Visiting the US: Tax Consequences

(Below is a transcription of this video)

Hi this is Michael Niren immigration lawyer and founder of Today I want to talk to you briefly about some of the possible tax implications for individuals who are staying in the United States, visiting the United States for a lengthy period of time. In a previous video I was talking about the immigration implications and briefly I was mentioning that you could potentially stay longer than six months in a calendar year, depending upon your exit and entries, but for that please refer to the previous video. This video is more about the tax implications which are different and separate from immigration. Now, I’m not a tax expert. We do immigration law. That’s what our expertise are in. So I’m just going to give you general information. For specific information about your situation, it’s important to speak to a cross boarder tax specialist.

Tax Implications for Long Visits in the US

But having said that, I’ll just give you some general background information that hopefully can help. The magic number is 120. So, what that means is if you are in the United States in a calendar year for 120 days or more, you could be liable for tax. Also, a lengthy stay like that could result in you ceasing to be a considered a Canadian resident if you’re Canadian, so it could be quite serious. What you have to do is, if you are intending to stay in United States for 120 days or more, you may have to fill out a special form, a tax form to exempt you from tax. That’s not really a big deal, it’s not a complicated form but it’s something you should be aware of.

Tax Calculations 

Now the way it’s calculated is pretty complicated, typically over a three year period. And there is some formula that goes into that and I’m not going to go into the details in this video because this is beyond the scope of our expertise. But I want people to realize that when they come to United States, they have to keep two things in mind that are separate. One is the immigration or visa issue, and I said in my previous video, that you can stay in United States, or visit the United States for more than six months in a given year. But you can’t in any given one visit, it should be six months or less. But there are issues surrounding that as well, and you can look at my previous video to get more information. So that’s a separate issue.

The other issue is the tax and as I said the magic number is 120 days. Some people are under the misconception that it’s six months or longer that results in a tax issue. That’s the immigration side not the tax side, so you have to keep that separate. So for you snow birds or those people who like to spend a lot of time in the United States, who are not permanent residents and who are not citizens, be aware of two things, tax as well as immigration. So hopefully this cleared up some misconceptions and if you like the video click like and feel free to join us at

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Michael Niren

About Michael Niren

Michael is a graduate of Osgoode Hall Law School in Toronto. He is a member of the Law Society of Upper Canada, the Canadian Bar Association’s Citizenship and Immigration Section and the Associate Member of the American Bar Association. Read more

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