The Q1 2016 Quarterly Publication of Individuals, Who Have Chosen to Expatriate, as Required by Section 6039G has been placed on public inspection for printing in Thursday’s Federal Register, five days later than required by law.
By my count, it has 1,159 names (41 names per full page and 27 full pages, plus 22 names on the first page and 30 on the last page, with no entries taking up two lines this time). Let me know if you get a different count. Correction: As Andrew Mitchel and Haydon Perryman both point out, the actual count is 1,158; there’s an entry on page 7 of the the pre-publication PDF which takes up two lines.
In contrast, the number of renunciant records held by the FBI in the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) database increased by 1,281 during the same period, from 32,666 at last year’s end to 33,947 as of 31 March (and they added another 860 in April). The NICS renunciant figures have outstripped the Federal Register count of “published expatriates” every year since 2012, with the gap last year growing to more than a thousand — even though NICS only covers 8 USC § 1481(a)(5) renunciants while the Federal Register is supposed to include all relinquishers under any paragraph of 8 USC § 1481(a), as well as some of the estimated five to seven thousand people who file Form I-407 to abandon their green cards each quarter.
All of the people added to NICS definitely paid the US$2,350 State Department fee — twenty times that in other developed countries — which has been in effect for renunciants since September 2014, meaning that Washington D.C. collected at least US$3 million from people seeking to exercise their human right to change their nationality last quarter. The State Department claimed this obscene fee “protects” the right to change nationality — well, that’s one mighty profitable protection racket they’ve got going on there! (And it could have been even more profitable if some consulates weren’t restricting renunciation appointments to an hour a week, leading to ten-month backlogs in Dublin and Toronto.)
Media reports on individual ex-citizens
Here’s a table of nineteen people mentioned by name in media reports as having given up U.S. citizenship since the beginning of 2014; seven of their names are missing from the Federal Register (three out of eleven from 2014 and four out of six from 2015), while for two more — the ones from this year — it’s too early to say whether they’ll show up or not. I’ve also included one person who posted his own CLN on Twitter and later showed up in the list (I haven’t included people who tweeted their own CLNs but didn’t show up in the list).
Names of public figures included in this quarter’s list: South Korean pop singer Alex Kim, who renounced nearly two years ago; and Jonathan Tepper, who said in a New York Times op-ed in December 2014 that his big appointment at the U.S. consulate was scheduled for early the following year. No public figure who spoke to the media about their renunciation in 2016 has yet been included, though this quarter’s list does have one name matching that of a Hong Kong government official who took office recently: Sandra Leung Shuk-bo.
|Giving up US citizenship||Appeared in
|Lu Shu-hao||Military||Taiwan||Service in Republic of China Army||January 2014 or earlier||No||Taipei Times|
|Sandy Opravil||Housewife||Switzerland||Save her mortgage||February 2014||Q3 2014||Newsweek|
|Roger Ver||Bitcoin investor||St. Kitts & Nevis||Libertarian political opinions||February 2014||No||Bloomberg|
|Sophia Martelly||Politician||Haiti||Run for Senate of Haiti||March 2014||Q3 2015||Haiti Press Network|
|Ya’aqov Ben-Yehudah||Writer||Israel||Complicated; see source||March 2014||Q2 2014||Times of Israel|
|Sean Cavanaugh||Technology||Canada||FATCA||April 2014||Q1 2015||Tweeted own CLN in August 2014|
|Mona Quartey||Politician||Ghana||Become Deputy Finance Minister of Ghana||July 2014||No||Graphic News (Ghana)|
|Alex Kim||Singer||South Korea||Obtain South Korean citizenship & serve in military||August 2014||Q1 2016||Herald Business (South Korea)|
|Nicole Beaudoin||Unknown||Canada||FATCA||September 2014||Q3 2014||La Presse (Canada)|
|Kim Sungkyum||Military||South Korea||Be commissioned an officer in the Republic of Korea Army||December 2014||Q1 2015||Kookbang Ilbo (South Korea)|
|Lin Jou-min||Architect||Taiwan||Take position in Taipei city government||December 2014||Q3 2015||Central News Agency (Taiwan)|
|Rachel Azaria||Politician||Israel||Members of Knesset cannot hold foreign citizenships||January 2015||No||Times of Israel|
|Jonathan Tepper||Macroeconomic analyst||United Kingdom||FATCA & other U.S. tax reporting requirements||January 2015||Q1 2016||The New York Times|
|David Alward||Politician||Canada||Become Canadian consul-general in Boston||April 2015 or earlier||Q3 2015||Canadian Broadcasting Corporation|
|Alfred Oko Vanderpuije||Politician||Ghana||Stand for election to Parliament||August 2015||No||Starr FM (Ghana)|
|Philip Ryu||Singer||South Korea||Serve in South Korean army||September 2015 or earlier||No||Money Today (South Korea)|
|Rachel Heller||Writer||Netherlands||FATCA & other U.S. tax reporting requirements even when no U.S. tax is owed||November 2015||No||Blog (will be included in TV news programme at a later date)|
|Neil Llamanzares||Businessman||Philippines||Public opinion (his wife is running for President)||April 2015||No||Rappler (Philippines)|
|Lee Chih-kung||Physicist||Taiwan||Appointed Minister of Economic Affairs by President-elect Tsai Ing-wen||May 2015||No||Apple Daily (Taiwan)|
Congratulations to all those who made the expat honour roll this term!
