“saddened123” has provided a link to this story. I’m posting it on her behalf.
Overseas Americans Band Together to Demand Rights – Geneva, Switzerland
Update: The report is available online on the web site of The Americans in Switzerland Working Group
Update 11:50 GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – A new report by several American citizen organizations outside the US is being used to give overseas citizens a voice in the upcoming presidential election. The report shows “how US Government policies and actions are negatively affecting the millions of US citizens who live abroad,” say the authors. “The report is based on a series of well-attended Town Hall Meetings, held in 2012 in five different Swiss cities, which brought together hundreds of Americans living in all parts of Switzerland.”
The group behind the report includes Democrats Abroad and Republicans Abroad as well as American Citizens Abroad (ACA), the Overseas American Academy and the Swiss branches of both the Democratic and Republican parties of the US. Personnel from the US Embassy in Bern were invited and attended each of the meetings.
“The most urgent motivation for the Town Hall Meetings was the unintended consequences and deplorable collateral damage caused to Americans living abroad by the pending implementation of the Fatca (Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act) legislation,” the group notes in a press release.
Posted by Ellen Wallace on 7 September 2012 at 10:10, genevalunch.com
In reading the “Recommendations”, I note that one is: “Eliminate Citizenship-Based Taxation and Adopt a Territorial Based Tax System”
In Vice-President Biden’s speech, he disparaged “Territorial Taxation”: http://isaacbrocksociety.ca/2012/09/07/biden-opposes-territorial-taxation-in-convention-speech-should-make-this-an-election-issue//. There is discussion in comments there on the meaning of “Territorial Taxation” and whether it refers to just business taxation or individual taxation as well.
I expect he is only addressing corporate taxation; I have never seen any reference that acknowledges any official government recognition of the need for territorial based taxation for individuals. Just my .02.
It runs in my mind, that at the very beginning of this mess (I mean my awareness, mid-Sept 2011), that I read that the “unintended effects” were not unintended at all. I will have to search and search but I will find it. Is it possible the group is simply being diplomatic in order not to provoke in hopes of being heard?
Although I can understand the Swiss feel they are at the centre, it would be interesting to know if they are really aware of us and how many are renouncing here. My sense is that we have made quite a noticeable fuss given that Phil Hodgen’s post about trip to Washington mentioned that several govt departments are quite aware of IBS.
*nobledreamer, unfortunately, I’m convinced that the letter by the Switzerland Working Group will be ignored and forgotten. According to the Swiss government, things won’t get any better if Romney is elected:
Swiss don’t see US tax deal terms easing if Romney wins
IBS thus needs to make more noise to reach more government departments.
The US government is still stuck in a 1950s-1980s timewarp when a US passport was viewed as the holy grail.
Truth of the matter is the world has changed drastically since then and the US needs to be realistic and competitive here (e.g., make US citizenship once again attractive).
Draconian tax laws and penalties and legislation penalizing renounciation/relinquishment will only make a US passport even more unattractive.
I’m afraid this letter will be ignored. US influence and power will decrease in the coming decade(s). The US will be forced to cut back spending and will no longer afford to sustain its superpower status and image; unfortunately there will be strong resistance to this cut back (we will start seeing US congressmen suffering from a “Lost Empire Complex” pretty soon).
Renunciation/Relinquishment is the best option and the best passports in the world today are Swiss and Canadian.
I also believe much will be ignored as the US’s desperation worsens. For example, who will care about gay marriage, woman’s right to choose, or a bunch of whiney (and considered lucky) expats when you can’t feed yourself? It seems that an order has been given to the IRS to seek revenue however and wherever it can. My husband was talking to a few Australians visiting here and they think the US has gone nuts, and that’s without knowing anything about FATCA. Is this a desperate nation in its death throes?
I think all of you are right – it will probably be ignored.
Very relieved to have renounced and to have that CDN passport.
How do we make more noise?
For more coverage, see also:
US expats seek to make FATCA, FBARs election issues
Sep 10 2012 BY: Helen Burggraf”
There is a place for comments if you’re interested.
International Adviser – US Expats Seek to Make FATCA FBARS Election Issues
Try this one (seems to work / don’t know what the difference is)
ACA is a great organization. But the way things are going it may one day be forced to change its name to ExCA.
I just read the Americans in Switzerland Working Group (ASWG) report. It was outstanding and clearly outlines the problems of Americans abroad while proposing fair and responsible solutions.
The ASWG report along with the recent proposal from ACA, also submitted to members of Congress, puts virtually everything on the table.
The big question is, will anyone in Congress give a damn? And if not, what will be the fate of Americans abroad?
Will everyone living abroad ultimately be forced to choose between a) returning to the Homeland or b) renouncing US citizenship?
With unemployment in the US as high as it is, my guess is that it will lean towards the latter.