Home » Living in US » US Tax Filing 2021 for H1B,L1, H4, L2 – Updates, Deadline, Rates, e-Filing

US Tax Filing 2021 for H1B,L1, H4, L2 – Updates, Deadline, Rates, e-Filing

We have looked at topics on how foreigners like H1B, H4, L1 are classified for Taxation in US , including FAQs like Why File, Penalty

In this article, we discuss important tax dates, the tax rates and related numbers that you may need to prepare your 2020 income tax return. These are the applicable numbers for the tax year 2020 – (income from January 1, 2020-December 2020).  The information is generic for all and applies to all foreigners on work visa like H1B, L1, etc…

Important tax dates  for year 2021 to file FY 2021 Taxes
 May 17, 2021 is the Tax filing deadline from IRS for filing taxes in 2021.  Below are various important dates from tax perspective to plan your activities.

DateTax Related Activity
April 15, 2021 May 17, 2021Tax Day* Last day for filing federal income tax returns and extension requests.
Also, it is a due date for filing extensions for 200 Federal Income Tax Returns.
Due dates for filing State Income Tax though it can vary by state. Also, if you worked for multiple employers in different states during the tax year, then you need to file state income tax returns in all those states in addition to the federal return in form 1040/1040NR as the case may be, depending on your residential status.
May 17, 2021U.S. citizens or resident aliens living abroad must file tax returns and pay any taxes due by this date (or file for a four-month extension)
Apr 15, 2021FBAR (Foreign Bank Account Report) forms due for taxpayers who have over $10,000 in total in foreign bank accounts at any time in the prior year. It is just for reporting purposes only. Remember, there is no extension to file this form.
October 15, 2021Last day to e-file a 2020 Federal Income Tax Return for Tax Extension. Note: you still need to file for an extension request.


2021 Income Tax Brackets or Tax Slabs

The amount of tax you owe depends on your income level and filing status like single or married.

US Tax Brackets for Single – 2020

10%$0 to $9,87510% of taxable income
12%$9,876 to $40,125$987.50 plus 12% of the amount over $9,875
22%$40,126 to $85,525$4,617.50 plus 22% of the amount over $40,125
24%$85,526 to $163,300$14,605.50 plus 24% of the amount over $85,525
32%$163,301 to $207,350$33,271.50 plus 32% of the amount over $163,300
35%$207,351 to $518,400$47,367.50 plus 35% of the amount over $207,350
37%$518,401 or more$156,235 plus 37% of the amount over $518,400

US Tax Brackets for Married Filing Jointly or Qualifying Widow(er)– 2020

Taxable incomeTax
$0 to $19,75010% of taxable income
$19,751 to $80,250$1,975 plus 12% of the amount over $19,750
$80,251 to $171,050$9,235 plus 22% of the amount over $80,250
$171,051 to $326,600$29,211 plus 24% of the amount over $171,050
$326,601 to $414,700$66,543 plus 32% of the amount over $326,600
$414,701 to $622,050$94,735 plus 35% of the amount over $414,700
$622,051 or more$167,307.50 plus 37% of the amount over $622,050

US Tax Brackets for Married Filing Separately  – 2021

Taxable incomeTax
$0 to $9,87510% of taxable income
$9,876 to $40,125$987.50 plus 12% of the amount over $9,875
$40,126 to $85,525$4,617.50 plus 22% of the amount over $40,125
$85,526 to $163,300$14,605.50 plus 24% of the amount over $85,525
$163,301 to $207,350$33,271.50 plus 32% of the amount over $163,300
$207,351 to $311,025$47,367.50 plus 35% of the amount over $207,350
$311,026 or more$83,653.75 plus 37% of the amount over $311,025

US Tax Brackets for Head of Household – 2017

Taxable incomeTax
$0 to $14,10010% of taxable income
$14,101 to $53,700$1,410 plus 12% of the amount over $14,100
$53,701 to $85,500$6,162 plus 22% of the amount over $53,700
$85,501 to $163,300$13,158 plus 24% of the amount over $85,500
$163,301 to $207,350$31,830 plus 32% of the amount over $163,300
$207,351 to $518,400$45,926 plus 35% of the amount over $207,350
$518,401 or more$154,793.50 plus 37% of the amount over $518,400

Deductions and Exemptions for Tax Filing in 2021 for year 2020

  • The personal exemption for tax year 2021 remains at 0, as it was for 2020; this elimination of the personal exemption was a provision in the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. 
  • The spouse of a person on H1B visa can be treated as resident for tax purposes by filing a declaration along with the tax returns even though he/she is not living United States. The advantage of doing so is that you are able to claim additional spousal exemption on the tax returns which directly could result in additional tax savings.
  • For 2021, there is no limitation on itemized deductions, as that limitation was eliminated by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.

