ON Lawyer remains in Poland as Law Society files notice of motion 4 interlocutory suspension or restriction https://t.co/1m7XIbGikk
— nobledreamer (@nobledreamer16) May 19, 2017
While this particular post is not about a tax-compliance professional per sé, it IS about a person with whom many of us have had interactions and from whom we have been assured we WILL BE CAUGHT in one way or another. Given that, I find it extremely ironic to come across what follows in this post. How many of you who have paid a retainer or left any other type of funds when using a lawyer, ever worry about that person absconding with it?
David S Lesperance used to post comments on Brock. Here is an example of the first of many on the post “Americansabroad in Canada may soon be unable to receive payments from Government by USCitizenAbroad, September 16, 2013.
First comment Continuing to ignore the issue; yell at your foreign banker for closing your account; hoping and praying that FATCA and the Qualified Intermediary Regime will be revoked; etc. are all a waste of time. It is time to either comply with the law or expatriate. Complaining is just a waste of time.
I believe my first real exchange with him occurred sometime back on a WSJ article “The Law That Makes U.S. Expats Toxic” October 10 2015 (paywalled-I can’t get around it with the Google News action). Unfortunately, while I have my own comments via my profile, I cannot access the article nor his comments. This limits what I would like to address for the most part. The first set of comments was his reaction to my referring to him as a tax-compliance professional. He did not agree with that label. It was an exchange where I felt constantly challenged at being tripped up especially because I could not (yet) refute the idea that the Qualified Intermediary program (QI) would “out” us hands-down. And I let him have the upper-hand to a certain degree, because he was a professional and I assumed he would know more than I. We seemed to develop a respectful, civil relationship. On several occasions since, I posted comments for him as he could not log on for some reason. I was aware he was in Poland visiting family as he explained it.
Later comments on Brock:
Comment on US Intention to Pursue Enforcement in Spite of Foreign Law
Comment on Do Canadian or Australian etc Tax Attorneys Advising on United States IRS Compliance Typically Comply with the Professional Code of Conduct of their Law societies?
I was very surprised to see some of the Tweets on Twitter when Keith Redmond tried to warn Accidentals not to put themselves into the US tax system. It is interesting that without any proof as to the ability of IRS able to collect via QI, he presumes it and treats Keith in a manner I found inappropriate and unprofessional. I believe the point of contention was to prove that actual Accidental Americans had been “outed” due to QI. This was not provided, nor has it been since that time. There were others that ganged up in more “attacks” that I will not put up here. Brock/Wed Rally Tweeps will remember this extremely unpleasant incident. After that, I declined to post anything further on his behalf. What is ironic, is a number of exchanges that took place privately, up to as late as March 16, with no indication of any actions such as this:
I am posting this comment of Gary Clueit that appeared on the Robert Wood article couple of days ago. Over the past few months, we have “met” Gary on FB, Twitter etc. Especially the Wednesday Tweet Rally- A group that just keeps on giving!!
by Gary Clueit
The article provides a good, if brief, overview of the perils and pitfalls of being a green card holder. The reality is somewhat bleaker.
As a long-term green card holder with no way to escape “covered expatriate” status should I decide the leave the US, I must point out a few of the other insidious side effects of being the holder of a residence permit.
If a green card holder were to decide to leave and relinquish his or her green card, here are some the issues they face in a bit more detail:
Determining the $2M net worth threshold does not cover any assets that the person might have had before ever moving to the US or assets received after taking up residence due to bequests from relatives that have never set foot in the US. The net worth amount signed into law in 2004 and was, I believe, related to the estate tax, despite being less than half the amount of the estate tax (which is indexed whereas the expatriation exit tax threshold is not). Anyone who has diligently saved for retirement and owned houses in San Francisco, Seattle or other major cities over the past dozen or so years can quite easily reach the $2M threshold. It does not make you “rich” by any stretch of the imagination. The non-indexed $2M figure simply appears to be a punitive amount designed to punish anyone for daring to want to leave the US.
