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I am an US citizen with residence in Argentina. I receive Argentine survivor’s social security benefits and also, a survivor’s disability benefit from the Argentine military forces. Both monthly payments, from my late Argentine husband. Do I need to treat those payments as other income for US tax purposes, or are they non-taxable? Argentina and the US do not have a tax treaty. In addition, am I right understanding that they are not reportable in Form 8938?
 

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I'm sorry for your loss.

If Argentina did have a tax treaty with the US, it would probably treat Argentinian social security pensions and military pensions, paid to a resident of Argentina, as taxable only in Argentina.

That's the usual agreement, and that's what the US says in its "Model Income Tax Agreement" (Articles 17 and 19, https://www.treasury.gov/press-center/press-releases/Documents/hp16801.pdf)
 

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If the Argentinian government withholds some form of taxes from the benefits, there's a good chance the benefits themselves are not taxable in the US. But that would be under a tax treaty. The other option is to invoke the payments as "public assistance benefits" - which are not considered income for US tax purposes, at least according to IRS publication 525.
Cheers,
Bev
 

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If the Argentinian government withholds some form of taxes from the benefits, there's a good chance the benefits themselves are not taxable in the US. But that would be under a tax treaty. The other option is to invoke the payments as "public assistance benefits" - which are not considered income for US tax purposes, at least according to IRS publication 525.
Cheers,
Bev
Up to the OP, obviously, but if it was me I would proceed on the assumption that sonce there is no treaty (and therefore no CBT-enacting Saving Clause), accepted international taxation conventions prevail, and these Argentinian-source pensions, paid by Argentina to an Argentine resident, are taxable only in Argentina.

I would proceed also on the assumption that since if there were a treaty the pensions would surely be taxable only in Argentina, and since the lack of a treaty means there's no Mutual Assistance article, the IRS is not likely to have any ability, or any desire, to try to double-tax the OP on her late husband's Argentinian Social Security and military service pensions.

But as always, it's up to the person signing the 1040 to decide on the best course of action.
 

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Either way, probably best to just omit the foreign pension from the return and see how it flies. Unless it's an extraordinarily large pension, I have a feeling no one will ever say anything about it.
Cheers,
Bev
 

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In addition, am I right understanding that they are not reportable in Form 8938?
On this point my take would be, like yours, yes, not reportable. From form 8938 instructions:
Foreign social security. An interest in a social security, social insurance, or other similar program of a foreign government is not a specified foreign financial asset.
Of course, this hinges on how 'similar' a military pension is to social security. But since nobody in the IRS or the US bureaucracy appears to have bothered to define "similar" in this context, nothing stops you from choosing what works best for you.
 
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