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Subject:  Re: Renouncing citizenship for tax purposes Date:  8/22/2013  7:13 AM
Author:  inparadise Number:  119048 of 132878

I'm fine with people renouncing US citizenship to avoid US taxes. However, I want them banned from ever setting foot on US soil again. Seems a fair trade-off.

I suggest you actually read the article before making these knee jerk comments. It's about the difficulty of complying with tax law from overseas, the lack of co-operation from foreign institutions to allow you to do so, and the heavy penalties and fines these people have experienced while attempting to comply with the US tax law.

In 2004, Congress imposed severe penalties—up to $100,000 or 50% of the account, whichever is greater, per year—on U.S. taxpayers who choose not to tell the IRS about foreign financial accounts totaling $10,000 or more.

Critics point out that this penalty is for not filing a form, not for evading taxes. Bryan Skarlatos, a New York partner with law firm Kostelanetz & Fink who has handled hundreds of offshore accounts cases, says the total includes more than a dozen in which the tax and interest owed on offshore accounts was less than $20,000. Yet the IRS assessed penalties of more than $1 million, he says. The IRS declined to comment.

These people have taken their choice to work and live elsewhere, and are conflicted over the need to relinquish their US citizenship to avoid crushing fines for things over which they have little control.

I came very close to marrying and living overseas. This administrative horror would have followed me as well, forcing me to choose between my pride in being American and potential ruin for my family. It is a horrible and unnecessary choice to force people into.

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