Internal Revenue Service (U.S. Taxes)

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has provided the following guidance for U.S. citizens abroad preparing for the 2015 tax filing season.  This IRS guidance is posted under Federal Benefits and Obligations on www.travel.state.gov.

Who Must File?

All U.S. citizens and resident aliens must file a U.S. individual income tax return, even if they permanently live outside the United States and may not owe any tax because of income exclusion or tax credit.

When is the 2015 Federal Tax Return Due?

Due date for Form 1040:  April 15, 2016.

Extensions:

  • An automatic extension to June 15, 2016, is granted for taxpayers living outside the United States and Puerto Rico.  No form is required; write “Taxpayer Resident Abroad” at the top of your tax return.
    • Caution:  This extension applies only for filing your tax return, not for payment.  If you owe any taxes, you’re required to pay by April 15, 2016.  Interest and penalties will generally be applied if payment is made after this date.
    • To request an additional extension to October 15, 2016, use Form 4868.
      • Caution:  This extension applies only for filing your tax return, not for payment.  If you owe any taxes, you’re required to pay by April 15, 2016.  Interest and penalties will generally be applied if payment make after this date.
      • Other extensions may be available on IRS.gov.

Can I Mail My Return and Payment?

You can mail your tax return and payment using the postal service or approved private delivery services.  A list of approved delivery services is available on IRS.gov.  If you mail a return from outside the United States, the date of filing is the postmark date.  However, if you mail a payment, separately or with your return, your payment is not considered received until the date of actual receipt.

Can I Electronically File My Return?

You can prepare and e-file your income tax return, in many cases for free.  Participating software companies make their products available through the IRS.  E-File options are listed on IRS.gov.

Income Tax Assistance

The IRS has discontinued the VECTA (Volunteer Embassy/Consular Tax Assistance) Program. The Embassy can no longer provide a venue for IRS-trained volunteers to assist taxpayers. All IRS overseas operations that previously provided taxpayer assistance, including walk-in assistance, ceased effective November 20, 2015.

If you are a taxpayer with specific individual or business account questions you should contact the International Taxpayer Service Call Center by phone or fax. The International Call Center is operational Monday through Friday, from 6:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. EST, telephone: 267-941-1000 (not toll-free), fax: 267-941-1055.

If you are a tax professional or software provider calling about an e-file issue and it is not account-related, please contact the e-help office in Austin, Texas, at 512-416-7750 (not toll-free).

Assistance is available Monday through Friday, from 7:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. CST. Individual taxpayers located outside the United States also may contact the IRS by mail:

Internal Revenue Service
International Accounts
Philadelphia, PA 19255-0725

Business taxpayers located outside the United States also may contact the IRS by mail:

Internal Revenue Service
International Accounts
Ogden, UT 84201-0038

International Taxpayer Advocate: To request Taxpayer Advocate assistance, call the Taxpayer Advocate Service toll-free number: 001-877-777-4778

Taxpayer service, formerly offered by IRS offices overseas, is no longer available.