@George. I don’t mean to boring – but I agree: “Non-USA court”.
@Iota, “But if self-certification of tax residence(s) is sufficient for persons not born in the US, it ought to be sufficient for persons born in the US also. There should be no need to supply a CLN as well.”
That is so simple yet so profound. I have cut and saved it away.
@Publius, “In the past accidental citizenship didn’t matter so much because most people would have done something, again by accident, that would lose them their U.S. citizenship by the time they were 25 or 30. And until CBT was enforced, the doling out of citizenship probably seemed like an alloyed good: the right to have rights.”
History is your forte…that is a superb explanation. CBT “worked” when USC was something that had to be maintained and cultivated. Today, its too easy to get and too hard to get rid of, with a lot of imputed obligations.
@Haydon, @Ginny writes…”Welcome to our world.”
The analogy is the old US TV series “The Twilight Zone” or in the UK.. “The Prisoner.”
Your example earlier is going to be most helpful as I know students who actually are “dual” and helped Nick Clegg campaign. They are now keen on this issue and I will ask them to bring it to his attention.
Re: “So what do you want to do and how?
Certainly Court Cases represent one path.”
@George – My UK passport says:
I actually never noticed that paragraph until I examined my passport carefully on the day I first heard the word “FATCA”. As soon as I read that paragraph I knew my goose was cooked.
@Haydon – correct, my view is that legal action is the best option.
@iota, i tend to agree. Especially since, ‘the law is the law.’
@George, you keep using the term ‘process guy.’ Is that kind of like someone who follows all the rules and regs without thinking about whether they make sense or not?
@iota “legal action is the best option.”
What legal action and in what jurisdiction?
@Haydon – legal action against an FI for refusing an account to a UK-resident non-US-citizen who won’t sign an IRS form.
And/or – legal action against an FI for refusing an account to a UK-resident non-US-citizen who doesn’t provide a CLN on top of self-certifying they are not a US citizen and not tax-resident in the UK.
I don’t know what you mean by jurisdiction. It would be a civil claim, obviously, but whether Small Claims or Crown I would expect the legal beagles to know.
Understood. By jurisdiction, I’m assuming you mean the UK. (Tax Jurisdiction)
1. “legal action against an FI for refusing an account to a UK-resident non-US-citizen who won’t sign an IRS form.”
OK, I’m assuming that fact pattern includes that the same individual/entity would complete a self-cert that wasn’t an IRS form?
If so, yes, I get it.
2. “And/or – legal action against an FI for refusing an account to a UK-resident non-US-citizen who doesn’t provide a CLN on top of self-certifying they are not a US citizen and not tax-resident in the UK.”
It would seem to me, based on the or in  below that as long as the fact pattern includes 3b, that would be fair enough.
Where account holder information unambiguously indicates a U.S. place of birth, the Reporting United Kingdom Financial Institution obtains or has previously reviewed and maintains a record of:
(1) a self-certification that the account holder is neither a U.S. citizen nor a U.S. resident for tax purposes (which may be on an IRS Form W-8 or other similar agreed form);
(2) a non-U. S. passport or other government-issued identification evidencing the account holder’s citizenship or nationality in a country other than the United States; and
(3) a copy of the account holder’s Certificate of Loss of Nationality of the United States or a reasonable explanation of:
(a) the reason the account holder does not have such a certificate despite renouncing U.S. citizenship; or
(b) the reason the account holder did not obtain U.S. citizenship at birth.
