reposted from citizenshipsolutions dot ca
posted by John Richardson
Introduction: It’s tax reform season and Senator Orrin Hatch wants to hear from you (again)
As reported on the Isaac Brock Society and other digital resources for those impacted by U.S. taxes, you have until July 17, 2017 to tell Senator Hatch what you think needs to be changed in the Internal Revenue Code. After great deliberation, it occurred to me that people who either are (or are accused of being) U.S. citizens or Green Card holders living outside the United States, might want the USA to stop taxing them. After all, they already pay taxes to the countries where they reside. This is your opportunity to “Let your voices be heard” (well maybe).
The Senate Finance Committee is yet again asking the general public to send comments on tax reform. The deadline is July 17, and the email address is email@example.com.
(July 17, 2017 is coming quickly. Please take a few moments to send your thoughts to Senator Hatch. Tell him you feel about FATCA, citizenship-based taxation, FBAR, etc.)
Speaking of “tax reform”: Introducing Jackie Bugion
Jackie Bugnion is a U.S. citizen who has lived in Switzerland for many many years. She has been a tireless advocate for “residence based taxation”. She worked with “American Citizens Abroad” for many years and has recently retired. She was recently honored with the Eugene Abrams Award by ACA- an event that was the subject of a post at the Isaac Brock Society – that described her many achievements (over a long career).
She was the principal organizer of the “Conference on Citizenship Taxation”
which took place in Toronto, Canada in May of 2014. The Conference was widely discussed on the Isaac Brock Society here and here. The live video of the “Kirsch Schneider debate” is here.
I have reproduced a number of her written submissions and posts on this blog, specifically:
- Even in “retirement” Jackie Bugnion writes the best arguments against citizenship taxation
- A Proposal for Fair U.S. Tax Treatment of Foreign Pensions
- Excellent @JackieBugnion and Roland Crim article on Boris Johnson @MayorOfLondon and plight
Jackie Bugnion – 2013 Submission to the House Ways and Means Committee – Explains the upcoming New American Revolution
— Citizenship Lawyer (@ExpatriationLaw) July 14, 2017
The submission referenced in the above tweet describes the history of the construction of the U.S. “fiscal prison” brick by legislative brick!
(Forward it to anybody and everybody with a interest in this.)
Jackie has returned with her 2017 submission to Senator Hatch.
Jackie Bugnion 2017 submission to Chairman Hatch – reproduced with permission of Jackie Bugnion
reposted from renounceuscitizenship blog
What follows is the full text of the Facebook post referenced in the above link. Really now, it’s time to understand that taxation is NOT the price you pay for Government services (or certainly not civilization). It’s something you are required to pay to support the Homeland. Homelanders abroad, Accidental Americans and other dual citizens, academics, and those opposing FATCA, FBAR, PFIC, CBT and other forms of U.S. extra-territorial harassment should really be asking:
“Ask not what the Homeland can do for you! Ask what you can do for the Homeland?”
I posted this to my 400 “friends” on Facebook. It’s great to see and hear their disgust when they become enlightened about what the US government is doing to its own citizens. Also had some friends from Iran say, “gee and I thought my government was bad” I also copied in the testimonial videos for good measure. We have to get the word out that this impacts all Americans and the USA as a nation. Hiding in fear and not speaking up will get us nowhere.
“Guys, most of you know I’ve lived overseas for close to 20 years. Let me warn my fellow Americans to not try to live and work outside the USA for an extended amount of time. The US government and IRS with it crazy laws has now made Americans living overseas “rejects”, while the rest of the world is free to work and live where they please completely unburdened by their home country. The US is unfortunately intent on destroying its network of US citizens living abroad in order to maybe catch a few rich American tax cheats that live in the US.
The US is the only country in the world that taxes on citizenship alone and forces foreign banks to give all banking account info on US citizens to the IRS, regardless of where they live. Mind you, the US gives these countries no information in return, and that has made the USA the biggest tax haven for the rich from the rest of the world.
Foreign banks are now as a result denying and cancelling American’s bank accounts, cancelling mortgages, or just won’t sell you financial products since the filing hassle for them to the IRS has become too much and it’s just easier to get rid of US Americans as customers.
Companies also don’t want you if you are American and have signing authority, since the IRS wants all of that company’s info too and most companies see no point and just refuse you the job and take anyone with any other nationality.
You are also supposed to file all sorts of forms each year declaring your bank accounts and insurance to the IRS even though you might owe no tax due to some treaty and if you get 1 thing wrong, you get a fine of $10k to $50k per form. You also need to hire an expensive accountant that understands US tax, while you of course hire another local accountant for your local tax, which is already much higher than the US.
If you sell any property here, the US also wants a piece of that too, even if you already paid tax here on it. If you get a pension from a company, the US will want some of that too. All while you will get $0 Social Security and not ever qualify for Medicare, and anything you need from an US Embassy, even evacuated from a hostile country, you have to pay for it. You get 0 benefit from being an American overseas.
