March 02, 2011, 01:39:02 pm
What I'm curious about is how to figure the exchange rate required for both the 1040 (line 7) and the 2555 (line 17)? I'm sure there was plenty of fluctuation in the year 2010 between the won-dollar exchange rate. So can we just choose any rate we want at any point in 2010?

My second question is what do we do about our income forms? In the U.S. an employer would supply us with W-2 forms, but we don't have that here. Is there any official form (which recognizes our salary) that we have to attach to the 1040 and 2555?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: mr sam teacher on March 02, 2011, 01:39:11 pm
What I'm curious about is how to figure the exchange rate required for both the 1040 (line 7) and the 2555 (line 17)? I'm sure there was plenty of fluctuation in the year 2010 between the won-dollar exchange rate. So can we just choose any rate we want during that time?

My second question is what do we do about our income forms? In the U.S. an employer would supply us with W-2 forms, but we don't have that here. Is there any official form (which recognizes our salary) that we have to attach to the 1040 and 2555?

To figure out the exchange rate, I used the historical exchange rate calculator at the Bank of Canada website (http://www.bankofcanada.ca/en/rates/exchform.html). I get paid the same amount every month on the 25th, so it was pretty easy to just put my salary amount in the calculator and run the conversion for each month. You will also need to write a short letter explaining how you arrived at that amount and which exchange calculator you used.

There is no W2 equivalent here. You could attach a copy of the page of your contract that states your monthly salary amount, but there is no requirement. The IRS is trusting you to accurately report your income.

Good luck. Taxes are confusing mess even if you aren't living in foreign country...
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: frisbee649 on March 02, 2011, 01:42:03 pm
Here is a sheet that shows the average exchange rate for the 2010 tax year.  I am using 1159.873=$1

At the bottom of the sheet it states

"The Internal Revenue Service has no official exchange rate. Generally, it accepts any posted exchange rate that is used consistently."


Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: frisbee649 on March 02, 2011, 01:44:46 pm
Oops! I forgot to post the sheet.

http://www.irs.gov/businesses/small/international/article/0,,id=206089,00.html
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: gwiffey on March 02, 2011, 01:52:50 pm
thanks mr sam teacher and frisbee, that helps a lot. Hopefully I'll be able to finish it off from here.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: PGraham3 on March 02, 2011, 02:29:03 pm
Will my 3 months of foreign earned income be added to my total US earned income for the year?

I arrived in early October last year and let's say I made $30,000 from January to September, which puts me in the 15% tax bracket. Then I made approximately $6,000 in foreign earned income that would essentially put me at $36,000 in total income for the year and that would unfortunately put me in the 25% tax bracket and I'd have to pay a bunch more in taxes. Can anyone answer my question?

Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: mr sam teacher on March 02, 2011, 02:33:49 pm
Will my 3 months of foreign earned income be added to my total US earned income for the year?

I arrived in early October last year and let's say I made $30,000 from January to September, which puts me in the 15% tax bracket. Then I made approximately $6,000 in foreign earned income that would essentially put me at $36,000 in total income for the year and that would unfortunately put me in the 25% tax bracket and I'd have to pay a bunch more in taxes. Can anyone answer my question?

See the above thread... Basically you need to file a 2350 (there is a link earlier in the thread) that will allow you to postpone filing your taxes until you've been in a foreign country for 330 days. Then you'll file your 1040 and a 2555, which excludes your foreign income from your US taxes.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: gwiffey on March 02, 2011, 03:20:58 pm
One more thing I'd like to get cleared up...

It seems a lot of people think that they can (legally) get out of paying taxes in both the US and Korea. However, in order to get out of taxes in Korea, you need a Residence Certificate, which basically says you are a tax payer in the USA. Ok fine, you can do that, but then, if you want to be exempt from paying taxes in the USA, then you have to fill out form 2555. On form 2555, Part I #3, it asks "Was your tax home in a foreign country or countries throughout your period of ... physical presence?" If you did in fact turn in your residence certificate, then basically you are saying you are a tax payer in the US, and thus, your answer to this question would be "No, my tax home was not in a foreign country." In which case, you would not be exempt from paying taxes in the USA.

Am I right, or is there something here that I'm missing?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: mr sam teacher on March 02, 2011, 05:56:25 pm
One more thing I'd like to get cleared up...

It seems a lot of people think that they can (legally) get out of paying taxes in both the US and Korea. However, in order to get out of taxes in Korea, you need a Residence Certificate, which basically says you are a tax payer in the USA. Ok fine, you can do that, but then, if you want to be exempt from paying taxes in the USA, then you have to fill out form 2555. On form 2555, Part I #3, it asks "Was your tax home in a foreign country or countries throughout your period of ... physical presence?" If you did in fact turn in your residence certificate, then basically you are saying you are a tax payer in the US, and thus, your answer to this question would be "No, my tax home was not in a foreign country." In which case, you would not be exempt from paying taxes in the USA.

Am I right, or is there something here that I'm missing?

I'm not sure about everyone here, but I got here in Sep 2010. On my 8802, I requested certification for 2009, during which I was a US taxpayer. I qualified based on my tax payment from 2008. The IRS sent me a certificate for 2009, and I gave it to my school. No problems whatsoever.
So when I filled out the 2555 I could check "yes" to that question with a clear conscience. Basically, I AM subject to Korean taxes while I am here, but due to the treaty Korea has agreed to exempt me. The 8802 only proves that I was an American taxpayer PRIOR to my arrival in Korea.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: be the ball on March 02, 2011, 11:52:38 pm
sam teacher is correct
Title: Must pay MAJOR American tax during second year in Korea??
Post by: Joss on March 04, 2011, 01:51:32 am
Hey guys,

I know the taxation question has been beaten to death on this site, but after much searching I haven't found and comments or threads reflecting my own circumstances. I know there were a few of you with a thorough knowledge of, and great advice about the tax situation in Korea. I was hoping you could offer some insight!

This is my second year in Korea. I took two months off between contracts, and lived in the US for that time. I didn't have to pay taxes last year, but this year, because I "haven't lived here more than 330 days", I have to pay taxes on my full income. They are asking for around $2,000.

This was really unexpected and was wondering if anyone knew of a similar circumstance. Any info would be greatly appreciated! Much thanks!

Title: Re: Must pay MAJOR American tax during second year in Korea??
Post by: crawlingkingsnake on March 04, 2011, 05:24:58 am
That's true, Deajon, but in order to qualify for that exclusion using form 2555, you need to meet some criteria, one of which is being abroad for over 330 days.  If the OP didn't meet any of the other two criteria, and was home for two months between contracts, then it's possible they aren't eligible for that exclusion.
Title: Re: Must pay MAJOR American tax during second year in Korea??
Post by: torstrom on March 04, 2011, 07:20:52 am
I don't know when you arrived, but you can file for an extension and then not file your taxes until your 331st day here. That will allow you to utilize the foriegn earned income exclusion. Good luck.
Title: Re: Must pay MAJOR American tax during second year in Korea??
Post by: eieayo on March 04, 2011, 07:33:13 am
The above posters are right, how I interpreted it on the IRS web site was your 330 days had to mostly be in the given tax year, and there is some room for fudging give or take a month, especially since I am assuming you didn't earn a whole lot during those two months in the states. I think you should be fine filing an extension and then submitting the 2555 form.
Title: Re: Must pay MAJOR American tax during second year in Korea??
Post by: helloana on March 04, 2011, 07:38:38 am
here is a useful blog http://cannesjournal.wordpress.com/2010/03/19/u-s-tax-info-for-nets-in-korea
Title: Re: Must pay MAJOR American tax during second year in Korea??
Post by: Futbolfirefan on March 04, 2011, 09:22:53 am
In my case, I wasn't out of the country for 330 days.  I got hit with $600 in taxes for 2009. Depending on your pay grade, you can invest in an Traditional IRA and receive a refund up to $1,000.  The Feds gave me $400 for my $1,000 contribution.
Title: Re: Must pay MAJOR American tax during second year in Korea??
Post by: Joss on March 04, 2011, 10:52:08 am
Thanks guys. Those are some great ideas. I definitely going to look into it! :)
Title: Re: Must pay MAJOR American tax during second year in Korea??
Post by: absurdjoy on March 04, 2011, 12:55:47 pm
This may come a bit late but I actually emailed the IRS about this very same problem. I have not yet been in the country a full 330 days but will be by August of 2011. As a result I will have to file the foreign exclusion form for two separate tax years.

For this year I filed an extension. In the email reply, I was told that the 12 month period only has to be consecutive and not all within one tax year.

Hope it all gets sorted out.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: bgore88 on March 08, 2011, 02:00:56 pm
I just sent the 8802 to the IRS.  It wont get back to Korea until after I am gone.  My co teacher said he can handle it.  Will they with hold all of my reimbursements(flight, pension, severance) if that form isnt filed before I leave?  If so will they refund my money once the form is finally filed?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Ley_Druid on March 09, 2011, 12:48:30 pm
Email the IRS at the Beijing office. I did that yesterday and got a quick response. They were very clear and kind with their answer. You can call them too, but I find email is more clear because they usually read it once before sending it instead of all the verbal corrections.

I'm glad that I did!
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Pearl4885 on March 09, 2011, 02:10:46 pm
I was worried about taxes in January (this is my first year), and my accountant told me she would look into my situation. She came back to me and said because I am a US citizen I don't have to pay any taxes for the first two years out here. She made a copy of my passport and alien resident card, and said that was all she needed. I even asked her again later and she said she needed nothing more. Anyway, I'm reading all this about form 8802 on here, and I'm wondering if I should go ahead and get it anyway just to be safe, or if I'm in the clear? It seems like a pain to fill out here not to mention I would love to save the money. ha. I think if Korean taxes are pretty much 'done' until next year, then it would be pointless to pay for the certificate. Anyone been here for a while and have some advice?
Title: 2 years tax free.....then what?
Post by: pedro1980 on March 15, 2011, 01:29:06 pm
I have just started my third year in Korea. I was residing in the U.K before coming here and hold an Irish passport. So... for the first two years here I was exempt from paying tax. My new school tells me that I now need to start paying tax becuase I have been here more than two years. I dont have a problem with this, and thought it was a bonus to not have to pay for the first two years.

My question is, what does this mean financially? Anyone in or recently been in the same boat. Do I pay one big tax bill or is it deducted from my salary each month, if so the latter, how much will be deducted?


Title: Re: 2 years tax free.....then what?
Post by: Ectofuego on March 15, 2011, 01:30:52 pm
I was in private school last year, making more then public school wages and I only paid 45,000 a year.

If you have been here for a while you grandfather in to the old system too so only a small amount.  if your new, i heard the tax system changed and you pay considerably more, like 1 to 200,000
Title: Re: 2 years tax free.....then what?
Post by: twitch on March 15, 2011, 01:34:17 pm
i would recommend having your school take a percentage out of every pay cheque.  it's much better than getting a grand sum deducted at the end.
Title: Re: 2 years tax free.....then what?
Post by: pedro1980 on March 15, 2011, 01:35:25 pm
Ecto, 45,000 a year or a month?
Title: Re: 2 years tax free.....then what?
Post by: kate.d on March 15, 2011, 01:36:18 pm
last year i paid about 50,000 every month.  not a big deal.
Title: Re: 2 years tax free.....then what?
Post by: Daejeon on March 15, 2011, 01:41:09 pm
You pay a prepaid amount that is calculated from your monthly salary.  Then at the year end, when it is possible to calculate actual income for the tax year, you either are liable or entitled to tax payment.

The tax rate is 15% of your total ADJUSTED income, not your total net income.

Title: Re: 2 years tax free.....then what?
Post by: pedro1980 on March 15, 2011, 01:48:32 pm
Very conflicting stuff. Thanks to all who replied but im no further on really. one person says 50,000 a month, no big deal. quite right, id be happy to pay that. yet im also being told 15% of my adjusted salary. well i take home around 2.1 million so 15% of that is 315,000 a month which certainly is a big deal.
Title: Re: 2 years tax free.....then what?
Post by: thektulu7 on March 15, 2011, 01:59:39 pm
Very conflicting stuff. Thanks to all who replied but im no further on really. one person says 50,000 a month, no big deal. quite right, id be happy to pay that. yet im also being told 15% of my adjusted salary. well i take home around 2.1 million so 15% of that is 315,000 a month which certainly is a big deal.

Yes, I've heard that typical tax rates are between 2 and 4%...
Title: Re: 2 years tax free.....then what?
Post by: Daejeon on March 15, 2011, 02:06:41 pm
Very conflicting stuff. Thanks to all who replied but im no further on really. one person says 50,000 a month, no big deal. quite right, id be happy to pay that. yet im also being told 15% of my adjusted salary. well i take home around 2.1 million so 15% of that is 315,000 a month which certainly is a big deal.

15% of your adjusted income, not total income.  In appearance it seems to be about 4% but that isn't the case.

I know what I am talking about, I have a degree in taxation, and am working toward my MA
Title: Re: 2 years tax free.....then what?
Post by: teacher_del on March 15, 2011, 02:11:28 pm
Do I pay one big tax bill or is it deducted from my salary each month, if so the latter, how much will be deducted?
It can be done either way.  My school administrator did not deduct taxes monthly in 2010, so I (surprise!) paid in a lump sum (200,000?) in February.  If you want to be sure you won't be surprised, ask them to deduct a little bit monthly. 
Title: Re: 2 years tax free.....then what?
Post by: JamericanTeacher on March 15, 2011, 02:21:03 pm
Very conflicting stuff. Thanks to all who replied but im no further on really. one person says 50,000 a month, no big deal. quite right, id be happy to pay that. yet im also being told 15% of my adjusted salary. well i take home around 2.1 million so 15% of that is 315,000 a month which certainly is a big deal.

15% of your adjusted income, not total income.  In appearance it seems to be about 4% but that isn't the case.

I know what I am talking about, I have a degree in taxation, and am working toward my MA

Mind explaining the difference between 'adjusted income' and 'total income' for us non-taxation majors?

Title: Re: 2 years tax free.....then what?
Post by: pedro1980 on March 15, 2011, 02:21:33 pm
hagwon,

i dont doubt that you know what tou are talking about. can you tell me what is meant by adjusted income? is this the amount i take home each month after deductions or another figure all together. if i am supposed to pay 15% tax on my take home wage, as quoted previously this is a lot of money, in the region of 300,000 won. not, the 200,00 per year or even the 50,000 per month that others are quoting.
Title: Re: 2 years tax free.....then what?
Post by: infogoddess on March 15, 2011, 02:24:09 pm
a full explanation is found on this thread http://waygook.org/index.php/topic,4508.0.html

many people were hit with additional taxes in January because the rules changed quietly last year and many schools did not deduct enough money
Title: Re: 2 years tax free.....then what?
Post by: kawaiikitty on March 15, 2011, 03:02:02 pm
They definitely took about 600,000 from my paycheck without any warning. And it was just after I went to Japan for a week. fml.
Title: Re: 2 years tax free.....then what?
Post by: Daejeon on March 15, 2011, 03:33:58 pm
a full explanation is found on this thread http://waygook.org/index.php/topic,4508.0.html

many people were hit with additional taxes in January because the rules changed quietly last year and many schools did not deduct enough money

Refer to my post in this linked thread under the user handle Daejeon for full explanation
Title: Re: 2 years tax free.....then what?
Post by: suzettec on March 15, 2011, 03:44:17 pm
It's just like paying taxes at home.  They deduct so much a month and then when your taxes are due you either have to pay more or you get a refund. 

Make sure that they deduct your taxes out monthly otherwise you will have a huge bill due at the end of the year.  I have done this for the 2 1/2 years I've been here. 

This year I'm getting a refund.  It's not much that they take out if done monthly but it depends on how much you make.

Also if you have a Korean credit or debit (check) card call your bank and tell them you need a statement for your taxes at the end of the year.  I'm not sure how it works but if you use a card you can get additional tax breaks.  Your bank can fax this over to your school and you give it to your office manager and say it's your bank statement for you taxes.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: laurel on March 18, 2011, 11:02:40 am
Sorry if this is redundant, but just to clarify:
If I have been paying Korean taxes for 5 months (the length of time it has taken the IRS to send my Residency Certificate), once the form is submitted, will the Korean taxes that I have paid be refunded to me?

Thanks!
Title: Is it too late to apply for Residency Certificate?
Post by: AshleyTeacher on March 21, 2011, 02:15:23 pm
I am about to finish my year in Korea by April. My taxes have been taken out by the school because I was never notified about getting the Residency Certificate for USA citizens...

My question is: is it too late to apply for the RC?

Thank you!
Title: Re: Is it too late to apply for Residency Certificate?
Post by: expertamateur on March 21, 2011, 02:23:20 pm
You can get it back from the Korean government when you do obtain the certificate. I heard it can take a long time though.
Title: Re: Is it too late to apply for Residency Certificate?
Post by: AshleyTeacher on March 21, 2011, 02:27:40 pm
You can get it back from the Korean government when you do obtain the certificate. I heard it can take a long time though.

But I can still go through the process? My Admin staff just told me that the taxes have already been done for this year and it's "impossible" to bother to try.
Title: Re: Is it too late to apply for Residency Certificate?
Post by: laurel on March 21, 2011, 02:32:20 pm
The U.S. IRS took about 5 months to mail me my RC.  Unfortunately. their level of service might render you out of luck.
Title: Re: Is it too late to apply for Residency Certificate?
Post by: youlovetonyt on March 21, 2011, 02:46:29 pm
My school doesn't take out any taxes, but they never told me to get a RC.

I am confuseddddddd
Title: Re: Is it too late to apply for Residency Certificate?
Post by: AshleyTeacher on March 21, 2011, 03:11:13 pm
My school doesn't take out any taxes, but they never told me to get a RC.

I am confuseddddddd

This is for US citizens.... but if your school isn't taking out taxes right now, you will get a surprise at the end of the tax year. This is my 1st year and I was taxed last month.
Title: Re: Is it too late to apply for Residency Certificate?
Post by: ame on March 21, 2011, 03:16:12 pm
In my EPIK contract it's article 13 section 5.  You did read your contract, didn't you?
Title: Re: Is it too late to apply for Residency Certificate?
Post by: tfuller on March 21, 2011, 03:20:21 pm
My school doesn't take out any taxes, but they never told me to get a RC.

I am confuseddddddd

Yep, I was in the same situation.. until this year when the admin staff changed. They took taxes out from last year, but said that if i got a RC then they would refund the taxes i paid. They also old me that it didn't matter when i got it, as long as i got it.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: sheila on March 22, 2011, 09:06:08 am
Just a reminder that there's only about 25 days left of tax season left.  Check out this information and get your taxes done on time.... if you need one, Turbo Tax provides a free online tax service so you can get your taxes done fast and easy without the hassle. http://turbotax.intuit.com/personal-taxes/online/free-edition.jsp
Otherwise, make sure your parents are on top of that now since it takes a bit of time to be mailing documents around the world.  Happy refunds everyone~!
Title: Re: Is it too late to apply for Residency Certificate?
Post by: AshleyTeacher on March 22, 2011, 09:29:27 am
My school doesn't take out any taxes, but they never told me to get a RC.

I am confuseddddddd

Yep, I was in the same situation.. until this year when the admin staff changed. They took taxes out from last year, but said that if i got a RC then they would refund the taxes i paid. They also old me that it didn't matter when i got it, as long as i got it.

Do you know for sure? I will go back to the administration again today. I am the first teacher... so it'll be the first time for both of us to go through this.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: expertamateur on March 22, 2011, 10:25:29 am
Sorry if this is redundant, but just to clarify:
If I have been paying Korean taxes for 5 months (the length of time it has taken the IRS to send my Residency Certificate), once the form is submitted, will the Korean taxes that I have paid be refunded to me?

Thanks!

That's what my school administrator told me, but I'm crossing my fingers.
Title: Re: Is it too late to apply for Residency Certificate?
Post by: Skee Wee_1908 on March 22, 2011, 11:30:33 am
I was just told the exact same thing....when I turn in the forms and US certificate, I will be refunded whatever was taken out.....
Title: Re: Is it too late to apply for Residency Certificate?
Post by: bhogj on March 22, 2011, 11:39:13 am
If you do apply for US Reg, be sure to call them around the time they are SUPPOSED to have it done. Chances are, especially with tax season, it'll take them far longer than the websites state. However, I had luck when calling them on a bi-weekly basis. After three calls, someone was assigned to my documents. If you don't do anything about it, it'll probably just get lost in the shuffle. My friend applied and called around the time he was supposed to receive it, only to find out that they "had no record of his application." Call and verify often.
Title: Re: Tax Exemption Information for Americans: Residency Certificate
Post by: jejusiii on March 25, 2011, 12:08:54 pm
OK, so it's been about 5 months since I've started this process and I'm still waiting on my residency certificate (long story).  talked to them today, and it seems as though I'll get it in the mail in about a month. 

I am getting income taxes taken out of my paycheck right now (as I am still waiting on the residency cert)... does anyone have any experience in getting that income tax back?  Is this even possible?

I was told by the people in the office that I could not get it back (their English is limited... they might not have understood me), but someone on this thread stated earlier that you can.  Just curious if any one else has dealt with this.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: dinomite385 on March 27, 2011, 09:20:16 pm
I arrived in Korea in the end of August after working in the US until then.  From my understanding I need to file for an extension (form 2350) in order to qualify for the physical presence test on form 2555.  Then, when the time for my extension comes up, I need to send in both forms 1040 and 2555.  Is this correct?  Also, does anyone know if extension requests are ever denied in these situations?  Any help would be appreciated!
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: mr sam teacher on March 28, 2011, 08:16:40 am
I arrived in Korea in the end of August after working in the US until then.  From my understanding I need to file for an extension (form 2350) in order to qualify for the physical presence test on form 2555.  Then, when the time for my extension comes up, I need to send in both forms 1040 and 2555.  Is this correct?  Also, does anyone know if extension requests are ever denied in these situations?  Any help would be appreciated!

You are correct. I have never heard of the extension being denied, but I've no real knowledge of that. I don't see that the IRS would have any incentive to deny it.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: dinomite385 on March 28, 2011, 08:35:46 am
Thanks for the help, Sam Teacher.  I also just wanted to add, in case anyone else hasn't filed for the extension yet and is in a similar situation to me, that if you are out of the country you actually have two extra months to getthe extension form 2350 in. 

I found some helpful information on the instructions today:
However, if you have 2 extra months to file your return because you were “out of the
country” (defined next), file Form 2350 on or before June 15, 2011. You
should file Form 2350 early enough so that if it is not approved, you can
still file your return on time.
“Out of the country” means that on the regular due date of your
return, either (a) you live outside the United States and Puerto Rico and
your main place of work is outside the United States and Puerto Rico, or
(b) you are in military or naval service outside the United States and
Puerto Rico. If you qualify as being “out of the country,” you will still be
eligible for the extension, even if you are physically present in the United
States or Puerto Rico on the regular due date of the return. You do not
have to file a form to get the 2-month extension because you were out
of the country. But you will have to attach a statement to your tax return
explaining how you qualified.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: pr1ncejeffie on March 28, 2011, 10:26:00 am
Hello all!

OMG... this is going to make you guys kill me!

Okay, I know I need to do a Form 2555EZ form for Foreign Earned Income Exclusion and Form 8802 for Certificate of Residency to be Korean Tax Exempt (yes, I'm a public school teacher).

Here is the problem...

I haven't filed my taxes since 2008.  :( :o
I have my W2 form from my old job before coming to Korea.
Do I need a different form for Foreign Earned Income Exclusion for 2009 and 2010?
Do I need to do a 1040 form for my 2008 US job?
Title: U.S. Taxes
Post by: Miss Sophisticated on April 01, 2011, 12:32:08 pm
Hello All,

         I'm exempted from paying Korean taxes, but still owe U.S. taxes and was wondering
if there were any businesses like H& R Block or Jackson Hewitt here in Korea?   Thank you in advance for the advice. ;)
Title: Re: U.S. Taxes
Post by: miriamluv on April 01, 2011, 12:58:57 pm
Yeah, you have to either pay U.S. taxes or Korean.  I just paid Korean, and then filed U.S. taxes online . . . it was pretty easy.  I used either turbo tax or H & R block, I can't remember.  Anyways, you do have to pay and mail it in because you are international.
Title: Re: U.S. Taxes
Post by: kyletr05 on April 01, 2011, 01:00:21 pm
When I asked my CPA about it, I was told that if I stay outside the country more than 330 days out of the year (can't remember the exact #) that I don't have to pay American taxes either...
Title: Re: U.S. Taxes
Post by: bethannv on April 01, 2011, 01:03:33 pm
hey, everyone. even if you dont pay american txes, you still need to claim foreign income earned, on a 2555 form.
i did the 2555 ez form, it takes about 5 minutes.
Title: Re: U.S. Taxes
Post by: scottdk on April 01, 2011, 01:07:18 pm
By filling out an 8802 you (US citizen) can avoid paying taxes in Korea.  From what I understand this is a request form to receive an official Resident Certificate showing you are US resident, thus not having to pay Korean tax.  As my cpa explained to me, if you are living outside the country for so many days and your earnings do not exceed X amount of dollars (i'd say all teachers aren't even near that X amount, can't remember it off the top of my head) for the year, you do not pay US taxes. 
Title: Taxes
Post by: Choman10 on April 07, 2011, 11:53:06 am
So I'm filling out my taxes and luckily my current teaching job doesn't count toward this tax season.  But I'm wondering what to do next time.  Usually I just use Turbo Tax online, but what specifically should I be looking out for when it comes to a US citizen teaching in Korea?
Title: Re: Is it too late to apply for Residency Certificate?
Post by: goodgollymiss on April 07, 2011, 12:48:58 pm
I requested this form from the IRS a full month before my departure last September (within the 30 day guarantee of my receiving the form;) it is now April and I still haven't received anything.

