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  • Income not on 򒥎\

    I recently returned to the U.S. All my income for this year was made in Japan. I have one complicated issue: my company gave me money for a plane ticket home. I did not have to account for it, I bought my ticket myself and was allowed to swallow the extra. This apparently makes it income I am required to report, but it doesn't appear on my 򒥎\.

    However, poking around it I can't figure out how I would report it. It seems that any U.S. company who had given me a chunk of extra taxable income in this way would have given me a form to report it with. Having no such form I don't know what to do.

    I saw people say in other threads that the IRS doesn't care what the numbers are as long as you're below the foreign income exemption amount. I'm well below it whether I report the plane ticket money or not. Does that mean it's not a big deal and I can just report what's on my 򒥎\? Just ignoring the plane ticket money would be the easiest thing for sure. If I report it, how do I report it?
    Last edited by Lotuspetal7; 2011-12-30, 01:26 AM.

  • #2
    If you report it as income you can also deduct it as a travel expense since you were here to work. So it's a wash. I would forget about it.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Lotuspetal7 View Post
      I recently returned to the U.S. All my income for this year was made in Japan. I have one complicated issue: my company gave me money for a plane ticket home. I did not have to account for it, I bought my ticket myself and was allowed to swallow the extra. This apparently makes it income I am required to report, but it doesn't appear on my 򒥎\.

      However, poking around it I can't figure out how I would report it. It seems that any U.S. company who had given me a chunk of extra taxable income in this way would have given me a form to report it with. Having no such form I don't know what to do.

      I saw people say in other threads that the IRS doesn't care what the numbers are as long as you're below the foreign income exemption amount. I'm well below it whether I report the plane ticket money or not. Does that mean it's not a big deal and I can just report what's on my 򒥎\? Just ignoring the plane ticket money would be the easiest thing for sure. If I report it, how do I report it?
      Why are you reporting Japanese income to the IRS?

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by KansaiBen View Post
        Why are you reporting Japanese income to the IRS?
        If you are interested in USA taxation of expats you may find Publication 54 informative.

        http://www.irs.gov/publications/p54/index.html

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        • #5
          OK, so I'm safe not reporting it?

          To be clear, I'm not talking about how I would deduct it, just how I would document it. I assume I could include it in line 7 as part of my total foreign income, and it would qualify for the exclusion. (Am I mistaken about that?)

          BUT that way my income on line 7 of the 1040 wouldn't match my 򒥎\. Shouldn't the amount on line 1 match your W2s / 򒥎\s? And I have no official records of receiving this money. (I could perhaps request records but it would be a huge pain receiving snail mail as I'll be backpacking around South America through April 15th. Any other option is preferable to waiting weeks in one place to receive a piece of mail just for the sake of filing my darned non-owed-taxes.)

          If you guys really think not reporting it is ok, I guess I'll leave it off.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by KansaiBen View Post
            Why are you reporting Japanese income to the IRS?
            Because he's American, and that's what they have to do.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Lotuspetal7 View Post
              OK, so I'm safe not reporting it?

              To be clear, I'm not talking about how I would deduct it, just how I would document it. I assume I could include it in line 7 as part of my total foreign income, and it would qualify for the exclusion. (Am I mistaken about that?)

              BUT that way my income on line 7 of the 1040 wouldn't match my 򒥎\. Shouldn't the amount on line 1 match your W2s / 򒥎\s? And I have no official records of receiving this money. (I could perhaps request records but it would be a huge pain receiving snail mail as I'll be backpacking around South America through April 15th. Any other option is preferable to waiting weeks in one place to receive a piece of mail just for the sake of filing my darned non-owed-taxes.)

              If you guys really think not reporting it is ok, I guess I'll leave it off.
              If you're really concerned about it you could report it on Line 7. The IRS person might recalculate the return, come up with the same result--zero tax--and you'll never hear from them again. I have another idea--It was a farewell gift. And gifts are not declared.

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              • #8
                I'd include it on line 7 if it weren't that it were going to make my return look so awkward. Per a tax guide I found for filing for Japanese-earned income, I was going to include a handwritten and signed note on my 2555ez along the lines of "See foreign earned income statement. I used the average 2011 Yen/USD exchange as reported by the Federal Reserve Bank to calculate the amount on Line 17. That rate was blah blah blah."

                But including the plane ticket amount (and I guess I'd better include it on the 2555ez too) will make the total not match what's on my 򒥎\, so I guess I'd better add to the note to say...what? "The total on line 17 includes the amount of a bonus not appearing on the foreign earned income statement"? Or should I include a note on the foreign earned income statement itself (which would otherwise be only a photocopy of the 򒥎\ with an explanation) to that effect?

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                • #9
                  They will accept a written statement from you which will be more understandable than your JPN tax statement.

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                  • #10
                    OK thanks, that will make it simpler for sure. I can just report it on line 7 then.

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