I plan to expatriate but am currently behind on filing my U.S. taxes. Can you give me a rough timeline for the filing process?

March 1

  • Start preparing tax returns for the past 5 years and FBAR reports for the past 6 years.
  • File 3 years of tax returns at once using the Streamlined Foreign Offshore Procedure.

May 1             

  • File the remaining 2 years of tax returns, and pay any tax due.

July 1

  • If no problems arise during the 2 months following the submission of your taxes to the IRS, schedule an expatriation interview at the embassy.
  • Although you are not required to present your tax returns for prior years at the embassy, it is prudent to know the outcome of filing delinquent returns before giving up citizenship. If IRS discovers problems with your prior returns, you may not be eligible for exemption from the expatriation tax.

September 1

  • Expatriation interview at the embassy.

November 1

  • Receive Certification of the Loss of Nationality.

Next year – As early as possible

  • Prepare your final (dual status) tax return for the prior year.  File it with the IRS and enclose a copy of Form 8854.        
  • Prepare Form 8854 and send it to:

Department of the Treasury

Internal Revenue Service

Philadelphia, PA 19255-0049


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