I'm just hoping this doesn't have too huge an impact. It'd be frustrating to know I was flushing money down the drain because the IRS is majorly inefficient.
Title: Re: Is it too late to apply for Residency Certificate?
Post by: scottdk on April 07, 2011, 01:01:20 pm
I had filled out and turned in my 8802 last September.  I finally got a letter saying they had received it this February and that within 30day I should have my RC.  I have contacted the IRS earlier this week and apparently they are WAY behind; there are some 50,000 be processed.  At least they have record of my form, but all they told me was to file again with my taxes... felt like they were saying you're &$#* out of luck but file anyway.  Hopefully when I do (or IF I do) receive it I can be refunded the taxes I will end up paying.
Title: Re: Is it too late to apply for Residency Certificate?
Post by: hmhlee on April 07, 2011, 01:13:12 pm
But I can still go through the process? My Admin staff just told me that the taxes have already been done for this year and it's "impossible" to bother to try.

I was told the same thing by my school as well as my district education office.  Then at an administrative meeting yesterday, we were told to contact Korea's tax office to figure things out. 
Here's their website:  http://www.nts.go.kr/eng/.  Good luck!
Title: Re: Is it too late to apply for Residency Certificate?
Post by: Malapropism on April 07, 2011, 01:16:17 pm
It might be different from school to school, but I just started teaching and I am waiting for the US government to send me my residency certificate. I am fairly sure the school is taking out taxes, but I was assured that once I have the certificate, the school will give me the taxes back. Though to be honest, it really isn't that much money so it is almost worth it to pay taxes here instead of the States. I already applied for the certificate so I am going to complete the process rather than risk a giant mess.
Title: Re: Is it too late to apply for Residency Certificate?
Post by: katrine on April 07, 2011, 01:20:16 pm
I just found out yesterday that my local tax office has lost my residency certificate, and I have to get it again. It took me five months last year to get it back from the IRS, but the office of education says it's no problem to get the all the taxes back as long as there is at least two months before I leave Korea.

hmlee, the impossible is just a lazy lie. You can get it all back. I do know it's more difficult, but for me, getting back the taxes for the past year is about 500k. Well worth pressuring them to go through the effort.
Title: Re: Is it too late to apply for Residency Certificate?
Post by: scbouy on April 07, 2011, 03:10:17 pm
My school is actually making me do this and I don't really want to. I'm unsure if I will be taxed in the US but I would rather be taxed in Korea since it is lower.
Title: Re: Is it too late to apply for Residency Certificate?
Post by: verbalist on April 07, 2011, 03:15:34 pm
I don't know if it is too late, but why would you want to pay US taxes?  They are much higher than the taxes that you would pay here. 
Title: Re: Is it too late to apply for Residency Certificate?
Post by: alfredmaul on April 07, 2011, 03:20:09 pm
1)  The residency certificate is RETROACTIVE, even past the school year if you're tenacious enough and have someone in Korea pushing for you.

2)  Being exempt from taxes in Korea is NOT mutually exclusive with being exempt from taxes in the U.S.  For up to two years you do not have to pay taxes to either country.  There are stipulations but research them yourself, form 2555ez, etc.

3)  DYDD. 
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Hollylove on April 07, 2011, 03:41:56 pm
do we still file a 1040?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: awaygookindarok on April 07, 2011, 03:46:40 pm
I am a F4 visa holder. How does taxation law change for me? I am a LEGAL resident, but have my citizenship in the USA.
Title: Re: Is it too late to apply for Residency Certificate?
Post by: MissTerry on April 08, 2011, 02:05:07 pm
I called the IRS office today and they warned about the possible government shutdown as well, which could even further delay getting the residency certification. I need to apply for this as well. What a pain in the ass.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Lever on April 10, 2011, 02:16:47 am
The extension:

I believe everyone living abroad gets a 2 month extension because we have to physically mail in our taxes.  I completed them online, but I can't e-file because I'm outside the US.

Question:

I work at a public school, and they need to know the address of my employer.  Should I use my school or my Office of Education?
Title: US tax exemption: 7 months in korea, can i apply now?
Post by: seorakboys on April 11, 2011, 12:47:48 pm
hi i've been in korea for 7 months now but i never applied for the US residency tax exemption for korea.  is it too late to apply for it?  will i get reimbursed for the 7 months i paid korean taxes? and if i do apply for the tax exemption in korea, how will effect my taxes in the US?  would i have to pay some kind of international tax for the US government?  thanks
Title: Re: US tax exemption: 7 months in korea, can i apply now?
Post by: Zeeto on April 11, 2011, 12:58:30 pm
You should ask your school accountant about the tax exemption, as they are the one that's paid to know (or figure out) the answer.  As for the way I understand US taxes, the residency certificate will not affect your filing there as long as you wait until you pass the physical presence test.
Title: Re: US tax exemption: 7 months in korea, can i apply now?
Post by: seorakboys on April 12, 2011, 01:05:03 pm
great thanks for the help. i'll talk with my school financial office.
Title: Re: US tax exemption: 7 months in korea, can i apply now?
Post by: DNogitsune on April 12, 2011, 01:11:38 pm
hi i've been in korea for 7 months now but i never applied for the US residency tax exemption for korea.  is it too late to apply for it?  will i get reimbursed for the 7 months i paid korean taxes? and if i do apply for the tax exemption in korea, how will effect my taxes in the US?  would i have to pay some kind of international tax for the US government?  thanks

1. Yes, It took awhile for me to find out how to get mine and for it to finish.

2. No, it's not to late.

3. Yes, there is a way to get them back.

4. It means you won't get double taxed.  You will have to pay the taxes you had in the states while you were working there before you took the job in Korea.

5.  I forgot how to apply for the reimbursement. I am sure it is on here somewhere. My school just didn't tax me.

6. International tax?  No idea.
Title: Residency Certification for American,
Post by: sonohgong on April 12, 2011, 09:59:59 pm
I know we can apply for Tax Exemption on non-resident's Korean source income provided under the Korea Tax treaty.
I'm trying to apply residency certification first in order to have tax exemption, but I have no clue where to start.
I downloaded 8802 form from IRS website, Do i need to fill my tax return from last year along with the 8802 form??
Please help me. I have so many questions now....=(
Title: I Received My US Tax Form (6166)...Now What?
Post by: mavsfan5 on April 14, 2011, 07:38:35 am
After about 5 months of waiting, I finally received my tax form saying that I am a US citizen. From my understanding, this should exempt me from paying taxes in Korea (I'm a PS teacher)...is that right? Also, do I just give this to my school administration office or what? Thanks for the help!
Title: Re: I Received My US Tax Form (6166)...Now What?
Post by: meesh on April 14, 2011, 08:42:47 am
I had to take it to my tax collector's office in my district. I would ask your coteacher, but make sure you know exactly where it needs to go (and maybe they will take you.) I heard of some people handing it to their school, but their school didn't submit it to the tax collectors, which = them paying taxes. It took me literally about 1 min at the collector's office to hand it to them - I just printed off a form I filled out at school and took it, along with my proof of citizenship and copy of contract(?) to that office.
((can't remember if I took that copy of my contract, but I'm pretty sure I needed to!)

**also just attached the form I needed to fill out - it also says the documents you need along with it
Title: Re: I Received My US Tax Form (6166)...Now What?
Post by: mavsfan5 on April 14, 2011, 03:27:07 pm
Awesome!! Thank you so much!!
Title: Tax Free Status for Americans
Post by: kimchi_lover545 on April 14, 2011, 03:54:06 pm
Hi everyone,

I know tax day isn't far off. I got this email from the US Embassy in Seoul, and thought I would repost here for everyone's convenience. The short: you do NOT have to pay taxes as long as you are here for almost one year.

Cheers.

FOREIGN EARNED INCOME EXCLUSION

The Foreign Earned Income Exclusion (FEIE) is the amount of income earned overseas that may be excluded from U.S. income taxes if certain criteria are met.  The maximum FEIE amount for 2010 is $91,500.  However, one of the criteria to qualify for the FEIE is the “Physical Presence Test.”  This means the U.S. taxpayer must have been physically present in a foreign country for at least 330 days during CY 2010 or during a period of consecutive 12 months starting or ending in 2010.  The www.irs.gov (http://www.irs.gov) website has Publication 54 which provides a more detailed explanation of FEIE.
Title: Re: Tax Free Status for Americans
Post by: cat23 on April 14, 2011, 03:59:45 pm
yes, but you should still file!
Title: Re: Tax Free Status for Americans
Post by: mscorpgrl on April 14, 2011, 04:01:58 pm
Yes, you must still file! Although I didn't owe anything for Federal Taxes, California doesn't honor the federal treaty (too poor I guess?) so I still have to pay to the State.   :( So watch out for that!
Title: Re: Tax Free Status for Americans
Post by: kimchi_lover545 on April 14, 2011, 04:02:35 pm
I just sent the IRS a plastic bag with kimchi inside. I figured they would understand that.
Title: Re: Tax Free Status for Americans
Post by: mscorpgrl on April 14, 2011, 04:02:59 pm
I just sent the IRS a plastic bag with kimchi inside. I figured they would understand that.


Hahahahahaha
Title: Re: Tax Free Status for Americans
Post by: mr sam teacher on April 14, 2011, 06:00:22 pm
I know tax day isn't far off. I got this email from the US Embassy in Seoul, and thought I would repost here for everyone's convenience. The short: you do NOT have to pay taxes as long as you are here for almost one year.

And if you haven't been here for 330 days, file a form 2350 to get an extension! http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/f2350.pdf (http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/f2350.pdf)
Title: Re: Tax Free Status for Americans
Post by: kimchi_lover545 on April 14, 2011, 06:47:00 pm
Cheers, thank you for the info.
Title: Re: Tax Free Status for Americans
Post by: nwgurl on April 14, 2011, 07:29:45 pm
Grr, I'm still working on my taxes, I'm such a procrastinator!  I been here for over a year and a half so I'm past the 330 mark.  It looks like I will have to pay some taxes this year.  I'm just going slowly step by step to make sure I have everything in order.  If you are already finished, Congratulations! Otherwise, I wish you luck on this irritating journey.^^
Title: US Citizen Tax Laws
Post by: dachiza727 on April 15, 2011, 09:18:21 am
US citizen here,

What documents do we need to fill out if any to appease the IRS back home?  Does anyone know? 
Title: Re: US Citizen Tax Laws
Post by: madininasmile on April 15, 2011, 09:22:35 am
i used turbotax to take me through everything, it was really easy, but since we're overseas, you have to pay $35 for an upgraded version, which i think is worth it.

the main form we need is form 2555-EZ, the foreign earned income exclusion. good luck!
Title: Re: US Citizen Tax Laws
Post by: korr on April 15, 2011, 09:24:38 am
I think it's just the foreign income exclusion, maybe a 1040 if you need it, and I think there might be a new form for international bank accounts because of that new bank secrecy act. Check here: http://www.irs.gov/businesses/small/international/index.html
Title: Re: US Citizen Tax Laws
Post by: Trybus on April 15, 2011, 09:40:07 am
I've looked into this quite a bit, and here's what you'll need.

1. Taxes are due on 4/18 for most Americans, but if you live overseas, you get an automatic 2 month extension to file and pay taxes.

2. You'll need the 1040, the 2555 EZ or 2555, maybe form 2350, and maybe the Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts (FBAR) if your bank accounts here were ever over $10,000 US.

3.  Form 1040 is the usual one.  2555 is to claim your Foreign Earned Income Exclusion if you qualify for it.  (If you've been here for a while, or you will, you probably do qualify.)  Form 2350 is if you'll eventually qualify for that exclusion, but you won't qualify until after your taxes are due.  Like for me, I came to Korea in September of last year.  I need to be here for 330 days out of 12 months to get that exclusion so I don't pay taxes.  I won't technically qualify by June (when we have to file our taxes), so the I'm filing the form to get an extension.  They give you until 13 months from when you arrived.  So for me, that's October of 2011.

Good luck!  Any other questions, just ask.
Title: Re: US Citizen Tax Laws
Post by: dachiza727 on April 15, 2011, 09:41:12 am
Thanks guys!  I'm trying to keep in line with uncle sam while i'm away.  I don't want to make the IRS angry.  =)
Title: Re: US Citizen Tax Laws
Post by: jamierlyon on April 15, 2011, 09:41:48 am
Oh taxes!

The basic form that everyone needs is a 1040, you must submit that every year.  Depending on how long you've been abroad, you may be eligible to also file form 2555EZ and claim a foreign income exclusion (that means you won't have to pay taxes on anything earned in Korea).

Unfortunately, you can only claim Foreign Income Exclusion if you have been in Korea for practically the entire tax year (you must meet the "Foreign Residency Test").  We first came over in August 2009, so for our 2009 taxes we were only in Korea for about 4 months and had to pay taxes on our foreign income.  However, since we stayed in Korea and have been present here from January 1 2010 to December 31 2010, we DO qualify this year and do not need to pay any FEDERAL taxes on our income, which is easily taken care of by using form 2555EZ.

If your case is the same as ours, we found it was pretty easy to just print the paper documents for the 1040 and 2555EZ.

If you want way more information than you actually need, worded in ways normal humans can't possibly comprehend, here is the IRS guide for US citizens living abroad.  http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p54.pdf

State taxes are on a state by state basis, I have NO IDEA what I'm supposed to do - anyone from Massachusetts know how to file?
Title: Re: US Citizen Tax Laws
Post by: jamierlyon on April 15, 2011, 09:44:14 am
OH!  And you have qualified student loans, you may want to hunt down from your loan provider how much you paid in qualified interest, especially if you paid taxes on income in the states prior to coming over here.  Interest paid on qualified student loans is deductible.

Title: Re: US Citizen Tax Laws
Post by: mr sam teacher on April 15, 2011, 09:47:26 am
Oh taxes!

The basic form that everyone needs is a 1040, you must submit that every year.  Depending on how long you've been abroad, you may be eligible to also file form 2555EZ and claim a foreign income exclusion (that means you won't have to pay taxes on anything earned in Korea).

Unfortunately, you can only claim Foreign Income Exclusion if you have been in Korea for practically the entire tax year (you must meet the "Foreign Residency Test").  We first came over in August 2009, so for our 2009 taxes we were only in Korea for about 4 months and had to pay taxes on our foreign income.  However, since we stayed in Korea and have been present here from January 1 2010 to December 31 2010, we DO qualify this year and do not need to pay any FEDERAL taxes on our income, which is easily taken care of by using form 2555EZ.

If your case is the same as ours, we found it was pretty easy to just print the paper documents for the 1040 and 2555EZ.

If you want way more information than you actually need, worded in ways normal humans can't possibly comprehend, here is the IRS guide for US citizens living abroad.  http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p54.pdf

State taxes are on a state by state basis, I have NO IDEA what I'm supposed to do - anyone from Massachusetts know how to file?

If you haven't been here for 330 days as of filing time, you can file a form 2350 and get an extension. http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/f2350.pdf (http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/f2350.pdf)
Title: Re: US Citizen Tax Laws
Post by: Hoogie10 on April 15, 2011, 09:59:56 am
Trybus and jamierlyon sound like they know what's up.  It seems ridiculous to be filing taxes when we KNOW we don't need to pay them, but that's the US system for ya.  Better than incurring the wrath of the IRS at a future date.  This year I filed form 1040 on taxslayer.com (only cost $15, I think).  I also filed the Foreign Income Exclusion or whatever 2555 (which you can do as PART of form 1040).  Turns out my school this year screwed up and was charging me Korean tax (last teacher here was Canadian).  Now they're giving the tax back, but requiring me to file for a "Residency Certificate" which requires filling out Form 8802 and REQUESTING Form 6166, which proves that you are a US citizen, we have a tax treaty with Korea, and we don't need to pay Korean income tax.  This required a fee of $35 and faxing internationally (which the school was kind enough to take care of).  It also can take up to 45 days, so I haven't recieved the forms yet.  Not sure you want to deal with that unless you're required/requested to...  My first year at a high school I never heard anything about it and never paid taxes...  As for the state requirements--google it!  I wouldn't worry about it too much.  It looked to me like I didn't need to file anything for Missouri...that was good enough for me.  Ahh, also, has anyone ever heard of some card we can get that will eliminate SALES tax?  I thought I heard about that a looonnng time ago--like you go to Emart and they take off your taxes?  But I never followed up on it properly and those I did ask, didn't seem to know...  Anyway--taxes suck.  Good luck!
Title: Re: US Citizen Tax Laws
Post by: jamierlyon on April 15, 2011, 10:01:39 am
Oh mr sam teacher!  Where were you LAST tax season!!  I had no idea about that option, awesome, awesome suggestion for new folks.

Blasted IRS, they really don't make finding these options easy...
Title: Re: US Citizen Tax Laws
Post by: sassneggs on April 15, 2011, 10:07:47 am
Hi there. If you call the IRS, they actually have foreign tax accounts to walk you through every step.  However, if you own things back home, there are a lot of exclusions that are available...which menas you are working at loss...which is a good place to be tax wise.  I hired an accountant to take care of all of that business so there wouldn't be any mistakes.  Please let me know if you would like his name.
Title: Re: US Citizen Tax Laws
Post by: Trybus on April 15, 2011, 10:08:42 am
Never fear, jamierlyon.  If you could have gotten more back on last year's taxes, you can always file an amended return to get your moola.  You have three years to do it.

Also, if you worked in the US for any part of 2010, don't forget the 1040 Schedule M form.  It's called the Making Work Pay Credit and it's worth $400 (unless you made a ton of money).
Title: Re: US Citizen Tax Laws
Post by: Trybus on April 15, 2011, 10:17:03 am
Are you still in Korea?

If you were here for only for months of 2010 and you're gone now, then yeah.  You'd owe money.

But if your were here for September - December and you're still here, then you won't owe anything if you stay long enough.  That's what form 2350 would be for.
Title: Re: US Citizen Tax Laws
Post by: jauntwithjo on April 15, 2011, 10:23:46 am
Don't mean to hijack this thread, but I heard talk about Federal taxes are not state taxes?
Title: Re: US Citizen Tax Laws
Post by: taingray on April 15, 2011, 10:26:56 am
Are you still in Korea?

If you were here for only for months of 2010 and you're gone now, then yeah.  You'd owe money.

But if your were here for September - December and you're still here, then you won't owe anything if you stay long enough.  That's what form 2350 would be for.

Yes, I'm still in Korea and plan to be for another year at least.  I got here at the end of August 2010.  And 2350 is the extension form, right?  I submitted that so hopefully I'll be OK! 

Thanks!
Title: Re: US Citizen Tax Laws
Post by: jih on April 15, 2011, 12:46:21 pm
Even if you don't file with them, TaxAct is a good program to use to make sure your numbers are right if you've never filed abroad before.
Title: Re: US Citizen Tax Laws
Post by: jamierlyon on April 15, 2011, 01:52:31 pm
...This year I filed form 1040 on taxslayer.com (only cost $15, I think).

I think if I had known their was a tax program out there called "taxslayer", I would have dropped the $15 bucks just so I could say that "my taxes have been SLAIN".  Tax season does sort of make me feel like an ax-wielding viking...
Title: Re: US Citizen Tax Laws
Post by: emwsu on April 15, 2011, 02:15:39 pm
One of my accountant friends did some reading for me. In a earlier conversation she said that the extension doesn't work for you to get the 330 days out of US.

This is what she told me:
So I re-read what I was talking about and there is an exclusion for foreign income. The annual amount is $91,500, but you have to be there for the full tax year to get the whole amount. In your case, since you are going to be there for a full year for sure, you get a pro-rated exclusion. You just have to figure out how many days you were in Korea in 2010 and divide it by 365 days. Then multiply that by 91,500 and that is how much you get to exclude. Of course there is a form you have to file showing that on your return.

Title: Re: US Citizen Tax Laws
Post by: Trybus on April 15, 2011, 02:55:29 pm
There are two "tests" to getting the deduction.  The first is called the "bona fide residence test."  That one means that you've been a resident in another country for an entire calendar year, Jan 1 - Dec 31.  The other is called the "physical presence test," which is where the 330 days out of 12 months come from.

Form 2350 gets you an extension in order to qualify for either one.  So if your 12 month span started in 2010 after the date that you're filing in 2011, then you file the form to be able to wait longer.  Make sense?

Here's a quote from 2350's instructions:

"Use Form 2350 to ask for an extension of time to file your tax return only if you expect to file Form 2555 or 2555-EZ and you need the time to meet either the bona fide residence test or the physical presence test to qualify for the foreign earned income exclusion and/or the foreign housing exclusion or deduction."
Title: Re: US Citizen Tax Laws
Post by: mrchristeacher on April 15, 2011, 03:33:03 pm
How do you go about filing your taxes in Korea?  My first two years here, I had taxes taken out of my pay, but never filed.  For the last three years, I have worked as a public school teacher and never had taxes taken out.  I was told that as an American, it's tax free for the first two years as a public school teacher.  This is now my third year at the same school, and they have yet to take any taxes out. 

I do file with the IRS every year, but I am exempt from paying US taxes.  I don't make over the US overseas tax exemption. 

Thank you. 
Title: Re: US Citizen Tax Laws
Post by: Trybus on April 15, 2011, 03:34:46 pm
I read a lot of conflicting stuff about that last year.

Actually, it's not fraud.  I called the IRS in December and was told that I'm still eligible for the Foreign Earned Income Exclusion even though I don't pay Korean taxes.  As long as you meet all of the tests in the instructions of form 2555, you're good to go.  It doesn't get you out of paying all US taxes, just for income under $91,500. 

If there's any question, just file all of the right forms to get the deduction and be honest about your income.  If there's a problem, I'm pretty sure Uncle Sam won't hesitate to turn you down.
Title: Re: US Citizen Tax Laws
Post by: thefrownclown on April 15, 2011, 04:08:12 pm
Agreed Trybus, it's not fraud. As long as you meet one of the requirements for Foreign Earned Income Exclusion you're fine in the eyes of the IRS. The issue with Korea is a separate matter. You have two years of tax free eligibility from the U.S. - R.O.K. Income Tax Convention entered into force Oct. 20 1979. Article 20 concerning teachers is pretty clear and is not influenced by your status with the IRS.
 
Title: Re: US Citizen Tax Laws
Post by: winterfall on April 17, 2011, 02:26:24 pm
Agreed Trybus, it's not fraud. As long as you meet one of the requirements for Foreign Earned Income Exclusion you're fine in the eyes of the IRS. The issue with Korea is a separate matter. You have two years of tax free eligibility from the U.S. - R.O.K. Income Tax Convention entered into force Oct. 20 1979. Article 20 concerning teachers is pretty clear and is not influenced by your status with the IRS.

Thanks for clearing that up. To other posters. Even if you pay $0. You still need to file. And the exclusion is only on foreign income. It's not a across the board $91,500 tax break.
Title: Paying taxes on renewal/severance bonus with a US residency certificate?
Post by: pdxinsk on April 21, 2011, 01:28:01 pm
Sorry if this question has been answered elsewhere on Waygook, I looked and didn't see anything though.

I'm wondering if this has happened to anyone else. I recently started my second year at my school (with GEPIK), and when I got a copy of my paycheck information for my bonus (renewal, re-signing, severance, whatever you want to call it - the bonus you get that's equal to one month's salary when you complete a one-year contract), I noticed I had taxes taken out - about 58,000 won for income tax, and about 6,000 won for resident tax.

I have my US residency certificate and submitted it to my school when I first got to Korea (so, before my first paycheck), so I have not had any Korean taxes taken out of my paycheck, until this one.

My co-teacher asked the administration office about it, and the answer they gave was that my bonus isn't counted as "income", so the tax exemption with the residency certificate doesn't apply.

This sounds strange to me, but I suppose it could be right….

Has anyone else had to pay Korean taxes on their bonus when they have their US residency certificate?  I’ve looked around online and looked through the Korea-US tax treaty, but haven’t found anything that answers my question.  I’m just wondering if this is completely normal or if I should talk to my school about it. It’s not the biggest amount of money in the world, but, I wouldn’t mind having it either.
 
Any responses would be greatly appreciated!
Title: Re: Paying taxes on renewal/severance bonus with a US residency certificate?
Post by: Daejeon on April 21, 2011, 03:12:57 pm
"income" is only income when it is given in exchange for a service.

Receiving severance is not income because a service isn't exchanged for it.  It is considered a fringe benefit, or bonus.

It only becomes income for tax purposes at the year end.  You should receive a credit note against the prepaid tax on the bonus at the year end.
Title: Re: Paying taxes on renewal/severance bonus with a US residency certificate?
Post by: pdxinsk on April 21, 2011, 05:51:25 pm
Thank you Daejeon! I appreciate the response and the information.

Since I posted this I've talked with a couple other NET's from the US, who also had the residency certificate, who did NOT have to pay tax on their bonus. I don't know if it varies from school to school, so I am  curious to hear what is the norm as far as if people have had their bonuses taxed in the past or not.
Title: Re: Paying taxes on renewal/severance bonus with a US residency certificate?
Post by: Daejeon on April 21, 2011, 06:45:03 pm
There was a system error, or benefit given to foreigners in Korea pre 2010 that allowed these FB's and bonuses to go untaxed.  They have since remedied this situation.  However, each province has its own tax department, and some aren't up to speed on the correct method of applying tax to bonus and benefit payments.

Hope that has cleared it up for you.
Title: To Pay or Not to Pay...that is the question! (Taxes)
Post by: Super English Teacher on April 22, 2011, 09:33:54 am
So my school just asked me if I wanted to pay taxes in Korea or taxes in the United States. A recruiter suggested that I should pay taxes in Korea because they have a lower percentage of tax owed. This is my first year here in Korea so I haven't had to pay taxes in the States on money earned here...yet. How are you handling this issue? Do we really have a choice or does the US require us to pay taxes to them? Please give me any tips or advice you might have.  :)
Title: Re: To Pay or Not to Pay...that is the question! (Taxes)
Post by: pyeager on April 22, 2011, 09:42:01 am
You have to pay taxes everywhere. Luckily, the US gives you a foreign income exclusion up to like $85,000. You should definitely file so that you show income if you want a loan or something in the future. Just file an extension and do your final taxes after you pass the 330 day physical presence foreign residency test.
Title: Re: To Pay or Not to Pay...that is the question! (Taxes)
Post by: Ectofuego on April 22, 2011, 09:46:54 am
State that you will pay in the states.  I am guess you are public school.  You get a 2 year exclusion from paying taxes in korea if you are public.  You get an exclusion from paying taxes in the states if it is under 85,000 annual international.
Title: Re: To Pay or Not to Pay...that is the question! (Taxes)
Post by: cc10det on April 22, 2011, 09:47:59 am
Actually  for the first 2 years you are exempt from both as long as you work in Korea for more than 330 days in a tax year. See Korea/US tax treaty.

