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I.R.S. Adds New Issues of Focus for Cross-Border Audits

I.R.S. Adds New Issues of Focus for Cross-Border Audits

In late 2018, LB&I announced five additional campaigns aimed at determining whether taxpayers are complying with tax rules in the following areas of the law: (i) foreign tax credits claimed by U.S. individuals, (ii) offshore service providers that assist taxpayers in creating foreign entities and tiered structures to conceal the U.S. beneficial ownership of foreign financial accounts, (iii) F.A.T.C.A. compliance by F.F.I.’s and N.F.F.E.’s, (iv) tax return compliance by foreign corporations that ignore the fact that they are engaged in a U.S. trade or business under the rules of U.S. tax law, and (v) late issuance of Work Opportunity Tax Credit (“W.O.T.C.”) certifications that result in the need to file amended tax returns and result in a misuse of I.R.S. resources when returns are filed without the W.O.T.C certifications. The move follows more than two years, of I.R.S. publications that alert the public to certain issue-based approaches being followed by examiners. Galia Antebi and Elizabeth V. Zanet summarize the new releases.

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Mirror, Mirror, On the Wall, Which Is My Tax Home of Them All? – Foreign Students Face Dilemma in the U.S.

Mirror, Mirror, On the Wall, Which Is My Tax Home of Them All? – Foreign Students Face Dilemma in the U.S.

The U.S. Department of State administers the Exchange Visitor Program, which designates sponsors to provide foreign nationals with opportunities to participate in educational and cultural programs in the U.S. and return home to share their experiences. These students receive taxable stipends, file tax returns, and reduce taxable income by costs associated with participation. Unfortunately, a recent Tax Court case, Liljeberg v. Commr., has determined that the travel and lodging costs of these individuals could not be deducted. Neha Rastogi and Beate Erwin explain that while home is where the heart is, a “tax home” is where a person is expected to live taking into consideration the person’s principal place of employment.

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Insights Vol. 6 No. 1: Updates & Other Tidbits

Insights Vol. 6 No. 1: Updates & Other Tidbits

This month, Rusudan Shervashidze and Stanley C. Ruchelman look at several interesting items, including (i) the publication of draft legislation by the Crown Dependencies of Guernsey, Jersey, and Isle of Man calling for the existence of economic substance for resident companies engaged in certain businesses and defining what that means, (ii) the denial of benefits incident to foreign earned income for a military contractor in Afghanistan who maintained a place of abode in the U.S., (iii) an increase in fees charged by the I.R.S. to issue residency certificates, (iv) the establishment of a working group to combat transnational tax crime through increased enforcement collaboration among tax authorities in several countries, and (v) changes to China’s residency rules and the sharing of taxpayer financial information under C.R.S. 

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How to Handle Dual Residents: The I.R.S. View on Treaty Tie-Breaker Rules

How to Handle Dual Residents: The I.R.S. View on Treaty Tie-Breaker Rules

The first step in advising a foreign individual who is neither a U.S. citizen nor a green card holder on U.S. income tax laws is to determine the person's residence for income tax purposes. But what is to be done when the individual is resident in multiple jurisdictions? A recent LB&I International Practice Unit offers a quick understanding of the tax issues I.R.S. examiners raise when dealing with individuals who are dual residents for tax purposes. Virtually all income tax treaties entered into by the U.S. contain a tiebreaker rule under which the exclusive residence of an individual is determined for purposes of applying the income tax treaty. Fanny Karaman and Beate Erwin explain how these rules are applied. One point to remember is that the tiebreaker test for treaty residence purposes does not affect an individual's obligation to file an F.B.A.R. form.

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C-Corps Exempt from Full Scope of Foreign Income Inclusion

C-Corps Exempt from Full Scope of Foreign Income Inclusion

One of the principal highlights of the T.C.J.A. is the 100% dividends received deduction ("D.R.D.") allowed to U.S. corporations that are U.S. Shareholders of foreign corporations. At the time of enactment, many U.S. tax advisers questioned why Congress did not repeal the investment in U.S. property rules of Subpart F. Under those rules, investment in many different items of U.S. tangible and intangible property are treated as disguised distribution. In proposed regulations issued in October, the I.R.S. announced that U.S. corporations that are U.S. Shareholders of C.F.C.'s are no longer subject to tax on investments in U.S. property made by the C.F.C. Stanley C. Ruchelman explains the new rules and their simple logic – if the C.F.C. were to distribute a hypothetical dividend to a U.S. Shareholder that would benefit from the 100% D.R.D., the taxable investment in U.S. property will be reduced by an amount that is equivalent to the D.R.D. allowed in connection with the hypothetical dividend.

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