US citizens, green card holders must file an income tax return

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You also may have to file FinCEN Form 114, Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts (FBAR) if you have a financial interest in or signature authority over a foreign financial account, including a bank account, brokerage account, mutual fund, trust, or other type of foreign financial account — exceeding certain thresholds. You can check on the www.irs.gov website.

To prepare a tax return, you can complete the forms by hand, use computer software or online programmes, or employ a tax preparation service. If you have physical forms, 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 www.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. If you use a computer-based method, you can e-file your income tax return, in many cases for free. Participating software companies make their products available through the IRS, and e-file options are listed on www.irs.gov

If you find you do have taxes to pay, you must pay your taxes in US dollars. Here are a few ways that you can pay:

Direct pay: You can pay online with a direct transfer from your US bank account using Direct Pay, the Electronic Federal Tax Payment System, or by a US debit or credit card. You can also pay by phone using the Electronic Federal Tax Payment System or by a US debit or credit card.

Foreign wire transfers: If you have a US bank account, you can use the Electronic Federal Tax Payment System. If you do not have a US bank account, ask whether your financial institution has a US affiliate that can help you make same-day wire transfers.

Foreign electronic payments: International taxpayers who do not have a US bank account may transfer funds from their foreign bank account directly to the IRS for payment of their tax liabilities. Note, however, that this method can be costly. For more information go to https://www.irs.gov/individuals/international-taxpayers/foreign-electronic-payments

The due date for filing an income tax return is April 18, 2017. You can qualify for an automatic extension until June 15, 2017 with no form required, if you are living outside the United States and Puerto Rico. To qualify, you must attach a statement to your return explaining how you meet the criteria outlined at https://www.irs.gov/individuals/international-taxpayers/u-s-citizens-and-resident-aliens-abroad-automatic-2-month-extension-of-time-to-file

This extension applies for filing and paying income tax that is due, however, even if you qualify for the extension, if you owe taxes you will be required to pay interest on any tax not paid by April 18. You can find out more about extensions on www.irs.gov

The IRS provides tax information in Chinese, Korean, Russian, Spanish, and Vietnamese. Go to www.irs.gov and use the drop down box under “Languages” on the upper right corner to select your language of choice.

More information on taxes for US citizens and green card holders abroad can be found at https://www.irs.gov/individual /international-taxpayers/u-s-citizens-and-resident-aliens-abroad. If you want help with filing your taxes, you can contact the International Taxpayer Service Call Center by phone or fax. The International Call Center is open Monday through Friday, from 6:00 am to 11:00 pm (EST) at 1-267-941-1000 or via fax at 1-267-941-1055.

You can find more information about services available to American citizens and Legal Permanent Residents on our website, www.jm.usembassy.gov Keep on top of embassy news on our Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/ USEmbassyJamaica/ and by following @USEmbassyJA on Twitter. We also answer general visa questions on our Facebook and Twitter pages

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