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  #1  
Old 10 February 2010, 00:46
murrcrow
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2009 tax question/CPA recommendation

I am currently serving in AFG as a Contractor and qualify for the 330 day tax exclusion for 2009. I own two homes; I rent one out and my wife and Son live in the other. I am paying more than 10K a month in taxes. Yesterday, my wife was informed that we will only be getting a refund back of less than 9K. This amount does not seem to match up with anyone that I have talked to that qualifies for the 330 day exeption and pays taxes thru the year.
I have no problem paying taxes (someone has to pay our retirements right?) I would just appreciate if a Member could recommend an CPA that they have talked to recently that will be aggressive. I realize there are many post out there on this subject and have done queries but most are a couple years old and it seems as if the tax laws change quarterly, not yearly. Thanks to all.
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  #2  
Old 10 February 2010, 03:14
KamoKid KamoKid is offline
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Pm sent... He redid my stuff when my wife and I had a same situation from another CPA. Some CPA's don't understand all the rules regarding overseas workers.
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  #3  
Old 10 February 2010, 16:30
theconnect theconnect is offline
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PM with your dates in and out of country as well as state of residence. You can Always your taxes though it takes aanywhere from 8-12 weeks and sometimes longer. The form you are looking to fill out is the Form 2555 and you are only needed to qualify for the Physical Presence Test not the Bonafide residence test. You can take and 365 day time period and just "say" you were out of country for 330 however try to be out for like 335 just to be safe. Also if you are in the USA for a minute they consider it a day. Basically it all depends on if you really feel you deserve the money tracking.
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Old 10 February 2010, 16:30
theconnect theconnect is offline
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Always "Amend"
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  #5  
Old 10 February 2010, 17:33
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BKK BKK is offline
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Also look into the Foreign Camp Exclusion if applies to your situation.

Foreign Camp Exclusion

A special, less restrictive exclusion of the value of such meals and lodging furnished to an employee is provided for Americans working overseas. This exclusion is provided if a taxpayer resides overseas in employer-provided housing that qualifies as a "camp."

To qualify as a camp, the following conditions must be met:

· The camp must be provided for the employer's convenience if the place of business is in a remote area where satisfactory housing on the open market is not otherwise available within a reasonable commuting distance of the work site;

· The camp must be located as near as practicable to the place of employment and be in a common area or enclave not available to the general public;

· The camp must normally accommodate ten or more employees.

The employee must accept the foreign housing as a condition of his or her employment. Furthermore, he or she cannot have an option to accept additional compensation instead of housing and meals in kind. The camp exclusion is separate from the general exclusion of meals and lodging discussed above. A taxpayer may claim the camp exclusion without meeting either the bona fide residence or physical presence tests.

It should be noted that any amount of lodging excluded from income under the above provisions is ineligible for treatment as a qualified housing expense when computing the foreign housing cost exclusion under section 911. Furthermore, the base housing amount is not prorated when an individual occupies a camp during part of the year and ordinary housing for the remainder. Thus, the benefits of the housing exclusion will be reduced in such a year.

Last edited by BKK; 10 February 2010 at 17:48.
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  #6  
Old 10 February 2010, 22:53
ronin1313 ronin1313 is offline
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CPA

You are smart to shop around for a CPA. I would recommend you start by looking in your home state's CPA association and ask around for any that work with expats or overseas workers.

When I was doing the WPPS thing I started to use the following accountant based out of San Antonio, Texas. I highly recommend her and her firm.
http://www.neighborhoodcpa.com. They have worked with others in/on the WPPS program and oilfield workers. I have used her since 99 and even though I no longer live in Texas I continue to use her as my CPA.

But again, I would recommend you start with working with a CPA in your state.
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  #7  
Old 18 March 2010, 15:04
quietstorm3155 quietstorm3155 is offline
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Tabtax

I just got back in country and am going to file this week. Alot of guys recommend Tabtax.com. *aka(Tidewater). They are out of VA and thus have worked with ALOT of contractors. They provided me with great info and seem to be aggressive. They know what you can get. I suggest checking out the site and at least give them a call.
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  #8  
Old 18 March 2010, 21:03
Scout3474 Scout3474 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by quietstorm3155 View Post
I just got back in country and am going to file this week. Alot of guys recommend Tabtax.com. *aka(Tidewater). They are out of VA and thus have worked with ALOT of contractors. They provided me with great info and seem to be aggressive. They know what you can get. I suggest checking out the site and at least give them a call.
T.A.B.S. has done my taxes the past 2 years now, and they do an excellent job, Ruth and her entire team are really professional. A little spendy compared to HR Block, but necessary if you have a complex tax situation.