Even after paying the exit tax on the “deemed sale” of everything you own worldwide, you will have to pay actual capital gains when you do actually sell since no tax treaty provides a credit for a deemed sale of anything. Outright double taxation. For example, if I own a house in Toronto and sell under normal conditions, I will pay capital gains tax on any profit in Canada. When filing my US tax return I will get a credit for the tax paid to Canada resulting in a single tax bite. However, if I own the Toronto property on the day of expatriation, the US taxes me on any paper profit. Since I have not actually sold the property, there is nothing to declare to Canada’s Revenue Agency (CRA) at that time. When I do eventually sell, CRA will then tax the actual profit, but there is no ability to get a credit from the IRS since expatriation is a terminating event.
After departure and payment of the exit tax, every penny of any bequest or gift you make to someone resident in the US (e.g. a child, grandchild or friend, even if they are not US citizens) is then further taxed at a flat 40%. Because this tax is imposed on the recipient, there is no opportunity to offset estate, wealth or inheritance taxes that might be imposed on the estate of the deceased person by another country even when there is a treaty in effect. Here is where it gets really interesting: assume your net worth is $2.5M on the date of expatriation, you pay the exit tax. Let us also assume that your wealth increases to $250M AFTER you leave the US due to hard work and good luck. If your heirs live in the US (again, whether citizens or not) and you leave all that wealth to them, the entire $250M estate will be taxable to them at 40% regardless of the fact that 99% of your wealth at the time of death was created outside the US and after you had ceased to be a resident. By what stretch of any imagination is this fair or equitable on either the expatriate or their US resident heirs?
Most foreign tax treaties contain tie-breaker clauses to prevent double taxation of those living abroad. However, if a green card holder is living overseas (on assignment, for example) and elects to use a tax treaty benefit to avoid double taxation, that in itself is considered an expatriating act.
I will point out that most of the above situations also apply to US citizens who decide to give up their citizenship, as well as to Accidental Americans who are compulsory citizens simply by being born in the US but who may never have lived, been educated in or worked in the country. The fundamental difference between the citizen and green card holder is that a citizen can only lose their citizenship through the proactive step of filing Form DS-4079. This might at least provide some ability to time events to minimize the tax consequences. A green card holder can voluntarily relinquish their card too. However, a green card holder may be denied re-entry into the US simply by staying out of the country for more than 1 year. Even a re-entry permit, applied for before leaving, is only valid for 2 years and is not be renewable. As a result, a 2 year and 1 month overseas assignment for a green card holder can result in refusal to enter upon return. You then have the alien(!) situation where you are not allowed to reside in the US by action of Customs and Border Protection, but are still considered a US resident by the IRS and still subject to FBAR, FATCA, PFIC, CFC filing requirements and taxation on your worldwide assets. Or at least until you explicitly relinquish the green card or the IRS finds out you are no longer living in the US at which point it becomes an involuntary expatriation and immediately invokes the expatriation regime and tax based on the date you were denied entry back into the US. Why is the ability to time any expatriation important? Take the case of your primary residence. If you plan to expatriate, you make sure you sell your house before that event to ensure that up to $250K profit is not taxable. If you are involuntarily expatriated for any reason, there is no tax break because you have not actually sold the house. The paper profit from the deemed sale will be added to your taxable base subject to the exit tax. When you do sell in the future, you may well be subject to tax on that profit from your new country of residence.
Even while a green card holder resides in the US, they are subject to discrimination. Besides never being allowed to vote (not really an issue since presumably one never desired to be a citizen), they are still expected to pay taxes on worldwide income (not really an issue either since almost every OECD country taxes worldwide income now). The real problems arise in estate planning:
FATCA Hearings in Washington, DC – April 26, 2017
April 26, 2017 – Washington, DC – REVIEWING THE UNINTENDED CONSEQUENCES OF THE FOREIGN ACCOUNT TAX COMPLIANCE ACT https://t.co/VmeUIdJlqb
— Citizenship Lawyer (@ExpatriationLaw) April 30, 2017
Beginnings – It all began in July 2016
The purpose of this post is NOT to describe the hearing in detail (that has already been well done), but rather to provide my overall (and perhaps broader) impressions based on actually having attended the hearing.
The April 26, 2017 FATCA hearing in Washington was long in the making.