Fill form 8802/6166 http://www.irs.gov/businesses/small/international/article/0,,id=122559,00.html
When you get it returned you can submit it to your school or the Korea Tax office and you are exempt from Korean taxes (or you can get a refund if you paid)

Then fill form 2350: http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/f2350.pdf and request an extension till the date you arrived in Korea (i.e. arrival August 2010..extend to August 2011) Submit a 1040 in August.. It's so sweet to fill in the 0000's

Fyi, This is as far as I understand it after spending hours on the phone with the IRS and talking to other waygooks. I am gonna roll with it. 
Title: Re: To Pay or Not to Pay...that is the question! (Taxes)
Post by: ricky.dedos on April 22, 2011, 09:58:37 am
I opted not to pay it because that 8802 form cost more than the taxes I payed in my first year. Also mailing it in is an extra 15,000w. After I mailed it in they said I need to send something else and I got frustrated. Soooo, it's actually easier and cheaper to pay the Korean tax. That 8802 is effin retarded btw. I dare you to read it once (maybe even twice) and understand what's needed.
Title: Re: To Pay or Not to Pay...that is the question! (Taxes)
Post by: gookway on April 22, 2011, 10:08:59 am
So my school just asked me if I wanted to pay taxes in Korea or taxes in the United States. A recruiter suggested that I should pay taxes in Korea because they have a lower percentage of tax owed. This is my first year here in Korea so I haven't had to pay taxes in the States on money earned here...yet. How are you handling this issue? Do we really have a choice or does the US require us to pay taxes to them? Please give me any tips or advice you might have.  :)

Why would they ask you if you want to pay taxes here or in your home country?  I didn't know the korean schools have the means to contact your home government or tax revenue agency to report to them everything you are earning in korea? o-o
Title: Re: To Pay or Not to Pay...that is the question! (Taxes)
Post by: Super English Teacher on April 22, 2011, 11:25:53 am
I don't think they report what I make...I think they were just wondering if I was going to pay taxes here or be exempt and pay them at home.
Title: Re: To Pay or Not to Pay...that is the question! (Taxes)
Post by: charliepacific27 on April 22, 2011, 07:21:07 pm
On a related note, I applied for the US Residency Certificate before I left. It's mildly frustrating because they said it would take 45 days to process and it took 60 before we got a letter that said it was going to take another 30 days. Then today, about 45 days after that letter, my mother in the US gets a phone call from the state department asking for me to fax a statement in that says "Under penalty of perjury I certify that I resided in the US in 2009, 2010, and will continue to reside in the US in 2011". From my understanding I'm still a resident of the US even though I'm working on a contract in Korea, right? I'd hate to perjure myself in order to get a tax benefit...any advice?
Title: Re: To Pay or Not to Pay...that is the question! (Taxes)
Post by: mr sam teacher on April 23, 2011, 12:27:22 pm
On a related note, I applied for the US Residency Certificate before I left. It's mildly frustrating because they said it would take 45 days to process and it took 60 before we got a letter that said it was going to take another 30 days. Then today, about 45 days after that letter, my mother in the US gets a phone call from the state department asking for me to fax a statement in that says "Under penalty of perjury I certify that I resided in the US in 2009, 2010, and will continue to reside in the US in 2011". From my understanding I'm still a resident of the US even though I'm working on a contract in Korea, right? I'd hate to perjure myself in order to get a tax benefit...any advice?

Before you sign any statement under penalty of perjury, I'd highly recommend calling the IRS. You don't want to accidentally sign something that is technically untrue. Perjury is not to be entered into lightly...
Title: Korean Tax Reimbursement for Americans
Post by: TurkeyDonkey on April 28, 2011, 03:42:41 pm
I'm American, and unfortunately I did not secure my IRS form stating that I'm an American resident before I got to Korea. No problem I thought, as I've been told that the money taken out for Korean taxes will get reimbursed once I've gotten the previously mentioned form.

Well, then my co-teacher told me that she was informed by the Daegu MOE that my school does NOT have to reimburse me. I've been looking around for something official to give my administration office to prove otherwise, but can't find it.

Has anyone been through this? Can you tell me what process you went through to get the tax reimbursement? Am I just out of luck?
Title: Re: Korean Tax Reimbursement for Americans
Post by: Borababe1 on April 28, 2011, 07:16:18 pm
Just get the form ASAP.  It takes about a month and costs $45, but once you get the form(after filing U.S. taxes), then the school can no longer collect tax money from you.  It's based on a U.S./Korea treaty, so it's federal law, and is good for two years. 
Title: I haven't filed my US taxes since 2009
Post by: Gomdori on April 29, 2011, 07:27:25 pm
I have not filed taxes in the US since I arrived in Korea in April of 2010.  Does anyone know what my punishment will be or what will happen when I go to file taxes again?  I have tried contacting the IRS in Beijing, but have never been given a simple answer about what I need to do.  Honestly, it is just too much of a hassle from what they have told me.  I have no W2's from 2008, no documents except for some paystubs from my time here in Korea.  I know I don't owe any taxes yet, but just wondering if anyone has been in this situation before.

Any help or information will be much appreciated!   :D
Title: Re: I haven't filed my US taxes since 2009
Post by: jrwhite82 on April 29, 2011, 08:08:22 pm
You don't need a W2 to file taxes. 

You can back file easily by going to the IRS website, downloading the forms for back filing and then send them off.  I think even turbotax lets you back file too.

It's still not too late to file your 2010 return (I think people living abroad get an automatic extension). 

You might wind up owing some for 2009, but it won't be a lot.  In 2010, you probably won't owe much either.  Did you have any income from January to April while in America?  If so, you should at least have those W2s.  Then for the time in Korea, we really aren't making that much that your tax liability will be much.  Especially if you have student loans and other deductions you can take.  When you do file (WHICH YOU SHOULD!) focus on maximizing your deductions.
Title: Re: I haven't filed my US taxes since 2009
Post by: jrwhite82 on April 29, 2011, 09:34:13 pm
Don't think that the amount of money you make (or don't make) will guarantee that you slip under the radar.  You are running a risk by not filing.

Don't forget you need to do your state taxes too. 
Title: Re: Korean Tax Reimbursement for Americans
Post by: Borababe1 on May 02, 2011, 08:55:14 am
I don't know if the form works for reimbursement, but, once you secure the form, you will no longer be required to pay taxes in Korea.  You can obtain the form once you have filed taxes in the U.S.  It is a one page document which states that you are a U.S. resident for purposes of taxation.  It costs around $45.  You can call or contact the IRS(800-TAX-FORM) for further information about obtaining the form, but, it's a simple process, although it may take a few weeks/months to receive the document.  I had the form mailed to a U.S. address and received it within 4-6 weeks. 
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Borababe1 on May 02, 2011, 09:27:09 am
Request Form 8802, Application for United States Residency Certification.  You can request it on the IRS website.  Here's a helpful link:  http://www.irs.gov/publications/p54/ch06.html
Title: Re: Taxes
Post by: younameit on May 11, 2011, 09:19:30 am
I am new to the filling taxes game. I would also like to know the right steps, as I am trying to file my taxes now.  I know for people from the US we get a 2 month automatic extension.

Here is a good article I have just found. http://www.asktheconsul.org/nl_apr11.pdf

I still am unsure what forms I need to fill out and do I need a W2? 

Anybody that is in the "know how" please let us know. 

Thanks.
Title: When Do I Start Paying Taxes? (Start/End Date Question)
Post by: JamericanTeacher on May 16, 2011, 02:49:29 pm
I'm American so we don't have to pay taxes in Korea for 2 years.  I started at my first school in June 2009 and left in June 2010.  I returned to the US and returned to Korea to work with a different school in August 2010 and will finish my current contract in August 2011.

The question is: when does my 2 year tax-break end?  June 2011 or August 2011?  I'm thinking August but who knows what kind of technicalities exist that would cause taxation to start in June. 

Thought?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: GraceNYC116 on May 16, 2011, 03:14:56 pm

Because the tax rules are so specific, you should consult a tax adviser/CPA. 
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: jauntwithjo on May 16, 2011, 03:20:22 pm
I realize that I'm exempt from American taxes for two years with a several forms, but for the 2010 tax year, I still made a couple thousand within the States. I would still have to file taxes for those, right? I'm assuming yes, but want to check.
Title: US Residency Certificate for tax exemption in Korea- What do we do with it?
Post by: shayrone3 on May 19, 2011, 02:13:52 pm
I was told by my recruiters many times that I would need my Residency Certificate (IRS form 6166) in order to be exempt from paying taxes both in the US and S. Korea.

I finally got the form, but no one at my school has mentioned anything about it, nor do I think I am paying taxes in my paychecks... Am I right, or do I need to give it to my school?
Title: Re: US Residency Certificate for tax exemption in Korea- What do we do with it?
Post by: weirdgirlinkorea on May 19, 2011, 02:24:15 pm
Make a copy and give it to your main co-teacher. They need it even if they haven't asked for it.
Title: Re: US Residency Certificate for tax exemption in Korea- What do we do with it?
Post by: partheania81 on May 19, 2011, 02:27:15 pm
The school may not ask for it now, but they WILL... give it to your head co-teacher... who should give it to the school's accountant... my school asked for mine during my 11th month... I had to pay for all the taxes up to the 11th month till they received it (cus I never went and got one... they gave me all the money back once they got the certificate).
Title: Re: US Residency Certificate for tax exemption in Korea- What do we do with it?
Post by: Pants on May 19, 2011, 02:28:12 pm
I would recommend that you get someone at your school to find out about the tax and the residency certificate. I went through the same thing where my co insisted that she didn't need my tax forms from South Africa, and then, at the end of Feb, right after a holiday, I was told I was being taxed 300,000. Then my co started running around trying to figure out what to do about the situation when I reminded her I'm not supposed to be taxed. Now, 3 months later, the situation is still not sorted out, that co has left to another school leaving my new co in charge of the mess, and no one at the tax office can answer any of my questions. They honestly seem very confused about the whole situation. As far as I can gather from my other teacher friends, the school is supposed to file your tax info for you, and the admin office should take care of it.
Title: Re: US Residency Certificate for tax exemption in Korea- What do we do with it?
Post by: lil l on May 19, 2011, 03:04:21 pm
I am from south africa and was told that the SARS has no arrangements with the korean government.
Can anyone shed light on this please.
Title: Re: US Residency Certificate for tax exemption in Korea- What do we do with it?
Post by: Pants on May 19, 2011, 05:48:29 pm
lil l, there were problems for a while as SARS stated that it doesn't produce Residency Certificates for SA citizens, so we couldn't claim those tax-free years. But someone from an SA recruiting agency took the matter in hand. Visit the South Africans in South Korea group on Facebook and look for a posting by Cliff Smith for more info.
Title: Do I need the 8802??
Post by: dereklee003 on May 20, 2011, 01:33:11 pm
I know the basics. We can claim exemption from paying Korean taxes for the first 2 years here. We have to do this by filling out the 8802 form. Then, after 2 years, we will be taxed by Korea. Right?

But....I've been here over 2 years. First 1.5 years was at a hagwon. I think they may have taken out taxes, but I don't remember for sure! (I know.) I have been teaching public school since Aug 2010, and will stay thru until Aug 2012. My public school has not taken out any taxes thus far, nor have they told me to give them the tax exemption form.

Do I still need to do this? Will this come back to bite me ?
Title: Re: Do I need the 8802??
Post by: Za on May 20, 2011, 01:43:31 pm
Yes Yes Yes it will def come back to bite you!!!! They should either deduct the taxes monthly OR they will deduct a HUGE ass amount at the end of your contract. Maybe you would prefer to it that way, but i def don't want half a paycheck at the end of my contract. 
Title: Re: Do I need the 8802??
Post by: dereklee003 on May 20, 2011, 01:55:40 pm
Okay...But since I've been here over two years already, I won't qualify for tax exemption anymore right? If anything, the first 6 months of my PS job (which are the last 6 months of the first 2 year period) are the only ones that would qualify for exemption, right?
Title: Taxes in Korea
Post by: rocky228 on May 20, 2011, 01:57:39 pm
Being an American, I know we are exempt from taxes for 2 years.  So do I still need to do my taxes in the states? I mean, I kinda forgot about it last year, but I can always go back and refile them.  Also, how do I provide any proof of my work here in korea, especially when everything is in korean, even the "pay stubs" i get...which is more just like a woman at the administration office typing out a balance sheet with korean excel.?
Title: US taxes for Korea: Working less than 330 days...what to do?
Post by: tikomg on May 22, 2011, 05:34:10 pm
Hi,

This is my first time working in Korea, but will be leaving at the six-month mark. I know that to opt out of paying US and Korean taxes, you file a US residency certificate with your school here to opt out of Korean tax, and fill out the physical presence test to avoid paying us tax if you were out of the country for more than 330 days.

My question is...what do I do if I will NOT be out for more than 330 days? I have been paying Korean tax the entire time I've been here (over 3 months) because I am STILL waiting on the Residency Certificate that I requested BEFORE coming. anyways, that is another story...

Should I just pay Korean tax and then do I not have to pay US tax? How do I prove I paid Korean tax? What is required by the IRS?

I have done quite a bit of research and have come up with vague answers for less than 330 days...and the IRS people on the phone are helpless. I've called multiple times and either they don't know and transfer me and in the process my call is "lost" or maybe purposely hung up on...

I have read a few posts that claim people have sufficiently done the physical presence test with NOT being in the US for the entire time and it was no problem. I won't be out for either tax year completely anyways. I arrived in February (already into 2011 tax season and was initially scheduled to leave in 2012, so into 2012 tax season.) I am guessing almost everyone here runs into that, not here for 330 days of any tax season...

Also, what do we even submit as documentation for our salary in Korea? Or is it just whatever we report? I don't get a pay stub or anything official.

Thoughts? Advice? Trying to avoid paying a lump sum of taxes in 2012.

Thanks!
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: sungsaneem on May 22, 2011, 08:28:37 pm
@jauntwithjo- Technically even though you are exempt from paying U.S taxes from teaching here, you would still need to report your income. In this case, you should report your income from back home in addition to your income from here. That's what I did and its relatively easy.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: naturegirl321 on June 14, 2011, 10:42:41 pm
2555 or 1116 can be filed with the 1040.  1116 has NO residency requirements.  2555 has stricter requirements, here's some more info.

http://tefltips.blogspot.com/2008/11/us-taxestis-season-to-start-taxes.html

It's supposed to be simply, but hte IRS never is.
Title: Re: US Residency Certificate for tax exemption in Korea- What do we do with it?
Post by: ohabbeyroad on June 15, 2011, 07:58:34 am
Is anyone else having problems getting their certificate from their country? I'm from America and they keep postponing mine and saying I need to send something to prove my citizenship but they don't say what and the local IRS has no idea what they are talking about. Has this happened to anyone else?
Title: Re: US Residency Certificate for tax exemption in Korea- What do we do with it?
Post by: weirdgirlinkorea on June 15, 2011, 08:57:02 am
I have a question about this. I have mine but I don't know if I need to get another one for the second year of exemption or if the one I have will suffice. Anyone know?
Since it took sooo long for me to get the first one, I want to apply now for the second one if I need it.
Title: Re: US Residency Certificate for tax exemption in Korea- What do we do with it?
Post by: eveliens on June 15, 2011, 09:10:03 am
Is anyone else having problems getting their certificate from their country? I'm from America and they keep postponing mine and saying I need to send something to prove my citizenship but they don't say what and the local IRS has no idea what they are talking about. Has this happened to anyone else?

I had this problem and I just wrote a letter to the IRS saying I am a US citizen and intend on remaining one, something to that effect and then finally gave me mine.

Same thing happened to me except they didn't accept the Letter of Residency I wrote and made me fix it (I wrote citizen and they wanted resident - seriously, ONE word) and resend it. 8 months after applying I still don't have my certificate :( Call the IRS and see where they want you to send your Letter of Residency.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: mr sam teacher on June 15, 2011, 11:09:59 am
2555 or 1116 can be filed with the 1040.  1116 has NO residency requirements.  2555 has stricter requirements, here's some more info.

http://tefltips.blogspot.com/2008/11/us-taxestis-season-to-start-taxes.html

It's supposed to be simply, but hte IRS never is.

The 1116 requires you to have paid taxes to a foreign government. If you have correctly filed all the paperwork, and are still within your first two years of teaching, you shouldn't have paid any foreign tax.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: runthegauntlet on June 15, 2011, 12:08:30 pm
Just a reminder that you must ALWAYS file your tax return. Doing so can pay off as well!

I filed my taxes at the beginning of April and got a $45 refund sent back to me here in Korea by mid-May.

I haven't paid US taxes in 4 years but I get refunds?!!

That'll do.
Title: Re: US taxes for Korea: Working less than 330 days...what to do?
Post by: runthegauntlet on June 15, 2011, 12:12:01 pm
I have read a few posts that claim people have sufficiently done the physical presence test with NOT being in the US for the entire time and it was no problem. I won't be out for either tax year completely anyways. I arrived in February (already into 2011 tax season and was initially scheduled to leave in 2012, so into 2012 tax season.) I am guessing almost everyone here runs into that, not here for 330 days of any tax season...

I wouldn't take this as anything more than the experience of one person (me) because I'm not completely sure it's correct, but I've always waited until I met the 330 days (though this won't be your case it seems).

As an example, I started work in Feb. of 2009 and finished in Feb. 2010. I filed that contract year for 2010 instead of 2009, meaning I sent in my 2010 return in April of 2011 listing my 330+ days of work from Feb 2009-2010.

It was accepted and I was issued a refund.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: naturegirl321 on June 15, 2011, 04:15:13 pm
2555 or 1116 can be filed with the 1040.  1116 has NO residency requirements.  2555 has stricter requirements, here's some more info.

http://tefltips.blogspot.com/2008/11/us-taxestis-season-to-start-taxes.html

It's supposed to be simply, but hte IRS never is.

The 1116 requires you to have paid taxes to a foreign government. If you have correctly filed all the paperwork, and are still within your first two years of teaching, you shouldn't have paid any foreign tax.

Right, but it still has no residency reqs :)
The 1116 is good for those that have a second job, since the 2555 is only good for one job.
OR
earn money elsewhere, such as from stocks, bonds, property, online, etc.

runthgauntlet, congrats on your refund! :)

FYI: double check if you use things like TurboTax, they often make mistaikes.
Title: Re: CALIFORNIA TAXES Question
Post by: j20kiminsk on June 15, 2011, 05:05:14 pm
OP, have you resolved this issue?  I'm going though the same situation.  (Although this whole time I thought I wasn't going to be taxed, but I am being taxed in the end and will likely have to pay a penalty for submitting a late payment.  ugh...)

I have read on the iinternet that CA taxes California residents even while they are not residing in the state because they will likely return in the future.  So because you and I are still California residents by law, we owe taxes.

I've actually paid Korean taxes since I arrived in 2009, so I am being double taxed because the state of California has such strict rules.  I suppose I should just submit my residency certificate to get a tax refund and suck it up and pay the CA state taxes.

... but how has anyone else dealt with this problem?
Title: Tax Question: obtaining a U.S. Residency Certificate?
Post by: greyskymornings on June 16, 2011, 01:45:31 pm
Hello everyone,

So, as this is my first year teaching in Korea and I am a United States citizen, I know that I should be exempt from paying Korean taxes so long as I provide a certificate of U.S. residency.

I'm working on the application for the certificate right now (Form 8802) and line 9 asks for purpose of certification. I'm not exactly sure if I'm supposed to check the box "Income tax" or "VAT"?

If it is "VAT" that I'm supposed to check, it says that I must specify an NAICS code for South Korea, but I can't find it on the irs.gov website.

Also, if I worked from September 2010 to September 2011, do I need to obtain certificates for both years?

Any help from people that have done/are doing this would be awesome!
Title: Re: Tax Question: obtaining a U.S. Residency Certificate?
Post by: ansananswers on June 16, 2011, 03:12:36 pm
You want to check 'Income Tax' under section 9. VAT stands for value added tax and is applied when making a large purchase or buying a luxury item. You can get exemption from VAT (in certain cases) if you're a resident of the US.

Yes, you will need a certificate for each year. Make sure two put the number '2' on the 'User Fee Voucher' page.

2 other pieces of advice:

1. We were advised to include the following statement under section 10 (as advised in section 7):
"The certification is given under penalties of perjury and to the best of my knowledge and belief, the statements are true and correct and complete.

 Full Legal Name
 SS#

I am a US resident and will continue to be throughout the current year.

2. Be sure to follow up with the IRS over the phone to ensure that your information was received and will be processed properly. Both my girlfriend and I had issues. I faxed mine in and they stated they had never received it and whoever processed my girlfriend's certificate botched the Korean address so bad it never arrived. Here's the number for the Residency Dept. 267-941-1000.

Good luck.
Title: Re: Tax Question: obtaining a U.S. Residency Certificate?
Post by: greyskymornings on June 16, 2011, 03:19:30 pm
@ansananswers: You're an angel. Thanks so much. I'm also slightly worried/suspicious that they'll screw up the Korean address. I'm thinking about having them send the certificate to my mother in Wisconsin, and then having her DSL it over here? I'm not sure if that would look strange, but I'd assume they'd send it to wherever you specified....
Title: Yay another post about taxes!!
Post by: lacuni on June 24, 2011, 06:08:31 pm
Sorry I do realise this topic has been killed to death..and I promise I did use the search function..

But just wanting to find out how/if I can get taxes back. Finishing my one year contract through EPIK in two weeks and would love to get my hands on some 'free' money if possible.

Any useful tips/links would be greatly appreciated. I may even chuck you a won or two...or not..

Thanks peps!

Title: Re: Yay another post about taxes!!
Post by: cat fud on June 24, 2011, 07:55:59 pm
You don't get taxes back.  You submit paperwork at the beginning of your contract (as specified in your contract) which gives you tax free status (except if you are Canadian).  Since you pay no tax there is none to claim.

If you did pay tax then I don't know what you can do.  Perhaps it's not possible (e.g. if you're Canadian).
Title: Re: Yay another post about taxes!!
Post by: mr sam teacher on June 27, 2011, 12:14:06 pm
Sorry I do realise this topic has been killed to death..and I promise I did use the search function..

But just wanting to find out how/if I can get taxes back. Finishing my one year contract through EPIK in two weeks and would love to get my hands on some 'free' money if possible.

Any useful tips/links would be greatly appreciated. I may even chuck you a won or two...or not..

Thanks peps!

It depends on whether you paid tax in the US before you came to Korea. For example, between January and August 2010, I made about $20,000 in the US. The IRS was withholding a nice chunk of each paycheck, assuming that my year-end income would be in the $30,000 range. When December rolled around, I calculated my actual income and my actual tax liability, and it turns out that I overpaid somewhere around $1800. So I do get a refund for that money. (My total tax liability ended up being in the $500 range).
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: naturegirl321 on June 27, 2011, 06:02:07 pm
My undrstanding is that the "Form 6166 - Certification of U.S. Tax Residency" is NOT for US residency, but tax residency.  There's a difference (I hope or I'm in trouble :( )

"Many U.S. treaty partners require the IRS to certify that the person claiming treaty benefits is a resident of the United States for federal tax purposes. The IRS provides this residency certification on Form 6166, a letter of U.S. residency certification."

So I lived in country X and not as an American, but an X citizen, but paid taxes to the US and not to X and made a whooping $2,000 usd that year and 15.3% of it went to the IRS :(  And got form 6166.  I thought I didn't qualify, but then saw that the name of the form is not proof of residency, but tax residency and the US was my tax home.  I included the tax forms for that year which were the 1040 and 2555.  And I figure, "hey, the IRS MUST know what they're doing, so if I don't qualfy, they'll deny it.  If I do, then they'll give it to me."

And I signed the perjury form and sincerely believe that I did everything "to the best of my knowledge" and did not intentationally try to screw the IRS over.  I firmly believe that it is to show tax residency in the US.  Not that I live int he US.  And sicne I sent in my form2555: they could clearly see that I didn't ive in the US.  I still got my form. 

Plus, I figure, honestly, the IRS has bigger fish to fry than a lowly English teacher in Korea.  I file every year, spend hours on my forms and believe that everything I file is correct.  There's no way I'm smart enough to intentiionally scerw the IRS over.  I can barely file taxes correctly as it is, never mind trying to use creative accounting. 

Sure, I make decent money at my uni, but I've still got a long way to go until I get to the $91,500. 
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: jglide on July 10, 2011, 08:05:52 pm
Folks I need some help.

I was originally under the impression that I had a three month tax extension due to being in another country. After reading through the forum I have now realized that it was actually 2 months and that I should have filed by June 15th. I was intending on filing form 2350 in order to get more of an extension as I came to Korea in August 2010. At this point am I screwed? Can I still file the 2350 form or is it too late? If its too late what tax forms should I file now (just the 1040)?. I'm assuming that would mean I have to pay taxes on my Korean earnings and a late fee.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: naturegirl321 on July 10, 2011, 08:22:32 pm
Not screwed.  Better late than never.  File all the forms.  You CAN get out of paying taxes on your Korean income, even if you came in August 2010 by filing the 1116 along with the 1040. 
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: assortedfruit on August 24, 2011, 02:21:02 pm
Folks I need some help.

I was originally under the impression that I had a three month tax extension due to being in another country. After reading through the forum I have now realized that it was actually 2 months and that I should have filed by June 15th. I was intending on filing form 2350 in order to get more of an extension as I came to Korea in August 2010. At this point am I screwed? Can I still file the 2350 form or is it too late? If its too late what tax forms should I file now (just the 1040)?. I'm assuming that would mean I have to pay taxes on my Korean earnings and a late fee.

If you don't actually owe taxes, I don't think it should be a big problem. But it depends on if you qualify for form 2555 or 2555EZ. If have other income to report for form 1040 that exceeds the minimum amount for tax exemption (non residency related) then that's another story.
Title: Re: IRS Form 6166 (USA)
Post by: longxtran85 on August 31, 2011, 08:27:28 am
I filed my tax exemption form about 2 weeks before i left for Korea. I hope to receive it soon and have someone ship it to me before my first day check, but if that doesn't happen can I give it to my co-teacher after my first paycheck comes in?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: naturegirl321 on September 01, 2011, 10:06:14 am
I sent mine in January and got it in May.  It's retroactive, so no worries.  I got 3 months of taxes back after I handed in my cert.  I didn't purchase them online.  I just sent a check with the applicaton.

