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Taxes: Should I TurboTax or Seek a professional?

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Taxes: Should I TurboTax or Seek a professional?

Old 02-19-05, 11:47 AM
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Taxes: Should I TurboTax or Seek a professional?

My situation:

I returned to the US after living in Japan for about 11 years in April, 2004. So I'll have foreign income from Jan 2004-April 2004 and US income from April 2004-Dec 2004.
I rent an apartment.
My wife is a Japanese national with no job so it's only my income. She does have a resident alien card.

Anyone know if this is a situation that software like TurboTax can handle or should I seek a professional?

Sorry but two more questions:

1. If my wife is not a US citizen with no income do I file a joint return?

2. What's the best way to find someone who can professionally do my taxes? Not sure if I want to go to an H&R Block.

Thanks in advance for any help.
Old 02-19-05, 12:10 PM
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I vote professional.
Old 02-19-05, 12:51 PM
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Foreign income is tricky. I'm sure TT can do the math, but I don't know if it can provide the guidance unless you are pretty sure of what you are doing.

I know in my company people who took foreign service assignments for the company had their taxes done professionally for about 5 years afterward plus the whole time they were on foreign service and the company paid for it. I don't know much about what the issues were though. I think it was mostly about US credits for foreign taxes.

You need somebody who specializes in it; H&R Block is certainly not the answer, and might be less of an answer than TT.
Old 02-19-05, 02:48 PM
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A professional is probably the best way, but you might want to check out TT Online first. You're not charged until you submit, so you can at least put in your information and see what happens.
Old 02-19-05, 08:52 PM
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Thanks all for your help. I didn't realize I could try TT online. I'll give that a shot but also seek out a professional.
Thanks again.

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