Its genesis was rooted in a meeting that took place in July of 2016 at the Republican National Convention. The planning and preparation involved the efforts and consistent cooperation (weekly meetings since August) of a number of people in different countries and on different continents. It was a privilege to have been part of this group. A list of the people who worked on making the hearing happen – the “FATCA prep team” – is described here. Those efforts culminated in what some witnessed “in real time” on April 26, and what thousands more will see (thanks to Youtube) in days to come.
The hearing has already been documented IN DETAIL and discussed in various places IN DETAIL, with the best commentary coming from posts at the Isaac Brock Society here and here and various Facebook groups here, here, here and here. (An example of ridiculous commentary is here.) When I say “commentary” I mean NOT ONLY the posts, but the rich and insightful comments. Seriously, this collection of “digital experiences” really is “History In The Making!”
Thinking about FATCA, What is it anyway?
I have written numerous posts about FATCA – “The Little Red FATCA Book” which you will find here. An explanation of how the Meadows “Repeal FATCA” bill would actually work is here.
Basically, FATCA is the collective effect of a number of amendments (including the creation of a new Chapter 4 of Subtitle A of the Internal Revenue Code – which has made largely irrelevant by the FATCA IGAs) which are designed to identify, attack and impose sanctions on:
A. FATCA: Non-U.S. banks and other financial institutions
Forcing them to “hunt down” the financial accounts and entities (examples include mutual funds, corporations, trusts and some insurance policies) owned by “U.S. persons”. The goal is to “turn them over” to the IRS.
This imposes enormous compliance costs on non-U.S. banks. The obvious effect is that they will not want U.S. person customers. Would you? Interestingly the focus of the witnesses
(Mr. Crawford and Mr. Kuettel) was primarily on the denial of basic access to financial and banking services.
Although important, this is only one half of the equation. What happens when “U.S. persons” learn (the vast majority had no idea) that they are subject to U.S. taxation?
B. FATCA: “U.S. Persons” with non-U.S. financial assets and bank accounts
It is not possible for “U.S. citizens” to BOTH: be U.S. tax compliant and live a productive life outside the United States, when they are also subject to the tax laws of other nations. (Digital nomads are the exception.) The reason is that U.S. citizens living outside the United States are living under a system where:
- They are presumed to live in the United States (which they
- Their assets (which are local to them) are presumed to be
“foreign” to the United States.
If you don’t understand (or don’t believe) why this is true, you will find an explanation here.
“When In Rome, Live As A Homelander” and do NOT “Commit Personal Finance Abroad!” (It’s UnAmerican)
Although a major effect of FATCA is to subject Americans abroad to a very special set of tax rules (think PFIC, foreign pension, CFC, and a crushing burden of forms that impact ONLY Americans abroad), there was NO witness that even alluded to this as one of the effects of FATCA. (FATCA is the enforcer of the uniquely American policy of “taxation-based citizenship”). There was also no witness that described how a “FATCA letter” can lead to absolute financial ruin for honest taxpayers, who have made a life outside the friendly borders of the United States of America. There was no witness who explained the confiscatory effects of entering one of the IRS “Amnesty – Ministry of Love” programs.
This had the effect of making it seem as though FATCA (in terms of the effect on Americans abroad) was just a simple “disclosure- Form 8938 issue. Nothing could be further from the truth.
If it were not for “taxation-based citizenship”, FATCA would be no more or less a problem for Americans abroad than it would be for Homelanders (which doesn’t mean it is not a problem). Unfortunately, the hearing did not provide evidence on this point.
(This is NOT a criticism. But, just imagine if there had been witnesses who had been
identified as a “U.S. Person” because of FATCA, did NOT know about “taxation-based citizenship” and then were forced into the “Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program“. Now that would have been a story …!)
It is “taxation-based citizenship” that makes the effects of FATCA so hard on Americans abroad! In 2011, I remember thinking:
The United States can have either FATCA or it can have “taxation-based citizenship” but it CANNOT have both!
by Karen Alpert
This feedback addresses the Residence Based Taxation (RBT) proposal from American Citizens Abroad that can be found at these links:
- Residency-Based_Taxation_ACA_Proposal_Side-By-Side_Comparison_161201_Final (1)
This proposal starts from the premise that citizenship is an acceptable basis for taxation. Shouldn’t that premise be questioned? Allison Christians, tax law professor at McGill University, argues that citizenship alone is not a sufficient basis for taxation ( https://ssrn.com/abstract=2924925). Every other country on the planet (bar Eritrea) starts from the premise that countries have the right to tax residents to support the services used by residents.
