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I have inheritance from my mother in India and would like to bring in USA. I have NRO/NRI account in India. I am aware of 15CB & 15CA forms need to complete. I know that legally I can bring $10,000 in commercial plan. But I like to bring all to gather (40,000). How can I legally bring this money and do I have to pay tax on it. Thanks PCP

  • There are surely two parts to this question, what is legal under US law and what is legal under Indian law, the answers so-far seem to be focussing on the former. – Peter Green Mar 6 '18 at 16:26
  • @PeterGreen Forms 15CB and 15CA are certifications that all Indian taxes have been paid and so there is nothing to discuss about taxation in India. The only questions are with regard to possible US taxes. – Dilip Sarwate Mar 6 '18 at 21:28
  • Use bitcoin. It's cheap, instant and if done quickly (within a day or so) shouldn't appreciate or depreciate too much. – Anthony Russell Mar 7 '18 at 14:59
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I know that legally I can bring $10,000 in commercial plane.

You can bring the whole amount to the US in cash if you wanted to, you just have to write/report that you are doing it. The only thing illegal is not declaring it if it is over $10,000 which just entails writing it on the form, but the amount you can bring over is unlimited.

Of course, that means if there are taxes then US officials know where to look, but thats the point.

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    Bringing in the large total in several individual transfers, each under $10000, is an even worse idea... – DJohnM Mar 6 '18 at 20:38
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The U.S. doesn’t tax inheritances, it taxes estates. Since the estate was settled in India, there is no U.S. tax on it. Furthermore, there is no tax for individuals bringing money into the U.S.

If you receive more than $100,000 from a foreign source, you must report it, even if there is no tax on it, to help prevent money laundering, etc. https://www.irs.gov/businesses/gifts-from-foreign-person

If you leave the assets overseas, you still have to report it. https://www.irs.gov/businesses/small-businesses-self-employed/report-of-foreign-bank-and-financial-accounts-fbar

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It is worth elaborating on a point raised in @pri's answer.

Since the value to the inheritance is more than US $10K, the OP needs to declare the existence of those foreign assets (NRO/NRE accounts) to the IRS (Schedule B of Form 1040) and separately to the US Treasury on Form FinCen 114 for every year in which the total value of all foreign assets exceeds US $10K at any time of year. Furthermore, regardless of the value of the account being more or less than US $10K, the interest earned on those assets while in India also needs to be declared on the OP's US tax return. Interest earned on NRO accounts (but not NRE accounts) is taxable in India but the OP can claim a credit for the tax paid in India on the US tax return. All these declarations of interest earnings (both NRO and NRE accounts) must have been done for every year that the accounts have been in existence, not just the years when the account value was more than US $10K. So, there might be other taxes and penalties that are due if the FBAR regulations have not been complied with in previous years.

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