Pilotage US Tax & AccountingServices & Offerings
US Tax Compliance and Advisory Services
How can we help you?
We offer tax compliance, return, preparation and advisory services for individuals, corporations and fiduciaries.
Federal & State Income Tax Preparation
Foreign Corporation Returns
Tax Planning & Advisory Services
Foreign Owners of US Corporations & LLC's
Green Card Compliance & Expatriation
US Real Estate & Minimizing Withholding Tax
Delinquent and Streamlined FBAR
Estate and Inheritance Tax Planning
Individual Income Taxes
U.S. FEDERAL INCOME TAX PREPARATION
American citizens and Green Card holders are taxed on their worldwide income and must file yearly income tax returns and reports about their financial assets abroad. We’ll help you meet your U.S. tax obligations as simply as possible. We have an in-depth understanding of the Swiss financial and tax context and will help you optimize the overlap between Swiss and U.S. tax treatment. Our primary focus is minimizing your overall tax liability while ensuring accurate and expedient filing.
STATE INCOME TAX PREPARATION
Certain individuals may be required to file state income tax returns, even if they are not living in the state or in the U.S. at all. We can help you with all your state tax issues.
TAX PLANNING AND ADVISORY SERVICES
In addition to tax preparation, we offer tax planning and advisory services. We proactively offer you an individually tailored plan to reduce your current year’s tax burden while also looking to the future.
MAKING A GIFT
American taxpayers who gift property, such as real estate, securities or cash must file a Form 709 Gift Tax Return. This applies even if the gift is a future interest with the donor retaining usufruct which is common in Switzerland. We can assist you to file Form 709 including applying the tax-free lifetime exclusion amount, which often eliminates any gift tax liability.
RECEIVING A GIFT FROM A NON-U.S. PERSON
U.S. citizens and residents who receive a gift from a foreign person in excess of $100,000 must report it on Form 3520. This includes a gift that may be encumbered with a usufruct for another person. Form 3520 does not trigger any U.S. tax but the non-filing penalty is potentially high. We can prepare Form 3520 as well as correct any delinquent filing to allow you to avoid penalties.
DEATH AND U.S. ESTATE TAX
When a U.S. citizen dies we can help the family or estate executor to file Form 706 Estate Tax Return, claim the tax-free lifetime exclusion amount and apply the US-Swiss Estate Tax Treaty.
GREEN CARD COMPLIANCE
Many Green Card holders don’t realize they have the same tax reporting requirements as U.S. citizens. Whether you already have a Green Card or are planning to acquire one, we can explain your filing responsibilities and advise you on long-term planning opportunities and potential pitfalls. We assist clients who have revoked their Green Card or allowed it to expire without completing all necessary IRS filings.
RENOUNCING CITIZENSHIP AND EXPATRIATING
Many dual-nationals are faced with a difficult decision about whether to renounce their U.S. citizenship and expatriate. We have extensive experience in guiding clients through this difficult choice and can advise you on the tax implications of expatriating.
ASSISTANCE FOR DELINQUENT FILERS (STREAMLINED, DELINQUENT FBAR and relief procedures)
We offer a unique specialization helping late or non-filers become tax compliant. We can help you get caught up whether you are a year late or have never filed a tax return. IRS programs such as the Streamlined Filing Procedure, the Delinquent FBAR Procedure and Relief Procedures for Former Citizens can help ease the burden of becoming tax compliant. We have assisted many clients through these procedures.
RECLAIMING U.S. WITHHOLDING TAX
If you receive a payment from a U.S. payer on which U.S. tax was withheld, we can assist you to reclaim any overwithheld tax from the IRS by filing Form 1040NR (or Form 1120F for foreign corporations).
OBTAINING AN ITIN
You may need an ITIN (Individual Taxpayer Identification Number) if you’re a non-U.S. spouse of a U.S. tax filer, if you own U.S. real estate or if you earn certain income from U.S. sources. Or, you may be told that you need an ITIN when you don’t. We are IRS-listed Certified Acceptance Agents and can help you obtain an ITIN by preparing IRS application Form W-7. We’ll meet with you and certify copies of your original identification documents, usually your passport. If it’s not convenient to meet face-to-face, we can meet through Skype or FaceTime and arrange private delivery service to securely receive and return your passport. We can prepare Form W-7 no matter where you live in Europe, including France, Belgium, Netherlands, Germany, Italy, etc.