Qualification for RBT
For Accidental Americans – both those born in the US to foreign parents who have not lived in the US as an adult, and those born outside the US who qualify for US citizenship from birth but have never lived in the US – the justification for citizenship based taxation is non-existent. Do these individuals need to apply for a “Departure Certificate”? If so, at what age?
When a person makes a long-term move out of the US, why should they have to wait for 5 years to qualify for RBT? If I move from California to Texas, once I’ve established a residence in Texas, California no longer taxes me as a resident, effective immediately. Why should an international move be any different?
While waiting those 5 years, US tax will cost low income earners much more than it does under the current system. The proposal repeals the Foreign Earned Income Exemption (FEIE). While the level of FEIE is quite high, it is most valuable for middle class and lower socio-economic groups. Other countries have much more generous tax free thresholds and lower tax rates at low income levels. In Australia, for example, an individual could earn up to A$20,000 (US$15,000) before any Australian tax is due. Loss of FEIE will mean tax is due to the US for individuals earning US$10-15k. At the other end of the income spectrum, however, FTC is always a better answer than FEIE. Australia’s tax rates rise to 45% for incomes above A$180,000 (US$135,000). So, repeal of Section 911 FEIE will impact those least able to pay additional taxes and exacerbate income inequality.
The proposal does not address other information returns. Current IRS rules require that forms 8621 (PFICs) and 5471 (controlled foreign corporation) are required even when a tax return is not. For many Americans abroad, the reporting (and associated punitive penalties) is more of a problem than actually paying taxes (most owe no tax to the US anyway). If the reporting continues as long as one is a citizen, then renunciations will continue as well.
When applying for a Departure Certificate it appears that the IRS has control over the timing of the issuance of the Certificate and thus the effective date. With the current renunciation process, the potential renunciant has the date of the appointment in advance and can decide on the day whether to complete the process or not. With volatile exchange rates, the timing can affect the US dollar net worth of the individual, potentially subjecting them to the Departure Tax should the value of the US dollar fall relative to their home currency in the time between submission and approval of the application for Departure Certificate. Additionally, lack of control over the timing could cause hardship for those who must be free of US reporting to take up a job, or otherwise have a time-critical need to be free of US taxation.
Annual re-certification is a bureaucratic nightmare. One possible alternative is to collect this information as US citizens enter and leave the country. For those who return to employment in the US, the chance of avoiding taxation is minimal. Similarly, Social Security checks or investment income sent to a US address could be used as a rebuttable presumption that the US citizen is once again residing in the US.
In the Departure Tax section of the proposal it is not clear whether the intention is to use the net worth threshold in section 877(a)(2) and raise that to $5million for both renunciants and citizens opting in to RBT. Given the justification used by legislators for both the exit tax and the Departure Tax, the net worth threshold for both should be linked to the estate tax threshold and similarly indexed for inflation.
At what point does an individual determine that they have been tax compliant. Is it similar to the current Exit Tax procedures where delinquent returns filed before filing form 8854 allow one to certify compliance?
The IRS “User Fee” of $2,350 per person is a lot of money for those on modest incomes – precisely the people who will be hurt most by the repeal of section 911. The renunciation fee, which the IRS User fee is based on, is already the highest such fee in the world, and a financial hardship for many. Forcing citizens to buy their way out of Citizenship based taxation at this high price means that only those who are already relatively well-off will be able to buy their freedom. Like the current system, the proposal exacerbates income inequality by making it prohibitively expensive for those with incomes below the median to exit the double taxation forced on them by the unfair system of citizenship based taxation. As under current rules, the proposed User Fee also makes it harder and more expensive for US citizens residing outside of the US to leave the US tax system than it is for permanent residents (green card holders) – in this area citizens are treated worse than non-citizens!
Furthermore, setting the IRS User Fee to the same price as renunciation makes renunciation preferable to RBT for many citizens abroad. Those who will not be covered expatriates, who are having trouble maintaining banking relationships, are shut out of jobs due to either FATCA/FBAR reporting or the requirement to report controlled corporations to the IRS, or have no intention of returning to the US will find renunciation preferable.