@Iota, I actually wrote to my MP to gain clarification on this matter in regards to my kids.
This is a restatement of the Master Nationality Rule available online from the Home Office.
The passport example refers to a dual national who is physically inside the country of their other citizenship. The UK by way of example can not protect a British Citizen who is deemed Iranian when that person is inside Iran, from Iranian military service. It does not mean that HM Government will ship off its citizens who Iran deems its own so they can perform any mandatory military service.
The US Passport warning on Dual Nationals is actually clearer but it expresses the same point. This is the actual text in the US Passport;
“A dual citizen may be subject to the laws of the other country that considers that person its citizen while in that country’s jurisdiction, including conscription to military service.”
Note; I provided through my MP copies of both passport pages, UK and US for my child. The Home Office confirmed to me that the text in their UK passport meant the same thing as that which is in their old US Passport.
Just a point of note in the US Passport language, it implies that when a dual national is not in said other countries jurisdiction that said duties does not apply.
@Haydon; re “the message” needs to be addressed – you’ve got a just cause but at the moment – seeing it is a stamina event.”
Please address the issue I’ve raised of those minors and individuals deemed too legally incompetent (due to developmental immaturity or sufficient disability) to comprehend US citizenship sufficiently in order to renounce/relinquish it (forever barred from exercising that US legal right in the case of those with permanent sufficient disabilities, and from exercising the UN Universal Human right to choose or divest oneself of citizenship), yet at the same time deemed competent enough to comprehend being directed to file their own FBARs online, and make FATCA self-certifications. No guardian or parent can ever renounce on their behalf, yet are expected to file those FBARs and comply with FATCA on the affected dependents behalf. Those populations are deemed too immature or disabled to comprehend US citizenship and thus to renounce it, yet concurrently deemed competent and mature and ‘willful’ enough to be treated by banks and our own NON-US government as potential tax evaders and money launderers?
That to me is a very very simple and obvious egregious wrong. Who cannot comprehend it?
What I have noticed, is that when that wrong is raised to the Banksters, and the US CBT apologists like Professor Michael Kirsch ( http://law.nd.edu/directory/michael-kirsch/ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RMiAMc4NLxA ) and here, conveniently it is either not acknowledged, or it is glossed over. Or worse, in our own Parliament, the ruling CONservative party that force through the FATCA IGA laughed at those deemed incompetent who were affected ( https://youtu.be/ANqVaEpRi_4 at 4:20 – Conservative Party members laugh and heckle NDP MP Mike Sullivan as he explains how the United States will not allow Carol Tapanila’s son to renounce his US citizenship.)
This is not a citizenship/quasi-citizenship/imaginary tax resident status problem vs. FATCA/FBAR/US CBT problem. It is the INTERSECTION of the two that makes it so unjust and so oppressive. We are not serfs, and for the US to assert extraterritorial jurisdiction over our persons and assets with the now willful assistance and active collusion of our home countries (of which we are also citizens and legal permanent residents) is a grievous wrong.
We should not have to excise US birthright citizenship (at current base cost of 2350 USD renunciation/(new) relinquishment fee) in order not to be treated like presumptive criminals, and be denied the same constitutional and human and civil rights recognized in our local home country and available to our fellows.
We should not have to buy our freedom out with the renunciation fee, exit tax and incomprehensible and burdensome paperwork and process. We should not have to wait in line for months and years at the pleasure of the US consulates and embassies waiting for an appointment in order to pay and swear our way out. We should not have to bear the burden forever, without recourse if we are minors, or those deemed legally incompetent. We should not bear the burden forever if we are the family of those minors or those deemed legally incompetent and not allowed to renounce.
This is not only a citizenship problem as you posited earlier in this thread. Because it is only US citizenship which is twinned with extraterritorial taxation (excepting Eritrea) that we are also forced to comply with extraordinary, draconian and confiscatory extraterritorial control of our persons, our local assets, and our very status and self perception as law abiding, honest, individuals equal under the laws of our actual home country and residence.
This is a human and civil rights problem.
@George – “The passport example refers to a dual national who is physically inside the country of their other citizenship. The UK by way of example can not protect a British Citizen who is deemed Iranian when that person is inside Iran, from Iranian military service. It does not mean that HM Government will ship off its citizens who Iran deems its own so they can perform any mandatory military service.”
