Taxes in the United States
Help for Taxpayers
Useful Tax Guidance for Filing Overseas:
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) address for filing returns for Hong Kong and Macau is located in Austin.
For immediate assistance from a taxpayer specialist, you can call, fax or email the International Customer Service Site located in Philadelphia. The Service Site is open Monday through Friday, for 20 hours each day, from 6:00 AM to 2:00 AM, Eastern Time. The customer service representatives there can be contacted as follows:
Tel: 1- 215- 516- 2000
Fax: 1- 215- 516- 2555
E-mail inquiries: Via Help With Tax Questions - International Taxpayers.
Inquiries regarding taxpayer identification numbers should be made at
Tel: 1- 215 -516-4846
Fax: 1- 215- 516-3271
All inquiries must be in the English language.
Please choose a topic:
- Contact the IRS
- Obtain Forms
- Individual Taxpayer Identification Numbers (ITINs)
- Social Security Numbers for American Citizen Children
- Reporting Rates of Exchange
- List of Tax Preparers in Hong Kong
- Expatriation Reporting Requirements
- Copies/Transcripts of Previous Tax Returns
You must contact the IRS directly. There is unfortunately no one at the Consulate who can answer tax-related questions.
215-516-2000 (M-F, 6am-2am EST)
- FAX for Transcripts of Returns
IRS Austin Service Center, Austin, TX 73301-0215
How to Contact the IRS
Via Help With Tax Questions - International Taxpayers.
- Tax forms are available by mail from the Internal Revenue Service website.
- Order the IRS tax products DVD.
Most Commonly Requested IRS Tax Forms
- Forms and Publications
- Form TDF 90.22.1 - Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts (PDF 177 KB)
- Form W-4 - Employee's Withholding Allowance Certificate (PDF 107 KB)
- Form W-9 - Request for Taxpayer Identification Number and Certification (PDF 85 KB)
- Form W-7 - Application for IRS Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (PDF 75 KB)
- Form 1040 - U.S. Individual Income Tax Return (PDF 157 KB)
- Inst 1040 - Instructions for Form 1040, U.S. Individual Income Tax Return and Schedules A, B, C, D, E, F, J, and (PDF 1.4 MB)
- Form 1040 A - U.S. Individual Income Tax Return (PDF 91 KB)
- Inst 1040 A - Instructions for Form 1040-A, U.S. Individual Income Tax Return (PDF 1.3 MB)
- Form 1040 EZ - Income Tax Return for Single Filers and Joint Filers With No Dependents (PDF 118 KB)
- Inst 1040 EZ - Instructions for Form 1040-EZ, Income Tax Return for Single Filers and Joint Filers With No Dependen (PDF 2.3 MB)
- Form 1040 NR - U.S. Nonresident Alien Income Tax Return (PDF 221 KB)
- Inst 1040 NR - Instructions for Form 1040 NR, U.S. Nonresident Alien Income Tax Return (PDF 734 KB)
- Form 1116 - Foreign Tax Credit (PDF 88 KB)
- Inst 1116 - Instructions for Form 1116, Foreign Tax Credit (PDF 248 KB)
- Form 2350 - Application for Extension of Time to File U.S. Income tax Return (PDF 156 KB)
- Form 2441 - Child and Dependent Care Expenses (PDF 87 KB)
- Inst 2441 - Instructions for Form 2441, Child and Dependent Care Expenses (PDF 140 KB)
- Form 2555 - Foreign Earned Income (PDF 330 KB)
- Inst 2555 - Instructions for Form 2555, Foreign Earned Income (PDF 196 KB)
- Form 2555 EZ - Foreign Earned Income Exclusion (PDF 176 KB)
- Inst 2555 EZ - Instructions for Form 2555-EZ, Foreign Earned Income Exclusion (PDF 144 KB)
- Form 3903 - Moving Expenses (PDF 75 KB)
- Form 4506-T - Request for Transcript of Tax Return (PDF 84 KB)
- Form 4852 - Substitute for W-2, Wage and Tax Statement (PDF 86 KB)
- Form 4868 - Application for Automatic Extension of Time to File U.S. Individual Income Tax Return (PDF 167 KB)
- Form 8822 - Change of Address (PDF 74 KB)
- Pub 970 - Tax Benefits for Education (PDF 113 KB)
- Pub 1 - Your Rights as a Taxpayer (PDF 31 KB)
- Pub 54 - Tax Guide for U.S. Citizens and Resident Aliens Abroad (PDF 1.4 MB)
- Pub 513 - Tax Information for Visitors to the United States (Please see Tax Publications)
- Pub 514 - Foreign Tax Credit for Individuals (PDF 1.4 MB)
- Pub 515 - Withholding of Tax on Nonresident Aliens and Foreign Corporations (PDF 1.5 MB)
- Pub 516 - U.S. Government Civilian Employees Stationed Abroad (PDF 1.1 MB)
- Pub 521 - Moving Expenses (PDF 1.2 MB)
- Pub 535 - Business Expenses (PDF 1.5 MB)
- Pub 593 - Tax Highlights for U.S. Citizens and Residents Going Abroad (PDF 1 MB)
- Pub 915 - Social Security Benefits and Equivalent Railroad Retirement Benefits (PDF 1.1 MB)
Social Security Numbers are only available to American Citizens and Legal Permanent Residents (LPRs, or "Green Card" holders). They are not issued to spouses of American Citizens who are not LPRs or foreign students going to the U.S. for college.
Instead, the Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) was created for use as a tax reporting number for those taxpayers who do not qualify for Social Security Numbers. ITINs are for tax purposes only. The numbers are not valid as personal identification, and do not imply or in any way provide legal status in the U.S. or entitle holders to work in the U.S. Please see General ITIN Information for more information.
How to Apply for an ITIN
For information on how to apply for an ITIN, please review General ITIN Information on the IRS website. Certified copies of foreign documents for ITIN application purposes can be obtained at the U.S. Consulate by appointment for a notarial service.
If you have had a child born abroad, registering him/her and obtaining a first passport also gets your child a Social Security Number. Please see Birth/New Baby Registration for more information and forms.
If you otherwise have an American Citizen dependent without a Social Security Number, or have questions about obtaining a Social Security Number, please see Federal Benefits.
IRS does not post an exchange rate schedule on its web site. Instead, you may use the US Treasury rate from Financial Management Service (FMS).
Other options: OANDA web site provides exchange rates. People using that site should obtain the average exchange rate using the 'interbank rate' for the period required, for example, January 1, 2004 through December 31, 2004. You input that information and the site automatically gives you the average rate for that period for any currency in the world.
If you go to Foreign Exchange Rates - Federal Reserve Bank of New York, you can download the daily rates into an Excel spreadsheet and have the spreadsheet compute the average rate.
Any of these rates could be used and accepted. If the IRS were to examine the return and ask how the exchange rate were computed, the individual would need to be able to show how the rate they used was computed. Since any of these are obtained from legitimate sites, they would be accepted.
Last modified: February 19, 2013