Essay by Mike Kaiser of Toronto on his efforts to get a Social Security number, a prerequist for filing US income tax. (Spoiler alert: it required six separate trips to the US.)
He now looks forward to filing US income tax. (Good luck!)
That piece is the featured op ed on the back of the first section of the print version of the Globe and Mail, not only published online. That placement is going to garner quite a bit of attention. Too bad it doesn’t go on to mention FBARs, FATCA, and the treatment of popular registered accounts.
The illustration accompanying it conveys the rueful tone better than the online version does.
Thanks — I would never have found that, and although it sounds like something I might have said or written, the odds of me remembering it are pretty slim.
I relate to the remembering part. Your words were right on, so glad I was able to find it for reounce!
Any word on when your article in BC Business Magazine is going to come out?
*BC business piece is in October issue — it should be online now, but it’s not there yet.
Thanks for finding the Arrow comment for me – really appreciate it.
@renounce. The least I can do for you, a person who has provided so much insight to me (all)!
@Badger & all
Kaiser claims to have “turned to a lawyer specializing in cross-border matters “, surely this lawyer didn’t miss the part about FBARS, etc? I have to agree he seems blissfully unaware of what’s ahead of him, but we don’t really know too much about his particular circumstances are. He really likes to drive though. When I decided to apply for my SSN last year, I managed to get a direct line to the SSN office in Bellingham and talked to someone who was very explicit in what I would need to bring. I was lucky to have the same person when I actually went to present to SS in Bellingham. In addition to what he said they would accept in proving residency in Canada for every decade in Canada, I brought additional documents which he cast aside. Apparently conditions that prove you are a resident to someone in Canada don’t apply as evidence in the US, like proof of residency in establishing provincial medical coverage. Unfortunately the SS official I talked to got sick on the very day I went there (nervous breakdown?) and left my application on his desk where it sat until I called a couple of times and got their attention to the matter. At that point they actually called me in Canada to say that it had been approved and would be sent out right away. Because it was late, I missed being able to include my SSN on my renewed passport and now will carry the number with me in case I have problems at the border for not having included it on my passport, to which there could be a fine of $500.
@bubblebustin: he may only write what he can, because he may not be aware of all the pitfalls, or because it wouldn’t be wise for him to. I wish him well, because I don’t want anyone to experience what we have (and are). My experiences with a SS office were varied. Unfortunately, there was no continuity, and I had no luck with getting through by phone or having letters answered no matter what office I contacted. Driving all the way to an office in the US – to attend in person, was the only method that worked – and even that wasn’t consistently successful – depended on who you got to see. I even wrote to complain, and pointed out that many a senior or those with a significant disability wouldn’t be able to do this on their own – yet seniors are a major part of their client base. I got no reply to the letters I wrote – even to a larger office.
Here is another letter re the IRS and a Canadian, not as certain what the issue is, but just as an FYI. It was written in reference to the column by Ruth Jordan http://www.edmontonjournal.com/news/Saturday+letters+Ambrose+should+applauded+following+conscience/7317758/story.html