Plus, they provide you audit protection, and will handle the case on your behalf if the feds come knocking.
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  #9  
Old 19 March 2010, 01:06
JayCeeNC JayCeeNC is offline
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After seeing many recommendations on other sites, Luke is doing mine this year.

Luke M. Fairfield
Certified Public Accountant
3711 Baker St .
San Diego , CA 92117
Office: 858.864.2087
Fax: 858.483.0428
Luke@fairfieldcpas.com
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  #10  
Old 19 March 2010, 02:40
roadraje roadraje is offline
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Luke did my 2008 and 2009 last month, very fast and accurate, highly recommended.
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  #11  
Old 19 March 2010, 07:49
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bmbsqd bmbsqd is offline
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Good on you for getting on SOCNET and checking it out. There were many guys back in the day who let themselves get scammed (translation: greed) by that fake letter going around that expats doing the job of a soldier did not have to pay any taxes. Many techs at Palladin in 05 bought in to that bullshit and got SCREWED to the tune of $40K+.

SOCNET should consider starting a tax forum in the International Jobs section. Just an idea, as I have seen this general question many times.
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  #12  
Old 19 March 2010, 16:05
Long Arm Long Arm is offline
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+1 on Luke. I still use him even though I am stateside now.
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  #13  
Old 19 March 2010, 17:29
quietstorm3155 quietstorm3155 is offline
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Whats the deal with LUKE. How was he ever recommended? Whats his history with us? And does he have a website?

Thanks.
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  #14  
Old 19 March 2010, 20:45
Mgo79 Mgo79 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JayCeeNC View Post
After seeing many recommendations on other sites, Luke is doing mine this year.

Luke M. Fairfield
Certified Public Accountant
3711 Baker St .
San Diego , CA 92117
Office: 858.864.2087
Fax: 858.483.0428
Luke@fairfieldcpas.com
X3. Luke has done my taxes for the past 2 years and I have always been happy. He charges 2/3 less than T.A.B.S to have it prepared talking to my team mates. He is very fast, accurate, and sends a yearly newsletter to your email outlining he tax exemptions and changes for contract/IE etc. Im pretty sure hes exclusive to guys like us, and revolves his business around us. if anyone wants his newsletter from this year PM me.
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  #15  
Old 19 March 2010, 21:11
Mgo79 Mgo79 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by quietstorm3155 View Post
Whats the deal with LUKE. How was he ever recommended? Whats his history with us? And does he have a website?

Thanks.
Hes been around for years. Alot of TC guys and other companies guys have been using him for a long time. Words out about him at the Mancamp, and im sure his business has jumped quite a bit this year. I dont think he has a website. Hes word of mouth, and highly recommended. I invited him to view this thread and join.
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  #16  
Old 19 March 2010, 22:16
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MixedLoad MixedLoad is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by quietstorm3155 View Post
Whats the deal with LUKE. How was he ever recommended? Whats his history with us?
Do you have a problem with his services you want to air?
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  #17  
Old 19 March 2010, 23:49
Jong Jong is offline
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I also use Luke and have recommended him to other guys. I don't have any complaints and neither does anybody that I have sent to him. He does a great job!! This was my 3rd year using him.
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  #18  
Old 20 March 2010, 02:48
kilo42 kilo42 is offline
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This is who I use.

I have been working overseas since 2006 and she has been doing them for me for more than 10 years. She is quite versed in the Physical Presence/Bonafide Residence situation, the Camp Exclusion. Multiple source income and also a Securities Broker.

http://www.lindaperrytaxes.com/
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  #19  
Old 20 March 2010, 02:51
kilo42 kilo42 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kilo42 View Post
This is who I use.

I have been working overseas since 2006 and she has been doing them for me for more than 10 years. She is quite versed in the Physical Presence/Bonafide Residence situation, the Camp Exclusion. Multiple source income and also a Securities Broker.

http://www.lindaperrytaxes.com/
By the way, she is located in Virginia.
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  #20  
Old 20 March 2010, 03:45
quietstorm3155 quietstorm3155 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nomad275 View Post
Do you have a problem with his services you want to air?

Nope! Just wondering about him. Thats the thing with the net. You cant "read" someones tone of voice. I wanted to compare Luke and Tabtax, and see some opinions and history on him. Sounds good so far. I'll be contacting him as well.
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