I agree, the para in the UK passport is about protection, not enforcement. Unfortunately, it’s protection we want, and need – protection from FATCA. America doesn’t want us, it wants our account information, hoping that among the dross (us) it may be able to identify high-value cases which can be pursued entirely in the US courts with no need to venture into the evil land of Foreign Jurisdiction. There’s no protection available against this, except ceasing to be US tax resident by renouncing citizenship.
those minors and individuals deemed too legally incompetent (due to developmental immaturity or sufficient disability) to comprehend US citizenship sufficiently in order to renounce/relinquish it (forever barred from exercising that US legal right in the case of those with permanent sufficient disabilities, and from exercising the UN Universal Human right to choose or divest oneself of citizenship), yet at the same time deemed competent enough to comprehend being directed to file their own FBARs online, and make FATCA self-certifications. No guardian or parent can ever renounce on their behalf, yet are expected to file those FBARs and comply with FATCA on the affected dependents behalf. Those populations are deemed too immature or disabled to comprehend US citizenship and thus to renounce it, yet concurrently deemed competent and mature and ‘willful’ enough to be treated by banks and our own NON-US government as potential tax evaders and money launderers?
Respectfully, there are two issues with this, and I imagine you are aware of them both:
1) The average “John Doe” can’t understand that text.
2) Those that can parse it will struggle to lend it credence because the language is emotive.
Badger – what can I say but, thanks once again for always pointing this out and now asking the question once again. I will be interested in Mr. Perryman’s response to your question. You are right — the question of this type of entrapment into costly and complex yearly compliance is never answered. I, of course, see this glossed over again and again, most recently from Canada’s Revenue Minister in her reply to my correspondence (i.e. sympathy – but nothing Canada can do as *the law is the law* – even if that law is the extra-territorial law of the US Congress and affects Canadian citizens an Canada has bought into it with the IGA entered into with the US and now Canadian law.) It will not / does not affect only my family — but many families in Canada and around the world, most of whom have yet any realization of this.
What’s not to understand in the absurdity of this situation? The language is emotive? How to make it less so?
Whoever wrote that has a very high IQ, it is well written and entertaining.
However, it does scream “look at me, I think I’m Shakespear and Einstein combined”
Emotive phrases include:
too legally incompetent
deemed too immature or disabled
to name but a few.
It also assumes credibility (where credibility has not yet been established, worse, damaged, by the emotive language) in making this point:
“comprehend US citizenship sufficiently in order to renounce/relinquish it”.
This reads like the language of a well-read pub brawler.
At this point, the uninitiated might think you are on the lunatic fringe. (To be clear – you aren’t, but show, don’t tell.)
Most people, who are not familiar with the argument, will have assumed different things about US Citizenship. You need to build up to that point rather than taking the horse and cart forward at 100mph in 4 seconds but taking none of the apples with you.
It is not about being right, that is easy, it is about taking people with you.
Dare I say, how about a little empathy and patience?
I agree that I am emotional. I realize I am too wordy. I realize I am whiny. I do not accept that my Canadian-born and raised son should be entrapped into this. Nor should so many other sons and daughters. I will always worry that my stance not to enter my family member into the US system may take from what I am to leave my children when I am gone. But, there it is — I’m a stubborn old gal getting closer and closer to that time so with little patience and am like a deer caught in the headlights on what else I can do, so I do nothing but continue this fight in my little corner of it.
and, the advice I got from US Department of State, Legal: http://isaacbrocksociety.ca/2014/06/01/its-time/comment-page-72/#comment-3097016
Personally I thought Hayden Perryman’s comments were singularly ill-informed. And dare I say it, kind of lacking in empathy.
Thanks for your well considered feedback; “Respectfully, there are two issues with this, and I imagine you are aware of them both:
1) The average “John Doe” can’t understand that text.
2) Those that can parse it will struggle to lend it credence because the language is emotive.”
With all due respect, I was directing it to you @Haydon, not “John Doe” and I didn’t think you’d have any trouble parsing it.
As for the phrases you object to, I don’t find them emotive, but perhaps if you do, several of them are very similar to those used by the source of the problem itself, and I thought you’d appreciate that. I tried to be accurate in my language. I think I was.
