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Living in Switzerland and paying Swiss taxes is enough! As a U. S. citizen who owns property in the U. S. and has a small Datek account, where do I go to find out questions about U. S. taxes? I've never made enough $ to have to have to file for taxes in the past. I know next to nothing about taxes except that the IRS is a large toothed carnivorous monster that prays on defenseless citizens like myself. Help!
Do I want to be resident, non-resident or other? Will the dividends and interest from Datek get me into trouble with the IRS? Please direct me to a good source that starts with the basics and then will answer the more complicated questions of investments of people abroad.
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[[Living in Switzerland and paying Swiss taxes is enough! As a U. S. citizen who owns property in
the U. S. and has a small Datek account, where do I go to find out questions about U. S. taxes?]]

While you may be gettin' hit with Swiss taxes, you may also be liable for US taxes. As a US citizen, you are responsible for taxes on WORLDWIDE income.

But, depending upon your circumstances, you may be able to exempt the first $75k of foreign earnings from US taxation. Not only that, you may also receive a credit for foreign taxes paid on your US tax return.

You can read more about in IRS Publications 514 and 54. You can read/download these publications at the IRS web site.

[[ I've never made enough $ to have to have to file for taxes in the past. I know next to nothing about
taxes except that the IRS is a large toothed carnivorous monster that prays on defenseless citizens
like myself. Help!]]

Again, your best bet is to read the publications noted above.

[[ Do I want to be resident, non-resident or other? ]]

You'll find out that it doesn't really matter. Since you are a US citizen, you are responsible for taxes on your worldwide income.

[[Will the dividends and interest from Datek get me
into trouble with the IRS? Please direct me to a good source that starts with the basics and then will
answer the more complicated questions of investments of people abroad.]]

They'll only get you into trouble if you decide not to report 'em. If you are looking for the very basic basics, you might first want to check out the Taxes FAQ area. There are a number of issues there that may be of benefit to you.

For other basics, you might want to check out a basic tax guide at your local bookstore (or at Amazon.com...since you local bookstore in Switzerland might not have much for you).

You should also be aware that many of the basics will be found in my upcomming book "The Motley Fool Investment Tax Guide", which should be available in the next few weeks.

TMF Taxes
Roy

SPECIAL NOTE: Remember that this response is not the "last word" on your situation. It is really only a starting point. Make sure to review the "Read This First" post
(http://www.fool.com/School/Taxes/TaxesDisclaimer.htm) for additional information. In addition, many of your questions may already be referenced in the Taxes Frequently Asked Questions area. In order to visit the Taxes FAQ area, go to the Fool's Money area (http://www.fool.com/money.htm) and check out "Tax FAQs" in the list box, OR you can jump directly to the Taxes FAQ area (http://www.fool.com/school/taxes/taxes.htm). Additionally, if any references were made to the IRS Web Site, you can get there by pointing your web browser to (http://www.irs.ustreas.gov).
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