Category: Citizenship

Deal that sends Canadian bank records to IRS is ‘illegal,’ lawyer tells U.S. committee

Witnesses call for repeal of Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act An agreement that has resulted in hundreds of thousands of Canadian banking records being sent to the U.S. Internal Revenue Service could violate the U.S. constitution, a congressional subcommittee heard Wednesday. Testifying before a subcommittee of the House Committee on...

Global crackdown on tax evasion signals the end of bank secrecy era

Unknown to many Kenyans, Parliament’s passing of Finance Bill, 2016 that granted amnesty to Kenyan residents who have offshore incomes and assets in foreign banks had a very global agenda. The foreign income that is subject to amnesty is for the year ended December 31, 2016 and offers a waiver...

Black money across the border: Why Pakistan’s elite are quivering as UAE demands tax information

According to unofficial estimates, more than $2 billion has flowed into Dubai real estate from Pakistanis every year for the past three years. Last week, account holders in a major UAE bank began receiving letters alerting them that soon they would be required to furnish information “with a view to...

Ukraine: Tax Residency Status: Issues To Consider When Moving Abroad

Recent social and economic developments have had a powerful impact on many Ukrainian citizens and businesses and have led them to look for a better life beyond the borders of Ukraine. Obviously, Ukrainians moving abroad is not something new. Periods of economic crisis in almost every state are usually accompanied...

7,000 Kuwaitis with $2.3bn in FATCA reveal

The USA Tax and Financial Consultants Office in the Middle East confirmed that Kuwait has revealed the accounts of about 7,000 Kuwaitis who hold dual citizenship and are covered by the US tax laws according to the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA), reports Al-Anba daily quoting informed sources. Sources...

US ambassador asks Swiss banks to service Americans

Several Swiss banks have received a letter from the United States Ambassador to Bern, Suzan LeVine, asking them not to shun US citizens who want to open accounts in Switzerland. Many Swiss banks have frozen out US clients, and even closed down existing accounts, in the wake of a damaging...

Israeli government enjoined from disclosing personal account information to the IRS

One disadvantage of United States citizenship is that all income from whatever source, worldwide, is subject to taxation. This is true regardless of how one obtains American citizenship; indeed, there are many “accidental Americans” who, by dint of having been born to a person with American citizenship, are technically American...

U.S. tax hunt overseas causes global headaches

There is little that can be done about FATCA and the change has to come from within the U.S. Death and taxes, life’s two certainties according to Keynes, sometimes have a causal relationship. One dies and some taxes are often associated with that event. Alternatively, one encounters so much regulation...

Panama Papers and US initiatives to identify entity beneficial owners

In early April 2016 files leaked from a large Panama-based law firm (known as the ‘Panama Papers’) brought to the attention of many the ways in which offshore companies and structures can be used to obscure the identity of beneficial owners, some of whom have used such entities to avoid...

CRA shared information on smaller bank accounts with IRS

Contrary to FATCA, accounts under $50,000 have been disclosed The Canada Revenue Agency has been transferring information about Canadian bank accounts worth under $50,000 U.S to the U.S Internal Revenue Service but cannot say how many accounts below that threshold have been shared with the Americans. Under a controversial information-sharing...

Residence-Based Taxation Put Forward For Americans Abroad

With regard to the increasing talk in the US Congress on tax reform, American Citizens Abroad (ACA) has provided the House of Representatives Ways and Means Committee with a full reform proposal for the enactment of residence-based taxation (RBT) for American expatriates. ACA has said lawmakers should enact RBT instead...

Govt seeks feedback on NZ implementation of OECD, G20 push to ‘end banking secrecy as we have known it’

The Government has released an issues paper on New Zealand’s implementation of an OECD initiative the OECD claims will “end banking secrecy as we have known it.” The OECD’s Automatic Exchange Of Information (AEOI) initiative is setting a global standard for sharing information between countries with the aim of reducing...

All You Need to Know About Estonia’s E-Residency Program

Estonia has become the first country in the world to offer a transnational digital identity. It’s attracted the attention of entrepreneurs and digital nomads worldwide, but there’s still a huge amount of confusion about the benefits of the E-Residency Program and what e-residency actually means. Let’s take a look. What...

British Virgin Islands: Adoption Of The OECD Common Reporting Standard In The British Virgin Islands

On 1st January 2016, an amendment to the Mutual Legal Assistance (Tax Matters) Act, 2003 came into force which implements the Organisation for Economic Co-Operating and Development (OECD) Common Reporting Standard for the exchange of tax information (CRS) in the British Virgin Islands (BVI). Globally this means that participating jurisdictions...

