2024 US Expat Tax Deadlines and Tips for Americans Abroad

As an American expat, balancing your adventurous life with the practicalities of tax season is crucial. As 2024 unfolds, Bright!Tax is here to simplify the US tax process for you. This guide is your essential companion for the 2023 tax season, packed with all the key dates and insights to navigate your tax responsibilities with ease and confidence. Let’s get started.

Everything you need to know about filing for the 2023 tax season

For the sake of clarity, note that the 2023 tax season refers to the taxes you file in 2024.

The tax season is an integral part of the year because all American citizens must file their tax returns regardless of where in the world they call home. The same applies to permanent residents such as green card holders and Accidental Americans (those who never knew they were American citizens).

Tax season essentials for Americans Abroad

  • Universal Filing Requirement: Remember, all American citizens, including expats, must file their tax returns, irrespective of their global location. This rule also applies to permanent residents like green card holders and those who have recently discovered their American citizenship, often referred to as ‘Accidental Americans.’
  • Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN): To file your taxes, you’ll need a TIN. For most, this will be your Social Security Number (SSN). This applies to both citizens and permanent residents. Accidental Americans, recognized as citizens by the IRS, will also need an SSN to file their tax returns.
  • Special Cases for Non-Citizens and Green Card Holders: If you’re living abroad without US citizenship or a Green Card but are engaged in business in the US, you might still need to file a tax return. In such cases, the IRS allows the use of an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) instead of an SSN.

Understanding your filing obligations

It’s important to know whether you meet the filing threshold. While some may fall below the required income level to file, there could be financial benefits to filing regardless, such as claiming certain IRS provisions.

US taxpayers seeking to understand their filing obligations should refer to the chart below to learn whether they qualify for filing. Note that even if you fall below the filing threshold and are not technically required to file, there are some circumstances where it may be financially beneficial to you to file and claim certain provisions from the IRS.

Minimum Filing Threshold for Taxpayers Younger Than 65

Tax YearSingleMarried Filing SeparatelyMarried Filing JointlyHead of Household

Minimum Filing Threshold for Taxpayers 65 And Older

Tax YearSingleMarried Filing SeparatelyMarried Filing JointlyHead of Household

Starting Your Tax Filing in 2024: The Earliest Date to Begin

As an American expat, staying ahead in your tax preparations is crucial. The IRS typically starts processing returns in late January, though the exact date varies each year. For 2024, mark your calendar: the IRS will begin accepting tax returns on Monday, January 29, 2024.

Keeping an eye on IRS announcements ensures you’re ready to file at the earliest opportunity.

2024 US Tax Filing Deadline

The primary deadline for filing your 2023 taxes is Monday, April 15, 2024. It’s essential to prepare in advance to meet this date, ensuring a smooth filing process.

Extensions for American Expats

American expats and Green Card holders benefit from additional flexibility with extended tax-filing deadlines:

  • First Extension: The automatic extension for expats extends the filing deadline to June 17, 2024. This extension is applied automatically, requiring no additional forms.
  • Further Extensions: If you need more time beyond June 17, you can request a second extension using IRS Form 4868. This extends your filing deadline to October 15, 2024. In certain situations, a further extension to December 16, 2024, may be available, ensuring you have ample time to file without penalties.

Understanding Tax Payment Due Dates

It’s important to note that while extensions delay the filing deadline, they do not extend the payment due date. For instance, if you’re a sole proprietor, any taxes owed must still be paid by April 15, 2024, to avoid penalties, even if you’ve obtained an extension for filing.

Navigating 2024 Estimated Taxes

The IRS operates on a pay-as-you-go basis, which means you’re expected to pay taxes on your income as you earn it throughout the year. For expats, particularly those working for foreign employers, it’s crucial to remember that US income taxes might not be automatically withheld from your pay. To avoid penalties and interest, it’s wise to stay ahead of your tax obligations rather than waiting until the formal due date.

If you’re self-employed, run a business, or have additional income like a side hustle, and anticipate owing at least $1,000 in taxes for 2024, you’ll need to make quarterly estimated tax payments. These payments are due on the following dates:

  • April 15, 2024
  • June 17, 2024 
  • September 16, 2024 
  • January 15, 2025

Business tax deadlines in 2024: Plan ahead for your business type

As we navigate through 2024, business owners and entrepreneurs must be aware of the key tax deadlines specific to their business structure. Staying informed helps ensure timely filings and avoids last-minute rushes.

Here’s a quick guide to the 2024 business tax deadlines based on your business type:

  • S corporations: March 15, 2024
  • Partnerships: March 15, 2024
  • Multi-member LLCs: March 15, 2024
  • Sole proprietorships: April 15, 2024
  • C corporations: April 15, 2024
  • Single-member LLCs: April 15, 2024

Each business structure has unique tax considerations, and meeting these deadlines is crucial for maintaining compliance and optimizing your financial strategy.

Navigating FBAR and FATCA: Essential 2024 Tax Deadlines

As a US expat, staying on top of your tax obligations means understanding a variety of critical forms and deadlines. Two of the most important are the FBAR and FATCA, each with its own set of rules and deadlines.

Let’s break these down to ensure you’re fully prepared for the 2024 tax season.

FBAR 2024 filing deadline: Reporting foreign bank accounts

  • What is FBAR? The Foreign Bank Account Report (FBAR) is a mandatory disclosure for Americans who have over $10,000 in foreign financial accounts at any point during the year. This electronic filing is straightforward but essential for compliance.
  • FBAR Deadline: The primary deadline for FBAR filing is April 15, 2024. However, there’s an automatic extension to October 15, 2024, for expats, meaning you can submit your report by this later date without any additional paperwork.

FATCA 2024 reporting deadline: Disclosing offshore financial assets

  • Understanding FATCA: The Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) requires US expats with significant offshore financial assets to report them. This is part of the broader effort to prevent tax evasion and ensure transparency.
  • FATCA Reporting Threshold: If your offshore financial assets are valued at $200,000 or more, you’ll need to report them using Form 8938, filed along with your federal tax return.
  • FATCA Deadline: The deadline for FATCA reporting aligns with your federal tax return. For the 2024 tax season, this falls on June 17, 2024.

Late Tax Filings and Compliance for 2024: Solutions and Support

Missed the 2024 tax filing deadline or playing catch-up with your tax obligations? Don’t worry, there’s a solution.

The IRS offers the Streamlined Procedures, a penalty-free way to file your returns, especially helpful if your delay wasn’t intentional. This program is designed to bring you back into compliance without undue stress.

The Long-Term Benefits of Staying Tax Compliant

Consistently filing your taxes and maintaining compliance is more than just fulfilling a legal obligation; it’s an investment in your financial peace of mind. While the US tax system may seem to operate on a ‘voluntary’ basis, the reality is that non-compliance can lead to significant financial and legal consequences. Regular filing is key to avoiding these complications and ensuring a smooth expat experience.

Expat couple at a laptop working out their Foreign Housing Exclusion

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