Maybe you get a refund, but it's not a full refund.  I'd rather not pay any taxes at all, then get a refund of X% at the end of the contract.  Money in hand now is worth now than money in the future.  Espeially with the economy now.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Currymarie on September 02, 2011, 02:44:14 pm
Yes,
As an American citizen, you should fill out the 1040 and the EZ2555. The 2555 form makes you exempt from paying taxes if your yearly income is less than I believe $100,000. It's a nice way to avoid being charged unnecessary taxes!
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: naturegirl321 on September 02, 2011, 04:44:19 pm
Read the 2555EZ, you might not qualify, especially if you have SE.  It was 91.500 or 91.400 last year. 
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: naturegirl321 on September 08, 2011, 11:01:38 am
Just read the questions on the top to see if you can file the EZ form or have to do the long form.  If you are NOT PAYING KOREAN TAXES, you MUST FILE THE LONG FORM:
Title: Re: IRS Form 6166 (USA)
Post by: stamerjam on October 04, 2011, 08:24:34 am
5. If you've already started paying Korean taxes, you'll continue to do so until your school receives the 6166.  However, you will receive the money back at the end, so try not to stress about it.

I have been in Korea for a month and have yet to get my 6166 sent to my parents in the states. I gave my coteacher the first letter (the one that says I will be processed within 30 days) - will this help? I think she is confused.

What does the school do with the 6166 once they get it? File it to my GEPIK  coordinator? How do I make sure to get my taxes back?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: naturegirl321 on October 04, 2011, 10:28:33 am
They file it and will give you your taxes back. If they don't, then you could always go to the tax office and ask why.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: naturegirl321 on October 04, 2011, 03:23:04 pm
Yes, they take it, but they'll give it back. They took taxes from me for 3 months then gave them back.  I'm not sure about the application. Maybe that's something your school will giv eyou?

[/quote]
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: purpleradish on October 06, 2011, 12:57:06 pm
Question about the American certificate of residence form:

I was in Korea last year and PAID Korean taxes (but received a refund) and did my American taxes when I got home. My hagwon and recruiter both didn't know/tell me about taxes and I didn't do enough research to realize I had to do the IRS form.

This is my second year at public school and I'm starting the IRS form. However, is the 80 the ONLY form we can use to establish residence? Because I paid taxes last year, are there any other special circumstances for my case?

Anyone with a similar situation?

Thank you
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: naturegirl321 on October 06, 2011, 01:50:12 pm
IN order to get the form, you have to pay American taxes. So I lived in peru, but paid taxes to the US and got a residency cert. You could try, but unless you paid the majority to the US, I'm not sure if it would work.

You got all your Korean taxes back, right?

Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: stamerjam on October 11, 2011, 07:59:30 am
So I got the first letter from the IRS saying they are processing my request. Now they have sent another letter to my parents house in the states stating this

"We regret that we are unable to process your request without addtional information

WE NEED THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION FROM YOU

All Applicants requesting a current year US Residency Certification must provide a statement signed under penalty of perjury that, for the purposes of taxation, they are US residents, and will remain so throughout the current taxable year. "

Did anyone ever get something like this? My parents are going to call the IRS to ask what this is about - but just wondering if anyone else has had this issue.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Slowpoke on October 11, 2011, 02:07:05 pm
stamerjam, it's a written statement that you just type on the form.

http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/f8802.pdf  Here is the form, 8802 Application for US Residency Certification

You MUST complete section 10 and it must be done correctly.  For information on what you must type, see form 8802-I: http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/i8802.pdf

See Line 10 and Table 2 on page 10 of the instructions form.  You need to type that in section 10 on the 8802 form.  If you've turned in the form without the perjury statement, maybe you can have your parents call the IRS to see if the statement can be turned in separately. 
Title: Delayed taxing?
Post by: Chuckthebear on October 13, 2011, 09:58:58 am
I'm about to finish up my contract.  I know since i'm a US citizen that there are somethings to do that will keep us exempt from having the korean government take out taxes. 

For the duration of my contract so far i haven't had the deductions from my monthly paychecks.  Now however, when my contract is about to be up (in less than a week) i'm told that they will be retroactively taking out taxes and that i need to provide the certifcate of residency, or proof of residency, from the IRS.  After doing some looking around it seems getting this will take a few months.  I'm at a loss of what to do about this situation.  Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
Title: 1040 and 2555 US Tax Forms - Please help
Post by: Andrea.ESL on November 29, 2011, 01:02:16 pm
First off, let me just say filing paperwork is a nightmare.  The wording on these forms is mind-numbing.

I'm looking for help in figuring out how this works, and if my logic is sound.

For reference, here are the links to the two tax forms (for 2011, but are the same or similar for previous years)

http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/f1040.pdf
http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/f2555.pdf

Let's first look at the 1040 Tax Form, Line 7:

Quote
Wages, salaries, tips, etc. Attach Form(s) W-2

It's confusing here whether they want you to only include your income earned in the United States (which for me would be none), or income earned elsewhere.  Let's continue.

Also on the 1040 Tax Form is Line 21:

Quote
Other income. List type and amount

Now I reference this line because of a note listed on the 2555 Tax Form, on line 45:

Quote
Subtract line 44 from line 43. Enter the result here and in parentheses on Form 1040, line 21.
Next to the amount enter “Form 2555.” On Form 1040, subtract this amount from your income
to arrive at total income on Form 1040, line 22

Tax Form 2555 Line 44:

Quote
Deductions allowed in figuring your adjusted gross income (Form 1040, line 37) that are allocable
to the excluded income. See instructions and attach computation

So it wants me to use an amount listed on line 37 of the 1040 to calculate something to list on line 44, which I use to calculate line 45 which is written again on line 21 (1040 Tax form) which is something I need to calculate line 37 on the 1040?  AGGHHH!  That shouldn't be possible, right?  It sounds like a circular loop that can't be done.  Here's how I see it:

1040 Line 21 = 2555 Line 45
2555 Line 45 = 2555 Line 44 - 2555 Line 43
2555 Line 44 = 1040 Line 37
1040 Line 37 = 1040 Line 36 - 1040 Line 22
1040 Line 22 = 1040 Lines 7 through 21

Does anyone see any sense to this?

I really hope someone can shed some light, because I really don't want to have to call the IRS and have them give me seven different wrong answers.
Title: Re: 1040 and 2555 US Tax Forms - Please help
Post by: justanotherwaygook on November 29, 2011, 04:26:37 pm
First off, let me just say filing paperwork is a nightmare.  The wording on these forms is mind-numbing.

I'm looking for help in figuring out how this works, and if my logic is sound.

For reference, here are the links to the two tax forms (for 2011, but are the same or similar for previous years)

http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/f1040.pdf
http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/f2555.pdf

Let's first look at the 1040 Tax Form, Line 7:

Quote
Wages, salaries, tips, etc. Attach Form(s) W-2

It's confusing here whether they want you to only include your income earned in the United States (which for me would be none), or income earned elsewhere.  Let's continue.

Also on the 1040 Tax Form is Line 21:

Quote
Other income. List type and amount

Now I reference this line because of a note listed on the 2555 Tax Form, on line 45:

Quote
Subtract line 44 from line 43. Enter the result here and in parentheses on Form 1040, line 21.
Next to the amount enter “Form 2555.” On Form 1040, subtract this amount from your income
to arrive at total income on Form 1040, line 22

Tax Form 2555 Line 44:

Quote
Deductions allowed in figuring your adjusted gross income (Form 1040, line 37) that are allocable
to the excluded income. See instructions and attach computation

So it wants me to use an amount listed on line 37 of the 1040 to calculate something to list on line 44, which I use to calculate line 45 which is written again on line 21 (1040 Tax form) which is something I need to calculate line 37 on the 1040?  AGGHHH!  That shouldn't be possible, right?  It sounds like a circular loop that can't be done.  Here's how I see it:

1040 Line 21 = 2555 Line 45
2555 Line 45 = 2555 Line 44 - 2555 Line 43
2555 Line 44 = 1040 Line 37
1040 Line 37 = 1040 Line 36 - 1040 Line 22
1040 Line 22 = 1040 Lines 7 through 21

Does anyone see any sense to this?

I really hope someone can shed some light, because I really don't want to have to call the IRS and have them give me seven different wrong answers.

Wages, salaries, tips, etc.  includes foreign and domestic.  If they meant domestic, they would have specified (these are painstakingly written).  The instruction manual states, "Enter the total of your wages, salaries, tipc, etc.". I had no issues filling out these forms the past 2 years.  Just be careful.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: stacykristina on December 08, 2011, 09:04:05 pm
Is it too late to try to be tax exempt for this year?  I haven't filled out the paperwork yet.

But I am American, & I started teaching this past August.


Does anyone know if it's too late for me to even bother filling out these forms? 
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: naturegirl321 on December 14, 2011, 09:59:35 am
YOu give the docs to your school, then your school gives you the money back and this extempts you from paying future taxes as well, up to two years.  If you leave, I'm not sure if you get another two years or not.

As to this "All Applicants requesting a current year US Residency Certification must provide a statement signed under penalty of perjury that, for the purposes of taxation, they are US residents, and will remain so throughout the current taxable year. "

It's for tax purposes, so if you're a US tax resident than you're ok. That's my interpretation and I got the form. I filed the 2555 for the prior year, but paid US taxes. My thinking is that these people do this for a living. I gave them all the paperwork and they have to interpret it. If their interpretation is that I'm a US tax resident, then they should give me the form.

1040 line 7, ALL income
1040 line 21, income from 2555 SUBTRACT THIS ( so if on line 7 you made 25K while in Korea, then on line 21 you enter this money in (25,000) so your total on line whatever would be 0, meaning you owe nothing to the US.
2555, line 44 chances are you have no deductions

I get worked about about taxes as well, my father says there's no need. We're poor English teachers making nowhere NEAR the 91K plus limit. If the IRS really wants to audit us, they can have at it, there are bigger fish to fry than English teachers in Korea.

I never purposely screw the IRS over, I've made mistakes, yes, like writing my SSN down wrong, but simple mistakes like that, they understand, flipping numbers and such. No matter how you put it, I've never made over the limit.

AND, you should always file. Backfiling is going to be hard. You don't need W2s if you work overseas, just save your paystubs if you have them. Or your bank book which should show deposits. They'll take your word for it. They should know that TEFL teachers in Korea arne't making heaps of cash. It's not like we're laundering money or antying.

As for tax accountants, I plan on using greenbacktaxservice s.com a friend recommended them to me. My taxes this year are a nightmare though (I've got income from three different continents, closed my IRAs, had a baby, etc) , I'll gladly pay someone 300 bucks and then base all my future taxes off that.

stacykristina, hopefully not. It's retroactive for two years.
Title: IRS email?
Post by: hiphopopotamus on December 20, 2011, 06:42:29 am
I submitted my Form 8802 in mid-September (mailed it from Korea). I noticed the IRS deposited my $35 check one month later. Now, it's late December and still no word/update/progress as far as I can tell. I'd like to contact them to make sure everything is ok.

I checked the IRS website but, can you believe it, there's NO email address provided for questions/inquiries! Only telephone numbers. Well, I'm in Korea. I'm not gonna pay to call the US.

Anyone know how to contact the IRS for free?

BTW, my school said that because the form is missing, I will likely have to pay 200-300,000KW for taxes this year. Not too bad, but still, would like to have that paperwork...
Title: Re: Korean tax
Post by: EllaRing on January 16, 2012, 08:00:08 am
Gabi, you should definitely turn in the paperwork to be exempt. The tax rate in Korea is NOT 3%. It simply appears to be quite low (there's a thread about this somewhere on here...if I find it, I'll post it.). However, even if you choose to pay Korean taxes, you'll still have to file tax forms in the US, especially if you've worked there within the last tax year. I've seen a few articles lately about how the US is cracking down on expats who haven't been filing taxes on foreign earned income. And even though our foreign earned income isn't taxed (for those earning less than $92,000), they want the information on file anyway. Big brother at work...
Title: Re: Korean tax
Post by: moksori on January 16, 2012, 08:38:34 am
Sorry about the thread hi-jacking, but am I exempted from paying tax if I'm a dual citizen of both the US and Korea?
Title: Re: Korean tax
Post by: EllaRing on January 16, 2012, 10:29:56 am
Moksori, unfortunately, you're never exempted from filing and/or paying taxes if you are a US citizens. You always have to file taxes on your foreign earned income and you if you owe, you pay. This works for anyone who has US citizenship, even if they are dual citizens. I and several of my family members have dual citizenship and even though only a few of us worked and lived in the US in 2011, we all still have to file taxes. Here's an article that sums things up http://www.theglobeandmail.com/globe-investor/personal-finance/us-tax-crackdown-hits-canadian-residents/article2067393/. Hope this helps.
Title: Re: Korean tax
Post by: EllaRing on January 16, 2012, 02:25:12 pm
Hey Moksori, sorry! Yeah you should be eligible as a dual citizen, but I'm not totally sure. There are a large number of people in Korea who are on various visas that might be able to answer your question. But since taxes tend to be a bit different for everyone, I'd suggest giving the IRS a call.
Title: residency certificate
Post by: prime on January 30, 2012, 01:02:04 am
I've been here for two years from America. I'm leaving in March and my co-teacher is telling me to get my residency certificate. What will happen if I don't get it? Will I still be able to get my money (Pension, Flight, Severance)?
Title: Re: residency certificate
Post by: Bulldogs12 on January 30, 2012, 09:22:04 am
'I've been here for two years from America. I'm leaving in March and my co-teacher is telling me to get my residency certificate. What will happen if I don't get it? Will I still be able to get my money (Pension, Flight, Severance)? '

You maybe able to claim income tax you have already paid in Korea over the past 2 years (I'm not sure though if you have to declare your earnings back in the US though). I'm an Australian and got a residency certificate in August last year. As far as I'm aware I don't have to pay tax for my first 2 years in Korea (or Australia) with a proof of residency certificate (if I stay in my job for that long). In regards to income tax I'd ask your co-teacher (you may need a tax card but I think that's exclusively for the purchase of goods/services, not income tax). The severance and flight claims should be okay but you may need the residency certificate for the pension (but I'm not 100% about this). I hope this helps but please check with your co-teacher/education office etc.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Davey on February 13, 2012, 02:13:08 pm
I edited the first post based on what posters wrote here. Hopefully this will reduce the number of redundant posts and make it easier for those seeking American tax info. I'm not American so I'm not completely familiar with the matter so please let me know if any of the info. is incorrect and what else should be added.
Title: Claiming tax that has already been deducted
Post by: Jozigirl on February 16, 2012, 09:38:59 am
I apologise if this topic has already been covered; I didn't find anything in the Search function though.

I am still struggling to get a Residency Certificate out of my tax office in SA (and have been since I left in 2010).  I have re-applied yet again for this certificate but have been told that it will take approximately 3 weeks to process.  My school needs the certificate by 27 February or I will have to pay the tax settlement.

Does anyone know if it's possible to re-claim the tax settlement if I submit the RC after February 27th?
Title: Re: Claiming tax that has already been deducted
Post by: Davey on February 16, 2012, 11:10:51 am
I apologise if this topic has already been covered; I didn't find anything in the Search function though.

I am still struggling to get a Residency Certificate out of my tax office in SA (and have been since I left in 2010).  I have re-applied yet again for this certificate but have been told that it will take approximately 3 weeks to process.  My school needs the certificate by 27 February or I will have to pay the tax settlement.

Does anyone know if it's possible to re-claim the tax settlement if I submit the RC after February 27th?

As stated in the FAQ:

"Yes. Please be aware that the refund won't  get handed back to you in cash--it will most likely come in the form of a tax credit at the end of the financial year.."

From this link:

http://waygook.org/index.php/topic,16586.0.html

"For those that did not get a tax residency certificate prior to leaving for Korea, you still can apply for one from your tax authority.  Submitting it to the Korean NTS will allow you to claim back tax that may have already been paid retroactively.  Please be aware that tax doesn't get handed back to you in a wad of won, it will most likely come in the form of a tax credit at the end of the financial year."

Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: nikkib01 on March 05, 2012, 06:59:39 pm
I have not received my residency certification in the mail yet (it should be here next week) and my first paycheck is not until the 25th of this month.  As long as i turn it in before I get paid, I shouldnt have to pay the taxes, right? 
Title: Re: No taxes for Americans?
Post by: teodulfopalisoc32 on March 13, 2012, 01:45:03 pm
Hi, all:

So I have my residency certificate. Do I just hand it to my co-teacher? Do I have to send it to the GEPIK office? Back to my recruiter? I've looked and looked, but can't seem to find an answer on this. I just want to make sure I am putting it into the correct hands.

Thanks.
You should talk to your main CO-Teacher.  Last week, my co-teacher asked for my Residency Certificate and so I gave it to her.   If your co-teacher hasn't asked you, let her know or to whom you should give it too.  Do it right away too.  Payday is coming soon and you might be taxed.   So, hopefully that helps you out there =).  GOod luck =).
Title: US Taxes Questions
Post by: Hoosier_Jedi on March 14, 2012, 01:49:33 pm
I'm filling out my taxes and have a few questions I was hoping I could get some help with.

* On the 2555, my school paying for my apartment counts as "expenses paid on your behalf for services you performed" right?

* Just what am I supposed to use as a W2 form?

* The the online class I took for my TEFL count as tuition and fees, right?


Man, do I hate filling out my taxes. I'd give a lot for an H&R Block right about now.  :(

Anyway, thanks in advance.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: mkccp2 on March 20, 2012, 09:38:04 pm
I'm an American, and I didn't apply for the residency certificate from the IRS. I'm only here for 6 months, taxes aren't high enough to outweigh the cost of the certificate, etc. However, the other day, my mentor teacher asked me about it. Her English is very broken and I don't speak Korean, but she seemed to be implying that there was a way I could still get it. I thought I had to have it in before my first paycheck to have it count, but she wanted me to go through with the process. I have no idea what exactly the process entails, but could anyone offer any insight on this matter?
Title: Filling out the 8802
Post by: sho on March 21, 2012, 10:27:26 am
Hi,

When filling out the 8802 (application for the Certificate of Residency), am I filling it out for the year I will be spending in Korea or for a previous year?  Ie. when it asks for my address (number 2), do I put my Korean or American one?  And when it asks for the year I want the certification, do I place the year I'm about to work in Korea or a previous one?

I ask because it's a form to prove residency, so it makes sense that I would stick in my US address and tax info from a previous year (for number 5) when I was actually residing in the States. 

Sorry if this question is obvious or been asked (I found it hard to search for).

SO: If I do fill it out for March 2012-March 2013 (the year I will be working in Korea), Do I write "Yes" for number five (was the applicat required to file a US tax form for the tax periods) and write "other" and say I will be filling out the 2555?

*Also, I have never filed taxes in the US (recent grad, never made enough money).  I'm going to put my Social Security for my taxpayer ID. 
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: anel0701 on April 04, 2012, 08:04:58 am
Does anyone have experience with efax.com? I used the service to fax my 8802 form because I couldn't find any places in my city that would let me send an international fax. I got a confirmation that the fax was sent successfully but I haven't heard anything from the IRS. Is that normal?
Also, when you get a tax credit back at the end of the year for the Korean taxes that were deducted before you got your tax exemption form in, do you have to fill out paperwork or do anything to get it back or do they just give it to you?

Thanks
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Steve Holt! on May 03, 2012, 08:52:38 am
Obviously Tax Day has already past, butttt I neglected to file yet. I know, i'm an idiot.

This is actually my first time filing taxes on my own without the aid of a parental unit.

I haven't even lived in the US for the last year, so I have no US income.  I never got my residency certificate from the IRS (although I tried my damnedest repeatedly) so I have indeed been getting taxed by the Korean Govt since I got here in Sept 2010.

Just looking for guidance on how exactly I should file?

Thanks.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: justanotherwaygook on May 11, 2012, 10:40:11 pm
Obviously Tax Day has already past, butttt I neglected to file yet. I know, i'm an idiot.

This is actually my first time filing taxes on my own without the aid of a parental unit.

I haven't even lived in the US for the last year, so I have no US income.  I never got my residency certificate from the IRS (although I tried my damnedest repeatedly) so I have indeed been getting taxed by the Korean Govt since I got here in Sept 2010.

Just looking for guidance on how exactly I should file?

Thanks.

File a 1040.  Get an foreign income exclusion using form 2555.  This means you don't have to pay taxes on foreign income (up to $90,000 approximately).

Lucky for you, you're not late.  Since you're abroad, you get an automatic 2-month extension (details in the instructions for form 2555).  Just attach a signed letter to your tax return stating this.  No need to apply ahead.

Don't forget to file an FBAR, if you have had over $10,000 total in foreign accounts last year.  This is due June 30th and is seperate from your taxes.
Title: Reporting Jeonse
Post by: justanotherwaygook on May 23, 2012, 12:11:18 pm
Hi,

I'm filling out my American tax forms.  To my knowledge, we're supposed to report our housing (how much our employer pays for rent).

However, I found out today that my school is doing Jeonse, not Wolse.  Therefore, there is no monthly payment to speak of.  Therefore, how do I report this, if I report it at all?

Thank you.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: rcollin1 on August 21, 2012, 01:37:06 pm
I have been paying taxes every month even though I arrived with my tax residency form and gave a copy to my school... should I not have been paying taxes at all? I assumed I got a refund at the end. I'm finishing up my second year here (feb intake) and I'll be going back to the States when it's up.

thanks in advance. (:
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Davey on August 25, 2012, 01:36:47 pm
I have been paying taxes every month even though I arrived with my tax residency form and gave a copy to my school... should I not have been paying taxes at all? I assumed I got a refund at the end. I'm finishing up my second year here (feb intake) and I'll be going back to the States when it's up.

thanks in advance. (:

But what if I've already started paying Korean taxes, will I get my money back once my school gets 6166?

Yes. If not, contact the tax office directly. 
Title: Re: US Residency Certificate for tax exemption in Korea- What do we do with it?
Post by: tideout on September 04, 2012, 08:03:49 am
This question is for anyone from California doing their taxes. My income earned in Korea, by federal standards is excluded from taxation. So, my income made here is excluded on my federal taxes. However, that is not the case for my taxes in California. California is taxing all of my income, including my money made here. I owe taxes to California. Is this happening to you? I'm paying taxes in Korea, and according to the U.S. Korea tax treaty, I am not supposed to be double taxed. I'd appreciate your comments.

This is a point that is frequently missed on the Korean boards and almost ignored automatically by many. I had a very long disucssion with the head attorney for the tax dept in my state last year about this subject.

The treaty to ignore taxes abroad, in Korea etc. is strictly a Federal agreement - not a treaty with your State government. In short, it has nothing to do with the decision of your individual state to tax foreign earned income or not. People just assume the Federal treaty trumps of supercedes your States taxation laws.  :o

Title: US Tax qustion - contract over 2 tax years, bonfide residency etc..
Post by: tideout on September 04, 2012, 08:46:41 am
I just came back to the States to find a short follow-up form from the IRS on my dates in Korea for 2011.

Here’s the story. I worked in Korea(public school) and finished my contract at the end of February 2011 (60 days). I then took a 6 month break and came back to work another year long contract in which I was paid for September, October, November & December of 2011 (120 days). Clearly, I’m not at or near 330 days with the break in the middle of 2011. I did file the 2555 form (2011 return) thinking the income in Korea would still be way under the 92K income limit.

I continued to work into 2012 on my contract which ended at the end of August.

How screwed am I with 2011 taxes? Can I somehow “extend” my 2011 months by filing for an extension to include my actual 12 month contract that goes into 2012? That would be quite a few months in 2012 but would actually more accurately reflect the contract as well as give me a solid 12 months in Korea.
It seems impossible to believe I’d pay taxes on 6 months of income teaching when someone else making say $80K working 10 months would pay nothing?

Thanks for any help on this – I really appreciate it.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: MalTX on September 05, 2012, 05:45:29 am
My apologies if this has been covered, I scrolled through quite a few pages and didn't see that this specific question has been addressed.

I am arriving in Korea on Sept. 26th. When I called the IRS the woman told me that I would need to get a RC now, and again on Dec. 1st. Now that the cost is $85 I feel like it isn't worth it to request the RC until Dec. I would rather just have taxes deducted from my pay for a few months then pay $85 twice. Do you think that this will become an issue with my school and when filing my taxes? Should I turn in the form now or should I just wait until Dec?

I appreciate any advice/suggestions you may have.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: iamrhart on September 05, 2012, 12:43:16 pm
Here is a question for you.
What is the ITIN? I saw different information about it. Some say you have to be a Foreigner (to the USA) to apply for one. Others say its the same as your SSN, and still some say that you need to apply for one.

Does anyone know the REAL answer? I would call the IRS, but they never answer me.

Please let me know,
iamrhart@yahoo.com
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: stamerjam on September 13, 2012, 09:38:33 pm
Switching public schools....

This is the start of my second year in Korea. I switch public schools (because Yongin cutting the budget).

I handed over a copy of my last years Residency Certificate to my new school.

My recruiter is saying that I need to pay taxes (USA and Korean) this year because the tax law only works if you stay at the SAME public school for two years. Any one know if this is correct? She also says it will be up to the Korean Tax Agency.

Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: ghuynh128 on September 13, 2012, 10:05:26 pm
Not true.  The 2-year Korean tax exemption treaty is between South Korea and your home country (with the exception of Canada).  It shouldn't matter which public school you are contracted to teach at, but it does have to be a public school.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: stamerjam on September 14, 2012, 10:06:40 am
Not true.  The 2-year Korean tax exemption treaty is between South Korea and your home country (with the exception of Canada).  It shouldn't matter which public school you are contracted to teach at, but it does have to be a public school.

Thank you. I believed you ghuynh128, but I also called the Korean Tax Office to varify.

Their number in case anyone has a question is: 82-1588-0560
The phone operator spoke great English and was very friendly.  ;D
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: aemaier on September 14, 2012, 02:06:40 pm
Switching public schools....

