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Record Number Of US Expats Giving Up Passports, Green Cards

by Mike Godfrey, Tax-News.com, Washington

28 October 2015


A record 1,426 US taxpayers gave up their passports or their green cards in the third quarter of 2015, according to Treasury Department statistics published in the Federal Register.

The previous record was in the first quarter of this year, which saw a total of 1,335. The second quarter saw just 460 citizens relinquish their passports or green cards.

The acceleration in the number of individuals giving up their citizenship has coincided with increased actions by the US Treasury and Internal Revenue Service to trace American undeclared assets and income held abroad, particularly by enforcing the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) and the requirement to file a Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts.

According to representative bodies, Americans living abroad are becoming increasingly aware of their US tax reporting obligations. In particular, US citizens are finding it increasingly more difficult to bank in foreign territories as a result of FATCA.

So far this year, the US Treasury Department has said 3,221 taxpayers have relinquished their citizenship – just below the 3,415 that did so in the full year 2014.

The Treasury is required by statute to publish a quarterly list including the name of each individual who has lost or renounced US citizenship during the period. For the purposes of this listing, long-term residents or green card holders are treated as if they were citizens of the US who lost citizenship.

TAGS: individuals | expatriates | compliance | Citizenship | tax | tax compliance | ministry of finance | United States | Compliance | Expats | Tax

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