Expats know that living in a foreign country can make day-to-day tasks twice as complicated: shopping for groceries can easily take hours and tracking an undelivered package can quickly turn into a frustrating game of hide-and-go-seek. Filing taxes can be complicated enough when filing from within your own country but as an American expat you’re required to file taxes both in your country of residence and with the IRS back home. The task can seem daunting. How should you report your foreign income? Your investments? Do you need to file for your spouse even if they aren’t an American citizen?
If you were in the U.S. there would be no shortage of local accountants around to ask. But if you’re living abroad, there’s probably not many accountants available who understand the intricacies of U.S. tax law. And even if you could magically teleport into an accountant’s office in the U.S., chances are they wouldn’t know the answers to all your questions either. Unfortunately, most accountants simply don’t work with many expats and so not many understand how to deal with the unique situations that affect people living abroad.
This is where Taxes For Expats comes in. Taxes For Expats works with expats in 160 countries around the world to file their U.S. taxes. And they’ve been doing it for over 25 years! Because they work primarily with expats, they’ve seen it all, and they can provide answers to even the most obscure tax questions. Check out some of their Simple Tax Guides for Overseas Americans to get an idea.
Not only do the professionals at Taxes For Expats know what they’re doing, they know how tricky it can be to work with someone on the other side of the world. That’s why they do everything possible to make the process easy on their clients. Rather than asking you to struggle through mountains of fillable PDFs, they’ve created a user-friendly Tax Questionnaire which will ask you clear and easy and questions about your situation. In fact, everything about TFX is designed to be accomodating. Their live support is available 18 hours a day so that no matter what time zone you’re in, you can always reach a real human who’s ready to answer your questions.
Their pricing structure is equally transparent. TFX offers flat fees for all of their services and forms. They even offer a multi-year filing discount of 20% to clients who file returns for three or more years at once. Plus, all of their prices are listed in USD and they don’t charge VAT. If you compare their prices to their competitors, it rapidly becomes clear that they offer some of the most competitive prices in the marketplace.
You may be thinking that all of this sounds too good to be true. After all, it’s not every day that you stumble across a service tailored specifically to your needs which is also easy to use and fairly-priced. You might be wondering what the catch is. So let’s take a more detailed look at exactly how the TFX process works:
Once you create an account online, you’ll be asked to schedule a 30-minute phone consultation. This is your chance to “meet” the people you’ll be working with, ask any questions you might have, and explain your situation. It’s also an important first step for TFX because this is their first chance to get to know you and their ethos is built around providing personalized services.
After you’ve finished the phone consultation, the next step is to fill out the Tax Questionnaire. If you’re like most of us, than the thought of answering an endless string of complicated questions about your taxes may fill you with dread. Fortunately, TFX has gone above and beyond to make the process as easy and painless as possible. Their Tax Questionnaire opens easily in your browser and is interactive–which means you’ll only be answering the questions that pertain to your situation, rather than trying to respond to heaps of questions that have nothing to do with you.
Once your Tax Questionnaire is completed, the hard part is done! TFX will review your answers to the questionnaire along with what they learned during your phone consultation. When they’re done, you’ll receive an electronic engagement letter outlining the scope of the work required and total cost. That way, you’ll know exactly what you’re paying for when you sign.
After signing, it’s TFX’s turn to get to work. They’ll go through your details with a fine-toothed comb to make absolutely sure that your taxes are filed correctly and in the way that’s most beneficial for you. Each return is reviewed not only by your preparer but also by a supervisor to ensure that no detail is missed. This part generally only takes around fifteen business days. But if you’re in a real hurry, ask them about their Rush Service, they’ll do their best to accomodate you.
At the end of this period they’ll double check with you to make sure that you’re completely satisfied with your tax return before it’s time to file. Then, they’ll even e-file your return for you. Or, if you’re not eligible to file electronically, they’ll provide you with explicit instructions about when and where to mail your return.
Overall, the process couldn’t be simpler. And at any time you’d like to talk to your tax preparer, you can easily schedule a consultation by phone from your account. However, if you’re more of the hands-off type when it comes to tax preparation, no worries! TFX can take care of everything for you.
So there it is. Taxes For Expats is the real deal: a service conceived specifically for expats with their unique needs in mind, which offers both a human touch and true peace of mind. TFX wants to make sure that all of their clients to feel completely at ease. Which is why they recommend that they do their homework before choosing them as a tax preparer. If you’d like to know more, you can read independent testimonials from individuals around the world. So what are you waiting for? Take a look!
This article was written in collaboration with Taxes for Expats