This is the start of my second year in Korea. I switch public schools (because Yongin cutting the budget).

I handed over a copy of my last years Residency Certificate to my new school.

My recruiter is saying that I need to pay taxes (USA and Korean) this year because the tax law only works if you stay at the SAME public school for two years. Any one know if this is correct? She also says it will be up to the Korean Tax Agency.

You will need a new residency certificate for the new tax year though. It is only good for one year.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: MarthaStewart on September 16, 2012, 04:38:20 pm
It looks like you have to pay California (CA) taxes if you are from there.

The residency certificate says you are resident of USA for tax purposes for two years of tax free pay. Do you continue to pay CA tax after the two years?

Example:
First two years in Korea with certificate, you don't pay Korea or USA, but pay CA, file both USA and CA.
Third year and beyond ??? Pay Korea AND CA? File all three?

If that is the case, how do I change my state residency? Double taxation is against AMERICA, BOO CA!Also, what does the 3+ years of tax paying/filing look like?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: karenology on December 18, 2012, 04:08:02 pm
help! My school didn't withhold any Korean taxes this whole time I've been here, which is over two years, assuming I could get this form easily. Months ago -- February, in fact -- I applied for an 8802 form from the IRS to show I'm a U.S. citizen. I didn't think about it until November, when my school told me they still haven't received that form. I again applied for the form, and called and badgered the IRS about it, and still no form. I'm getting ready to leave in a week, and now the school is saying I will have to pay back the taxes, which total over 6 million won (!!!)  What can I do?  I don't even *have* 6 million won...
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: tesoljon on December 21, 2012, 02:26:58 pm
FYI - the instruction PDF in the first post is out of date. New fee of $85 as of March 31, 2012. Here are the current instructions.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: 3twentseven on December 21, 2012, 03:24:16 pm

You will need a new residency certificate for the new tax year though. It is only good for one year.

Can someone else confirm if this is the case?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Synoptic23 on January 03, 2013, 02:49:26 pm
I submitted the tax exempt document once to my first school. I switched schools after my first year, and didn't have to submit the document again. This may not be standard though. This will be my first year paying taxes. What has anyone paid in the past?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: anna.tran on January 15, 2013, 11:31:29 am
Hi everyone! I tried to search for this, but can't find it anywhere. Sorry, if this question is repeated.

When do I file my tax? I'm not sure if I file it according to Korea's deadline or America. In Korea the dates are 1/15 - 1/20, so do I file all my forms (2555, 1040, etc.) now or i can do it until April.

If anyone can help with this question, much appreciated!
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: tesoljon on January 16, 2013, 12:47:08 pm
Hi everyone! I tried to search for this, but can't find it anywhere. Sorry, if this question is repeated.

When do I file my tax? I'm not sure if I file it according to Korea's deadline or America. In Korea the dates are 1/15 - 1/20, so do I file all my forms (2555, 1040, etc.) now or i can do it until April.

If anyone can help with this question, much appreciated!

If you're filing USA taxes, go by the USA deadline. If you're filing Korean taxes, go by the Korean deadline.

Or am I missing something here?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: anna.tran on January 17, 2013, 10:42:33 am
Nope, I think you're right. Thanks!
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: muffin85 on January 17, 2013, 12:54:19 pm
Hey guys. I scoured this thread and couldn't find the answer to my question. Does anyone know what information we need from our Korean employers to file American taxes? Will we get the equivalent of a W2 sometime in January?

Happy tax time,
Cheers
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Synoptic23 on January 17, 2013, 12:59:05 pm
Hey guys. I scoured this thread and couldn't find the answer to my question. Does anyone know what information we need from our Korean employers to file American taxes? Will we get the equivalent of a W2 sometime in January?

Happy tax time,
Cheers

I've never got a W-2. Instead, I receive a monthly sheet detailing my salary and oter expenses like healthcare and the pension. I printed out all twelve sheets, and sent them to te IRS. This was enough for them.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: chuck2657 on January 17, 2013, 02:32:26 pm
Hi everyone! I tried to search for this, but can't find it anywhere. Sorry, if this question is repeated.

When do I file my tax? I'm not sure if I file it according to Korea's deadline or America. In Korea the dates are 1/15 - 1/20, so do I file all my forms (2555, 1040, etc.) now or i can do it until April.

If anyone can help with this question, much appreciated!

http://www.irs.gov/uac/Do-I-have-to-File-a-Tax-Return%3F

You may not have to file either, although if you're eligible for tax credits (not sure of any federal ones that would apply while overseas) you may want to.  But you could potentially get things like college/renters credit if you were only back home for a short time (so your income earned is below the cut-off, but you still have some credits).

Generally speaking, if you will have money coming back and don't file, the IRS won't really care.  You're technically required to file regardless, but people have gone 10+ years without filing and were never bothered.  If you owe taxes, however, you can be sure they'll let you know that you were required to file :).
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: 2mmca0huu on January 18, 2013, 10:08:14 am
I have question on how to fill out my FAFSA application.  I need to report my 2012 income tax but as far as I know that amount is $0.00.  I have been teaching in Korea since August 2011.  For the first year, I had tax exemption and did not pay any Korean income taxes.  Because I was in college for half of 2011, I thought I had foreign income exclusion for the income I earned in Korea and didn't file a tax return.  For my second year, I didn't know that I had to resubmit a new residency certificate but so far in my pay stubs, I have only been deducted for pension and health insurance. 

Seeing as I have been earning a solid wage for all of 2012, I'm afraid it will look odd if I put $0.00 in income tax on my application.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: tesoljon on January 18, 2013, 01:59:56 pm
It might look odd, but the worst thing that happens is that you get selected for verification and have to fill out some more paperwork. You still have to fill out paperwork, but at that point, you add a note saying what happened and everything should be good.

When in doubt, ask your university's financial aid office.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Violet711 on January 23, 2013, 09:25:27 am
Hello friends! I have an embarassing question to ask. I am leaving Korea midway through my contract and the whole time I have been here I never got around to filling out my 8802 form that made me exempt from Korean taxes. So am I just screwed and never getting that money back that they took out of my paycheck? I mean it is my own damn fault if I am but I'm just throwing it out there in case there is a chance.
Title: I'm just wondering if anyone is in my same boat
Post by: aghostwriter on January 23, 2013, 03:01:28 pm
Okay, like a bad girl, I didn't file taxes for the past two years. I was unemployed and going to school full time. Anyhow, now I need this damn residency cert. That I can't get unless I can prove that I paid taxes for the last two years.

Question: Does anyone know a way around this?  :rolleyes: Never thought this would come back and bite me in the ass....

I can file taxes for this year and last year, it will just take a while to get all that nonsense done. How will "not" having that resident cert. filled out by the Korean tax deadline affect me?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: melanie0989 on January 28, 2013, 10:09:12 am
What is form 1004? I can't find it anywhere on the irs website. Do you mean 1040?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: melanie0989 on January 28, 2013, 10:29:18 am
Also would we actually be considered "bona fide residents" I'm having a hard time being able to tell if we do based on the IRS language for the 2555 form instructions. I don't pass the physical presence requirement for 2012 since I did not get here until the end of September but I'm not sure how else to document my foreign earned income for the IRS if I can't technically use the 2555 form...
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: brandyg3 on January 30, 2013, 08:34:37 pm
okay here's my situation. i worked in hagwons for two years in korea, and then switched over to the public schools. i have never filed for the 8802 form.
am i eligible for the tax exempt status, since i am now working for epik?  or am i not exempt, as I have already been in korea for two years? as it is, i've been telling my school to go ahead and deduct the taxes. i find this all extremely confusing and headache inducing  :sad:
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: newb on January 30, 2013, 08:37:18 pm
okay here's my situation. i worked in hagwons for two years in korea, and then switched over to the public schools. i have never filed for the 8802 form.
am i eligible for the tax exempt status, since i am now working for epik?  or am i not exempt, as I have already been in korea for two years? as it is, i've been telling my school to go ahead and deduct the taxes. i find this all extremely confusing and headache inducing  :sad:

Not.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: brandyg3 on February 04, 2013, 01:02:28 pm
okay here's my situation. i worked in hagwons for two years in korea, and then switched over to the public schools. i have never filed for the 8802 form.
am i eligible for the tax exempt status, since i am now working for epik?  or am i not exempt, as I have already been in korea for two years? as it is, i've been telling my school to go ahead and deduct the taxes. i find this all extremely confusing and headache inducing  :sad:

Not.


So, after trying to explain the issue to my school, they called the tax office and the tax office says they are a-okay with me turning in the 8802 form, even though I've been in Korea for two years.  At least according to the translated conversation between my co and the administration office, where I repeatedly asked about the fact that I had been here two years in korea, and that I was worried about going to jail/ getting a huge bill/getting kicked out of the country. Anyone else in this situation before?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: bts21 on February 04, 2013, 02:55:52 pm
okay here's my situation. i worked in hagwons for two years in korea, and then switched over to the public schools. i have never filed for the 8802 form.
am i eligible for the tax exempt status, since i am now working for epik?  or am i not exempt, as I have already been in korea for two years? as it is, i've been telling my school to go ahead and deduct the taxes. i find this all extremely confusing and headache inducing  :sad:

Not.


So, after trying to explain the issue to my school, they called the tax office and the tax office says they are a-okay with me turning in the 8802 form, even though I've been in Korea for two years.  At least according to the translated conversation between my co and the administration office, where I repeatedly asked about the fact that I had been here two years in korea, and that I was worried about going to jail/ getting a huge bill/getting kicked out of the country. Anyone else in this situation before?

You're fine. AFAIK you can get tax exempt status with US citizenship for up to two years, but when you take those two years is up to you. A lot of schools will say you have to file the form within your first month/first x amount of time employed, though.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: heatvn on February 05, 2013, 08:50:42 am
That's a lot of information

Who's eligible for Korean tax exemption?

To be exempt from paying Korean taxes, you need to employed by the government (e.g., public school teachers). Thus, private-sector workers (e.g., hagwon teachers) must still pay Korean taxes. However,  private-sector employees CAN still be exempt from paying AMERICAN taxes (more details further down).

Remember the Korean tax exemption isn't forever--it lasts TWO YEARS.

 How to apply for Korean tax exemption?

In order to be exempt from paying Korean taxes (for two years), you need to give your school the 6166 form.  However, you must first fill out the 8802 form in order to get the 6166. Please be aware that the 8802 is NOT the residency certificate, it is the application for the residency certificate (6166).
 
Here are the steps.


1. I had to purchase the number of 6166 copies I wanted to have PRIOR to sending the 8802 to the IRS.

Here is the link for payment https://www.pay.gov/paygov/forms/formInstance.html?agencyFormId=12164322.

You'll have to go on to the website, purchase the copies, and you'll receive a confirmation number. You can get up to 20 copies for $35. I'd say to shoot for at least 5-6 just in case your school needs extras. If you want to be really safe order all 20!


2. Fill out the 8802. I've attached it and the instructions below. Make sure to put that confirmation # on the 8802 form before sending it (I promise this will make more sense once you get down to paying for and filling out the forms). If you are having the form mailed to someone besides yourself (which is probably the case since many of you are already here in Korea),  you'll have to name an appointee.


3. After filling out the 8802 form, you can fax or mail it to the IRS. Make sure that you mail the form to the correct place. If you pay for the 6166 via the link that I've given above, then you'll have to send it to one address. If you pay by check, the address is different. Just so you know, I faxed mine and it was kind of a huge deal because they have two different fax numbers, so I had to send it twice. My point is, call if you are unsure! 

4. After the IRS gets your 8802, they'll send a letter telling you that they've received it and are processing your 6166. They will send it to a US address only, so send it to a family or friend. The letter will say that they'll respond to you within 30 days, but that's a lie. I had to call a few times. It took THREE MONTHS to get my 6166 and that was only after calling.  It'll take time, but it should work out.



How long does it take to get 6166?

The IRS claims they will contact you within 30 days after processing form 8802, but that doesn't generally happen. It would be prudent to call the IRS to remind them; people typically wait three to five months, sometimes LONGER.  Constantly remind the IRS about it.

But what if I've already started paying Korean taxes, will I get my money back once my school gets 6166?

Yes. If not, contact the tax office directly.  Please be aware that the refund won't  get handed back to you in cash--it will most likely come in the form of a tax credit at the end of the financial year.


Do I have to pay US taxes?

Unlikely. If your contract is one year, you become a "bona fide resident" of Korea the day your contract commences and hence qualify for the exclusion. However, there is one exception to this rule: if you make more than $92,900 USD (2011 figure), but since EFL teachers in Korea typically don't make that much, you probably don't have to worry. Also, if your contract is less than a year (e.g., six months), then you don't qualify for avoiding US taxes. However, you can still apply for Korean tax exemption.

Is the foreign income tax exclusion automatic? Do I still have to file my tax return with the IRS every year in Korea?,

The exclusion is not automatic as you must submit form 2555 along with form 1004 (NOT 1004A or 1004EZ).  You can request your school to give you a document showing your yearly earnings around tax time (late Jan.) as the IRS may require proof of foreign income.   Say/write to your school's administration office:


"원어민교사 급여지급내역"

This means "Foreign teacher's salary payments".

If your school refuses to give it to you, showing your bankbook (or a printout of your deposits via online banking) should suffice.  You should convert your salary to USD for each month; one member used the Bank of CANADA's web site (yes, Canada) because it conveniently lists montly historical exchange rates. The IRS will likely take your word for it as they're aware the overwhelming majority of EFL teachers don't make  close to the foreign income exclusion threshold.

Submitting 2555  with 1040 obviously means you're filing your tax return. But, you don't have to do it every year; you can file three years later . For example, a 2011 return can be filed in 2014 without applying for an extension.

Form 2555 or 2555-EZ?

If you're exempt from paying Korean taxes, you must submit the 2555, NOT 2555EZ.

So, what's the diff between form 1040, 2555, 8802, and 6166?


Form 8802 is the application to get 6166, the latter is what you need to submit to your school to avoid KOREAN taxes. So, 8802/6166 is so you avoid paying KOREAN TAXES.

Form 1004 is the income tax return filing document.

Form 2555 (which you must submit when you file your US tax return using form 1004) is so you don't have to pay AMERICAN taxes.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: marksurendra on February 18, 2013, 08:22:40 am
So I am confused on what part makes us a bonafide resident.  Where on the form does a first timer declare this?

13A should be yes as we file the 6166 form, and 13b should be no as we (at least I am) are not required to pay income tax, only pension and medical.  But saying Yes, No does not qualify us as bona fide residents.
Title: Is 1/2 the pension refund considered income?
Post by: travis1983 on February 18, 2013, 11:19:08 am
ok, so I worked all of 2011 and part of 2012. epik. Jan 2012 i went to usa ended contract. I got my pension refund in jan 2012. Now.....is the 1/2 of the pension considered income for 2012? because it was money the school matched? or are pensions not considered income? anyone know this? and since i actually got the funds in 2012 it would be 2012 income yeah?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: jenbo79 on February 26, 2013, 08:49:04 am
My school just taxed me 600,000 won and I've only been here a little bit over a year.  I'm filing the 8802 to get the form 6166.  My school is saying that it doesn't matter because I didn't provide with the form earlier, I'm not to get a refund.  Should I call the tax office and do they speak English?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: jenilyn8705 on February 26, 2013, 12:47:13 pm
I'm rather confused about this whole thing...

Okay, so my situation is that I've worked at a Hagwon from August 2011 through February 2012.  I filed my US taxes that year through my  parent's accountant and I only went through and claimed the income I made in the states that year.  From March 2012 until now I've been working at a public school.  So, I'm exempt from paying Korean taxes and my school hasn't said or done anything regarding my taxes with that, as to my knowledge it's automatic.

So, would I just fill out the regular tax form (1040) and the 2555 (Foreign Income Earned)?  Do I even need to be concerned about the other two forms (8802 and 6166)?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: tbaren on February 28, 2013, 11:34:42 am
So I am confused on what part makes us a bonafide resident.  Where on the form does a first timer declare this?

13A should be yes as we file the 6166 form, and 13b should be no as we (at least I am) are not required to pay income tax, only pension and medical.  But saying Yes, No does not qualify us as bona fide residents.

This, please. I'm confused, too. Are those of us that are exempt from the first two years bona fide residents or not?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: marksurendra on February 28, 2013, 12:11:15 pm
I think who ever said "bona fide" resident in the first page sticky used that term without knowing it's in the tax forms.  My impression is that simply because we are earning foreign currency (Korea) and are still American citizens, we will not be taxed as long as it doesn't reach that $90,000+ amount. 

In addition, we will not be taxed in Korea BECAUSE of the 6166 form. 

I will try to confirm this for the future people once I receive my taxes back.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: alexc2000 on March 02, 2013, 09:57:49 pm
In the past, I was filed as a dependent with my parents. Last year, I was no longer able to be filed as a dependent. Though I still didn't file since I didn't make much money.

I'm not sure if I can apply for Form 6166.

I should also mention that I am with the TaLK Program. We make less money than EPIK teachers do. Anyway, I plan on staying in Korea for a long time. Would I be better off applying for this form when I get an English teaching job that pays more than the TaLK Program does? I am asking because this benefit is only for two years.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: larcobaleno on March 05, 2013, 05:59:49 am
How are we supposed to go about translating Korean for taxes? Scribbling notes in the margins seems unprofessional...
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: KimchEli on March 06, 2013, 08:06:33 am
i've been working in a public high school for a year and a half, and will be here for 6 more months, completing my second contract. then i'll head back to the states.

my main co-teacher told me last night at dinner that she needs my residency certificate before friday (today is wednesday) if i don't want to have to pay taxes. i did all this when i first came, and had heard nothing about having to do it again until last night.

is this something that needs to be done every year? or can i just find a copy of the document i gave the school when i first came? from looking on this thread, there is no possible way i can get a new one in two days. just wondering if there is anyway avoiding dealing with the IRS while i'm still here?

also, if i do in fact have to do this again, and need to try and get refunded later for paying korean taxes, i read something about getting the refund in the form of a tax credit. what is this? i'm leaving korea at the end of august and want to be sure that if i go through all this b.s. with the IRS that it will actually be worth it and i'll get refunded.

any kind of advice/knowledge about my situation would be GREATLY appreciated.

thanks!
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: popeye2u on March 07, 2013, 09:33:14 am
Why americans fall for the IRS fear and the crappy BS to not pay little in Korean taxes is beyond me.  The US has no idea what you make so why tell them?  Once you make over 97,000 then its a different story.  Dont stress over beauracratic messes.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Hoosier_Jedi on March 08, 2013, 12:19:16 pm
Why americans fall for the IRS fear and the crappy BS to not pay little in Korean taxes is beyond me.  The US has no idea what you make so why tell them?  Once you make over 97,000 then its a different story.  Dont stress over beauracratic messes.

I screwed up my tax forms TWICE while I was living in Japan. The IRS didn't eat me alive. They just had me take another crack at it until I got it right. Yeah, it's a hassle. But it's one you can knock out in an evening and then you don't have worry about it again for a year. So just relax, read slowly and carefully, have plenty of copies and if you live in one of the big cities hire an accountant to do it for you.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: lifeisgood6447 on March 08, 2013, 12:42:24 pm
In the past, I was filed as a dependent with my parents. Last year, I was no longer able to be filed as a dependent. Though I still didn't file since I didn't make much money.

I'm not sure if I can apply for Form 6166.

I should also mention that I am with the TaLK Program. We make less money than EPIK teachers do. Anyway, I plan on staying in Korea for a long time. Would I be better off applying for this form when I get an English teaching job that pays more than the TaLK Program does? I am asking because this benefit is only for two years.

This may help you and others understand things more. There are links to the IRS forms at the bottom of the site to help you if needed. Good luck!
Title: Re: Korean Tax Reimbursement for Americans
Post by: crod11 on March 08, 2013, 02:23:17 pm
Just get the form ASAP.  It takes about a month and costs $45, but once you get the form(after filing U.S. taxes), then the school can no longer collect tax money from you.  It's based on a U.S./Korea treaty, so it's federal law, and is good for two years.

@KimchiEli, I'm in the same boat as yourself. I started my first contract March 1, 2012.

I already submitted a US Residency form for 2012 when I arrived and paid no taxes. I've just renewed my contract and am starting a 2nd year (2013). Need to know if I need to request a new US Residency Certification (specifically for 2013--or is the 2012 form good for both 2012/2013)?

This seems to hint that one form may be used for two years!?????? HEEEEEEELP! :D

*Update: On page 14 someone stated that you need to file a new Residency form every year but that statement wasn't verified. I went through every message on this thread and this is the best I can do, if I find a definitive answer I'll let you know.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: crod11 on March 11, 2013, 08:57:56 pm
@KimchiEli,

After calling, e-mailing and researching forums and Korean tax offices, I finally e-mailed my recruiter who's been in Korea for 10-15 years. 1 tax residency form for US citizens is good for 2 years!

Praise Zeus' beard, cause I didn't want to pay the astronomical $85 fee or have to wait for the IRS to maybe get around to sending me another form.

*Make sure you keep a copy though, one of my friend's said her school lost the residency form.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: KimchEli on March 12, 2013, 07:44:19 am
really??? wow, that's great news! thanks for keeping me updated!
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Seoul1 on March 13, 2013, 02:24:38 pm
For those that have filled out the 8802 form:
In section 10 where the Penalties and Perjury Statement is made, what did you include?

I am trying to decide which statement to use.

"Applicant Full Name" is a U.S. resident and will continue to be throughout the current tax year.

or

Countries other than Japan: [Insert name of individual and TIN] was a U.S. resident within the meaning of Article

If it is the latter, what is the article #?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: aemaier on March 20, 2013, 01:48:00 pm
I've heard two different things about the Korea-US tax treaty.

From the American side I have heard that you have a cumulative 24 months to claim tax exemption. For example if you work hagwon for one year and then public for one year and then hagwon for 6 months and then public for 11 months, you can get all of the public income tax exempt but not the hagwon income. Even if it is 2 years after you started working. You would even have one more month of income tax exemption to use at a later date. That's what the US IRS told me.

I was told by some Koreans that you have 24 consecutive months to use it and that starts  the moment your contract starts. If you work for hagwons for 2 years and then work a public school then you are out of luck.

Which of these is true, or more accurate? None of them?
Title: Living Abroad and filing taxes
Post by: ADB123 on March 21, 2013, 10:39:48 am
Out of my own stupidity I didn't file taxes last year. I need to also file for this year. I am a U.S. Citizen. I'm an expat here in Korea and haven't filed anything.

1. What forms must we fill out?
2. Do I file for last year?

Thanks ~~
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: chuck2657 on March 21, 2013, 12:00:03 pm
I've only hear the first; that you have 24 consecutive months regardless of where you work.
Title: Re: Living Abroad and filing taxes
Post by: adamjay on March 21, 2013, 01:35:17 pm
Far as I know, if you're working here you don't have to file there.  At any rate, I haven't filed in the last few years.  I know for sure that anything under 90 grand that you make abroad they don't care about, and I'm pretty sure we all fall under that category.

Title: Re: Living Abroad and filing taxes
Post by: Chicagohotdog on March 21, 2013, 03:28:19 pm
Yes, as an American you need to file and you should file for last year too.

They may not tax you on income less than $91,500 but you are still supposed to report it.  It's a lot of busy work but it's your legal responsibility.

You fill out form 2555 (the foreign income exclusion) and the 1040.  If you've at any point had more than $10,000 in bank accounts outside of the U.S. there is another form that you are supposed to fill out but I'm not sure what number that is since I always send money home to the states before it ever got that high.

You shouldn't have to pay anything, but you are supposed to file.
Title: American Tax Question
Post by: xtummyx on March 25, 2013, 02:26:31 pm
I have received the appropriate tax documents that exempt me from Korean tax, but when I go back home to the states, how do I pay taxes on what I earned? Also, how much is that going to be (how much should I save and set aside)?
Title: Re: American Tax Question
Post by: LindseyN on March 25, 2013, 02:51:44 pm
As an American working in another country, you need to file a foreign earned income exclusion form, which I believe is a 2555. You will qualify for an automatic 2 month extension. When you file your taxes, you must include a letter to explain why you took the extension. You can request a 6 month extension if you need to qualify for the bona fide resident test or the physical presence test. Otherwise, I'm not sure it is best to wait until you are home to file taxes since it really isn't too difficult to file from Korea. It is overwhelming at first, but it isn't so bad once you start. I used turbo tax last year and file my federal taxes, state taxes in two states, and claimed my foreign income without any issues. Here is a website you can search if you have any more questions-http://www.irs.gov/Individuals/International-Taxpayers/Foreign-Earned-Income-Exclusion
Title: Re: American Tax Question
Post by: rocketeerjoe on March 25, 2013, 03:24:58 pm
I thought we didn't have to file at all until we went home. Do you even need to file an extension? I heard you can wait after your first two years are up and then file.
Title: Re: American Tax Question
Post by: Tiara on March 25, 2013, 04:02:08 pm
I thought we didn't have to file at all until we went home. Do you even need to file an extension? I heard you can wait after your first two years are up and then file.
I hope this is true b/c I didn't file for my first year in Korea :O
Title: Re: American Tax Question
Post by: xtummyx on March 26, 2013, 07:55:30 am
What happens if I wait until I am back in the states? does anyone have experience with this? i return home in september.
Title: Re: American Tax Question
Post by: iamrhart on March 26, 2013, 08:05:48 am
What happens if I wait until I am back in the states? does anyone have experience with this? i return home in september.

I was back home my first year of doing taxes. the problem i had with this was, i needed information from the school, and was having a difficult time getting the information.
My advice is to do it early/now.  I used TaxAct, they were $15 for both Federal and State. (states will charge you differently). It was faster, easier, and above all, cheaper than other services i have used, like TurboTax. TurboTax ran me over $100 last time i did my foreign taxes with them.

In the states, you may have to file by hand. I know my taxes needed to be filed by hand because it was my first time filling out the "foreign earned income' sheet for my state/irs.  i think it is form 2555 or something.

good luck
Title: Re: American Tax Question
Post by: Hoosier_Jedi on March 26, 2013, 08:44:18 am
This is my fifth year overseas. Just fill out form 2555. From what I've seen the IRS isn't picky about documentation in Korean. Just so long as you have documentation.
Title: Re: American Tax Question
Post by: ADB123 on March 26, 2013, 08:52:17 am
I didn't file my taxes for being an expat in Korea last year. Can anyone give me any advice?