— Citizenship Lawyer (@ExpatriationLaw) April 15, 2017
The purpose of this post is, as put forth by Tim:
This is a copy of the transcript of the one and only hearing on FATCA in the US Congress many years ago. I once had a copy of this years ago and lost it. I feel there is important information in this that will help the ADCS legal challenge against the government of Canada.
We would like to hear what sections of the testimony (including the non-witness, written testimony) you feel may have some impact on our Charter Challenge. I have tried to make this a little more readable; i.e., the original document is 154 pages, a lot of it in very small print. I have separated where possible, individual letters. It is a lot to take in and I hope this is helpful.All bolding/italics are mine.
NB: Member names that are bolded/italicized still sit on the Ways & Means Committee
U.S. Government Printing Office Washington
Foreign Bank Account Reporting and Tax Compliance Hearing
Before the Subcommittee on Select Revenue Measures of the Committee on Ways and Means
U.S. House of Representatives
One Hundred Eleventh Congress First Session
November 5, 2009
Committee on Ways & Means
Charles B. Rangel, New York, Chairman
Fortney Pete Stark, California
Sander M. Levin, Michigan
Jim McDermott, Washington
John Lewis, Georgia
Richard E. Neal, Massachusetts
John S. Tanner, Tennessee
Xavier Becerra, California
Lloyd Doggett, Texas
Earl Pomeroy, North Dakota
Mike Thompson, California
John B. Larson, Connecticut
Earl Blumenauer, Oregon
Ron Kind, Wisconsin
Bill Pascrell, Jr., New Jersey
Shelley Berkley, Nevada
Joseph Crowley, New York
Chris Van Hollen, Maryland
Kendrick B. Meek, Florida
Allyson Y. Schwartz, Pennsylvania
Artur Davis, Alabama
Danny K. Davis, Illinois
Bob Etheridge, North Carolina
Linda T. Sanchez, California
Brian Higgins, New York
John A. Yarmuth, Kentucky
Dave Camp, Michigan
Wally Herger, California
Sam Johnson, Texas
Kevin Brady, Texas
Paul Ryan, Wisconsin
Eric Cantor, Virginia
John Linder, Georgia
Devin Nunes, California
Patrick J. Tiberi, Ohio
Ginny Brown–Waite, Florida
Geoff Davis, Kentucky
David G. Reichert, Washington
Charles W. Boustany, Jr., Louisiana
Dean Heller, Nevada
Peter J. Roskam, Illinois
Janice Mays, Chief Counsel and Staff Director
Jon Traub, Minority Staff Director
Subcommittee on Select Revenue Measures
Richard E. Neal, Massachusetts, Chairman
Mike Thompson, California
John B. Larson, Connecticut
Allyson Y. Schwartz, Pennsylvania
Earl Blumenauer, Oregon
Joseph Crowley, New York
Kendrick B. Meek, Florida
Brian Higgins, New York
John A. Yarmuth, Kentucky
Patrick J. Tiberi, Ohio, Ranking Member
John Linder, Georgia
Dean Heller, Nevada
Peter J. Roskam, Illinois
Geoff Davis, Kentucky
The subcommittee met, pursuant to notice, at 10:05 a.m., in Room B–318, Rayburn House Office Building, the Honorable Richard E. Neal [chairman of the subcommittee] presiding.
FOCUS OF THE HEARING:
The hearing will focus on non-compliance by U.S. taxpayers with foreign bank accounts,rules regarding foreign trusts with U.S. beneficiaries, and certain U.S. dividend equivalent payments to foreign persons to avoid U.S. taxes. The hearing will also focus on recently introduced legislation, HR 3933, the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act of 2009.
According to the most recent tax year data available (2003), more than $293 billion in U.S. source income was sent to individuals and businesses residing abroad.The United States imposes withholding taxes when U.S. source investment earnings are paid to a foreign person. Those withholding taxes were largely designed to collect tax on income earned in the United States even though the income is earned by a foreign person not subject to the jurisdiction of our laws. Those withholding taxes also play a role in preventing non-compliance by U.S. persons holding investment assets in accounts overseas.