RENEWING AN ITIN
We are IRS-listed Certified Acceptance Agents and can help you renew your ITIN. You may have received an IRS Notice to Renew, or your ITIN may have expired. This happens if it has not been used in the last 3 years or if it contains middle digits between the numbers 70 and 82 (for example, 9XX-78-XXXX). We will be pleased to assist you to apply for renewal and certify a copy of your passport. If it’s not convenient to meet face-to-face, we can meet through Skype or FaceTime and arrange a private delivery service to securely receive and return your passport. We can prepare Form W-7 no matter where you live in Europe, including France, Belgium, Netherlands, Germany, Italy, etc.
Corporate and Fiduciary Services
FOREIGN TRUST ACCOUNTING AND COMPLIANCE
FOREIGN CORPORATION RETURNS
U.S. citizen shareholders of certain foreign corporations may be required to file Form 5471 for corporations or Form 8865 for partnerships. This may also apply to directors or officers whether or not they own shares. If you’re associated with a foreign entity, we can help you determine your disclosure obligations, and convert and translate financial data according to U.S. tax principles.
FOREIGN OWNERS OF U.S. CORPORATIONS AND LLC’S
Any U.S. corporation with 25% or more foreign ownership or any LLC with 100% foreign ownership may be required to file Form 5472. This requirement applies even if there is no U.S. income to report and a $10,000 penalty applies for late or non-filing.
OWNING U.S. REAL ESTATE AND MINIMIZING WITHHOLDING TAX
If you’re a non-U.S. person owning U.S. real estate that earns rental income, we can assist you with your U.S. federal and state tax filing obligations. If you plan to sell U.S. real property we can help you meet your non-resident filing obligations and limit withholding tax under federal (FIRPTA) and state tax law.
U.S. ESTATE TAX WHEN A NON-U.S. PERSON OWNS U.S. PROPERTY
The estate of a foreign owner of U.S. property, such as U.S. real estate or U.S. securities, may be subject to estate tax when the owner dies. An executor, surviving spouse or heir must file Form 706-NA. We can assist in obtaining an IRS Transfer Certificate Form 5173 after applying the benefits of the U.S.-Swiss Estate Tax Treaty to allow the heirs to receive the property.
FORMS W-8BEN TO MINIMIZE U.S. WITHHOLDING TAX
U.S. withholding tax, ranging from 0 to 30 percent, may apply to certain payments coming from the U.S., such as dividends and fees for services paid to a foreign person. The U.S.-Swiss double tax treaty may reduce U.S. withholding tax when you provide Form W-8BEN to the payer. We can assist you to prepare the correct form to reduce the withholding tax before the payment is made to you.
RECLAIMING SWISS WITHHOLDING TAX
Switzerland withholds tax on certain dividends, investment fund distributions and interest from Swiss payers. Swiss residents obtain a credit when they file their Swiss tax return but a U.S. person investing directly in Swiss securities must file a Reclaim Form to obtain a partial or full refund. We can assist you to claim this refund from the Swiss tax authorities.
U.S. HEIR OF A SWISS ESTATE
If you accept an inheritance from the estate of a Swiss person, the money or property you inherit is considered to be yours from the date of death. It doesn’t matter how long the inheritance may be tied up as undivided property before it’s actually paid to you. We can prepare the U.S. information returns you must file with the IRS until your Swiss inheritance is distributed to you.
Get Your Taxes Done Quickly & Painlessly
We are the trusted U.S. tax advisors in Switzerland.
“US taxes and the documentation have become very complex. Pilotage US Tax & Accounting is very knowledgeable, with a convenient upload of documents and speedy returns allowing e-filing. Tax returns and all the necessary documentation required is prepared accurately and quickly. Friendly, dependable service for my US tax issues.”