For the 2012 tax year I just need to mail in my 1040 & 2555 forms, correct?
Title: Re: American Tax Question
Post by: bmacdow on March 26, 2013, 09:45:59 am
I don't know much about taxes, but I'm pretty sure you should be filing every year even if you are out of the country.  If you file for an extension for the first few months until you can hit the requirements (such as being out of the country for 330 days) and then file you are exempt from American taxes; but you do still need to file so they know just in case.  I've been in Korea nearly 3 years and have filed every year but have never needed to pay anything to the US. 
Title: Re: American Tax Question
Post by: Robotka on March 26, 2013, 11:30:02 am
I've been in Korea 5 years, and every year I file online with Turbo Tax.

If you go to http://apps.irs.gov/app/freeFile/jsp/index.jsp?ck and scroll down to the Turbo Tax link, it's free to file your federal return.  I haven't filed state returns since I've been here.  (I was a little worried about that when I had to renew my driver's license in Kansas last month, but there wasn't a problem!)

With Turbo Tax, you just fill out their questions and they do the forms for you.  Somehow, you will end up with a negative income (unless you also have US income from earlier in the year).  You can file online, unless you have extenuating reasons to need to print out and mail in the forms.

You don't need any official Korean W-2s.  I just checked my Korean bank account, added the total deposits from my paychecks for the year, and converted it to US dollars using an online currency calculator.  There's also a place to put in the value of your housing, which you can estimate to be 400,000 per month.  I don't think it's that important to include, though (I don't remembering filling out that part last year).

I definitely recommend Turbo Tax with free file; the other ones I tried didn't seem to calculate correctly!
Title: Re: American Tax Question
Post by: xtummyx on March 28, 2013, 08:44:34 am
Has anyone NOT filed in korea and then filed back home who can tell me how much they ended up owing after the 2555. The thing about the 2555 is that I have only been here since september and don't qualify yet because of the 330 day rule.
Title: Re: American Tax Question
Post by: acousticr on March 28, 2013, 09:26:15 am
Has anyone NOT filed in korea and then filed back home who can tell me how much they ended up owing after the 2555. The thing about the 2555 is that I have only been here since september and don't qualify yet because of the 330 day rule.

File for an extension now - form 4868. That gives you two or four months, I forget which, but you can extend up til something like six months. Then file when you qualify for the 330 day test.
Title: Re: American Tax Question
Post by: ADB123 on March 28, 2013, 09:54:03 am
So if we didnt file last year then we can file Form 4868??
Title: Re: American Tax Question
Post by: gchan19 on March 28, 2013, 12:25:12 pm
I am sorry, this might be a stupid question, but what happens if I don't file my taxes? I am a recent college graduate and I never filed taxes before. And this is the first time, but I am in a foreign country, so how does this work?
Title: Re: American Tax Question
Post by: country09 on March 28, 2013, 01:05:56 pm
I am sorry, this might be a stupid question, but what happens if I don't file my taxes? I am a recent college graduate and I never filed taxes before. And this is the first time, but I am in a foreign country, so how does this work?

You will have to file each year regardless if you earned income in the states or not

There are two forms that for most of us we will all need to file. They are 1040ez(always) and the 2555ez(depending on your stay in Korea this year. This form has requirments that have to be met in order for it to be filed but they are written in on the form so just follow it.) Go to www.irs.gov or do a quick search in google with those key words and you will find the pdf files. Also you can add the word instructions at the end of those key words and get instructions on how to fill out each part of the form. For the most part it is very simple and easy.

Some people like to file online. I tried to file but I wound up being asked to pay additional money for the service so I just choose to do the paper. I also like the paper because I can better understand what is going on when filing by reading the instructions.

And last piece of advice. Call the IRS. Find some time to call and they can help answer.
Title: Re: American Tax Question
Post by: LindseyN on March 28, 2013, 01:13:35 pm
It sounds like people are asking the same questions over and over. The best place to find answers about tax information in the States for people who make foreign income is the IRS website-

www.irs.gov/Individuals/International-Taxpayers/Foreign-Earned-Income-Exclusion

This page will answer many questions that people are asking without relying on what someone else experienced as the rule for taxes. If something is still unclear, call them and find out the answer. I have heard of people waiting to file taxes until they return home or file several years at once, but I can't tell you if that is advisable (or even allowable). Filing taxes with a tax program will take you through the steps. If you run into something you don't understand, you can save your progress and come back to it once you find the answer. It feels overwhelming, but it really isn't bad at all once you start.

Ask your school for a pay stub and calculate the income you made in 2012  (if you worked in Korea for all 12 months of 2012) or per month (if you worked in Korea for a few months in 2012). You can also calculate the cost of your housing by either asking your school how much rent they pay (if your housing if covered by your employer) or by researching the average cost of your apartment type in your area. You just repport the amount of money you made in the states and/or the amount of money you  made in Korea. If you  make less than $92,000 usd, I don't believe you will own anything to the IRS.

It sounds complicated, but it is really ok once you get started. As for waiting, I am going to file now because I know it is expected and it isn't difficult. It might be much more complicated to attempt to do several years at once from the states at a later date. Better safe than sorry.
Title: Re: American Tax Question
Post by: Grimne_Lothos on March 28, 2013, 01:15:25 pm
if you don't owe anything then nothing happens if you wait and file 3 or 4 years worth of taxes when you get back to the states.  If you do owe then there will be penalties.
Title: Re: American Tax Question
Post by: acousticr on March 29, 2013, 09:22:54 am
1. Can I file later?

Yes. The 4868 is super simple so you might want to throw that in the mail, though. You'll automatically qualify for the extension by being overseas, so the only penalty you pay is interest on anything you owe. If you don't end up owing taxes, you don't pay anything.

2. Do I have to file?

Probably. Better safe than sorry, and you'll have to learn this eventually. Get forms 2555 and 1040. Check the EZ versions of each and see if you qualify to use them.

3. I'm not at 330 days yet.

Then wait! You can get an extension or just file late without too much trouble. Figure out when you hit 330 days, and send stuff over then.


Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Schellib39 on April 01, 2013, 02:12:22 pm
USA's instruction page for U.S. Citizens and Resident Aliens Abroad:

http://www.irs.gov/Individuals/International-Taxpayers/U.S.-Citizens-and-Resident-Aliens-Abroad

According to this page if you have earned less than $57,000USD, then you are able to file online.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: rocketeerjoe on April 14, 2013, 11:40:20 am
I just tried to file an extension with TurboTax but I had to put in my last American address because they do not let you file a foreign address for extensions.

This is so confusing. I have had people tell me I need to file an extension. I have heard I do not have to file at all until I go back home after two years. I have heard that we have a few extra months anyway. I don't know which of these is true.

On top of that, you can't pay for TurboTax at all if your address on your US bank account cards has a foreign address linked with it.

This is all horribly confusing. Did I just mess up by filing the extension with an American address on it?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: williethewimp on April 14, 2013, 02:22:02 pm
USA's instruction page for U.S. Citizens and Resident Aliens Abroad:

http://www.irs.gov/Individuals/International-Taxpayers/U.S.-Citizens-and-Resident-Aliens-Abroad

According to this page if you have earned less than $57,000USD, then you are able to file online.
I haven't yet found an online filing service that will allow you to file online using a foreign address. If anybody has a link please share it. If I can't find a free one, the IRS will like in past years get a paper return from us

BTW DON'T worry about filing or filing for an extension by Monday, if you are an overseas resident, you AUTOMATICALLY have until June 17 (since the 15th is a Saturday) to file, you don't have to file an extension etc. If you file a paper return all you have to do is attach a note saying you are an overseas filer
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: techteacher on April 14, 2013, 04:16:41 pm
I used this https://www.taxactonline.com/
Title: Re: American Tax Question
Post by: Smilie on April 23, 2013, 12:36:21 pm
I'm also confused about taxes. I'm trying to file online and the website ask for an EIN (employer identification number). Does anyone know how to get around that? By the way, I'm using H&R Block, but I assume that all tax sites will ask the same questions. 
Title: Re: American Tax Question
Post by: LindseyN on April 23, 2013, 12:54:10 pm
An EIN is an employment identification number that employers in the states have to identify themselves to the federal government. Foreign employers do not have an EIN. Go back and make sure you listed your employer as a foreign employer. You should not be asked for an EIN number if everything is filled out correctly.

I used Turbo Tax for the past two years and never had a problem. I'm not sure about H&R Block, but I can vouch that Turbo Tax was easy. Just make sure to double check everything!
Title: Re: American Tax Question
Post by: justanotherwaygook on April 23, 2013, 12:54:43 pm
You MUST file ever year.  Ever American who earns income anywhere must file.  The 2 year exemption is for Korean tax.  It does not relieve you of your duty to file American tax returns.

Also, you must file a FBAR if you had over $10,000 total in all your foreign bank accounts at any point in the year (so, if you have 2 separate accounts, you must add them together).  This is separate from taxes.  It must be received by June 30th.  No extensions.  Not doing this can lead to nasty penalties, especially if it was willful.  And now that I told you, not reporting would be considered as willful.  :evil:
Title: Re: American Tax Question
Post by: rocketeerjoe on April 23, 2013, 01:08:45 pm
I actually purposefully avoided having more than 10K in my American account by paying off enough student loans so I was always shy of it. I hate filling out paperwork so I'll just do that the next year when I qualify for it. ;)
Title: Re: American Tax Question
Post by: psJohnny7 on April 23, 2013, 01:37:39 pm
It's so disgusting. The constant intrusion and complication of peoples lives. We are petty English teachers here in S. Korea. Why can't they just leave people who make pittens 28,000 USD alone? Sigh...

@Justanotherwaygook: So I'm on the official FBAR website. WHICH form do I need? From 8938 or Form TD F 90-22.1????.... F*#%ing ridiculous...
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Davey on April 23, 2013, 01:49:43 pm
Just in case, remember to check the first post (FAQ), please.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: psJohnny7 on April 23, 2013, 01:55:18 pm
There is no information on FBAR forms in the FAQ.
Title: Re: American Tax Question
Post by: justanotherwaygook on April 23, 2013, 02:08:05 pm
I actually purposefully avoided having more than 10K in my American account by paying off enough student loans so I was always shy of it. I hate filling out paperwork so I'll just do that the next year when I qualify for it. ;)

It doesn't matter how much is in your American account.  It only matters how much you have in your Korean/other foreign accounts.

Quote from: psJohnny7 link=topic=1237.msg352595#msg352595
@Justanotherwaygook: So I'm on the official FBAR website. WHICH form do I need? From 8938 or Form TD F 90-22.1????
[/quote

http://www.irs.gov/Businesses/Comparison-of-Form-8938-and-FBAR-Requirements

Probably TD F 90-22.1
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: popeye2u on April 23, 2013, 03:03:36 pm
It's all a waste of paper!
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Davey on April 25, 2013, 04:44:01 am
There is no information on FBAR forms in the FAQ.

Yes, I know; I was referring to people who may have other inquiries.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: eslatter on May 21, 2013, 08:55:43 am
Similar to a few other comments on here, I worked in a hogwon for 3 months and then switched to a public school (in my second contract now). I just received the IRS residency cert but the local tax office is now insisting that I don't get any refund. They said because I worked first at a hogwon, that disqualifies me from receiving the public school taxes back. I understand that it would be only for up to two years (not the hogwon, and not the end of my PS contract) but has anyone else had this experience?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: jordan.schultz on May 21, 2013, 09:36:06 am
There is a free service to foreigners who need questions about the law, and they might know taxes.  I'm sure if you do a search you would be able to find it on this site, or someone more knowledgeable could give you the link or better advice. 
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: spivey378 on May 24, 2013, 09:14:05 am
I applied for my residency certification January 17th and I still haven't received any confirmation or anything in the mail.  Should I message them and ask how long it will be?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: defpunk on May 24, 2013, 11:02:48 am
I applied for my residency certification January 17th and I still haven't received any confirmation or anything in the mail.  Should I message them and ask how long it will be?

Yes call them, there is generally very little wait time.  I had many problems with mine, and it took forever to get it.  Best time to call is right when they open at 8:30am east coast time.  I believe it will be 9:30pm KST
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: spivey378 on May 24, 2013, 11:41:33 am
do you happen to have the number? if not no biggy. id prefer to have a direct number if you have on handy.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: defpunk on May 24, 2013, 12:18:47 pm
do you happen to have the number? if not no biggy. id prefer to have a direct number if you have on handy.

It's (267) 941-1000.  Just listen for residency certificate and select that option! 
good luck!
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: spivey378 on June 21, 2013, 12:03:31 pm
I'm trying to  file the 2555 and it says I'm not exempted from Taxes but can get a credit.  I am basically trying to get my residency certification.

I plan on printing it out and sending it anyway in addition to my completed 8802.

I will have my 1040 attached to the 2555.

I need to get an extension for my taxes (for both 2011 and 2012) with form.


Is there anything specific I should be looking out for with my 1040?  I'm trying to turbo tax it and it's looking a little difficult...
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Chicagohotdog on June 21, 2013, 12:09:12 pm
I'm trying to  file the 2555 and it says I'm not exempted from Taxes but can get a credit.  I am basically trying to get my residency certification.

I plan on printing it out and sending it anyway in addition to my completed 8802.

I will have my 1040 attached to the 2555.

I need to get an extension for my taxes (for both 2011 and 2012) with form.


Is there anything specific I should be looking out for with my 1040?  I'm trying to turbo tax it and it's looking a little difficult...

turbo tax has a glitch with foreign exemption.

I just did mine all by hand and I just got the refund in my account last week so I guess I did it right.  Just follow the instructions they aren't as confusing as they look at first.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: spivey378 on June 24, 2013, 08:24:12 am
did you just send it in via snail mail?  im thinking of scanning it and having my mother fax it to them.


how long did it take?  i have til september 15th
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Chicagohotdog on June 24, 2013, 08:36:53 am
did you just send it in via snail mail?  im thinking of scanning it and having my mother fax it to them.


how long did it take?  i have til september 15th

Yeah I snail-mailed it because you need to sign it and I don't think they would accept a photocopied signature.

I sent it in March and the refund (I worked in the States for one month last year) was just deposited into my account 2 weeks ago.  The important thing is the day it is postmarked by the post office.  So if you have an extension through September 15th, as long as it is in the mail before then you are in the clear.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: sushiaddict on October 14, 2013, 10:59:47 am
This may have been answered already, but I don't have time to go through all the previous pages.
I didn't file taxes for the 2012 year because I didn't make sufficient income for it to be required (so my dad told me...) but I'm reading that you have to have filed taxes no matter what in order to get the 6166? Is this right? I have no clue what I'm supposed to do!
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: leonardlee on January 21, 2014, 10:55:11 am
Hey guys, I had a few questions regarding the whole tax process as a U.S citizen.


1.) I downloaded the .pdf file that "seligamon22" provided in her his/her first post, but the .pdf is 12 pages of instructions on filling out the 8802. Where can I find the latest 8802 form online?

2.) https://www.pay.gov/paygov/forms/formInstance.html?agencyFormId=12164322.
     $85 for the form? I guess the price has increased a considerable amount since 2010?

3.) On page one of the .pdf file, there are two fax numbers listed under the "Submission of Form 8802 after Electronic Payment." Which of the two numbers should I send my 8802 to?


Thanks waygook, first time filing for tax exemption!
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Traveling T.O. on January 21, 2014, 01:27:15 pm
Hey guys, I had a few questions regarding the whole tax process as a U.S citizen.


1.) I downloaded the .pdf file that "seligamon22" provided in her his/her first post, but the .pdf is 12 pages of instructions on filling out the 8802. Where can I find the latest 8802 form online?

http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/f8802.pdf <---form

Quote

2.) https://www.pay.gov/paygov/forms/formInstance.html?agencyFormId=12164322.
     $85 for the form? I guess the price has increased a considerable amount since 2010?

The price is $85.  You can pay online or send in a money order. I have no idea why it went up so much.  Why let certain people make tons of money and cut their taxes when you can raise for rates for those rich Americans working abroad?  Especially teachers?

Quote
3.) On page one of the .pdf file, there are two fax numbers listed under the "Submission of Form 8802 after Electronic Payment." Which of the two numbers should I send my 8802 to?

You can use either.  From the IRS page you are referring.  Emphasis mine:

Fax. You can fax up to 10 Forms 8802
(including all required attachments) for a
maximum of 50 pages to the fax
numbers
below. A fax cover sheet
stating the number of pages included in
the transmission must be used.
The following fax numbers are not
toll-free:
(267) 941-1035
(267) 941-1366

Quote
Thanks waygook, first time filing for tax exemption!

Your welcome. 
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: dailj2 on January 22, 2014, 01:19:03 pm
I've been in Korea for almost a year. If I leave Korea for good after my contract ends, can I still take advantage of the tax exemption? Also, I need to submit the forms. I've looked and looked on waygook but can someone post a simple list of what I need to do for tax exemption in Korea?

Can you also post a list of what I need to do so I can be tax exempt in the U.S.? I've never done taxes before so I'm a bit worried. My school doesn't know what to do, we've got a new guy.

Also, I went to City Hall and got a document that says Certificate of Alien Registration.

Korea Tax Exemption
1. Form A
2. Form B
3. etc

Thanks for any info.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: acousticr on January 22, 2014, 01:26:56 pm
As long as you haven't been here for more than two years, you qualify for the exemption from Korean taxes.

For US Foreign Income Tax exclusion, you'll file a Foreign Income Tax exclusion form - something like 2555 - with your 1040 for each tax year you've earned money in Korea. (I'm assuming 2013 and 2014 for you).
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: MBDU on February 03, 2014, 02:38:16 pm
According to this comment (granted, from a few years ago), it sounds like there are basically two sets of documents.

Exemption from American Taxes
Exemption from Korean Taxes (For up to two years.)
The first set you submit to the IRS every year. The second you get from the IRS and give to the Korean Tax Office.

My question is this: do you have to get a new 6166 (residency certificate) every year, or is one enough for the two year Korean tax exemption. (If I have a residency certificate for 2013, do I have to request a new one to be exempt for 2014?)

Who's eligible for Korean tax exemption?

To be exempt from paying Korean taxes, you need to employed by the government (e.g., public school teachers). Thus, private-sector workers (e.g., hagwon teachers) must still pay Korean taxes. However,  private-sector employees CAN still be exempt from paying AMERICAN taxes (more details further down).

Remember the Korean tax exemption isn't forever--it lasts TWO YEARS.

 How to apply for Korean tax exemption?

In order to be exempt from paying Korean taxes (for two years), you need to give your school the 6166 form.  However, you must first fill out the 8802 form in order to get the 6166. Please be aware that the 8802 is NOT the residency certificate, it is the application for the residency certificate (6166).
 
Here are the steps.


1. I had to purchase the number of 6166 copies I wanted to have PRIOR to sending the 8802 to the IRS.

Here is the link for payment https://www.pay.gov/paygov/forms/formInstance.html?agencyFormId=12164322.

You'll have to go on to the website, purchase the copies, and you'll receive a confirmation number. You can get up to 20 copies for $35. I'd say to shoot for at least 5-6 just in case your school needs extras. If you want to be really safe order all 20!


2. Fill out the 8802. I've attached it and the instructions below. Make sure to put that confirmation # on the 8802 form before sending it (I promise this will make more sense once you get down to paying for and filling out the forms). If you are having the form mailed to someone besides yourself (which is probably the case since many of you are already here in Korea),  you'll have to name an appointee.


3. After filling out the 8802 form, you can fax or mail it to the IRS. Make sure that you mail the form to the correct place. If you pay for the 6166 via the link that I've given above, then you'll have to send it to one address. If you pay by check, the address is different. Just so you know, I faxed mine and it was kind of a huge deal because they have two different fax numbers, so I had to send it twice. My point is, call if you are unsure! 

4. After the IRS gets your 8802, they'll send a letter telling you that they've received it and are processing your 6166. They will send it to a US address only, so send it to a family or friend. The letter will say that they'll respond to you within 30 days, but that's a lie. I had to call a few times. It took THREE MONTHS to get my 6166 and that was only after calling.  It'll take time, but it should work out.



How long does it take to get 6166?

The IRS claims they will contact you within 30 days after processing form 8802, but that doesn't generally happen. It would be prudent to call the IRS to remind them; people typically wait three to five months, sometimes LONGER.  Constantly remind the IRS about it.

But what if I've already started paying Korean taxes, will I get my money back once my school gets 6166?

Yes. If not, contact the tax office directly.  Please be aware that the refund won't  get handed back to you in cash--it will most likely come in the form of a tax credit at the end of the financial year.


Do I have to pay US taxes?

Unlikely. If your contract is one year, you become a "bona fide resident" of Korea the day your contract commences and hence qualify for the exclusion. However, there is one exception to this rule: if you make more than $92,900 USD (2011 figure), but since EFL teachers in Korea typically don't make that much, you probably don't have to worry. Also, if your contract is less than a year (e.g., six months), then you don't qualify for avoiding US taxes. However, you can still apply for Korean tax exemption.

Is the foreign income tax exclusion automatic? Do I still have to file my tax return with the IRS every year in Korea?,

The exclusion is not automatic as you must submit form 2555 along with form 1004 (NOT 1004A or 1004EZ).  You can request your school to give you a document showing your yearly earnings around tax time (late Jan.) as the IRS may require proof of foreign income.   Say/write to your school's administration office:


"원어민교사 급여지급내역"

This means "Foreign teacher's salary payments".

If your school refuses to give it to you, showing your bankbook (or a printout of your deposits via online banking) should suffice.  You should convert your salary to USD for each month; one member used the Bank of CANADA's web site (yes, Canada) because it conveniently lists montly historical exchange rates. The IRS will likely take your word for it as they're aware the overwhelming majority of EFL teachers don't make  close to the foreign income exclusion threshold.

Submitting 2555  with 1040 obviously means you're filing your tax return. But, you don't have to do it every year; you can file three years later . For example, a 2011 return can be filed in 2014 without applying for an extension.

Form 2555 or 2555-EZ?

If you're exempt from paying Korean taxes, you must submit the 2555, NOT 2555EZ.

So, what's the diff between form 1040, 2555, 8802, and 6166?


Form 8802 is the application to get 6166, the latter is what you need to submit to your school to avoid KOREAN taxes. So, 8802/6166 is so you avoid paying KOREAN TAXES.

Form 1004 is the income tax return filing document.

Form 2555 (which you must submit when you file your US tax return using form 1004) is so you don't have to pay AMERICAN taxes.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: leonardlee on February 03, 2014, 03:27:13 pm
Hey guys,

I had a couple questions while filling out the 8802. I've looked through the past pages, but I am still confused.

Back in Los Angeles, I worked as a freelance violinist and am not sure if I have ever filed taxes back home. My family has an accountant, so this is my first time filling any tax form out.

1) What is the applicant's U.S taxpayer I.D number? Is this my social security number?

2) For Question 5, "Was the applicant required to file a U.S tax form for the tax period(s) on which the certification will be based?" Would the answer be no because I am working in Korea? If so, do I check the "Other" box?


Thanks for the help thus far waygook! I'm sure other first-timers would appreciate the answers as well :).
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Chicagohotdog on February 04, 2014, 08:33:12 am
MBDU - you don't need a new residency certificate. Them having the old one on file is all you need.

leonardee - Yes, your taxpayer ID is you social security number.   

This is a few years dated but: http://mysocalledklife.wordpress.com/2012/01/18/the-agony-of-irs-forms-form-8802/
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: gchan19 on February 10, 2014, 02:43:46 pm
The dread of filing taxtes  :cry:

So I am trying to file the 1040 and it comes to the part where it ask for my mailing address and telephone number... I currently live in Korea, but I am going to leave in 2 weeks back to the USA. Should I write my Korean address for the filing, or should I write my American home address?

Thanks!
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: acousticr on February 10, 2014, 02:46:37 pm
The dread of filing taxtes  :cry:

So I am trying to file the 1040 and it comes to the part where it ask for my mailing address and telephone number... I currently live in Korea, but I am going to leave in 2 weeks back to the USA. Should I write my Korean address for the filing, or should I write my American home address?

Thanks!

Use your American address.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: gchan19 on February 10, 2014, 03:05:21 pm
The dread of filing taxtes  :cry:

So I am trying to file the 1040 and it comes to the part where it ask for my mailing address and telephone number... I currently live in Korea, but I am going to leave in 2 weeks back to the USA. Should I write my Korean address for the filing, or should I write my American home address?

Thanks!

Use your American address.
I did that and now somehow it shows that I owe the state $8. And am I suppose to file for 2555 or 2555EZ ? How about the 1040? or 1040EZ?

Sorry, this is my first time, it is just too hard for me.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: acousticr on February 10, 2014, 03:13:04 pm
If you're using the 2555 or 2555EZ, you have to use the 1040. The 1040EZ doesn't have the lines for the Foreign Income exclusion. You probably can use the 2555EZ, that's what I've always used. As long as you're not claiming self-employment wages, moving expenses, or a housing exclusion, use the 2555EZ.

It's okay, taxes are confusing.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: gchan19 on February 11, 2014, 09:49:20 am
I know someone said that there was a glitch in turbotax for foreign income, so just wondering if that glitch still exists? Can I file electronically anywhere? Oh and also since we don't have a w-2, how should we report our income?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: tausha12 on February 12, 2014, 02:11:10 pm
Does the 8802 form really cost $85.00?

I've never tried to do the tax exemption thing here so I am a little confused.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: leonardlee on February 14, 2014, 03:14:32 pm
Hey guys,

I am currently filling out my 8802 and ran across a question.

Line 5: Was the applicant required to file a U.S. tax form for the tax period(s) on which the certification was based?

What do I fill out for this? In 2013, I was freelancing so I am not sure if I check the Yes, or No box.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: janelle_j on February 18, 2014, 01:20:09 pm
Holy moly this thread is massively confusing! Why not split it into 3 threads:
1: Residency Certificate
2: Paying American taxes (1040 and 2555)
3: Paying Korean Taxes

It would make it so much easier to sort through the info I don't need! So here are my questions for other EPIK teachers:

Do we need to include the entrance allowance and settlement bonus we received upon arrival as part of our income? Does this count as moving expenses? What are the pros vs cons of claiming this exclusion as a moving expense? From what I understand it won't do any good unless we make over $95,000. Is this correct?