If you prefer, then here is the language of the US State Department instead;
7 FAM 1290 :
MINORS, INCOMPETENTS, PRISONERS, PLEA BARGAINS, CULTS AND OTHER SPECIAL CIRCUMSTANCES
(Office of Origin: CA/OCS/L) https://fam.state.gov/fam/07fam/07fam1290.html
“a. Because loss of U.S. nationality occurs only when a would-be renunciant or person signing a statement of voluntary relinquishment has the legal capacity to form the specific intent necessary to lose U.S. nationality, cases involving persons with established or possible mental incapacity require careful review. This includes mental disability, mental illness, developmental impairment, Alzheimer’s disease, and similar conditions…….”
From the ’emotive’ horse itself, FINCEN:
“United States Person. United States person means United States citizens (including minor
“Responsibility for Child’s FBAR
Generally, a child is responsible for filing his or her own FBAR report. If a child cannot file his
or her own FBAR for any reason, such as age, the child’s parent, guardian, or other legally
responsible person must file it for the child.
Signing the child’s FBAR. If the child cannot sign his or her FBAR, a parent or guardian must
electronically sign the child’s FBAR. In item 45 Filer Title enter “Parent/Guardian filing for
I don’t see specific instructions for those ‘deemed legally incompetent’ (substitute your own favourite non-emotive phrase), but it seems to follow that the instructions for minors apply.
And then there is the ’emotive’ language of the IRS itself;
“A legal incompetent is an individual who has been declared to be under a legal disability, other than being a minor, by a court of competent jurisdiction, including tribal justice systems or as established by the tribe.” https://www.irs.gov/Government-Entities/Indian-Tribal-Governments/ITG-FAQ-%232-Answer-What-does-the-term–minor-or-legal-incompetent–mean-within-the-context-of-an-IGRA-trust%3F
“…… an individual may be legally incompetent include those where the individual is a minor, or is senile, disabled, insane, or otherwise incapable of fully administering his or her own affairs.”
Damn, if only we were less emotive. We could have freed all our affected children and dependents by now. And had FATCA repealed and all the IGAs too. Or if we were more emotive, or had more patience (over the > last 5 years). Or if we wrote better, or more clearly, or begged more, or were less wordy, or more ……
We’ve tried communicating the essence of the situation I tried to describe to you to US, Canadian and other politicians, the State Department, the IRS Taxpayer Advocate, the UN, our fellow citizens in several different countries, US tax professionals and lawyers, bankers, the CCLA, our Privacy Commissioner, our Revenue Agency, Finance Ministry, etc. And in MANY different individual voices, styles, etc.
I’m sure that’s it. It is our fault.
And as for ‘sympathy’, we already have had a bit of that officially and in writing, and it has done no good for children (BTW is “children” less emotive than “minors”?) and those judged/deemed/declared legally incompetent / mentally incompetent (insert your own favourite phrase) – from the Department of State who is “sympathetic” to the plight of those who can’t renounce and their families, and from various politicians but they finish by saying that basically, “the law is the law”.
Can’t take ‘sympathy’ to the Bank/sters, that is one group who’ve never expressed even the smallest in any interest but their own.
With FATCA, FBAR and US extraterritorial CBT, sympathy alone will get your legal, local savings account holding your government issued disability and education grants and benefits sent to the IRS right on time.
Here is a description of part of the problem in a different voice:
Hope its not too emotive, too little empathetic, too impatient, too……
If only we were merely taxpayers, and not human beings, we might not be so “emotive”.
@bubblebustin, and @calgary411, and @all;
See below, courtesy of Keith Redmond,
Among numerous other significant points, Keith says in a letter to Speaker Paul Ryan, (in critiquing the letter dated May 5, 2016 from Ryan to Lew about the US lack of reciprocity and need to enact US law to provide it via FATCA https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10209426602571250&set=pcb.599409483558461&type=3&theater ):
“..Collectively, this is OUR Civil Rights Movement, and I respectfully ask you to address these serious issues which are devastating so many lives around the world…”
Bravo to Keith. This is indeed a Civil Rights Movement now. As you say @Bubblebustin, fought by human beings, not mere “UStaxablepersons”. No matter our perceived deficiencies in technique.
Good for Keith Redmond — bravo for his letter with parallel of OUR Civil Rights Movement to others in past US history. Can those in Congress with blinders still firmly fixed see something that is so obvious to us, the victims of US CBT consequences.