Publication 570

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Tax Guide for Individuals with Income from U.S. Possessions


This publication discusses how to treat income received from the following U.S. possessions on your tax return(s).

  • American Samoa.
  • The Commonwealth of Puerto Rico (Puerto Rico).
  • The Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI).
  • Guam.
  • The U.S. Virgin Islands (USVI).

Unless stated otherwise, when the term “possession” is used in this publication, it includes the Commonwealths of Puerto Rico and the Northern Mariana Islands.

Chapter 1 discusses the requirements for being considered a bona fide resident of the listed possessions.

Chapter 2 gives the rules for determining if your income is from sources within, or effectively connected with a trade or business in, those possessions.

Next, chapter 3 looks at the rules for filing tax returns when you receive income from any of these possessions. You may have to file a U.S. tax return only, a possession tax return only, or both returns. This generally depends on whether you are a bona fide resident of the possession. In some cases, you may have to file a U.S. return, but will be able to exclude income earned in a possession from U.S. tax. You can find illustrated examples of some of the additional forms required in chapter 5.

If you are not a bona fide resident of one of the above possessions, or are otherwise required to file a U.S. income tax return, the information in chapter 4 will tell you how to file your U.S. tax return. This information also applies if you have income from U.S. insular areas other than the five possessions listed above because that income will not qualify for any of the exclusions or other benefits discussed in chapter 3. These other U.S. insular areas include:

  • Baker Island,
  • Howland Island,
  • Jarvis Island,
  • Johnston Island,
  • Kingman Reef,
  • Midway Islands,
  • Palmyra Atoll, and
  • Wake Island.


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