I use the housing my school provided, do I need to include the rent they pay on my behalf as income?

I can't seem to find clear answers anywhere! Thanks guys!
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: cephas on February 25, 2014, 12:19:21 pm
Who's eligible for Korean tax exemption?

Is the foreign income tax exclusion automatic? Do I still have to file my tax return with the IRS every year in Korea?,

The exclusion is not automatic as you must submit form 2555 along with form 1004 (NOT 1004A or 1004EZ).  You can request your school to give you a document showing your yearly earnings around tax time (late Jan.) as the IRS may require proof of foreign income.   Say/write to your school's administration office:

This should be changed. The post should read "1040" and "NOT 1040A or 1040EZ."

To avoid confusion, thank you : )
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: JCMccullough on February 26, 2014, 12:08:11 pm
I skimmed through several pages of the thread but didn't run across what I was looking for (maybe I'm just blind).

It's a possibility I might have to break my contract and leave early, so I won't be making the 330 day minimum if I do that. If I do leave it'll be around the 7-8th month point.

Anyone know what kind of US taxes I'll be faced with for not hitting the 330+ day mark?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: naturegirl321 on March 02, 2014, 07:47:22 am
If you dont meet the 330days minimum req you may be able to still do the 2555 due to bona fide res. And you can definitely do the foreign tax credit.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: naturegirl321 on March 02, 2014, 07:53:22 am
I am currently filling out my 8802 and ran across a question.
Line 5: Was the applicant required to file a U.S. tax form for the tax period(s) on which the certification was based?
What do I fill out for this? In 2013, I was freelancing so I am not sure if I check the Yes, or No box.

Yes most likely. Check the IRS site though since they publosh a min of how much you have to make in.order to file.

Did you file for 2013?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: 88matthew on March 02, 2014, 01:29:14 pm
Must always file taxes.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: taingray on March 19, 2014, 05:58:57 pm
I f***ing hate trying to figure out taxes.

Maybe this has been addressed somewhere in this long, confusing thread, but I can't find the answers even when I try the search function.

Can I still file form 2555 and use the physical presence test IF I left Korea in September of 2013? I wasn't in Korea for 330 days of 2013, so I don't know if that means I will owe taxes to the U.S. government. I WAS in Korea for at least 330 days if include the start of my contract, which began in September 2012. Does that qualify me for the physical presence test?

My other questions is, if I can still use the physical presence test, how do I fill out Part III of form 2555, where it asks you to list the dates you were in the U.S. in 2013? Do I just say I was in the U.S. from September to the end of the year? Because that would make it seem like I can't use the physical presence test, since it clearly shows I wasn't there for 330 days of 2013. I really don't get it.

Help, please!
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Chicagohotdog on March 20, 2014, 07:33:15 am
I f***ing hate trying to figure out taxes.

Maybe this has been addressed somewhere in this long, confusing thread, but I can't find the answers even when I try the search function.

Can I still file form 2555 and use the physical presence test IF I left Korea in September of 2013? I wasn't in Korea for 330 days of 2013, so I don't know if that means I will owe taxes to the U.S. government. I WAS in Korea for at least 330 days if include the start of my contract, which began in September 2012. Does that qualify me for the physical presence test?

My other questions is, if I can still use the physical presence test, how do I fill out Part III of form 2555, where it asks you to list the dates you were in the U.S. in 2013? Do I just say I was in the U.S. from September to the end of the year? Because that would make it seem like I can't use the physical presence test, since it clearly shows I wasn't there for 330 days of 2013. I really don't get it.

Help, please!

If it's the same as last year the physical presence test is a year long period starting or ending in the tax year in question.  Meaning that you could use September 2012-September 2013 as your years for physical presence.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: taingray on March 20, 2014, 10:36:25 am
I f***ing hate trying to figure out taxes.

Maybe this has been addressed somewhere in this long, confusing thread, but I can't find the answers even when I try the search function.

Can I still file form 2555 and use the physical presence test IF I left Korea in September of 2013? I wasn't in Korea for 330 days of 2013, so I don't know if that means I will owe taxes to the U.S. government. I WAS in Korea for at least 330 days if include the start of my contract, which began in September 2012. Does that qualify me for the physical presence test?

My other questions is, if I can still use the physical presence test, how do I fill out Part III of form 2555, where it asks you to list the dates you were in the U.S. in 2013? Do I just say I was in the U.S. from September to the end of the year? Because that would make it seem like I can't use the physical presence test, since it clearly shows I wasn't there for 330 days of 2013. I really don't get it.

Help, please!

If it's the same as last year the physical presence test is a year long period starting or ending in the tax year in question.  Meaning that you could use September 2012-September 2013 as your years for physical presence.

Cool, thanks! What, then, did you put for Part III when you have to write the specific dates you were in the U.S.? Would I just put that I was there the last 4 months of 2013 and assume that they will believe me that I was in Korea for 330 days even though those days were not all in 2013?

Thanks in advance!
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Chicagohotdog on March 20, 2014, 10:47:50 am
I f***ing hate trying to figure out taxes.

Maybe this has been addressed somewhere in this long, confusing thread, but I can't find the answers even when I try the search function.

Can I still file form 2555 and use the physical presence test IF I left Korea in September of 2013? I wasn't in Korea for 330 days of 2013, so I don't know if that means I will owe taxes to the U.S. government. I WAS in Korea for at least 330 days if include the start of my contract, which began in September 2012. Does that qualify me for the physical presence test?

My other questions is, if I can still use the physical presence test, how do I fill out Part III of form 2555, where it asks you to list the dates you were in the U.S. in 2013? Do I just say I was in the U.S. from September to the end of the year? Because that would make it seem like I can't use the physical presence test, since it clearly shows I wasn't there for 330 days of 2013. I really don't get it.

Help, please!

If it's the same as last year the physical presence test is a year long period starting or ending in the tax year in question.  Meaning that you could use September 2012-September 2013 as your years for physical presence.

Cool, thanks! What, then, did you put for Part III when you have to write the specific dates you were in the U.S.? Would I just put that I was there the last 4 months of 2013 and assume that they will believe me that I was in Korea for 330 days even though those days were not all in 2013?

Thanks in advance!

You have to list the year that you are claiming, not necessarily the tax year.  So for you would would be listing where you were and for how long from the period starting in 2012 - 2013.  Do not include anything past the end time in 2013. 

You're not saying that you were in Korea for 330 days in 2013.  You are saying that you were in Korea for 330 day over the period of time from September 2012-September 2013.  As long as the year period is starting or ending in the tax year that you are filing for.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: KirbyOwnz on March 20, 2014, 10:55:56 am
Kind of a dumb question but I'll ask anyway.   Should I file form 2555 if I've technically been in Korea for under 330 days?  I arrived mid February for EPIK, so for the 2013 tax year I'm under. 

Another dumb question  - should I write my address, employer etc in English?  I would assume I should..
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: bluepaper on April 01, 2014, 07:48:06 am
I understand we are exempt from US income tax if we file correctly.

My accountant in the states is saying that I owe 15% of my income for social security tax.
Also I must be filed self employed since my employer is not removing it for me.

Is this correct?
Is everyone here doing the same too?
Thanks.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: teach2learn on April 07, 2014, 01:51:16 pm
Taxes are so confusing!

TLDR: American, GEPIK teacher, in Korea less than two years.

A) How much should be taken out from my paycheck each month for things like pension and health insurance? Is ~175,000 about right?

B) Assuming all the forms got filled out correctly (8802, 6166, 5222, & 1040) I should owe next to nothing in BOTH countries, correct?

Long version:

Okay, I'm a tax dummy :-[ (yes, my parents still do them for me. I'll grow up eventually, I promise!) Anyway. When I first got here I applied for my residency certificate and got everything submitted to my school. I thought everything was hunky dorey. My salary was 2.0m and I was getting 1.8ish in my bank account every month. I assumed the deductions were for health insurance, pension, and school lunch. Does that sound right to everyone? Or was there something else coming out of my paycheck? I did not get pay stubs at the time and have asked my old co-teacher for them but am not very hopeful that I will ever get them....

My parents back home in the States are trying to submit my American taxes and they think I owe the IRS $2,000!! I just don't think that's correct. After reading through this thread a bit it looks like what I'm missing is this Form 2555 thing. Submitting my 1040 with the 2555 should significantly lower what I owe in the States, right? (I did work a minimum wage job for two months of 2013).

Thanks for reading, I was kind of freaking out. I mean, $2,000?!? On what I make?? After reading this thread I feel better but still want to get some advice on the situation. Basically I want to make sure I haven't inadvertently been paying Korean taxes and that I understand the basics of what's needed to complete my exemptions.

Your help is much appreciated!!
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Traveling T.O. on April 07, 2014, 03:18:41 pm
Taxes are so confusing!

TLDR: American, GEPIK teacher, in Korea less than two years.

A) How much should be taken out from my paycheck each month for things like pension and health insurance? Is ~175,000 about right?

B) Assuming all the forms got filled out correctly (8802, 6166, 5222, & 1040) I should owe next to nothing in BOTH countries, correct?


A.) Roughly 18% give or take a percent.

B.)Yes but no.  You are responsible for the taxes on your job that you had at home.  As far as your job here, it is not that you are "tax free".  The tax agreement is to keep you from being double taxed. It just works in our favor because your first x amount of dollars of pay  (google "site:wagook.org American taxes" for that thread)  is exempt from American taxes and  the agreement exempts us from Korean taxes for two years it really is "tax free"  Now, here's the rub.  If you have not filed the correct paperwork AND you claimed the money that you made here AND you haven't told the american government you are overseas they tax it at the full rate.  If those three things didn't happen, like that, then someone made a mistake.  But, as you said, assuming all is done correctly and you don't have other income in the States like inheritance, investment, blah blah blah blah, your liability should be low and just for that job.

Unless your job in the U.S. for two months was ballerific to get taxed like that.  Then I would wonder why you are here, play-yah!
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: KirbyOwnz on April 07, 2014, 03:39:28 pm
teach2learn:  do the form 2555.  if you claim you made something like $20,000 here without doing the 2555 you'll literally owe thousands.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: teach2learn on April 08, 2014, 02:10:52 pm
Thank you for the answers guys!!

I'm working on the 2555 now and am beyond confused. Am I claiming the housing exclusion or housing deduction? I don't understand what that is really... Do I get to write off my heating and gas? Or do I skip section VI and go to VII??

I'm looking at the IRS provided instructions but they're very confusing as well, is there somewhere I can look at an example or something? Lol, I'm so out of my depth here.

Thanks!
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: jebckr on April 17, 2014, 12:26:44 am
Hi, I'm being told I owe money for state taxes.  I lived in Alabama.  As I understand it, most people are exempt from state tax and all people are exempt from federal up to $95,000ish.

I'm guessing, Alabama is the exception to the rule here (they usually are).  Any info would be great.  Is there any way around this?  I can prove residence in Korea.  I have no house in Alabama and I'm not even registered to vote there.  Help...
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: jebckr on April 19, 2014, 04:30:23 pm
Any info on this question?  I sent my taxes info to my parent's CPA lady.  She, while lovely I'm sure, has little experience with foreign tax returns.  She has told me she is honestly not sure if I owe or not, but I'd certainly like to know since $700 hangs in the balance.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Jet0716 on August 01, 2014, 12:33:55 pm
Hello, ive already been paid twice and just realize that i could do that form (8011 or whatever) to get out of taxes.  Even if i turn it in a little late i get a refund or something right?  Maybe?  PLEASE!
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Tulfl2000 on January 20, 2015, 11:36:06 am
He guys.  Wanted to resurect this thread instead of making a new one. I'm kind of hoping for a quick answer.

I have my 6166 form with me and have to fill out my Korean Income Tax form.  Is there a slot where I can show that I have tax exemption status on the form or do I fill it out and hand it in with the 6166 form?

Thanks for any help.  Ah, taxes.  Stressful whatever country I live in.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: leonardlee on February 04, 2015, 12:37:24 pm
Hello, ive already been paid twice and just realize that i could do that form (8011 or whatever) to get out of taxes.  Even if i turn it in a little late i get a refund or something right?  Maybe?  PLEASE!

I'm in an almost similar situation, could someone chime in please?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Resolance on February 04, 2015, 01:37:51 pm
You might be able to get a refund but keep in mind that paper alone costs about $85 and might take 2-3 months to get.

If you already have a 6166 then you give it to your school admin office if you work at a public school. If you work at a hagwon then the 6166 isn't worth the paper it's printed on. The exemption doesn't apply to hagwon teachers.
Title: Korean Taxes!!
Post by: lessonlearner1 on February 10, 2015, 02:39:33 pm
Question. I worked in Korea for one year in 2010-2011. I submitted my form for tax exemption and didn't pay taxes. I came back to Korea in 2013. The first year I did not pay taxes because I submitted a new tax exemption form. My coteacher came to me today to say that I owe 700K in taxes. My question is does my tax exemption start over again for two years 2013-2015? Or is the exemption only good for two years?
Title: Re: Korean Taxes!!
Post by: taeyang on February 11, 2015, 09:49:07 pm
http://www.waygook.org/index.php/topic,43234.0.html
Title: Re: Korean Taxes!!
Post by: Chicagohotdog on February 12, 2015, 07:29:28 am
Question. I worked in Korea for one year in 2010-2011. I submitted my form for tax exemption and didn't pay taxes. I came back to Korea in 2013. The first year I did not pay taxes because I submitted a new tax exemption form. My coteacher came to me today to say that I owe 700K in taxes. My question is does my tax exemption start over again for two years 2013-2015? Or is the exemption only good for two years?

Only good for two years, it does not start over again.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: jcastane89 on September 14, 2015, 05:51:32 pm
Hey guys!

So it's been a while since anyone has posted on this thread, but I have a question. My U.S. Residency Certification has been denied. The reason being:

"Our records show that for the tax year shown above (2014), you either filed a Form 2555, Foreign Earned Income or a Form 1116 indicating your tax home was in South Korea for the tax period for which you are requesting certification. You have requested residency certification for purposes of claiming treaty benefits from South Korea.....For this reason we are unable to grant your request."

I've been teaching in South Korea for 2 years now and haven't paid taxes since I've been here. My first year I was at a private school, my second year at a public school with EPIK, and I just started my second (3rd year of teaching in Korea) contract with EPIK this semester. I absolutely have no idea what to do next? What question(s) to ask to the IRS, Korean tax offices.

Any helpful advice would be more than appreciated. It's been literally giving me a headache these past few days.

Thanks!
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: jcastane89 on September 14, 2015, 06:35:52 pm
Hey rhannahbrown!

I know that for my 3rd year I won't be tax exempt. I'm worried about having to pay taxes NOW (or before I leave) here in Korea for the first 2 years I was here since I wasn't able to obtain my U.S. Residency Certification. I'm not sure if it would also affect my pension money.

I was told by my co-teacher today that starting this month, I'll be taxed every paycheck.

Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: marksurendra on September 17, 2015, 01:47:51 pm
In my experience and from what I've learned, the Residency Certificate can start anytime (personal experience, started in April 2012).  As for the validity of the Residency Certificate, I thought that was only in effect for Government employees, i.e. public schools.  So Hagwons should not count AFAIK.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: eleven11punk on October 05, 2015, 10:33:07 pm
So I sent the IRS an 8802 form so I could get my 6166 form. However, instead of sending me the 6166 forms, they sent me a W-8 BEN form (which is for foreigners who work in the US?) Why? How?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: runnershigh17 on October 06, 2015, 01:51:13 pm
So I sent the IRS an 8802 form so I could get my 6166 form. However, instead of sending me the 6166 forms, they sent me a W-8 BEN form (which is for foreigners who work in the US?) Why? How?

Try calling the IRS. There was probably some mixup in your forms but I doubt anyone on Waygook will have an answer.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: oceancloud on October 06, 2015, 03:33:38 pm
does anybody have a source for the two year exemption? i've heard that alot but when I looked at the irs website it says if you live outside the us for more than like 330 days then you can be eligible to not pay, unless you make more than about 100000 a year.  There was no limit mentioned.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: nermal on October 06, 2015, 03:44:47 pm
does anybody have a source for the two year exemption? i've heard that alot but when I looked at the irs website it says if you live outside the us for more than like 330 days then you can be eligible to not pay, unless you make more than about 100000 a year.  There was no limit mentioned.

The two year exemption is for Korean taxes. You ARE exempt from paying American income tax because of what you mentioned, but you are still supposed to file your taxes and report your foreign earned income.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: marksurendra on October 06, 2015, 04:02:28 pm
does anybody have a source for the two year exemption? i've heard that alot but when I looked at the irs website it says if you live outside the us for more than like 330 days then you can be eligible to not pay, unless you make more than about 100000 a year.  There was no limit mentioned.

Regarding your 330 days question, I always second guess myself when doing the taxes.  I believe you are referring to the "Bonafide resident" BS-thingy.  I'm pretty sure I've filled out my taxes both ways and didn't pay any taxes (as I should not have). 

Just as an FYI, there is a limit as you mentioned but if you are making that limit, then you already sold your soul to the devil and don't need to worry about taxes.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: cad_diva20 on November 03, 2015, 10:15:46 am
Hello everyone! We just backfiled some taxes (mailed from Korea).
 I need the tax transcripts asap. Anyone have any current experience with the waiting time?
 How long does sit take for irs to process the taxes so I can then request a tax transcript?
I need the taxes for US spousal immigration purposes.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: country09 on November 03, 2015, 10:41:32 am
It took them about a month to process my back taxes but I sent them back in February. I had about 4 years worth being processed.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Korea13 on November 03, 2015, 12:31:18 pm
Hello everyone! We just backfiled some taxes (mailed from Korea).
 I need the tax transcripts asap. Anyone have any current experience with the waiting time?
 How long does sit take for irs to process the taxes so I can then request a tax transcript?
I need the taxes for US spousal immigration purposes.

I backfilled my 2013 tax return with my 2014 tax this March. On the IRS Where My Refund website, it's still showing that my tax return are being process. It been 9 months now and still not complete yet.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: cad_diva20 on November 04, 2015, 12:08:35 pm
It took them about a month to process my back taxes but I sent them back in February. I had about 4 years worth being processed.

You are the 4th person to tell me this. All 4 people had theirs show up on the web site within one month. This gives me hope, thanks!
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: runnershigh17 on November 17, 2015, 10:27:50 am
Hi everyone. So a family member back in the States sent in a completed Form 8802 for me, but for some reason the mail bounced back saying the address was not valid? I put down

Department of the Treasury
Internal Revenue Service
Philadelphia, PA 19255-0625

as the website states (she used USPS to send it). I paid using the electronic payment.

I tried calling them too but I haven't been able to get through.. Any help would be greatly appreciated!

Bump.. Does anyone know the exact address I need to send my forms to? Still haven't been able to mail it in :/

From the website:

Electronic Payment:

After the electronic confirmation number has been entered on page 1 of Form 8802, the Form 8802 and all the required attachments are sent either:

Department of the Treasury
Internal Revenue Service
Philadelphia, PA 19255-0625

You sent it the first time to the address if you pay by money order or check. Just follow the directions on the website.

https://www.irs.gov/Individuals/International-Taxpayers/Form-8802,-Application-for-United-States-Residency-Certification---Additional-Certification-Requests

Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: massu on February 08, 2016, 11:17:17 am
I know we have to file form 1040 and 2555 for American taxes but...

Since we have bank accounts in Korea, do we have to file Schedule B - Interest and Ordinary Dividends as well? And if we do, do we have to file FinCEN Form 114?

Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: jeremydc808 on February 08, 2016, 05:46:05 pm
Has anyone else received the following message after submitting taxes?


Latest Known Issues

Tentative Fix Date

Business Rule X0000-005 is received when you select Form 4361 from the drop-down menu on Line 57 of Form 1040. February 13, 2016
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: saintriddler on February 09, 2016, 11:29:01 am
So I am filling out form 8802 and I have run into an issue with #5. So I did not file taxes any previous years. My parents claimed me as a dependent. So I put that under "no" and the "other" section of #5.

Now in the instructions it says "a child under age 19, or under age 24 if a full-time student, whose parent(s) elected to report the child's income on their return" I am assuming this is me due to the situation." And I'm also assuming that #5 is asking about taxes that were filed for the previous year.

But also in that section it says I need to attach form 8814 to send in. All of that I was fine understanding (unless someone knows I have made a mistake somewhere already). But in form 8814 it is asking for information that neither my parents or I were ever provided with at any time in my life. So I have no way to fill this document out yet they still want it?

Anyone know what I am missing?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: robobob9000 on February 09, 2016, 02:42:15 pm
I know we have to file form 1040 and 2555 for American taxes but...

Since we have bank accounts in Korea, do we have to file Schedule B - Interest and Ordinary Dividends as well? And if we do, do we have to file FinCEN Form 114?
If your Korean bank account was valued at over $10,000 at any point during the year, then yes you need file Form 114. If you kept it under $10,000 then you don't need to file. If your money is in investments instead of bank accounts then you don't need to file.  It's just to make sure that you're not funneling money to terrorists.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: massu on February 12, 2016, 10:06:27 am
I know we have to file form 1040 and 2555 for American taxes but...

Since we have bank accounts in Korea, do we have to file Schedule B - Interest and Ordinary Dividends as well? And if we do, do we have to file FinCEN Form 114?
If your Korean bank account was valued at over $10,000 at any point during the year, then yes you need file Form 114. If you kept it under $10,000 then you don't need to file. If your money is in investments instead of bank accounts then you don't need to file.  It's just to make sure that you're not funneling money to terrorists.


Thanks for the response! Good to know :)
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: mimimiscellany on February 19, 2016, 12:52:14 pm
sorry if this was already answered... I taught in Korea from 2009-2011 through EPIK and got the tax exemption.  I'm going back now, also public school... should I still file for tax exemption?  Am I no longer eligible for the U.S. tax refund since I got it the first two years, or does that only count for people who live in Korea consecutively?  Thanks in advance.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: pohangster on April 15, 2016, 02:39:14 pm
I started filing my taxes on TaxAct which I've used for the past few years with no problem.  However, now I'm unable to include the Foreign Earned Income Exclusion (form 2555) with my 1040 without upgrading to a premium service.  Does anyone know of an online free tax service that lets you include form 2555 for free.  I know Turbotax makes you upgrade as well.  It seems like most of the services do.  I'm thinking I might just wait until I go home and file for multiple years since I don't actually owe any tax anyway.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Pecan on April 15, 2016, 03:34:49 pm
pohang,

You can do that, however, I would strongly advise against it, as you won't be able to max out your Roth IRA, if you don't file annually.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Mezoti97 on April 15, 2016, 05:40:58 pm
sorry if this was already answered... I taught in Korea from 2009-2011 through EPIK and got the tax exemption.  I'm going back now, also public school... should I still file for tax exemption?  Am I no longer eligible for the U.S. tax refund since I got it the first two years, or does that only count for people who live in Korea consecutively?  Thanks in advance.

By "tax exemption," I assume you mean exemption from Korean taxes -- if so, since you got exempt from paying Korean taxes from 2009-2011, you are no longer eligible to be exempt from paying Korean taxes again. My understanding of the 2-year tax exemption for Korean taxes is that it is a "one-time only thing" (meaning, if you received the exemption in the past, then you can't get the exemption again later on in the future).
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: pohangster on April 18, 2016, 01:58:45 pm

You can do that, however, I would strongly advise against it, as you won't be able to max out your Roth IRA, if you don't file annually.

Yeah, I've been reading up about this.  It seems you can't claim the Foreign Earned Income Exclusion and still contribute to an IRA. That's why I've never gotten a Roth IRA.   However, now that I've been here long enough that I have to pay Korean income taxes I'm wondering if it wouldn't be better to claim the Foreign Tax Credit rather than the FEIE thereby allowing me to contribute to a Roth IRA.  Is it worth it to do this?  I guess I better figure out exactly what I pay in Korean income tax and see how much less it is than U.S. income tax.  By looking at my pay stubs it looks like I only pay around 5% in Korean income tax.  I'm not sure why it's so low.  It says online that Korean income tax is 8% for the first 10 million won and 17% on income from 10-40 million won.  If I was actually paying that it seems comparable to what my U.S. income tax bracket would be which would make it worth it to pay U.S. income tax on my income, claim the Foreign Tax Credit, and contribute to a Roth IRA.  Could anyone help clear this up?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Pecan on April 18, 2016, 02:10:13 pm
Who told you aren't able to claim the exclusion and contribute to your IRA?

That is news to me, as it hasn't been that way in the past.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: pohangster on April 18, 2016, 02:39:05 pm
Who told you aren't able to claim the exclusion and contribute to your IRA?

That is news to me, as it hasn't been that way in the past.

I think this explains it pretty well.
http://www.ustax.bz/expats-iras/
So it seems if you claimed the FEIE, you could only contribute any amount you made more than $100,800 (the FEIE limit).  But you couldn't make more than $116,000 which is the limit to be able to contribute to the Roth IRA.  Did you just contribute anyway?  I'm thinking I'll probably just claim the exclusion.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Resolance on April 18, 2016, 07:02:39 pm
Just a reminder for everyone that you are required to file every year (if you are American)

You can see proof in another thread, here: http://www.waygook.org/index.php/topic,96442.msg617625.html#msg617625
Title: Help with back taxes!
Post by: brenng87 on April 20, 2016, 01:12:47 pm
Quick question: I think I may have filed my taxes wrong a couple years ago. Can someone confirm or dismiss this. I came in July 2013 so half of the year was spent in Korea and half in the US up until July. I filed a 2055 and claimed a bonafide residency test. How? By claiming a future date, because I planned and did stay in Korea.

I'm thinking I should have paid US taxes for the income I earned in Korea that year. Am I right?

If so. How can I rectify the situation? Will I have to pay interest on the balance?

Thanks!
Title: Re: Help with back taxes!
Post by: Teachersa on April 20, 2016, 09:50:24 pm
Quick question: I think I may have filed my taxes wrong a couple years ago. Can someone confirm or dismiss this. I came in July 2013 so half of the year was spent in Korea and half in the US up until July. I filed a 2055 and claimed a bonafide residency test. How? By claiming a future date, because I planned and did stay in Korea.

