Thanks for writing us about the U.S. Foreign Account Compliance Act (FATCA). First off, we want to thank you for your important work on the social determinants of health.
Regarding your question, we share many people’s concerns that FATCA’s sweeping provisions on financial disclosure will have significant consequences for dual Canadian-American citizens and Americans with landed immigrant status lawfully living here in Canada. New Democrats have consistently challenged the over-reaching aspects of FATCA and have urged the Conservative government to negotiate protective measures for those citizens who will be burdened by FATCA’s onerous regulations.
We are also troubled that the secrecy of these negotiations with the US is detrimental for citizens with legitimate concerns relating to privacy and financial pressures. They must rely on media reports for developing news and have no opportunity to have their views considered in a meaningful way.
It is important to reinforce how serious and unfair the consequences of FATCA could be for Canadians if unilaterally imposed. In taking the lead on this issue, NDP Official Opposition critic for National Revenue, Murray Rankin, has written to Finance Minister Jim Flaherty calling on his government to reject any agreement that may violate the privacy rights of Canadians, erode Canadian sovereignty, or fail to offer Canada equal benefits to those provided to the United States.
Going forward, please be assured that we will be vigilant on this issue. We will continue to pressure the Government to help address the above-mentioned concerns and ensure the rights of Canadians who hold dual citizenship with the United States are justly protected.
Again, we appreciate the time you have taken to share your concerns with us.
Campaign to elect Linda McQuaig in Toronto-Centre
Better late than never. At least she has backed off what appears to have been her support of FATCA in her book a few years ago. This is less than ringing attack on FATCA, not quite as strong as what Mulcair and Rankin said. It’s hard to imagine how any IGA could possibly NOT erode (whatever that means) Canadian sovereignty, violate privacy rights (unless those are changed by legislation), or offer equal benefits to Canada under any definition. I don’t feel wonderful about the possible wriggle-room there, but this is better than silence and certainly better than outright support for FATCA.
I sent her two emails bugging her about earlier comments and paraphrasing arguments I had gleaned from this blog and Maple Sandbox. Somehow, I feel the tide is turning in our favour. Is that too Pollyanna of me?
…and, please, can we hear this directly from Ms McQuaig, the candidate?
More than what we had before and I’m glad to hear it. There are some very specific things that need to be asked for here though. NO FBAR penalties should be applied at all, what so ever to long term expat families legitimately Canadian citizens and residence with few ties to the U.S. Not “we wont’ collect them” but, as part of the deal FBAR goes off the table as a means of raising funds out of Canadian households. That ought to be a deal breaker.
Secondly, no full reciprocity in writing, clearly stated, NO IGA at all.
Thirdly, I can’t see how any IGA can be signed that doesn’t use weasel words to get around our Charter of Rights.
Some of these nations need to push back and tell the U.S. to do as they do and go to RBT THEN sign an IGA. NO RBT? NO IGA. Period. It’s only fair that way and no other way. They are asking others to change the laws of their nations but, refusing to even adjust the laws of the U.S. to make FATCA fair and to make it work better to catch actual tax cheats. ALL CBT does with regard to FATCA in Canada is penalize families who would in the vast majority of cases never owe any U.S. taxes.
I’d also like to see the candidate herself say some of this. I appreciate the NDP stepping forward in this way very much.
I was just brainstorming…I was watching the CBC and Peter Goldring (Edmonton East) was interviewed regarding the current senate scandal. His remarks caught my attention. He said that he had 20 years of constitutional experience, more than most in parliament, and that it was his job to stand up for the rights of all Canadians. Anyway, I don’t know if we have him on record in regard to FATCA, but I thought he might be a good person to contact.
Letter a friend of mine sent to Hon Peter Goldring
I live in Vancouver but have about a dozen friends in Edmonton who are losing sleep over this ridiculous CBT taxation and potential theft from Canadians who are US citizens or US Persons which number about a million in Canada but affect directly about 5 million. Those numbers aren’t hard to figure out nor are they an exaggeration.
There are some duals in Parliament that I know of and many in the media, one talk show host in a very populous city comes to mind. He announced to all on the radio last that he is a dual citizen and concerned about FATCA. If the Canadian government signs an IGA with the US you can’t even imagine the damage this will do to Canada and your party. Imagine the damage this one talk show host will do to the Conservative campaign next election!
Already there are reports from the EU of some banks closing the accounts of Americans who live there. I recall Adolph Hitler used the same witch hunt tactics as the USA is now using. Also I just saw a bulletin from Nesbit Burns sent to Canadians telling them about FATCA and how it might affect them LOL. Question: If France or China or any other country on the planet demanded similar info be sent to Canadians with brokerage accounts informing them of a foreign country’s tax law would that be OK with you? Does this country stand for anything at all anymore?
Canada stands to lose everything by continuing its present relationship with the US. I will tell you that without a dobut and almost to a person these people who are affected will never vote for Harper and he WILL lose the next election over it. The reason is that the Conservatives don’t understand that this is the ONLY issue of importance to this block. I gurantee that you will lose it if this draconian pogrom is allowed to do any more damage to our citizens.
Who will VOCALLY come out and support this voting block? The Liberals? The NDP? Well whoever it is better not pass up this opportunity to come out and support Canadians rights and privacy
Has anyone contacted Edmonton Independent MP Brent Rathgeber?
Thanks for sharing that shoot-from-the-hip, political consequences letter from your friend to PC MP, Hon Peter Goldring, Vancouverite.
I give up — who is the dual citizen talk show host?
@Suki, No, not too “pollyanna”! As long as we keep doing what we’re doing, and we will, FATCA is toast.
And now it is time for the NDP stand up in Parliament and out the ‘imminent’ FATCA IGA machinations – and demand that the Canadian public be privy to information about what FATCA would mean to ALL Canadians, and demand a public conversation and open debate instead of the back room conversations with the Banksters – while actual accountholders, voters, and taxpayers are kept deliberately in the dark?
Will Linda McQuaig challenge the Liberal party and their representative in Toronto Centre to say where they stand on FATCA?
I think you’re right: http://www.cbc.ca/player/Radio/The+Current/ID/2299689224/?page=23&sort=MostRecent
(duel / dual) I think we know what is meant.
I was wondering if people could clarify whether the Isaac Brock Society is endorsing a candidate in this by-election (Toronto Centre) and, if so, which candidate. Linda McQuaig of the NDP has attracted a lot of attention on this blog. But I noticed that a more minor party, the Progressive Canadian party, is running a candidate–its president, Dorian Baxter. And I also noticed that the Progressive Canadian party’s leader, Sinclair Stevens, was an active participant at one of the Isaac Brock Society’s events. Can anyone clarify for certain whether the Isaac Brock Society is endorsing Linda McQuaig, Dorian Baxter, someone else, or no one? Thanks!!
I’m not sure that Brock can actually endorse a candidate but we can certainly express our opinions. I know the PCs are a very minor party (no elected member yet) but I can tell you I am very pleased that here in Alberta in the last federal election I voted for their candidate, even though he lost. It was before I even knew about FATCA and as it turned out the PCs have been on the right side of this issue from the get-go. As you mentioned, they played a major role in the Toronto Forum. Even if Linda McQuaig reversed her position to coincide with the recently revealed NDP position on FATCA I don’t think her heart would be in it. I’ve never been one to worry about “throwing my vote away” because I always vote for whichever party/candidate best matches my own views on issues.