The result, Americans born and raised in the US and instilled with American values are not allowed to live unburdened overseas and have 0 representation in the US government, yet are supposed to pay taxes twice, have job opportunities lost and have banks refuse you.
If you want to give up citizenship to escape the hassle and be free to live like everyone else, that will cost you $2,500 and maybe a piece of everything you own.
So, I bet you didn’t realize you aren’t free to just leave the US other than on vacation. The rest of the world will leave us behind with their overseas network of citizens and build relations, while Americans will simply just need to stay home to avoid the hassle.
I’m passing this on, because I
realize most of the homeland Americans had no idea about these laws and their consequences made by our own government.”
Many thanks Trish for lending us a hand in our search. Documents should be sent to ericmartin2017 at hotmail dot com. We thank in advance our Canadian friends for their help. We too are fighting FATCA with all our energy with one simple im: to win!
I already saw the many responses on Brock. We are grateful, all this is very useful. We intend to milk this idiosyncrasy of our constitution to the fullest.
I’ve received a request from our fellow expats-in-peril Association des Américains Accidentels to search for documents to help them in their litigation.
As of this week, we have hired a lawyer to get a legal opinion re: FATCA.
One of the angle we are pursuing is non reciprocity. Under the French Constitution (article 55) a treaty which is not reciprocal becomes null and void, as simple as that. We are presently looking for all documents written par the IRS/Treasury to US Senators or any other documents emanating from the US Treasury which point to the fact that the US has no intention of making FATCA reciprocal.
We are now in full gear and our aim is to make FATCA null in void in France and perhaps at the European level too. (it is another avenue we are exploring too)
In advance many many thanks,
Eric and Fabien
Please help their legal challenge: Let’s Unite to Defeat FATCA
Introduction: Penalty as a part of American Culture
"U.S. tax, form and penalty club": Google "IRS penalty as part of American culture" and see a wide range of results https://t.co/eR0QTZ2sOH
— Citizenship Lawyer (@ExpatriationLaw) June 25, 2017
The above tweet links to a wide range of examples of America’s culture of penalty.
The purpose of this post is to explore how inflation results in the facilitation of enhanced penalty collection in America today.
What is inflation?
In its simplest terms:
“Inflation is defined as a sustained increase in the general
level of prices for goods and services in a county, and is measured as
an annual percentage change. Under conditions of inflation, the prices
of things rise over time. Put differently, as inflation rises, every
dollar you own buys a smaller percentage of a good or service. When
prices rise, and alternatively when the value of money falls you have
(Note his use of the words “goods and services“. Are
FBAR penalties and the S. 877A Exit Tax consumer goods or
Inflation can either be helpful or can be hurtful. Some benefit from
inflation and others are hurt by inflation. At a minimum, inflation will
always erode the value of cash.
Effect of inflation on owners/lenders of cash: When it
comes to cash inflation will hurt the owners/lenders of cash. This is
because inflation will erode the value of cash.
Effect of inflation on borrowers of cash: Inflation
will help he borrowers of cash. This is because inflation erodes the
value of the cash that must be repaid.
cross-posted from the citizenshipsolutions blog
Prologue:U.S. citizenship is not as attractive as it was
Making Choice to Halt at Door of Citizenship https://t.co/Z7A1d8Mvrq – Interesting: fewer Green Card holders taking step to become citizens
— Citizenship Lawyer (@ExpatriationLaw) June 19, 2017
One benefit of U.S. citizenship: If one is a U.S. citizen then one cannot be deported from the USA
Some Green Card holders become U.S. citizens. Some do NOT become U.S.
citizens. Many of those Green Card holders become U.S. citizens in order to avoid the possibility of deportation. Deportation results in expatriation and can (among other things) subject the unfortunate Green Card holder to the S. 877A Expatriation Tax, which can result in significant confiscation of assets. In fact, the S. 877A Expatriation Tax discourages people from seeking Green Cards in the first place. That said, it is only Green Card Holders who are “long term residents” who are subject to the Exit Tax.
The plight of Mr. Morales-Santana: No U.S. citizenship = the possibility of deportation
The facts as described by the court:
In 2000, the Government sought to remove Morales-Santana based on several criminal convictions, ranking him as alien because, at his time of birth, his father did not satisfy the requirement of five years’ physical presence after age 14. An immigration judge rejected Morales-Santana’s citizenship claim and ordered his removal. Morales Santana later moved to reopen the proceedings, asserting that the Government’s refusal to recognize that he derived citizenship from his U. S.-citizen father violated the Constitution’s equal protection guarantee.
To be deported or not to be deported – it depends on Mr.Morales-Santana’s claim to U.S. citizenship
In order to avoid deportation, Mr. Morales-Santana needed to establish that he was a U.S. citizen.
In order for the U.S. Government to deport Mr. Morales-Santana, it needs to establish that he was NOT a U.S. citizen.