I'm thinking I should have paid US taxes for the income I earned in Korea that year. Am I right?

If so. How can I rectify the situation? Will I have to pay interest on the balance?

Thanks!

Bonafide residency is a tricky beast. If you didn't get a letter from the IRS asking for money you should be fine. You can also ask for transcripts to check it was accepted.
Bonafide residency is essentially you saying "I intend to live in this foreign country for a long time" so even if I go to the States for a little while I'm planning on returning to "other country".

The amount of time you spent in the States lowers the amount of money that's tax exempt so if you filled that out correctly and still didn't meet the thresh hold you're good to go!
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: jade4 on July 23, 2016, 09:18:05 am
Hey folks! Incredibly useful info throughout this thread - thanks!

However, I've read through the entire thread and I can't seem to find confirmation for my question. A few people have mentioned offhand that the same Form 6166 can be used for two consecutive years of tax exemption in Korea. However, in filling out the Form 8802 to request the 6166, I have to fill in the specific year that I am requesting it for (Line 7 and again on Page 3) - so I assume that said year is printed on the Form 6166 somewhere.

Would that not mean that the Form 6166 for (say) 2017 would NOT be still valid for 2018?

I'm pretty new at all this, so I just want to make sure that I'm doing this correctly!
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: stellaristic on September 09, 2016, 11:12:58 am
Hey folks! Incredibly useful info throughout this thread - thanks!

However, I've read through the entire thread and I can't seem to find confirmation for my question. A few people have mentioned offhand that the same Form 6166 can be used for two consecutive years of tax exemption in Korea. However, in filling out the Form 8802 to request the 6166, I have to fill in the specific year that I am requesting it for (Line 7 and again on Page 3) - so I assume that said year is printed on the Form 6166 somewhere.

Would that not mean that the Form 6166 for (say) 2017 would NOT be still valid for 2018?

I'm pretty new at all this, so I just want to make sure that I'm doing this correctly!

To answer this question, I would say that you should definitely put both years that the tax credit applies to. I just got word from my own school that because I only put 1 year on the form, the tax credit expired and they need a whole new form. If I want to get the tax credit again, I'm assuming I need to get a whole new paper which is just another $85. And because I'm only staying here for another 6 months, that means it won't even really be worth it. So there goes my money. Learn from my mistake.

So in short, it couldn't hurt to put both years that the credit applies to on the form.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: jade4 on September 24, 2016, 02:27:45 am
Hey folks! Incredibly useful info throughout this thread - thanks!

However, I've read through the entire thread and I can't seem to find confirmation for my question. A few people have mentioned offhand that the same Form 6166 can be used for two consecutive years of tax exemption in Korea. However, in filling out the Form 8802 to request the 6166, I have to fill in the specific year that I am requesting it for (Line 7 and again on Page 3) - so I assume that said year is printed on the Form 6166 somewhere.

Would that not mean that the Form 6166 for (say) 2017 would NOT be still valid for 2018?

I'm pretty new at all this, so I just want to make sure that I'm doing this correctly!

To answer this question, I would say that you should definitely put both years that the tax credit applies to. I just got word from my own school that because I only put 1 year on the form, the tax credit expired and they need a whole new form. If I want to get the tax credit again, I'm assuming I need to get a whole new paper which is just another $85. And because I'm only staying here for another 6 months, that means it won't even really be worth it. So there goes my money. Learn from my mistake.

So in short, it couldn't hurt to put both years that the credit applies to on the form.


Thanks for answering, Stella! I guess I assumed that you could only put ONE year on the form, but I went back and saw that it indeed says "Calendar year(s) for which the form is requested" (gotta love that plural). Sorry that you're having to deal with the last 6 months of taxes over there - but thanks for letting me benefit from your experience!
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: kberger on September 25, 2016, 10:59:25 pm
This is sort of a response to pohang and pecan.  It is not possible to contribute foreign earned income to a Roth IRA.  Income that that goes into a Roth has to be on a W-2.  That is a bummer about working overseas. 
Similar question and answer here:
https://ttlc.intuit.com/questions/2261307-problem-with-foreign-earned-income-and-roth-ira-contributions

Now, I'll go off on a bit of a tangent.  If someone has a 401k, 403b or a Simple IRA or something like that, there is something you may want to look into.  A 401k and those things are funded with pre tax income.  While in Korea, one thing you may want to do is convert some of that into a Roth.  While in Korea, your taxable US income is basicly zero.  So, you could convert some 401k money into a Roth, and you would report that amount as taxable income.  If you move an amount like $10,000 from a 401k to a Roth, there would be little to no taxes owed on that, and the Roth never gets taxed by the IRS again.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: taingray on April 02, 2017, 03:21:13 am
I've filed my taxes every year I've worked in Korea and always filed the foreign income exclusion. For 2016 taxes, I actually had a tax preparer do them for me, and they keep telling me I do not have to file form 2555 since Korea wouldn't have declared my income to the IRS and I don't have an actual W-2 from Korea. They even went and asked their boss to make sure.  :huh:

This goes against everything I have read and researched. I worked in Korea for five years and always submitted that form. Has anyone else been told this?? I think they are wrong, despite being tax professionals...
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Pecan on April 02, 2017, 06:32:41 am
It sounds like you could be in a world of hurt if you ever end up on the IRS's radar.

Foreign Earned Income Exclusion - Requirements

To claim the foreign earned income exclusion, the foreign housing exclusion, or the foreign housing deduction, you must have foreign earned income, your tax home must be in a foreign country, and you must be one of the following:

Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: nimrand on April 02, 2017, 07:20:09 am
I've filed my taxes every year I've worked in Korea and always filed the foreign income exclusion. For 2016 taxes, I actually had a tax preparer do them for me, and they keep telling me I do not have to file form 2555 since Korea wouldn't have declared my income to the IRS and I don't have an actual W-2 from Korea. They even went and asked their boss to make sure.  :huh:

This goes against everything I have read and researched. I worked in Korea for five years and always submitted that form. Has anyone else been told this?? I think they are wrong, despite being tax professionals...

May I ask who these tax professionals are?  I think you need to find new ones.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Andyman on April 02, 2017, 11:43:56 am
Hey, quick question here...

I sent a completed f2350 ("Application for Extension of Time To File U.S. Income Tax Return") back at the end of February so that I could meet the 330-day physical presence test at the end of April. I haven't had any confirmation from the IRS that this has been received, let along processed and accepted.

Should I be worried?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: taingray on April 02, 2017, 12:48:30 pm
I've filed my taxes every year I've worked in Korea and always filed the foreign income exclusion. For 2016 taxes, I actually had a tax preparer do them for me, and they keep telling me I do not have to file form 2555 since Korea wouldn't have declared my income to the IRS and I don't have an actual W-2 from Korea. They even went and asked their boss to make sure.  :huh:

This goes against everything I have read and researched. I worked in Korea for five years and always submitted that form. Has anyone else been told this?? I think they are wrong, despite being tax professionals...

May I ask who these tax professionals are?  I think you need to find new ones.

They're U.S. military. My husband is in the Air Force and there is a tax office on base that prepares their taxes for free.

I'm flabbergasted. She even went to ask her boss, whose rank is much higher, and he also said we don't need to report it. I think they're wrong but they kept insisting. :huh:
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: nimrand on April 02, 2017, 04:30:38 pm
They're U.S. military. My husband is in the Air Force and there is a tax office on base that prepares their taxes for free.

I'm flabbergasted. She even went to ask her boss, whose rank is much higher, and he also said we don't need to report it. I think they're wrong but they kept insisting. :huh:

Well, the IRS's website says that those living abroad are taxed on their "worldwide income".  So, to convince me you don't need to report that income, you'd have to show me something that says that IRS doesn't consider employment income from a foreign country (e.g., Korea) is not part of your "worldwide income", which would be counter-intuitive (but then so is most of the tax code).

But, I'm pretty sure they are wrong, in that, technically, you are required to report that income, even if you don't have a W-2.  However, I'm not sure there is any actual penalty for not reporting it.  Afterall, if they audited you and discovered that income, it would contribute exactly $0 to your tax liability.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Andyman on April 03, 2017, 08:49:02 am
Hey, quick question here...

I sent a completed f2350 ("Application for Extension of Time To File U.S. Income Tax Return") back at the end of February so that I could meet the 330-day physical presence test at the end of April. I haven't had any confirmation from the IRS that this has been received, let along processed and accepted.

Should I be worried?

Okay, I just looked at the form again and there's a return address slip, plus a verification form that should denote whether or not your application was approved. I filled this in at the time (it was my own completed application that I pulled up for reference). A little worried that it's taken so long to get this back...
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: eastreef on April 03, 2017, 10:38:29 am
Many in the military, and others who are U.S. federal employees working overseas hear, and resent, that U.S. civilians working overseas don’t pay U.S. taxes, but that U.S. federal employees have to pay.  BTW, I served on active duty for six years in the U.S. Navy.  Many federal employees also do not understand the process of U.S. civilians having to file, and then using Form 2555 for the Foreign Earned Income Exclusion.  If you dare (lol), ask them for an IRS link that supports their position.

I have been a U.S. expat for approximately 17 years, but I am not a tax expert or legal tax advisor.  The following is just my opinion and experience, and is not legal or tax advice.  Do your own research.

If you are filing as married and jointly, then you report your foreign (worldwide) income if it is above the minimum threshold.  See below.  You then exclude your foreign income using Form 2555.

If you are filing married but separately, then your husband does not have to include your income, but if you are a U.S. citizen and/or U.S. legal resident each of you then file separately, and you would report your foreign income and then exclude it per Form 2555.

I never received a W2 for my seven years in Korea and don’t receive one now in Thailand.

I am married to a Thai national who works at the same school as me in Thailand.  For tax reasons we file Married and Jointly (I also have U.S. income), and thus we are required to include her foreign income.  We then complete a Form 2555 for me to exclude my foreign income and complete a Form 2555 to exclude her foreign income. 

BTW, she had to get a U.S. Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) for us to file married and jointly.  Because she got the ITIN she can be considered a U.S. tax resident and thus she can also take the Foreign Income Exclusion. 

We could file married and separately, and doing this would mean that I did not have to report her income on my U.S. tax form, and she would not have to file anything with the U.S. because she is a foreign national.  However, for us there was a tax advantage to file jointly.

Again, this is just my opinion and experience and is not legal or tax advice.  Check the IRS instructions on their website.  In the case of Foreign Income and filing married, the instructions are pretty much clear.

Quote
  https://www.irs.gov/businesses/income-from-abroad-is-taxable

If you are a U.S. citizen or resident alien, you must report income from all sources within and outside of the U.S. This is true whether or not you receive a Form W-2 Wage and Tax Statement,  a Form 1099 (Information Return) or the foreign equivalents.  See Publication 525, Taxable and Nontaxable Income, for more information.

General Filing Questions

https://www.irs.gov/uac/general-filing-questions

General Filing Questions

Am I Eligible to Apply for an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number?
Determine if you should file an application to receive an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN).

Do I Need to File a Tax Return?

Determine if you're required to file a federal tax return or if you should file to receive a refund.

What Is My Filing Status?

Determine your filing status: Single, Head of Household, Married Filing Jointly, Married Filing Separately, or Qualifying Widow(er) with Dependent Child.
Who Can I Claim as a Dependent?

Determine who you can claim as a dependent.

How Do I File a Deceased Person's Tax Return?

Determine who must file a decedent’s individual tax return, how the tax return is notated, and the timeframe for filing the return.

What Is the Due Date of My Federal Tax Return or Am I Eligible to Request an Extension?
Determine the due date of your federal tax return or whether you're eligible to request an extension.

What Is the Simplest Form to Use to File My Taxes?

Determine the simplest form to use to file your federal income tax return.

Can I Claim My Personal and/or Spousal Exemption?

Determine whether you can claim your own exemption or your spouse’s.

How Much Can I Deduct for Each Exemption I Claim?

Determine how much can be deducted for each exemption claimed on your return.

Can I or My Spouse Claim Part of a Refund Being Applied Toward a Debt Owed by the Other Spouse?

Decide if you should file a claim for part of a refund that was jointly applied toward a spouse’s past due debt for which you weren't responsible (federal/state tax, child/spousal support, student loan, etc.).
         
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: SuperDoodle23 on May 23, 2017, 03:42:33 pm
I am a U.S citizen and I have been living in Korea for almost 3 years now and I haven't been filing my taxes ( Yes, I know I'm an idiot ) . What forms do I need to get from my school? I want to get this fixed asap. I also have been paying student loans that I can deduct from. I don't want to get into too much trouble with Uncle Sam. Can someone please guide me on what I should do? Can I just use turbo tax or something like that?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Pecan on May 23, 2017, 06:10:04 pm
I am a U.S citizen and I have been living in Korea for almost 3 years now and I haven't been filing my taxes ( Yes, I know I'm an idiot ) . What forms do I need to get from my school? I want to get this fixed asap. I also have been paying student loans that I can deduct from. I don't want to get into too much trouble with Uncle Sam. Can someone please guide me on what I should do? Can I just use turbo tax or something like that?
Simply file the last three years now, before you get a letter from the IRS.

You wouldn't have owed anything, so it's not going to be an issue.

You don't need anything from your school, just get the income statement from your local tax office (in English).
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: lifeisgood6447 on May 24, 2017, 07:34:18 am
I am a U.S citizen and I have been living in Korea for almost 3 years now and I haven't been filing my taxes ( Yes, I know I'm an idiot ) . What forms do I need to get from my school? I want to get this fixed asap. I also have been paying student loans that I can deduct from. I don't want to get into too much trouble with Uncle Sam. Can someone please guide me on what I should do? Can I just use turbo tax or something like that?

I got behind at one point, and then just basically filled out the forms. You can do it yourself for free by downloading the necessary PDFs from the IRS website. There is also an English International line that you can call, and they will tell you exactly what needs to be done and which forms to fill out. I have been filing simple taxes from here for some years, and I have never needed any extra paperwork. I advise that you call the help line, as they helped me sort out something from last year...Helped me clear 4 grand owed from my name, so they are good for something.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: thunderlips on May 24, 2017, 07:52:01 am
I am a U.S citizen and I have been living in Korea for almost 3 years now and I haven't been filing my taxes ( Yes, I know I'm an idiot ) . What forms do I need to get from my school? I want to get this fixed asap. I also have been paying student loans that I can deduct from. I don't want to get into too much trouble with Uncle Sam. Can someone please guide me on what I should do? Can I just use turbo tax or something like that?

Yep do it yourself for free. Get the forms here: https://www.irs.gov/forms-pubs
If you claim the foreign earned tax exemption form 2555 you won't get a credit for student loans, but if you earned only a little for the years you may be better off filing and claiming your income. Depends on how much you earned.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: SuperDoodle23 on May 24, 2017, 08:46:57 am
Wow, thanks for the help guys. That is tremendously helpful.I have one more follow up question that is semi related to this topic so I hope the mods don't move it. I am wanting to start investing. I would like to invest in index funds but I feel more comfortable keeping the investments in U.S markets. I feel like an idiot for asking, but what is the process for keeping a U.S address on file? I have been using my fathers address to get U.S mail. I want to declare to the U.S government that I have been receiving foreign income so that everything is tidy and orderly with them, but at the same time I don't want to be declared a non U.S resident because it may make it difficult to put funds into a brokerage account. I would like to still declare my fathers address for U.S mail, but I also don't want to get in trouble for not declaring  my foreign income. Is it possible to keep a U.S address on file and also declare foreign income?  I know my questions are a bit confusing, but hopefully someone can help.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: thunderlips on May 24, 2017, 08:50:50 am
Wow, thanks for the help guys. That is tremendously helpful.I have one more follow up question that is semi related to this topic so I hope the mods don't move it. I am wanting to start investing. I would like to invest in index funds but I feel more comfortable keeping the investments in U.S markets. I feel like an idiot for asking, but what is the process for keeping a U.S address on file? I have been using my fathers address to get U.S mail. I want to declare to the U.S government that I have been receiving foreign income so that everything is tidy and orderly with them, but at the same time I don't want to be declared a non U.S resident because it may make it difficult to put funds into a brokerage account. I would like to still declare my fathers address for U.S mail, but I also don't want to get in trouble for not declaring  my foreign income. Is it possible to keep a U.S address on file and also declare foreign income?  I know my questions are a bit confusing, but hopefully someone can help.

Yes keeping a US address won't affect your filing status.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Pecan on May 24, 2017, 10:07:37 am
I don't want to be declared a non U.S resident...
Are you aware of the tax implications of this?

I wouldn't recommend it.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: SuperDoodle23 on May 24, 2017, 11:07:51 am
I don't want to be declared a non U.S resident...
Are you aware of the tax implications of this?

I wouldn't recommend it.

I thought it was clear that I'm an idiot. I am not aware. I want to keep U.S residency to make it easier to invest, but I don't want to pay absurd tax rate. What would be the tax implications of this?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Pecan on May 24, 2017, 11:12:58 am
Well, if the last two years were your first two years here (the two you didn't file), you would be OK with doing that, thanks to the 2 year exemption.  However, after that, if you don't have an exclusion, you will owe taxes to the IRS (so much for "no double taxation"), though you are paying taxes in the ROK, as well.

I tiny bit of elbow grease on your part will help you to wrap your head around the above.

Best of luck.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: ashwalton on March 06, 2018, 07:44:47 am
Hello, this is the first year where I have lived in SK and only worked in SK and I need to file my taxes in the USA. I have been told to file a form 2555 but my mom, who does my taxes and has power of attorney over me, says that I need a document from the school that has my yearly wage for 2017. Does this document exist? and if it did wouldnt it be 100% in Korean? I am an EPIK teacher and only one CT can speak English but she isn't in charge of my paperwork and has no idea what I need. Thanks for any help!

*I am still within the two year tax exception for Korea if that affects anything.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: Chinguetti on March 06, 2018, 08:02:16 am
Hello, this is the first year where I have lived in SK and only worked in SK and I need to file my taxes in the USA. I have been told to file a form 2555 but my mom, who does my taxes and has power of attorney over me, says that I need a document from the school that has my yearly wage for 2017. Does this document exist? and if it did wouldnt it be 100% in Korean? I am an EPIK teacher and only one CT can speak English but she isn't in charge of my paperwork and has no idea what I need. Thanks for any help!

*I am still within the two year tax exception for Korea if that affects anything.

You've got a few options, but the easiest is to visit the person who handles the financial affairs of the school. This person will be in the administration office (in my experience, this office is usually located on the first floor of the school, but it can be anywhere), and is normally responsible for debiting money for lunches and paying out salaries, including yours. You can ask this person for your Wage Earner Income Statement (근로소득 원천징수영수증(근로소득 지급 명세서). Yes, it'll be in Korean, but you can look up the translations for what is what and write them down.

If you've been receiving your pay stubs, you can also just use those.

You can also visit your local tax office for your Certificate of Income (소득금액증명).

Reference this site:

http://www.korvia.com/filing-us-taxes-from-korea/

Another option would be to register on the hometax.go.kr website, and download the Year-end Tax Settlement document from there (more info on that here: http://www.korea4expats.com/article-year-end-tax-settlement.html)... but I think you'll need to visit your bank for a security certificate first (which, once they set you up, you'll need to finalize on a PC computer with Internet Explorer, and download the certificate from there), because you'll need it to access the info. More on that here (https://medium.com/@Ediket/how-to-get-an-official-id-certificate-for-online-use-in-korea-%EA%B3%B5%EC%9D%B8%EC%9D%B8%EC%A6%9D%EC%84%9C-ef8f46aaa930).

More about the Year-end Tax Settlement doc here (https://www.koreantaxblog.com/single-post/2018/01/04/Year-end-tax-settlement%EC%97%B0%EB%A7%90%EC%A0%95%EC%82%B0).
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: ashwalton on March 06, 2018, 08:25:33 am
Thank you, I will look into all the information you have provided.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: thunderlips on March 06, 2018, 08:26:29 am
Hello, this is the first year where I have lived in SK and only worked in SK and I need to file my taxes in the USA. I have been told to file a form 2555 but my mom, who does my taxes and has power of attorney over me, says that I need a document from the school that has my yearly wage for 2017. Does this document exist? and if it did wouldnt it be 100% in Korean? I am an EPIK teacher and only one CT can speak English but she isn't in charge of my paperwork and has no idea what I need. Thanks for any help!

*I am still within the two year tax exception for Korea if that affects anything.
:shocked: :shocked:

Ok so you can find the documents online at  http://www.hometax.go.kr/websquare/websquare.html?w2xPath=/ui/pp/index.xml (http://www.hometax.go.kr/websquare/websquare.html?w2xPath=/ui/pp/index.xml) you need to create an id and log in. I was on there yesterday and 2017 isn't all updated yet, my co-t said after 3/12/18 it should be all there.

For the 2555 form you need to have residency in a foreign country for a certain amount of time-
Quote
Part II
Bona Fide Residence Test
To meet this test, you must be one of the
following.
A U.S. citizen who is a bona fide
resident of a foreign country, or countries,
for an uninterrupted period that includes
an entire tax year (January 1–December
31, if you file a calendar year return), or
A U.S. resident alien who is a citizen or
national of a country with which the United
States has an income tax treaty in effect
and who is a bona fide resident of a
foreign country, or countries, for an
uninterrupted period that includes an
entire tax year (January 1–December 31, if
you file a calendar year return). See
Table 3 at IRS.gov/individuals/
international-taxpayers/tax-treaty-tables
for a list of countries with which the United
States has an income tax treaty in effect.
Whether you are a bona fide resident of
a foreign country depends on your
intention about the length and nature of
your stay. Evidence of your intention may
be your words and acts. If these conflict,
your acts carry more weight than your
words. Generally, if you go to a foreign
country for a definite, temporary purpose
and return to the United States after you
accomplish it, you aren't a bona fide
resident of the foreign country. If
accomplishing the purpose requires an
extended, indefinite stay, and you make
your home in the foreign country, you may
be a bona fide resident. See Pub. 54 for
more information and examples.
Line 10. Enter the dates your bona fide
residence began and ended. If you are still
a bona fide resident, enter “Continues” in
the space for the date your bona fide
residence ended.
Lines 12a and 12b. If you check “Yes”
on line 12a, enter the type(s) of family
member(s) and the date(s) they lived with
-2- Instructions for Form 2555 (2017)
Page 3 of 11 Fileid: … ions/I2555/2017/A/XML/Cycle06/source 8:08 - 25-Oct-2017
The type and rule above prints on all proofs including departmental reproduction proofs. MUST be removed before printing.
you on line 12b. Acceptable entries for
family members on line 12b include child,
foster child, grandchild, parent,
grandparent, brother, sister, aunt, uncle,
nephew, niece, son, daughter, spouse, or
other. If you check “No” on line 12a, leave
line 12b blank or enter “None.”
Lines 13a and 13b. If you submitted a
statement of nonresidence to the
authorities of a foreign country in which
you earned income and the authorities
hold that you aren't subject to their income
tax laws by reason of nonresidency in the
foreign country, you aren't considered a
bona fide resident of that country.
If you submitted such a statement and
the authorities haven't made an adverse
determination of your nonresident status,
you aren't considered a bona fide resident
of that country.
Part III
Physical Presence Test
To meet this test, you must be a U.S.
citizen or resident alien who is physically
present in a foreign country, or countries,
for at least 330 full days during any period
of 12 months in a row. A full day means
the 24-hour period that starts at midnight.
To figure 330 full days, add all separate
periods you were present in a foreign
country during the 12-month period shown
on line 16. The 330 full days can be
interrupted by periods when you are
traveling over international waters or are
otherwise not in a foreign country. See
Pub. 54 for more information and
examples.
Note. A nonresident alien who, with a
U.S. citizen or U.S. resident alien spouse,
chooses to be taxed as a resident of the
United States can qualify under this test if
the time requirements are met. See Pub.
54 for details on how to make this choice.
Line 16. The 12-month period on which
the physical presence test is based must
include 365 days, part of which must be in
2017. The dates may begin or end in a
calendar year other than 2017.
You must enter dates in both
spaces provided on line 16. Don't
enter “Continues” in the space for
the ending date.
https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/i2555.pdf


Also I filed 2555 many times and never included the wage earner statements. You should if you can get them, but if not just file anyways.
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: slycordinator on March 09, 2018, 08:21:24 am
BTW, I saw the earlier post that foreign-earned income can't be contributed to a Roth IRA. That's not strictly true.

If you have use the foreign-earned income exclusion, you can't use any of the excluded money to contribute to Roth or a traditional one either. But if you don't use the exclusion, you'd be fine and it can be advantageous in that you can also apply a "foreign taxes paid" credit (assuming you pay taxes here) and would be eligible to contribute to IRAs.

https://www.thebalance.com/ira-for-workers-abroad-3193218
https://www.thebalance.com/foreign-tax-credit-3193475
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: sh9wntm on June 11, 2018, 08:35:50 am
I'm an American and I'm pretty sure I haven't been getting taxed on my paychecks. I haven't filed for tax exemption. I pay pension and healthcare, but I haven't seen anything other than that. Am I missing something here, or is it possible they just assume my documents are in?
Title: Re: Questions and Answers for American Taxes
Post by: slycordinator on June 11, 2018, 03:15:15 pm
I'm an American and I'm pretty sure I haven't been getting taxed on my paychecks. I haven't filed for tax exemption. I pay pension and healthcare, but I haven't seen anything other than that. Am I missing something here, or is it possible they just assume my documents are in?
Which taxes are you referring to, Korean or American?

For Korean taxes:
If you file (and pay for) form 8802 (Application for United States Residency Certification), the US gov't will send you a form that certifies you are a resident of the US for tax purposes. Then you can give that to your employer and for the first 2 years you live abroad, it makes you exempt from paying taxes here. After those first 2 years, you're no longer eligible.

For US taxes:
You can have all your foreign earned income up to around $100K exempt/excluded from tax, but only if you were a bona fide resident of the foreign country for the entire year or were physically outside the US for at least 330 days of the year.

If you don't meet the physical presence or bona fide resident tests (either not a resident for whole year or present abroad for less than 330 days), you can get a credit on foreign taxes paid.

Either way, you have to report your income.