UPDATE SATURDAY September 15, 2018
“…. and the US government is my best business promoter”
“I’m livin’ high on the hog”, says Blackie the Black marketer in my followup interview. “I’m selling non-US citizenship like hotcakes…..I can’t keep up with demand.
Some of you might remember that I interviewed Blackie years back, when President Obama had hiked the fee to $400 for renouncing U.S. citizenship. Blackie had established a business selling fake Certificates of Loss Of (United States) Nationality (CLN), after the fake-American-passport business had dried up.
Not long after that, demand for non-citizenship was so high that President Obama hiked the fee again to $2350. “The business model I started based on $400 competition skyrocketed when the fee went to $2350” explains Blackie. “Whereas the president was marketing a product at the $2350 level, I undercut it and gave them the same paper at a fraction of that price”
“I’ve been able to make this into a full-blown enterprise, with employees…I even hire marketing consultants to analyze my market segments and give me tips for where to go next” he explains.
Update 27 August 2018
interesting: One of the factors irritating to the EU is the “repatriations of billions of dollars in profit from Europe by U.S. based tech giants” (Bloomberg) an outcome of course, from recent U.S. tax reform (TTFC)
I have become fascinated by an ongoing development in Europe stemming from Trump’s actions against Iran. First, there is the United States pulling out of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action
JCPOA, (aka the Iran nuclear deal in which Iran promised to stop development of its nuclear program in return for a lessening of sanctions and increased trade relations). After the withdrawal, Trump issued harsh sanctions against Iran.
Over the last couple days, a number of expats have tweeted/posted a
condensed version of this story. I was curious know more about it.
On August 21, German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas wrote an editorial for the German paper, the Handsblatt. He called for a “balanced partnership” as counterweight to the US actions regarding Iran.
At first, this might seem completely unrelated to our situation however, one aspect of this “Balanced Partnership” may include an option for trading outside of the U.S. SWIFT system.
from The Nation
Interesting that FATCA, which predates CRS is not mentioned here.If the U.S. were interested in reciprocity, wouldn’t this be the focus? In fact, this is not FATCA or CRS. It is plain and simple discrimination. If the U.S. continues making the U.S.an unwelcome place for immigrants, we may no longer have to listen to the nonsense that our leaving is irrelevant due to the much larger numbers of people clamoring to get into the United States of America.
What an idiot -does he have any idea what is going on? #FBAR #FATCA #TransitionTax #GILTI doh……Former Hamilton school superintendent pleads guilty to forging documents to get his children U.S. citizenship https://t.co/2dc9RKkViK via @torontostar
— Tricia Moon
Just a little something likely to amuse most Brockers
Really, it boggles the mind……..would appear nothing further reached the Consulate.
Those kids don’t know how lucky they are!
Interested to know whether the comments to French version of this @LizT1 article on the @USTransitionTax are different in tone than the English version: "Nouveau coup dur pour les résidents canadiens frappés par l'impôt de Trump" https://t.co/xsvTqtE8t5
— U.S. Citizen Abroad (@USCitizenAbroad) August 15, 2018
Reference to the English version of Elizabeth Thompson’s recent article on the U.S. Transition Tax was posted here. A person in Europe found the French version and forwarded it.
The French version has far fewer comments. But, I thought it would be interesting to perhaps do a bit of translation and see if they are as ridiculous as the majority of the comments on the English version.
Can't make "Live Toronto Event" to discuss end of @citizenshiptax https://t.co/pk6PVMNAKc? @Expatriationlaw interviews @SolomonYue LIVE: Friday Aug. 17 – 11:00 a.m. EST (Toronto) – VIEW it @thatchannel anywhere in the world! Tweet questions to @expatriationlaw in advance and RT! pic.twitter.com/bWFBBPv2Zz
— John Richardson – lawyer for "U.S. persons" abroad (@ExpatriationLaw) August 14, 2018
Canada has raised the issue of the impact of the repatriation tax on Canadian residents with the U.S. government, says Finance Minister Bill Morneau https://t.co/1s3puNhyyI #cdnpoli #tax #repatriationtax #taxreform #politics
— Elizabeth Thompson (@LizT1) August 14, 2018
Following up from yesterday’s CBC article by Elizabeth Thompson, CBC has today published a shorter article describing Mr. Morneau’s response or non-response (whatever the case may be) to the “transition tax”. Her article begins:
The Canadian government is talking to the U.S. government about the impact a retroactive tax signed into law by U.S. President Donald Trump is having north of the border, Finance Minister Bill Morneau revealed Monday.
Speaking to reporters in Windsor, Ontario, Morneau said he is aware that some of the U.S. government’s tax changes affect Canadian residents with U.S. or dual citizenship.
It is, at the end of the day, going to be up to them to manage their own tax code.
