International Taxes…American Abroad

“Kathleen, I am a recent retiree, and newsletter subscriber, single, and would love to retire oversees and not have to fight with the IRS about income tax each year. I have a 401k that I need to draw down and a government pension from the military.

“Is there somewhere I can move where I would not have to file with the IRS every year?”

— Paul R., United States

Unfortunately, the answer is no. As long as you hold a U.S. passport (and have more than US$9,000 of income a year), you must file a U.S. tax return annually, no matter where you’re living.

As must all we Americans.


“Kathleen, Panama sounds great, but I’ve never been overseas. I’m 61 years old and single. I feel like there is something more to life than what I’ve got. I love tropical places, and I have always wished I could travel, but I never got the chance. Why not now? I’m not rich, and I know it takes money, so I guess I’ll just keep dreaming. But I love to read your e-mails. Thank you.”

— Dianne J., United States

It takes less money than you may think, and it can be far less intimidating than you right now imagine.

Break the proposition down into steps and then take it one step at a time.

Start by taking a trip. Think of it as a vacation. What’s the worse thing that could happen? You return home with memories of the adventure of your lifetime.

You could take your first step anytime, of course, but I encourage you to time it to coincide with one of our upcoming Panama conferences. Going this alone is more difficult, more challenging, less efficient, and, typically, more costly than doing it with help.

Plus, at one of our conferences, you’ll have the chance to spend time with dozens of others just like you, also considering options for starting new lives in new countries.

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