I am trying to determine my residency status for US tax purposes. According to the substantial presence test, I am a resident alien of the United States.
This is going by the days that I've been in the country in 2013 (1/6), 2014 (1/3), and 2015 (1). Throughout those years I had visited the US on numerous occasions because my SO (now wife, who is currently also working in the US but would be considered an non-resident alien because of F-1 visa) was studying there, and in 2014 I was there for an extended period working under a TN visa, then went back and returned under a different TN visa in the summer of 2015. So based on my travel history alone, I would be, at least for the latter part of 2015, a resident alien of the US.
Note, I did not work/live in the US from January – July 2015. Guess I would still be classified as a non-resident alien during that time (is anyone in the world, if they aren't a citizen or resident alien, considered a non-resident alien, or is there another status, such as "no status"?).
My question pertains to what constitutes a sufficient "closer connection" for form 8843, what constitutes a 'tax home', and whether you need to fulfill all of these conditions to qualify for the exemption?
- Are present in the United States for less than 183 days during the year : I was in the US for more than 183 days during 2015
- Maintain a tax home in a foreign country during the year: I earn investment income etc and file taxes in a foreign country, but I work and spend most of my time in the US. I have access to homes (parents) in a foreign country and return there fairly several times a year
- Have a closer connection during the year to one foreign country in which you have a tax home than to the United States. *I definitely have a close connection to my home; I have belongings there, financial accounts, have driver's license, family, religious/community/social ties, vote there, file taxes there, and plan to return within a year or two.
Now the language seems to imply you have to fulfill all three of the above conditions to qualify, but I have someone else suggesting differently. (Also seen elsewhere the IRS using the word 'and' in a possibly ambiguous fashion Form 8843 "Statement for Exempt Individuals and Individuals With a Medical Condition", although this example isn't that ambiguous when you think about it).
EDIT: My home country, Canada, has a tax treaty with the US, which according to my colleague (mentioned above) overrides the domestic US law. Was confused because my colleague seemed to say that I can file 8840 even though I have over 183 days, but they were actually referring to tax treaty, and according to the Canadian laws, I could actually be considered a resident (http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/tx/nnrsdnts/cmmn/rsdncy-eng.html), although I only have the secondary ties and it's not a well-defined set of rules on that page).