On January 25th, I posted a story of the “Opt Out” success of a Minnow with the alias of Moby.
It was under the title of An OVDP Minnow “Opt Out” Success by Moby
If you are not familiar with his story, I would suggest that you read that post first to bring you up to date with his story.
Moby, now complete in his dealings with the IRS and no longer residing in America, has generously made his “Opt Out” correspondence public for all OVDI participants to see and learn from. What follows is his message for all of us.
Here are copies of my correspondence with the IRS during the opt-out process. It starts with them sending a 906 (which I did not sign) and ends with the acceptance letter for my opt-out recommendations and the assessment of only the accuracy related penalty (which I did pay). I believe the whole episode is now concluded for me.
I’ve published these letters with a view to providing more visibility on the mechanics/details of the opt-out process, and to hopefully inspire some creative arguments to use during the process. I hope this of use to people out there who are still knee deep in this stuff.
NOTE: The only communication not in the letters was a phone call that took place between letters 02 and 03 where the agent explained the opt-out process over the phone.
Link to the 5 letters is here: http://bit.ly/wdrEky
This will also be posted at Jack Townsend’s blog, Federal Tax Crimes at the thread Opting Out” #2 (3/2/12)
If you are not following Jacks blog, I would encourage you to do so, especially those who are in the OVDI, and now considering whether or not they should Opt Out. There has been some new Opt Out stories and messages of reduced penalties reported that should give you hope that the worse case scenarios that the IRS shows in its OVDI FAQs may not be applied to Minnows. This is all anecdotal of course, but it does give some hope that application of reason is starting to set some free of this OVDI morass, and all may not be as dire as it seems. Time will tell as my cynicism remains finely tuned, but there are hopeful signs of a positive trend coming from the trickle of new reports.
A personal note to Moby. I just want to say publicly how much I have appreciated what you have done with your open communication at Jack Townsend’s blog. You and Sally were Opt Out trend setters that have benefited a large community of Minnows, many unseen or not heard from, but still gaining from your knowledge and the sharing of your experiences. A sincere thank you for helping us all in such an unselfish manner. Your departure from America’s shores is our collective loss, and I wished Commissioner Shulman would man up and issue an apology for your treatment. Or, as an alternative, how about just an formal acknowledgement of Nina Olson’s TAD? Sadly, tonight, Commissioner Shulman is snug in his bed in DC apparently unconcerned about the continuing damage that is being done to the IRS reputation, and America’s image with expats and immigrants around the world from his misguided offshore VD processes. Sigh…..So it goes.
PS… I just issued two more warnings tonight to Australians I met at a dinner party not to ever consider immigrating to the US. It is not the welcoming country it once was. Steer clear! They were absolutely flabbergasted at the story I told them of how the US taxes and treats its “US persons”, and I tried real hard not to be hyperbolic or over the top. I told them just the facts, …really!