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has established the Qualified Intermediary (QI) program that authorizes foreign financial institutions to collect withholding taxes on behalf of the U.S. government. The program was implemented to improve compliance for tax withholding and reporting on U.S. source income that flows offshore through foreign financial institutions. The recent UBS case revealed problems with the QI program that permitted tax evasion by U.S. persons. Further, even with jurisdictions in which the United States has a tax treaty, effective information exchange used by tax enforcement agencies may sometimes be undermined by local laws providing for banking secrecy that conflict with U.S. law.
In March of this year, this Subcommittee held a hearing on bank secrecy and tax evasion at which the Commissioner of the Internal Revenue Service testified (Ways and Means Committee Hearing Print, Serial 111-12, Hearing on Banking Secrecy Practices and Wealthy American Taxpayers). In May, the President released a fiscal 2010 budget proposal including a number of new requirements on taxpayers with foreign bank accounts and foreign financial institutions holding those accounts. Last week, Representative Charles B. Rangel filed HR 3933, the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act of 2009 containing, among other proposals, many of the proposals from the Administration’s budget, including a mandatory 30 percent withholding on payments to foreign financial institutions unless they disclose information to the IRS on accounts owned by U.S. individuals or close the accounts, and a requirement on individuals and entities to report offshore accounts with values of $50,000 or more on their tax returns (see Joint Committee on Taxation Technical Explanation, JCX-42-09).
cross-posted from the citizenshipsolutions blog
The Internal Revenue Code of the United States requires two things:
1. The calculation of taxes; and
2. The reporting of information.
The Internal Revenue Code of the United States is based on three basic principles:
1. A dislike of all things “foreign”. (If you see the word “foreign” a penalty is sure to follow.)
2. A hatred of all forms of non-U.S. “tax deferral”
3. An attempt to stop the “leakage” of “U.S. taxable assets” from the U.S. tax base. (Examples include the U.S. tax treatment of the “alien spouse”and the U.S. S. 877A “Exit Tax” that may be payable when one makes the decision to renounce U.S. citizenship).
“Forms” AKA “information returns” are for the purpose of forcing disclosure of information relevant to “foreignness”, “deferral” and “leakage”.
— Citizenship Lawyer (@ExpatriationLaw) April 11, 2017
The above tweet references an earlier post describing many of the “forms” required to be filed by Americans abroad. The post also describes the significant penalties which can be potentially imposed for failure to file the forms.
For Americans abroad the information reporting requirements are extensive, burdensome and penalty laden. Normally (but not in all cases) the “forms” are filed as part of the tax return (1040 or 1040NR).
NEVER FORGET MR. FBAR – THE NEW SYMBOL OF U.S. CITIZENSHIP – AND THE POTENTIAL FBAR PENALTIES FOR FAILURE TO FILE THE FBAR! THOSE WHO HAVE FAILED TO FILE MR. FBAR SHOULD BE CAUTIOUS ABOUT HOW THEY “FIX THE FBAR PROBLEM“.
THE EUGENE ABRAMS CITIZENSHIP AWARD 2017 WINNER
excerpts from the ACA site:
American Citizens Abroad, Inc. (ACA, Inc.) is proud to confer its Eugene Abrams Award for 2017 on Jackie Bugnion.
The Abrams Award, named for Eugene B. Abrams, ACA Executive Director from 1992-1994, honors Americans abroad who have contributed outstanding volunteer service to their community. This year, it is being presented to an American abroad who has been of invaluable service to the overseas American community around the world.
Mrs. Bugnion served on the ACA Board and Executive Committee for 12 years, from 2003 to 2015, and she was the driving force behind the development of Residency-Based Taxation (RBT), writing detailed RBT proposals, visiting lawmakers and giving speeches on several different continents. She was instrumental in creating relationships with key legislators and the tax writing committees on Capitol Hill, and she wrote policy papers which helped establish ACA as the premier thought-leader on issues affecting the community of Americans living and working overseas.
…….ACA and ACAGF owe a great debt of gratitude to Mrs. Bugnion for her years of service to the organization. She always had excellent insight into the problems facing Americans overseas and worked tirelessly to find practical solutions to these problems. Jackie’s dedication and commitment to the cause of Americans overseas and her committed focus to the issues of overseas taxation and compliancy issues helped bring RBT to the forefront of discussions in Washington.
