SO will be working in Europe for a few years. How should we file taxes going forward? Jointly or married but separate? What are the benefits? Also we are both on H1B at the moment. Not sure if choose either will have any implications down the road when applying for green cards. TIA

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Use significant presence test for SO.

If he/she meets the criteria, file a joint US return showing total global income (treaties are in place to avoid double taxation, but you will end up paying some more taxes compared to all US income).

If he/she doesn’t meet the criteria, file US taxes as married filing separately.

I have used turbo tax for both scenarios and it works fine. Carry details about significant presence in case asked during AOS interview.

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If you’re not going to make money( W2) in the US then you’re not filing taxes in the US , unless you are a citizen. So if your SO is going to work in europe, they will not be getting US salary I presume and they are not going to be on H1B status. I don’t think there will be any benefits in filing jointly then. I don’t even know if you can file jointly if the income is earned outside the country by a non citizen

But this is a complicated situation and tax person should be able to help

I’d try and document (pretty easy to do) where you and your SO physically are during the year fairly - highlighting where work was being done. I think you also should use someone professional to help make this determination and even file for you. Shouldn’t be too complex, but I’d like someone else’s name on the dotted line with my mine affirming I did it the right way as I’m sure you may have some grey area that needed interpretation. Your SO’s company or you’re may have a department that can provide some help here too.

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