Similar Posts


  1. @bubblebustin,

    Thanks for the link. I have downloaded the paper and I will be ready for the quiz on Friday. 🙂


  2. @bubblebustin,

    Phil, do you mean that I have send my greencard to the embassy with the I-407 and I get a stamped copy back with the signature of the Consul acknowledging it ?

    Check the local Consulate rules. I have seen some places where they don’t insist on getting your actual green card from you. But it is safer to give it to them with the I-407 and be done with it.

    As for the effective date, the Treasury Regs say you cease to be a resident alien for income tax purposes on the day when you hand the I-407 to the Consulate. The paperwork may come back to you with a different effective date. That is only a problem if you have income that you receive between the date you hand over the I-407 and the date that the Consulate happens to put on the letter they send you. In that case the IRS might think you were still a U.S. taxpayer and taxable on that income.

  3. ….the government (via administrative action or court proceedings) has not said “Yes, you have abandoned the green card…..
    Phil, do you mean that I have send my greencard to the embassy with the I-407 and I get a stamped copy back with the signature of the Consul acknowledging it ?

  4. @bubblebustin,

    1. No particular reason that I left out the discussion of Form 8854 except that this blog post was written late at night in a hotel room in San Mateo, California. 🙂

    2. Well, the other reason I guess is that I am talking here about status: is a person a resident alien or not? Someone can lose the resident alien status (by for instance giving up the green card in an Embassy somewhere) and never file the Form 8854 with the IRS. The person at that moment became a nonresident alien for tax purposes but has to (eventually) settle up with the IRS for the taxes due.

    The old rules (before mid-2008) had a rule that said “Yeah, you can give up the green card ‘n stuff but you aren’t logged out as a U.S. taxpayer until you file Form 8854.” The current rules don’t have that feature.

    Thus, for this blog post I was just focusing on the situation where someone sits, blissfully unaware of the fact that U.S. resident alien status continues. Eventually they must cut off that status pro-actively. And at that moment there is a tax consequence triggered and the Form 8854 must be filed.

  5. Phil, is there a reason why you left out the important fact that for IRS purpose just filing the I-407 and NOT the 8854 is meaningless ?

  6. @Anon,

    This answer is given without benefit of any research. So it may be wrong. 🙂

    The temporary green card is a regular green card with conditions placed on it. In order to keep the permanent resident status, you are required to file a petition to remove the conditions. If you do not, then permanent resident status is lost automatically.

    I don’t think you have a problem with the exit tax for your wife. She has not held a green card “in at least 8 of the last 15 years”. Therefore, she is not a “long term resident” and is not under the exit tax rules.

    I think you are the only person who needs to worry about the exit tax rules.

    Make sure you hire someone to look it all over first, of course.

  7. Would it matter if the green card was temporary or permanent? In my case, my spouse received a temporary, 2-year green card in 1999, which expired in 2001. We left the U.S. permanently in 2001, and her temporary green card expired. She attempted to get the permanent green card despite leaving the US, but was refused. Now I – a US citizen – am considering renouncing my citizenship. I have been filing all necessary forms since leaving the US, including my spouse, as we filed joint returns the entire time. My question is, would she need to renounce (her non-existing status as far as immigration is concerned) as well, in order to eliminate any future tax liability? Or is the fact that she never had a permanent green card sufficient, despite the fact that we have been filing joint US income tax returns for the past 11 years from abroad. Thanks.

Comments are closed.

Tax laws change over time, and the information in this post above may be less accurate today than it was at the time of the last revision. This post is not tax advice for your specific situation. Please contact an international tax professional to get personalized advice for your situation.