Our FATCA IGA litigation trial DEEGAN ET AL. v. ATTORNEY GENERAL OF CANADA ET AL., Court file number A-370-19, has just been held in Canada’s Federal Court of Appeal on March 30, 2022.
At the trial Canada’s lawyers argued that there was no significant Charter 8 (privacy) breach to the Canadian FATCA IGA legislation, especially since Canadians who the U.S. deems to be US persons, already have to comply with US tax law. We continue to feel differently.
Decision expected to be made in 4-6 (?) months.
Thanks to our Appellants Gwen and Kazia and to all of our supporters, over many years, who made it possible for us to get to the Appeal Court.
CANADIAN FATCA LITIGATION UPDATE —
LITIGATION PROGRESS: This is a lawsuit, begun in 2014, challenging the constitutionality of Canada’s FATCA IGA legislation, which was imposed on us by a foreign country, and which violates the privacy rights of Canadians (see our ADCS website).
The Trial (with three Justices) in Canada’s Federal Court of Appeal was held on March 30, 2022.
Our four ADCS Board members are John Richardson (co-chair and legal counsel), Patricia Moon (Treasurer), Carol Tapanila, and Stephen Kish (Chair).
The Canadian FATCA hunt and turnover are NOT hypothetical.
This year the CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation) told us that financial data on 901,000 accounts were turned over to the U.S. in 2019 and also discovered that most of the data did not have to be turned over under the so-called FATCA “agreement”:
“According to information released by the CRA in response to an access to information request, the account balances in 615,000 of the 901,000 records the agency transferred to the IRS in 2019 were below $50,000 U.S.
The year before, 610,000 of 900,000 accounts the CRA reported to the IRS fell below that threshold…
[This means that] The Canada Revenue Agency has been reporting hundreds of thousands of Canadian bank accounts to the Internal Revenue Service, despite the fact that they fall below the mandatory reporting level set in an agreement between Canada and the United States…
Mathieu Labrèche, spokesperson for the Canadian Bankers Association, said their members are simply following the [FATCA] law.”
John Richardson responded to this CBC article:
“The people impacted by this are your middle class neighbours who you have known for years. They are Canadian citizens living in Canada. They have a lingering/technical US citizenship because of the accident of a US birthplace. But, that’s it.
It’s bizarre that a subgroup of Canadian residents (identified by a US place of origin) could be subject to stricter reporting obligations to a country they don’t live in (USA) than to a country they do live in (Canada).
It’s clear that FATCA serves no public policy objective. It simply imposes costs and regulations on Canadian residents. The Government of Canada needs to end this agreement!”
For more details on our lawsuit see: Alliance for the Defence of Canadian Sovereignty
I’m outing myself as the donor referred to in the post’s headline today because today is the 10th anniversary of my OMG day and donating is how I chose to “celebrate” it. (Note: ADCS emails Brock updated headlines for this post, but never reveals to us donor names)
The US caused me a lot of trouble with FATCA and their underhanded attempts with retroactive citizenship (I relinquished and believed myself to be a Canadian-only citizen since 1978).
I now have a CLN, recognising that I have not been a US citizen for some 40 years. I don’t volunteer my place of birth as a matter of principle in banking, and I’ve been asked. My principles have limits, though, and I can and will use my CLN if push comes to shove.
So, either way, I basically don’t have a horse in the ADCS race. But if I’d wanted to live under American laws, I could’ve just stayed there. I’ve no complaints about my life in the US nor had I any personal beefs with the US government until this day in 2011.
However, I feel that people outside the US should not be governed by US laws and I believe a legal victory against FATCA in any country will have some repercussions around the world. And I’m sure aware of the damage FATCA has caused and that it continues to derail people’s lives.
But the main reason I donated today was for me. Knowing it was the 10th anniversary of that awful OMG day (and the lengthy period of fallout from it) not surprisingly brought back dark memories. So I decided to throw those thoughts right back at them and make a big (for me, anyway) donation to ADCS today. It felt great hitting that Send button, my way of giving the bully a commemorative swift kick in the stomach (or elsewhere)!
Was FATCA a discussion point, even in the most minor way, in the Canadian election that just happened? FATCA rape happens to many Canadian citizens. Did at least some candidates for election mention this?
Nope, not a word. Honestly, this is not on anyone’s radar. Those who know what not to say keep their US citizenship secret. Others have never been asked, or don’t understand the question (if it’s the vague version about foreign tax residence rather than simply US citizenship). Those who do answer in the affirmative and are possibly reported don’t necessarily know that they are supposedly required to file US tax returns, so they don’t.