The following are a set of videos, interviews and reports that demonstrate how clearly Jackie understands the problems of Americans abroad and her no-nonsense approach to fixing them.
CFA SOCIETY SWITZERLAND SPONSORS DEBATE – FATCA, THE WORLDWIDE END OF BANK SECRECY? JUNE 25-26, 2012 GENEVA & ZURICH
The CFA Society, Switzerland sponsored debates on June 25 & 26, 2012 in Geneva & Zurich. Of particular interest is listening to the architect of FATCA, J. Richard (Dick) Harvey, Jr. For a fine review of this by Wellington (a Brocker who attended the debate in Zurich) please see callousness of Mr Harvey & the U.S. government .
full debate – 2 hours
ACA DIRECTOR JACKIE BUGNION TALKS ABOUT #FATCA WITH JENNIFER CORDINGLEY OF DUKASCOPY TV – NOVEMBER 15, 2012
This short interview with Jennifer Cordingley of Dukascopy is very concise and you won’t find a better one anywhere. This is the one to convince your family and friends-no hysterics or complaining, just, “this is what it is” (and “oh by the way, its terrible“).
There is no direct representation in Congress or in the Administration for Americans residing overseas in Washington D.C., yet U.S. law seriously impacts the lives of Americans overseas through rules related to transmission of citizenship to children born overseas, through specific penalizing measures related to Social Security payments, and, in particular, through its unique citizenship-based taxation whereby the United States continues to impose its tax regime on Americans living outside of the country, even though they pay taxes where they reside. Most recently, in 2010, Congress passed the FATCA legislation (Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act), which makes it very difficult for Americans abroad to maintain bank accounts in the country where they live.
reposted from the citizenshipsolutions blog
Comment below is music 2 ears of an expat. We need r fellow citizens resident in the US 2 hear this; 2 understand we r NOT cheats PLS RT https://t.co/y88YL8Zv8F
— Patricia Moon (@nobledreamer16) April 6, 2017
— Patricia Moon (@nobledreamer16) April 6, 2017
As many of you know, the long-awaited #FATCA hearing will take place three weeks from today. This is exciting and followed by the news that Congressman Mark Meadows will reintroduce his repeal FATCA legislation. Closely matching is the effort of Nigel Green & Jim Jatras. The recent letter, endorsed by major think tanks, etc is here . We still await the hoped-for tax reform. The fate of those who have not yet chosen whether to become compliant and/or renounce hangs in the balance. Regardless of the outcome(s), our direction will become much clearer in the next little while.
reblogged from Allison Christians’ Tax, Society & Culture with permission
— Patricia Moon (@nobledreamer16) April 1, 2017
Taxpayers who hide assets abroad to evade taxes present a serious enforcement challenge for the United States. In response, the U.S. has developed a family of initiatives that punish and rehabilitate non-compliant taxpayers, raise revenues, and require widespread reporting of offshore financial information. Yet, while these initiatives help catch willful tax cheats, they have also adversely affected immigrants, Americans living abroad, and “accidental Americans.”
This Article critiques the United States’ offshore tax enforcement initiatives, arguing that the U.S. has prioritized two problematic policy commitments in designing enforcement at the expense of competing considerations: First, the U.S. has attempted to equalize enforcement against taxpayers with solely domestic holdings and those with harder-to-detect offshore holdings by imposing harsher reporting requirements and penalties on the latter. But in doing so, it has failed to appropriately distinguish among differently situated taxpayers with offshore holdings. Second, the U.S. has focused on revenue and enforcement, ignoring the significant compliance costs and social harms that its initiatives create.
The confluence of these two policy commitments risks creating high costs for the wrong taxpayers. While offshore tax enforcement may have been designed to catch high¬-net-worth tax cheats, it may instead impose disproportionate burdens on those immigrants and expatriates who have less ability to complain, comply, or “substitute out” of the law’s grasp. This Article argues that the U.S. should redesign its enforcement approach to minimize these risks and suggests reforms to this end.
The paper provides a thorough review of the panoply of offshore enforcement programs and mechanisms and documents the harms of their dragnet approach, especially on the most vulnerable and least likely targets. A significant contribution to the literature.