FATCA One Year On: 48% of Americans Abroad Want a President Who Would Repeal It

As America’s highly controversial global tax law reaches its first birthday, almost half of Americans who live overseas would support a presidential candidate who vowed to move to repeal it, reveals a new survey by one of the world’s largest independent financial advisory organizations.

In a global poll, deVere Group recently asked more than 370 of its American expatriate clients:

Would you vote for a presidential candidate that opposed FATCA (the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act) and pledged to seek its repeal?

48 per cent said ‘yes’, 29 responded ‘no’, and 23 per cent ‘didn’t know.’

There are a reported 7.6 million Americans living and/or working outside the U.S.

Purportedly designed as a tool to counteract tax evasion, FATCA has resulted in additional reporting requirements for all U.S. citizens overseas. It also means substantial compliance obligations for all non-US financial institutions worldwide. FATCA critics insist that it will do little, if anything, to curb the serious global issue of tax evasion.

Under FATCA, all non-U.S financial institutions are required to report the hitherto private financial information of American clients who have accounts holding more than $50,000 directly to the IRS.

The deVere Group founder and CEO said:

48 per cent is an enormously high percentage of people who say they would vote for a presidential candidate who publicly vowed to seek FATCA’s repeal. However, I am not surprised as, a year since this toxic, imperialistic and damaging global tax law came into effect, its unintended consequences are now hitting home with Americans worldwide

FATCA is a huge, costly and burdensome imposition on ordinary Americans who happen to live and/or work outside the U.S. In addition, due to the onerous and expensive impact of FATCA, many non-US financial institutions, such as banks in other countries, now no longer work with Americans – even if they have been clients for decades. Clearly this makes life extremely challenging for the estimated 7.6 million U.S. citizens

To date more than 80 countries have signed so-called ‘intergovernmental’ FATCA agreements with the U.S. government. Additionally, some 77,000 Foreign Financial Institutions (FFIs) have signed up with the IRS.

Last month, Mr Green, a vocal critic of the FATCA project, has urged presidential candidates to ‘come clean’ on the issue ahead of the 2016 election.

Presidential candidates who support this tax act now need to justify to America why they support it; whilst those who want it repealed now need to articulate to voters why they believe it is fundamentally flawed and why they will move to repeal it. It is an issue that must play a major part in the national conversation ahead of the election.

Mr Green added:

FATCA is paving the way for GATCA, the Global Account Tax Compliance Act. The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), which is based in France and is the defacto world tax authority, is proposing that accounts opened by foreign nationals be routinely reported to that individual’s homeland tax authorities. It is thought approximately 65 countries could ultimately be involved.

GATCA – which for Americans would violate the Fourth Amendment – is FATCA on steroids.

This piece is written by deVere group:

deVere Group is one of the world’s largest independent advisors of specialist global financial solutions to international, local mass affluent, and high-net-worth clients.  It has a network of more than 70 offices across the world, over 80,000 clients and $10bn under advisement.

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