Standard Tax Deductions for  2020 to file in 2021

Filing status2020 tax year
Single$12,400
Married, filing jointly$24,800
Married, filing separately$12,400
Head of household$18,650

Tax Credits for  2020 to file in 2021

Child Tax Credit: In 2021, the Child Tax Credit offers up to $3,000 per qualifying dependent child 17 or younger on December 31, 2021.

The credit increases to $3,600 if the child is under 6 on December 31, 2021.

Check if your child is qualified

When to expect Tax refunds filing: The IRS expects to issue more than 9 out of 10 taxpayer refunds in less than 21 days. The “Where’s My Refund?”(link https://www.irs.gov/refunds) and IRS2Go app (link https://www.irs.gov/uac/irs2goapp), is the best way to check the status of a refund.

You can begin checking the status of your refund within 24 hours after the IRS has received your e-filed tax return or four weeks after mailing your paper return.

For renewal ,applicants who need help can visit IRS.gov/ITIN, consult a Certified Acceptance Agent or Acceptance Agent or make an appointment at an IRS Taxpayer Assistance Center (TAC)

For further details and doubts visit: https://www.irs.gov/individuals/itin-expiration-faqs

Online Tax Filing Options for e-filing

If you are filing first time and applying for ITIN, you cannot e-file your return. Most online tax services offer a free filing service if you’ll be using Form 1040EZ or 1040A. For free filing on simple federal, TurboTax, H&R Block, Tax Act, Free file (IRS) and e-file (IRS) are excellent options. TurboTax is the most widely used user friendly and headache-free option for federal tax return.

Its free edition can easily be used if one has income of less than $100,000 and doesn’t have sizeable medical bills to deduct and doesn’t claim any rental, investment, or business income. H&R gives you easy face to face access to tax advisers if your taxes get complicated.

However, they may NOT support Form 1040NR which you have to use as a non-resident alien for tax purposes

Any other topics that I have missed ?  Any questions ?

   

Other Articles

8 Comments

  1. Is H1 holders eligible for below credits?
    Lifetime Learning Credit up to $2,000 per year
    American opportunity tax credit $2,500 per eligible student
    and i heard for 2018 if child doesn’t have SSN, we can’t get $2000 credit. how true it is?

    Reply
  2. Hi Saurabh – I transferred from F1 to H1 in October 2016 and got married in November 2016. For the year 2017 (1) Would I be considered a resident alien (I stayed the whole year of 2017 in US except for a few weeks)? (2) Would my wife be considered a resident alien (she moved to US on H4 in May of 2017)? (3) Can we file 1040A as married filing jointly and attach a W7 for my wife with the return (previous years I filed 1040NR)?
    Apologies for the long list of questions, hopefully I am not too late in the conversation. Kindly advise
    Gyan

    Reply
  3. I am working in California Silicon Valley company. My salary alongwith bonus is around 110 K. At present I am on STEM OPT but yesterday only I got the receipt of H1B i.e. selected in lottery. I married on 29th December 2016. I brought my wife here in March 2017 on F2 Visa and she is staying with me. What shall be the impact (increase or decrease) on tax rate considering two aspects (1) OPT to H1B and (2) If I file joint Return? Again will I be able to get tax refund if the same is deducted in excess by the company. Or can I intimate the company to lower the tax rate while deducting the tax. Pl elaborately explain me. Thanks in advance.

    Reply
    • Hanuman,

      If you over the federal or state taxes, the same will be refunded when your return is filed next year. This year I overpaid the taxes, and CA state refund was received in 1 week, and federal tax refund was received in 1 month.

      Let employer know when your status changes from F-1 to H-1 as they need to start deducting social security and medicare once you become a resident alien on H-1.

      Reply
  4. Hi,

    I got a job offer from a big semiconductor company in California non bay area. Base bay is 135k annual , i couldn’t negotiate as they are offering whole relocation from india to US also. With a family of four(spouse and 2 kids) i want to understand how good will be this. Bonus and rsu are extra but i heard they are fully taxed which is huge. If someone can tell me tax calculation in CA it would be helpful. Online calculators are really not helping as I don’t understand few concepts related to US taxation.

    Reply
      • Thanks Saurabh. I read few blogs online where they say if you have dependents then overall tax is reduced. Isn’t that right?

        Reply
        • Avi,

          What I have given are the tax slabs based on your salary. Your final tax will take lot of other things into consideration – filing status (married jointly), standard/itemized deductions, 401k contribution, FSA/HSA contributions, number of dependents etc.

          Reply

Leave a Comment