BVI Enacts Legislation Implementing OECD Common Reporting Standard

The government of the British Virgin Islands (“BVI“) has amended the Mutual Legal Assistance (Tax Matters) Act, 2003 in order to enact domestic legislation implementing the OECD Common Reporting Standard (“CRS“) which was published on 31 December 2015 (the “BVI CRS Legislation“). It is not currently intended to issue guidance...

Kuwaitis with US passports must comply with FATCA

KUWAIT: Kuwaiti citizens who possess US passports need to straighten out their US tax status to avoid the penalty of having their US passports scrapped, said Abdulaziz Al-Anjeri, head of the American Tax Bureau in Kuwait. Technically Kuwaitis are barred from holding a second citizenship but many are suspected of...

How Microsoft moves profits offshore to cut tax bill

SEATTLE — When someone in Seattle buys a copy of Office at a Microsoft Store, that cash doesn’t take the short route to the company’s area headquarters. Instead, after accounting for state taxes, the profit goes to a Microsoft sales subsidiary in Nevada. From there, much of that money begins...

Pay US taxes, or lose passports

KUWAIT CITY, Dec 22: Jim O’Neill, Vice-President of the American Bureau of Consulting and Audit who is also in charge of international activity was recently quoted as saying the passports of those who have obtained the American citizenship and reside outside the United States might be withdrawn if they fail...

IRS Issues Updated US Expatriate Tax Guide

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has released the 2015 update to Publication 54, which provides guidance on the special tax compliance rules for US citizens and resident aliens who work abroad or receive income from foreign countries. The worldwide income of US citizens or resident aliens is generally subject to...

Worldwide: Global FATCA: Let’s Do It Again

Fifty-three jurisdictions have agreed to automatic exchange of tax information beginning in 2017, under the OECD’s Common Reporting Standard. Over 40 others have committed to exchange information by 2018. Another wave of global tax information is about to take place, and financial institutions everywhere are in a race to prepare...

How Microsoft moves profits offshore to cut its tax bill

Cash doesn’t flow directly from buyers’ pockets to Microsoft’s headquarters in Redmond, Wash. Instead, the company operates through three regional sales units, centered in Ireland, Singapore and Puerto Rico. These groups control the rights to profit from Microsoft products around the world. By conducting sales from places with small populations...

The ugly face of FATCA: Why life for American expats is getting harder

The Foreign Account Compliance Act (FACTA), while designed to “minimize tax cheats”, is making banking — and life in general — painfully difficult for millions of American expats, according to Mike Michelini, a Hong Kong-based business consultant withglobalfromasia.com. Here is his editorial. Under FACTA, all 8 million or so Americans...

Abandoned Yahoo Spinoff a Sign That Tax Is Fading as a Deal Driver

Yahoo has reportedly abandoned its plan to spin off its stake in Alibaba. Yahoo’s proposed spinoff had been driven by tax concerns. In a world without taxes, Yahoo could have simply sold its Alibaba shares and distributed the proceeds to shareholders. Yahoo will now concentrate on other strategic options, including...

Banks, MFs ask US NRIs to submit FATCA certificates

MUMBAI: Indian banks and mutual funds have in the past fortnight started warning NRIs who hold an American passport or are working in the US that their accounts could be frozen unless they get a tax-compliant certificate from US authorities, thanks to a treaty signed by New Delhi and Washington....

British Virgin Islands: BVI Financial Account Reporting — Preparing For The CRS

The Common Reporting Standard (CRS) is the standard for automatic exchange of financial account information produced by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) which provides for systematic and periodic automatic exchange of information between signatory jurisdictions. At its heart is a requirement for financial institutions, including British Virgin...

Congress Scrutinizes OECD BEPS Corporate Tax Changes

The House and Senate held hearings Tuesday on the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development’s Base Erosion and Profit Shifting action plan, also known as OECD BEPS, for combating tax avoidance by multinational corporations. A number of the lawmakers expressed a skeptical view of the international tax reforms. “The OECD’s...

Sea-change in landscape of taxation

KUWAIT CITY, Nov 29: “The world of taxation has changed tremendously impacted by FATCA, transfer pricing, Base Erosion and Profit Sharing, and others which require dramatic changes in existing operating models and structures,” remarked Fouad Douglas, PwC Country Senior partner, at a tax seminar organised by the PwC in conjunction...