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I live and work in the US (I am a resident here for tax purposes)

I was paid to a bank account in Australia, but don't live there (I'm not a resident in Aus for tax purposes)

Where do I pay income taxes?

Do I need to transfer the earnings back to the country where I did the work?

Will the country where I have the bank account think I'm evading taxes if I receive money but pay no taxes there?

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    Generally, you pay taxes in the country where you physically did the work in. What is your country of residence and country of citizenship and where is the bank located? – Michael May 11 '17 at 20:44
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    That depends on the two countries and and tax treaties they may have between them. Specifying the countries is important here or no one can answer this question. – Victor May 11 '17 at 20:53
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    Tax questions require a country tag(s). Laws vary. – Chris W. Rea May 11 '17 at 20:57
  • @MichaelC. Thanks, added. Residence for tax purposes: US. Citizenship: Aus. Bank: Aus. Haven't lived in Australia for more than ~1 week over the past 4 years. I became US resident for tax purposes Jan 1 2017. – tobeannounced May 11 '17 at 23:12
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    Almost read that as "I became US president for tax purposes" – Kevin May 12 '17 at 0:10
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Transfer the funds back to a bank account where you earn the income to avoid the hassle of thinking about this all together.

Update:

To answer your initial questions. You will pay income tax on income earned in the USA. If you receive interest payments on your Australian bank account, I imagine you'd be taxed by Australia on that interest, but if your bank account is over a certain threshold, Australia and the USA have data sharing treaties, meaning the IRS will know the details of your Australian bank account.

I think the whole guts of your questions comes down to the last one: "Will the country where I have the bank account think I'm evading taxes if I receive money but pay no taxes there?" Maybe. If you were a government agency, wouldn't accounts that fall into that scenario at least be a place to start analysis?

In the end, you're entitled to have bank accounts in various countries. If you're not doing anything dodgy, then don't worry about it. If you want to reduce the likely hood of even being swept-up as a "starting point" for analysis, then move the money back to the country where you earnt it.

  • Ok, great. If I send the money from the Australian bank to the US (and set it up so that for the future it goes directly to the US), does that mostly solve it? Is there anything else I need to do? – tobeannounced May 12 '17 at 2:09
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    Nothing else to do. It doesn't need to be complex. US and Australia do have tax treaties like has been commented, but that's just to make sure people are declaring the appropriate income. You'll be doing that... in the US. So it's all good. One other note is, if you're transferring over $10,000 Australian dollars, then behind the scenes the bank must notify AUSTRAC that "a significant lot of money is leaving the country". That just helps with government's analysis of "is something shady going on", but it's not, so you're good. – Turgs May 12 '17 at 2:42
  • what's the advantage/purpose behind sending the funds back to a bank account in the US? – tobeannounced May 12 '17 at 18:32
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    I'd ask the same.. what's the advantage/purpose behind leaving the funds in Australia? I'd say moving funds back to the US just ties up lose ends. There's maybe no real advantage either way. If you're Australian bank account is receiving interest payments, a record of the interest you're receiving will be reported to the ATO by your bank. – Turgs May 13 '17 at 0:05

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