Apologies for not updating yesterday — things got pretty busy. As I hinted on Friday, I had to get some tax stuff sorted out.
Here’s the deal. I hadn’t filed my US taxes for various reasons — the biggest of which was that I thought the government owed me money, and I was in no rush to get it.
Now the Canadian gov’t wants proof of how much tax I paid in the US.
Problem is, that proof takes the form of a copy of my US tax return — which I don’t have — yet. Until I produce it, they’re assuming I paid no taxes in the states (patently false!), and I owe them a whole whack of cash, accumulating interest daily. Without proof — I NetFiled — my claim of a foreign tax credit isn’t valid.
So I went to see an accountant yesterday who deals with late tax returns. He said it looks like I’ll be getting a refund. While this is good news, it invalidates the amount of foreign tax I claim to have paid on my Canadian return (my mistake), so that will need to be adjusted.
I just need to give the accountant a couple more things before the US return can be filed: the amount of money I claimed as foreign tax credit in Canada, and the exactly entry and exit dates from the US. As a Canadian, the number of days you’re in the states during a given tax year makes a difference to whether you’re considered a “resident”, and whether you’re a resident makes a difference to how you’re taxed.
Anyway, hopefully this whole mess will be sorted soon. It already feels like there’s a big weight being lifted off my shoulders. If you’re a Canadian working in the states, be sure to record the exact entry and exit dates to and from the US. It’s vitally important to filing your taxes, especially if you’re there for around 6 months (the resident/non-resident categorization pivots around 183 days).