Every small business owner is accustomed to working with deadlines in their business, and when it comes to taxes, there are no exceptions. If you’re an American living abroad, understanding the small business deadlines for US expats is key! Knowing which deadlines impact you and your business is essential since the IRS can charge hefty penalties for merely not filing the paperwork on time—even if there is no tax due on the income tax return.
How to Determine the Small Business Deadlines That Apply to You, as an American Living Abroad
The due date for your tax return filing depends on if your business is a domestic entity, which includes companies organized in the US as limited liability companies, corporations, and trusts. A business formed outside of the US uses the due date of the owner, and since these are more straightforward, let’s begin with them.
Typical Small Business Deadlines and Extensions
First, let’s focus on individual taxpayers only. A US person that owns an interest in a foreign limited company, foreign corporation, or partnership will need to include the business filing on the due date of their personal income tax return. For a person that is residing in the US, the due date of the income tax return is April 15. If an extension is prepared, then you have until October 15 to submit. For a US person residing outside of the country, the due date is June 15, with an available extension to October 15. If your foreign enterprise structured a trust, you would need to file Form 3520-A by March 15. This deadline can be extended to September 15. For a foreign corporation that does business in the US, the due date is April 15. This date can be extended to October 15.
For US LLCs, deadlines depend on the tax classification of the entity. For an LLC that is a disregarded entity with a single owner, the due date will be the owner’s filing due date. For US owners living in the US, the deadline is April 15. If an extension is prepared for you, then you have until October 15 to the file return. For owners outside of the country, the due date is June 15, with an extended due date of October 15.
An LLC that has filed an election to be treated as a corporation will be subject to the corporate deadline. The corporate due date for an entity that is classified as S Corporation is March 15. This date can be extended to September 15. C Corporations and entities taxed as corporations have a due date of April 15. This date can be extended to October 15.
For a US-based entity that classified as a partnership, the due date of the return is March 15. This date can be extended to September 15. For US-based trusts, the due date of the return is April 15. This date can be extended to October 15.
Now that you know what your due date is, it is essential to meet the due date since IRS will charge a penalty for failing to file depending on how late your return is. These penalties are easily avoidable by timely preparing your return or filing an extension.
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