If you wanted to argue that Mr. Morales-Santana was a U.S. citizen, then how would you make the argument?
Facts: Mr. Morales-Santana was born (1) outside the USA and (2) out of wedlock. He was NOT born to a U.S. citizen parent who met the U.S. “physical presence requirements” to transmit U.S. citizenship! How could he then be a U.S. citizen?
The initial reaction of the Canadian government to FATCA can best be described by a letter then-Finance Minister, the late Jim Flaherty wrote, intended to be placed in major American newspapers.Virtually no one believed there would be any reason for the U.S. to impose this given Canada is a higher tax jurisdiction and owing annual income tax was rather unlikely. Back in 2012, in spite of all the scaremongering created by the IRS and foreign tax compliance practitioners, the underlying hope/belief of “US Persons” in Canada was that it would be impossible to get around the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. In spite of the fact that the first Model 1 IGA was released on 26 July 2012 by the US Treasury. The IGA was developed cooperatively with France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom.
The post below was written over a year before the Canadians signed the IGA agreement on Feb 5 2014. Interestingly enough, it was written on the same day as a letter written by Peter Hogg, perhaps THE most important constitutional lawyer in Canada. This letter was sent to the Department of Finance and was welcome news.
“Note that the prohibited grounds of discrimination
include ‘national or ethnic origin’, and the Supreme Court has held that citizenship is an ‘analogous ground’ also prohibited by s. 15(1).”
(Andrews v. Law Society of BC (1989) 1 S.C.R. 143)…
“The point of this letter is to urge the
Government not to agree to an IGA which would call for foreign legislation which would offend s. 15
of the Charter.”
Perhaps I just have a bad memory but it is curious to me now, that there is such a difference in the time some of our main allies signed and when we signed. I only recently (and surprisingly) learned that the U.K. and Germany do not have anything comparable to our Charter. Could that be a reason they were more willing to sign earlier on in the process? Does it mean the Canadian government at first considered the possibility that any action they took would not be able to withstand a Charter Challenge? And if so, what was it that made them change their minds? How did they come to believe they could get away with changing a law to break the law? Bill C-31 is the only of the clearly unconstitutional laws that the Trudeau government refuses to budge on (the others being C-23 C-24 & C-51).
— Patricia Moon (@nobledreamer16) June 18, 2017
While Canada clearly failed when it had the chance to stand up to the U.S. government, perhaps we can count on the Supreme Court of Canada, in the end, to demonstrate leadership by living up to the ideals enshrined in the Charter.
Reposted from renounceuscitizenship blog on December 21, 2012.
Let the Lawsuits Continue!
Another group of people, residents & citizens of other nations (yet claimed by the U.S. all the same), the Association des Américains Accidentels has formed a legal entity in order to raise funding for procuring a legal opinion and proceeding with litigation against the FATCA IGA in France and/or the European Union courts.
We began our journey in February 2014 and welcome this effort, hoping it spreads around the world. Best thing to remember:
cross posted from Association of Américains Accidentels
— Patricia Moon (@nobledreamer16) June 5, 2017
Let’s Unite to Defeat FATCA!
The “Association of Américains Accidentels” (Accidental Americans Association) is a legally formed entity under the French law of 1901.
Its aim is to defend and protect Franco-American binationals against the nefarious effects of FATCA. The consequences of this Inter Governmental Agreement (IGA) between France and the United States have been manyfold and tragic for binational citizens: French banks have refused to open accounts or have closed them, payments of inheritances have been suspended, insurance policies and mortgages have been cancelled among other bureaucratic hassles binationals have had to endure. This has resulted in feelings of great anxiety, anger as well as the feeling that French Authorities has abandoned them to their fate.
The Association has two goals: First, to seek legal opinions in French, European and International law to defeat FATCA in France or better yet in the European Union altogether and secondly to undertake the necessary judicial actions to exclude binationals from the FATCA IGA’s once and for all. Preliminary conversations with highly qualified lawyers have been promising and we think that there may be solid legal grounds to achieve this goal whether at the French or European Union level or both. But legal opinions by good lawyers are not free.
Courtesy of Andrew Grossmann · @andygr
28th May 2017 from TwitLonger TwitLonger
This is a transcript from the FATCA Hearing held in Washington D.C on April 26, 2017.
I think it is interesting to actually read the testimonies that we heard that day. Some of the more striking aspects seem even more shocking and the mistakes stick out like sore thumbs……………..All emphases are mine – Patricia Moon
Thanks to USCitizenAbroad for posting links re Ms Ran Kim. Here is a piece she is listed on while interning at Caplin & Drysdale in Washington, D.C. (2012-2013, 2014)
Scott D. Michel, Zhanna Ziering & Young Ran Kim, U. S. Offshore Account Enforcement Issues, 16 J. Tax Practice & Procedure 65 (Aug./Sep. 2014).