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Questions about taxes for year 2011

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Hi everybody,

I have a few questions regarding the taxes.

I'm French, my wife is a US Citizen, we have been married since March 2010.

Here is our situation for year 2011 :

From January 1st to March 3rd : we were living in France at my parents.

(no income for both of us)

From March 3rd to December 4th : I was living in France at my parents and she went back to the US at her dad.

We started the Visa petition.

She was pregnant and delivered from our son in July.

She was collecting welfare for both her and our son since I was out of the country.

For my part in France I worked but not that much, lets say I got less than €5000 of income during that period.

(welfare for both her and our son, french income for me)

From December 4th to December 31th :

I enter in the US with my Visa.

No US income for me.

Welfare for my wife and our son.

So overall during the year, I got French income and she and our son Got US welfare.

Questions :

Do we have to file taxes?

If yes, do I have to add my French Income ?

Does she have to add her welfare ?

Since I was out of the US for the majority of the Year and wasn't able to help my wife and my son financially that much, her dad helped her and my son too so he added my son on his taxes as a dependent, was he supposed to ?

If we have to file taxes and logically add our son on it, does her dad have to amend his taxes and remove our son ?

Thanks a lot.

03-08-2010 : Marriage


04-14-2011 : I-130 Sent

04-19-2011 : NOA1

07-18-2011 : NOA2

07-19-2011 : Birth of our son.


08-01-2011 : Case received

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IRS has an interactive tool to see if someone is required to file taxes.


My understanding is that welfare is not taxable income so you do not need to include it in tax return.

Most likely if that was her only income, she is not required to file since she has zero taxable income.

But I would go through the interactive questions as you know your situation best.

They also have a guide for US citizens with alien spouse in a section here:


For if you do need to file.

AOS 05/08/10 - sent05/14/10 - receipt date on NOAs - transferred to National Benefits Center06/14/10 - Biometrics Done - Lawrence, MA (original appt)07/26/10 - Interview - APPROVED!!07/30/10 - Welcome letter rec'd (notice date: 07/26)08/05/10 - Green Card (&EAD) Received! - 2 months and 28 days total!ROC 04/28/12 - ROC package sent05/03/12 - check cashed05/04/12 - NOA1 received - dated 05/01/1206/07/12 - Biometrics done02/07/13 - Approved (status update via text msg)02/14/13 - Ten year Green card receivedNaturalization07/26/13 - eligible (90 day window opened 4/27/13)02/24/14 - N-400 sent to Dallas03/04/14 - Check cashed & case accepted (update via txt & email)03/10/14 - Biometrics appt letter rec'd (scheduled for 03/28/13)03/28/14 - Biometrics done04/01/14 - In line for interview 04/03/14 - Case status change to scheduled for interview04/10/14 - interview letter rec'd 5/13/14 - interview 6/3/14 - in line for oath 6/30/14 - Scheduled for oath

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You were a non-resident alien for all of 2011. You can choose to be treated as a resident alien for tax purposes if both you and your spouse intend to file a joint tax return. Your foreign earned income up to $92,900 would be excluded from tax liability.

Given that your wife had no taxable income in 2011, and that you are not required to choose to be treated as a resident alien for tax purposes, you do not have to file a tax return for 2011. The only advantage to filing would be that you might be qualified to claim the earned income tax credit, which means you'd get a small refund from the IRS. In order to qualify for that you must file a joint return (since you're married), which means you'd have to choose to be treated as a resident alien for tax purposes, and you'd have to declare your income. I don't think you'd have qualifying income for the credit, since your wife had no taxable income for the year, and all of your income would be excludable.

Feel free to talk to a tax consultant, but I wouldn't bother filing if I were you.

12/15/2009 - K1 Visa Interview - APPROVED!

12/29/2009 - Married in Oakland, CA!

08/18/2010 - AOS Interview - APPROVED!

05/01/2013 - Removal of Conditions - APPROVED!

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