https://fatcalegalaction.com/ now live.
Attorney Bopp has issued a legal opinion on FATCA stating three constitutional claims, with strong legal merit, can be brought against the legal requirements imposed by the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) and the Foreign Bank Account Report (FBAR).
According to James Bopp, Jr., “It is our preliminary opinion that the potentially meritorious claims are a violation of the treaty power, an 8th Amendment Excessive Fines Claim, and a 4th Amendment Search and Seizure Claim. . . . We believe that these 3 claims form the basis for a successful suit that would stop the damage that FATCA and FBAR have inflicted of U.S. citizens.”
At the start of the Legal Opinion, Mr. Bopp highlights Allison Christians’ arguments regarding the legal status of the FATCA IGAs signed by countries around the world.
The legal status of these IGAs is unclear and susceptible to challenge. They are not treaties under U.S. law because they have not be en submitted to the Senate for advice and consent pursuant to the Treaty Clause of the U.S. Constitution, Art. II, sec. 2, c l. 2. Nor ae they congressional-executive agreements because Congress has not authorized the Treasury Department to conclude the IGAs as part of the FATCA implementation effort. Instead, the Treasury Department appears to be treating the IGAs as treaty-based agreements, interpreting the information exchange provisions of existing tax treaties and tax information exchange agreements already in place with FATCA Partners. However, Allison Christians, a tax law expert and associate professor of tax law at McGill University in Montreal, argues that none of the IGAs are properly considered treaty-based agreements. Allison Christians, The Dubious Legal Pedigree of IGAs (And Why it Matters), Tax Notes International Vol. 69, No. 6 (Feb. 11, 2013).