By November 23, 2022 No Comments

IRS Promises More Enforcement of Foreign Nationals in U.S.


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A newly re-funded IRS is promising more scrutiny on non-U.S. citizens over taxes. Protecting yourself in this new environment means knowing American tax rules and proactively getting the right help.


Foreign nationals living and working in the U.S. may soon be in the crosshairs of a re-energized Internal Revenue Service.

A representative of the IRS Office of Chief Counsel reportedly told an audience at a recent American Bar Association Tax Section conference that compliance among foreign nationals in the U.S. will be a priority and focus of the IRS.

This comes on the heels of the tax agency getting some $80 billion from the landmark U.S. Inflation Reduction Act signed into law last August. The IRS will receive the money over a decade, with a major portion of the funds earmarked for enforcement (and hiring as many as 87,000 new agents).

That number may be deceptive – heavy attrition in personnel and many past years of underfunding may mean the agency mostly replaces what it’s lost – but the IRS has still pledged sharper scrutiny on rich tax cheatscrypto investors and others to close America’s huge gap in tax collection.


Special problems – and penalties

Common tax-filing errors for non-U.S. citizens don’t always differ from those of American citizen taxpayers, including using an incorrect filing status, incorrectly claiming tax credits or underreporting income. But tax-compliance factors special to non-Americans include:

  • Taxation of income sources can be more complicated.
  • Non-U.S. citizens not in compliance with American tax laws face a variety of special penalties. Failing to properly report taxable income could block obtaining immigration status in the United States, for instance, and even lead to deportation.
  • Tax preparers are unregulated in the United States – no government license is required to practice. Non-citizens often don’t know much about American tax law and are a frequent target of unscrupulous tax preparers.
  • Non-citizens often don’t know about IRS voluntary disclosure programs to amend returns or correct past filing errors or about IRS payment options for tax debt, including installment plans and, in rare cases, offers in compromise.

If you’re a foreign national living in the U.S., your tax specialist needs to be able to handle these and many other cross-border issues of wealth, income and tax enforcement. If we can help, please let us know.


About the Author 

Alicea Castellanos is the CEO and Founder of Global Taxes LLC. Alicea provides personalized U.S. tax advisory and compliance services to high net worth families and their advisors. Alicea has more than 17 years of experience. Prior to forming Global Taxes, Alicea founded and oversaw operations at a boutique tax firm, worked at a prestigious global law firm and CPA firm. Alicea specializes in U.S. tax planning and compliance for non-U.S. families with global wealth and asset protection structures which include non-U.S. trusts, estates and foundations that have a U.S. connection.

Alicea also specializes in foreign investment in U.S. real estate property, and other U.S. assets, pre-immigration tax planning, U.S. expatriation matters, U.S. persons in receipt of foreign gifts and inheritances, foreign accounts and assets compliance, offshore voluntary disclosures/tax amnesties, FATCA registration, and foreign companies wanting to do business in the U.S. Alicea is fluent in Spanish and has a working knowledge of Portuguese.

Alicea is an active member of the Society of Trusts & Estates Practitioners (STEP), the New York State Society of Certified Public Accountants (NYSSCPAs), the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), the International Fiscal Association (IFA), a member of Clarkson Hyde Global, a world-wide association of accountants, auditors, tax specialists and business advisors and the International Advisory Experts (IAE).

Distinctly, in 2020, Alicea was awarded with a prestigious NYSSCPA Forty Under 40 Award. She was selected as someone that has notable skills and is visibly making a difference in the accounting profession. Alicea has also been recognized as a leading expert for Tax advice and she has been invited to join Advisory Excellence, as their exclusively recommended tax expert in the USA.

In 2021 and 2022, Alicea was the Gold and Silver Winner, respectively, of Citywealth’s Powerwomen Awards in the category USA – Woman of the Year – Business Growth (Boutique). Furthermore, Alicea is currently listed in the Global Elite Directory 2022, which is an annual exclusive directory of the world’s elite lawyers and outstanding wealth advisors advising ultra-high net-worth clients.

Please note: This content is intended for informational purposes only and is not a replacement for professional accounting or tax preparatory services. Consult your own accounting, tax, and legal professionals for advice related to your individual situation. Any copy or reproduction of our presentation is expressly prohibited. Any names or situations have been made up for illustrative purposes — any similarities found in real life are purely coincidental.