Tax Tips: Do I have to report income from a foreign country?

Quite simply, yes. All income must be reported to the IRS, no matter which country it came from. This includes wages, interest, dividends, capital gains, pensions, rent, and royalties. The IRS wants its cut of the taxes on those items, so you're required to report them. (There are a few exemptions, but don't count on any of them applying to you.)

If you live outside the United States and have foreign earned income, you might be able to exclude $85,700 of that income from being taxed. But there are lots of rules to follow, and you likely may need help from a tax professional. If you're living in the U.S. and have foreign income, that exclusion doesn't apply. However, if you've paid taxes on your foreign income in the foreign country, you may be able to take a tax credit for that here.

Tracy L. Coenen, CPA, MBA, CFE performs fraud examinations and financial investigations for her company Sequence Inc. Forensic Accounting, and is the author of Essentials of Corporate Fraud.

Your resource on tax filing
Tax season is here! Check out the Tax Center on AOL Finance for all the tips and tools you need to maximize your return.
Filing Your Taxes Late
What do you do if you can't meet the IRS filing deadline? Learn more about filing a tax extension, late payment and late filing penalties, and what to do if you can't pay your taxes.
Read MoreBrought to you
How to File an Amended Tax Return with the IRS
Did you make a mistake on your tax return or realize you missed out on a valuable tax deduction or credit? You can file an amended tax return to make the correction. Filing an amended tax return with the IRS is a straightforward process. This article includes step-by-step instructions for when and how to amend your tax return using Form 1040-X.
Read MoreBrought to you
Taxes 2021: 7 Upcoming Tax Law Changes
Tax Year 2021 will likely bring some surprises, but some of its changes are already planned. Here's what you need to know about some of the planned phase-outs, changes and inflation adjustments the IRS will present for taxes in 2021.
Read MoreBrought to you
Ways to Increase Your Tax Refund You Never Thought About
Laying the groundwork for a tax refund requires some simple tax planning, a little research and some forethought. Reviewing your tax status, consulting your spouse when filling out your W-4s and taking advantage of several tax credits can help you increase your tax refund. TurboTax also can help decide which credits can get you the biggest refund.
Read MoreBrought to you