Do they really support this law? How is that possible? I can see them supporting Canadian compliance from the point of not wanting to anger the US thug to the south, but strongly embrace?
Nah, surely not?
This is amazing!!! Thank you, thank you, thank you!!
Any chance this might be live-streamed, or recorded somehow? (I seem to recall reading somewhere that it might be live-streamed, just given the Covid context, but I know it’s still a court case…).
Anyway, thank you so much for what you’re doing!!
So glad that a date has been set. Will be thinking of all of you.
All best wishes and grateful heartfelt thanks to all those who have made this possible – and made years and years of sacrifices of your time, energy, resources, etc. on behalf of the many. So many readers won’t know who any or all of you all are, but owe you all a great debt.
I hope readers and those affected by these issues who’ve never contributed, but who agree with and will benefit from this lawsuit will donate to help pay off the outstanding balance needed for legal fees.
Thank you to everyone who made this happen and may the verdict be the one we all want it to be. Surgite!
I’ve e-mailed ADCS regarding your question. I expect to hear back in a day or two and will post an answer then.
Stephen Kish of ADCS has written me that he has contacted Federal Court about this and he’ll let us know as soon as he hears back.
Wow! Amazing! Thank you. : )
I’m very grateful for everything that ADCS has already done (and, yes, I’ve donated). Will probably make another donation before the trial. Here’s to hoping!!
@ Alex and All,
Yes, this will be streamed on-line. The info on how to obtain remote access to the Appeal Court hearing, along with the e-mail address to contact for access, is found at this link:
You email the Federal Court of Appeal with a request for remote access and include case name (Deegan et al. vs. Attorney General et al.), case number (A-370-19) and case date (December 13, 2021). The Court office will then email the instructions when it has the link.
Maybe someone may request the livestream then is that a link that may be published here?
@ JC and All,
Unfortunately, we cannot post the link to the appeal hearing on the site. I have received word from the Court “To keep this webinar secure, do not share this link publicly.”
You can get a link to the hearing by e-mailing Information@fca-caf.gc.ca
and providing the following information: case name, case number and hearing date.
Case Name: GWENDOLYN LOUISE DEEGAN ET AL. v. ATTORNEY GENERAL OF CANADA ET AL.
Court Number: A-370-19
Hearing Date: December 13
The contact information comes from this page: Public and media access to hearings during the COVID-19 pandemic (Amended as of September 1, 2020)
Interesting story about a FATCA false positive involving a Canadian living in France. I did not know that there are a few Ottawas in the US.
This is wonderful news. It looks like this was an overzealous bank run by risk averse busybodies. The best part was the following: “The court held that the bank cannot claim that the place of birth of Mr. X in Ottawa, the capital city of Canada (with a population of more than 1 million) is an unequivocal indication of a place of birth in the U.S., as required to fall within FACTA, simply because there are three cities of the same name in the U.S., the largest having a population of 19,000 people. According to the court, such an interpretation by the bank is also “worrying” given the number of cities in the U.S. that are named after cities in other countries.”
I have personally stopped Ottawa, Illinois – not worth a visit. Ottawa, Ohio was recently in the news because some idiot teenager tried to call in a bomb threat or swatting during the recent failed insurrection, but got the wrong Ottawa police department on the line and managed to have himself arrested instead.
These sort of incidents make it all the more important to support legal efforts against FATCA, and that running and hiding won’t help with such a flawed law.
Looks good on ’em. I especially like that in addition to being ordered to pay 15,000 euros for damages and 5000 euros for costs, the bank will be subject to an ongoing daily fine of 1500 euros until they undo the damage they did. Undoing that data erroneously transmitted to the IRS should be pretty much impossible.
It sucks to be that bank, but this demonstrates that (at least in France) there may be more actual hazard to the bank due to the incorrect transmission of data than there is from the US government due to a failure to transmit data at all.
Will the appeal be streamed? Anybody?
Yes, this will be streamed live on-line. The info on how to obtain remote access to the Appeal Court hearing, along with the e-mail address to contact for access, is found at this link:
Case name (Deegan et al. vs. Attorney General et al.), case number (A-370-19) and case date (March 30, 2022).
Each person has to get their own link for the hearing as Federal Court does not allow it to be shared publically.
Thank you, Pacifica.
“The Government of Canada needs to end this agreement!”, absolutely! The situation with a thread of finance industry, 30% withholding from US funds, scares bankers and their profit margins along with the added expense of the burden of reporting with regards to FATCA.
It’s outrageous that sovereign Nations, including Canada, agreed to this arrangement under duress with the threat of 30% sanctioning with US sourced funds!
It is nothing short of the imposition of tax law onto other sovereign nations!