- Finance Minister Bill Morneau
“We’re continuing to consult with Americans to make sure that we fully represent the challenges that these changes have made for Americans or dual citizens living in Canada,” Morneau said. “That’s an ongoing process. We certainly hope that we can make progress.”
Here is Mr. Morneau in the Q and A:
Finance Minister Morneau responds to questions about the effect of the @USTransitionTax on Canadian residents – he does acknowledge that this impacts those with @dualcitizenship https://t.co/QSETrawVqr
— U.S. Citizen Abroad (@USCitizenAbroad) August 14, 2018
The comments (at least so far) reflect the difficulty of understanding the issue.
Nevertheless, this is significant because it is now clear that the Trudeau Government is well aware of the “transition/repatriation tax” and its effect on Canadians. This is good news.
And across the ocean and and the question of legislative change …
The following message appeared from Lawyer Monte Silver:
Americans Abroad with small businesses subject to Repatriation/GILTI taxes:
To get an exemption for American small businesses abroad from the Repatriation tax, last month we focused on Senator Cassidy of Louisiana who volunteered to assist. It worked and we have a draft bill in hand.
Now we focus on Ohio Senator Portman for a bill exempting us from GILTI. Portman responded and wants to speak to Americans abroad impacted by GILTI. If you or someone you know owns a small business abroad and is impacted by GILTI – or the Repatriation tax, IT IS URGENT THAT YOU CONTACT ME BY PRIVATE MESSAGE OR AT MS@SILVERCOLAW.COM
— Elizabeth Thompson (@LizT1) August 13, 2018
Another good article by the Elizabeth Thompson. It would appear that compliance with the “transition tax” is getting more and more difficult. The article begins with:
Thousands of Canadian residents hit hard by a retroactive tax signed into law by U.S. President Donald Trump have been dealt another blow, CBC News has learned.
Newly proposed regulations issued by the U.S. Treasury Department and the Internal Revenue Service threaten to increase their tax hit.
“You have to almost empty out your company and pay a lot of Canadian tax to avoid the U.S. tax,” said Kevyn Nightingale, a partner with the accounting firm MNP.
Interestingly, Ms. Thompson does reference the Solomon Yue American Chamber of Commerce meeting this Thursday August 16 in Toronto.
The comments seem less vicious today (at least so far).
An excerpt from “Identity theft in a #FATCA and #CRS World: The Role Of the U.S. Social Security Number” cross-posted from citizenshipsolutions.ca
This morning I received a fascinating message from a third party who writes:
IDENTITY THEFT, SSN & CRS
With the creation of Social Security in the US after World War II, Americans were issued individual social security numbers for retirement contribution tracking and disbursement purposes. Over time, by convenience and not by design, these social security numbers morphed into national tax ID numbers and the only identification number used in all aspects of Americans’ lives — from getting a driver’s license, buying a car, enrolling in university, opening a bank account, buying health insurance and soon. The list is endless.
The IRS and the Social Security Administration regularly entreat Americans to be careful about to whom, why, and how they reveal their precious SSN. Indeed, identity theft is the fastest growing industry in the US and rarely a day goes by without yet another data breach making headline news (need a list??) or a warning of fake IRS forms (such as the W8-Ben) enticing people to provide private data never asked on those forms.
Europe, on the other hand, provides its nationals with distinct tax ID numbers. No single identifying number can provide access to and take control of all aspects of an individual’s life.
In comes FATCA and CRS.
And what does the IRS and USG compel us to do? Fork over our SSN to FFIs and foreign governments — and their myriad service providers, data bases and servers.
Aside from this requirement’s dubious legality under GDPR, having to fork over one’s SSN is akin to leaving your front door open with a big “Welcome” sign while you go off on holiday.
Americans get to choose between the risk of privacy violations and identity theft and the ability to bank. If they can find a bank that accepts them that is — not one online European bank will accept a client with the slightest whiff of “American-ness”, even if said client is a dual national. Discrimination anyone?
It’s not as if there were no other options and the USG had no CHOICE but to put its citizens at risk. The IRS could issue TIN numbers separate from SSN. Americans abroad could prove their identity with a passport number and show their compliance with redacted FBARs and 8938s. Most FFIs in Europe are not even aware that our SSN is the unique number that controls our lives and understand the Solomon’s dilemma once it is explained to them. Yet they cannot do anything about it, they too are victims of the IRS’ extra-territorial reach.
While we wait for various efforts to reform or repeal FATCA to bear fruit, solving this dangerous conundrum should be simple and SSN numbers must no longer be used.
The U.S. tax compliance industry regards FATCA as “The Gift That Keeps On Giving!”
For Americans Abroad, FATCA is “The Nightmare That Just Keeps Happening!