Renunciation and Relinquishment: What are the differences? Is there a difference?

We often use separate terms for “renunciation” and “relinquishment” since there are some notable differences between renunciation and the other methods of terminating one US citizenship. However, renunciation is actually one of the 7 methods of relinquishment, as set out in Immigration and Nationalities Act, s. 349(a).  This post explains some of the similarities and differences.

RENUNCIATIONImmigration and Nationalities Act, s. 349(a)(5)
Renunciation is only form of relinquishment where the relinquishing act itself takes place at a US consulate. It is performed by taking the oath of renunciation (form 4080). Form 4081 (Statement of understanding of consequences) is also required. Form 4079 (Request for determination of loss of citizenship) is not strictly required, but the DOS procedure manual does state that “it may prove useful” regarding intent and it seems that most consulates do require it.
Depending on the consulate, renunciation may take one or two visits.   Since 2012, there seems to be a trend to switch to one visit.
Since July 2010, there has been a $450 fee for renunciation.  It increased to $2350 on 12 September 2014.  This fee is payable at the visit where you sign your papers.
In the case of renunciation, the loss of citizenship is effective, for all purposes, as of the date you sign the forms at the consulate.
RELINQUISHMENT BY OTHER MEANSImmigration and Nationalities Act,
s. 349(a)(1)(2)(3)(4)(6)(7)
Of the remaining 6 methods of relinquishment, the most common means is by naturalisation in a foreign country s. 349(a)(1) with the intent of relinquishing one’s US citizenship.
[This is of particular interest in Canada because whilst over 100,000 US-born Canadian citizens believe themselves to be “Canadian Citizen Only,” according to the 2006 census, it’s believed that almost none have a Certificate of Loss of Nationality because we were told we terminated our US citizenship automatically upon taking Canadian citizenship, particularly prior to 1990 when the administrative presumption changed, and almost no one seems to have even heard of a CLN before 2011.]
In the case of relinquishment not done by renunciation (eg. naturalisation), although the loss of citizenship occurs at the moment the relinquishing act is performed, the relinquishment is not effective in the eyes of the US government until the US government is notified by signing forms at a US consulate. Required forms are 4079 (Request for determination of loss of citizenship) and 4081 (Statement of understanding of consequences). It’s also a very good idea to supplement your 4079 with a statement illustrating your intent, how your post-relinquishment conduct has been consistent with lack of US citizenship.  Your post-relinquishment conduct would include indicators of loss of citizenship such as not voting in US elections, travelling on a US passport, etc.
Your CLN will show that the US  govt recognises your loss of citizenship did occur on the date you performed your relinquishing act (eg. naturalisation) not the date you signed your CLN application.
When you attend at the consulate regarding this type of relinquishment, you’re essentially notifying them that you already have relinquished.  Consequently, this requires only one consulate visit.
There is no fee for processing relinquishments done under these sub-articles.   UPDATE:  September 2015 – Dept of State has announced relinquishment-based CLNs will cost $2350 beginning November 9, 2015.
Once this is done, the US government will consider the loss of citizenship effective as of the date of the actual relinquishment, except IRS will consider the loss to have occurred on the date you signed the forms at the consulate.
This IRS policy became effective on 4 June 2004, so it may not apply to you if your relinquishing act was performed prior to that date, in which case you ceased to be a citizen before the law came into effect.  Please see Read These if Relinquishing Act Performed Prior to 4 June 2004 regarding this.

530 thoughts on “Renunciation and Relinquishment: What are the differences? Is there a difference?

  1. Great,Pacifica. Very clear and informative. I look forward to the next one! I have a question – do we actually know from experience that the IRS dates the relinquishment from the date the forms are signed? Has anyone been told that? I’m just wondering how two departments in the same gov’t can differ, and if there’s any issues, which one would take precedence, the DOS or the IRS, if push came to shove.

    1. @Outraged,
      I don’t know anyone from actual experience (since this matter of having relinquished years ago and needing to get a CLN only came to light in the past year), but I have been told that this is IRS’ position. I’ve also been told to ignore it. Disclaimer: I’m not recommending what to do, just sharing information. Coincidentally someone reported they were told this at Vancouver consulate this week. (No one mentioned anything about tax at all where I filed my CLN application.)
      It stems from this law. 26 USC § 877A, s. (a),(g)(4)(B):
      “A citizen shall be treated as relinquishing his United States citizenship on the earliest of—
      (A) the date the individual renounces his United States nationality before a diplomatic or consular officer of the United States pursuant to paragraph (5) of section 349(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1481 (a)(5)),
      (B) the date the individual furnishes to the United States Department of State a signed statement of voluntary relinquishment of United States nationality confirming the performance of an act of expatriation specified in paragraph (1), (2), (3), or (4) of section 349(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1481 (a)(1)–(4)),
      (C) the date the United States Department of State issues to the individual a certificate of loss of nationality ….”
      I know that some very experienced lawyers in the field have differing opinions about this, as IRS only created its own definition of when citizenship ends (being different than DOS’) years/decades after some people actually relinquished.
      I want to look up some sources on this to make sure I report accurately and I’ll provide some links.
      UPDATE 2013. There’s a thread now on this topic, along with a link to US tax lawyer Michael J. Miller’s article. Also a thread on Brock regarding three recent legal opinions on the matter. Things are looking quite positive.

  2. @Pacifica. Great post. Concise and to the point. I find so often the two terms are used interchangeably so it is nice to have the two spelled out for their differences. I am curious about one thing. If you go to the consulate to report a previous expatriating act, such as, taking an oath of allegiance to another country, why does one have to swear another oath at the consulate. Did we not do that decades ago? Or am I missing a point here?
    @OutragedCanadian – I believe I read on a U.S. government site that the IRS would not date the relinquishment until one reported it to a consulate. However, I am unsure whether they would attempt to enforce the filing of tax forms. I believe only ‘time will tell’ that – will individuals like johnnb, pacifica get contacted for tax forms?

  3. @Tiger: The only thing I had to swear or affirm at the relinquishment appointment was the bottom of form 4081.
    That form outlines all the consequences of loss of citizenship and then you are asked to swear that you have either read it or had it read to you and in what language. You are not asked to swear that you are relinquishing citizenship just that you have been told the consequences.
    Until (if?) I hear from the IRS I will have no idea how they treat the date of relinquishment but they have nothing to do with the actual CLN. It was signed by the consul in Halifax and appears to be initialed by four different people at State – perhaps the ones who checked that I had not voted, paid taxes, traveled on a US passport or resided in the US since 1973.

  4. @johnnb
    Thanks for the info re the oath being the bottom of form 4081. Have now had a look at that.
    As I have mentioned before, I am still in the mode of afraid to show my face at a consulate. Maiden name (name while living in U.S. and name on last tax return – 1964) and married name not yet matched up by DOS or IRS. However, I find myself checking the U.S. consulate @ Vancouver more and more frequently, checking for appointment times (presently looks like they are booking in November). I know if my hubbie were alive, he would have grabbed me by the ear and marched me down there months ago.
    So when(if) I do finally get that courage, I know that WHEN/IF the IRS contacts me at some time after the CLN is issued, I will most definitely not file tax returns or any other form. In fact, I have thought about it alot. I might open the first envelope they send and send a nice note back that I do not consider myself obligated to file U.S. tax returns. Any future correspondence would then be sent back “RETURN TO SENDER”.
    @johnnb and Pacifica
    As both of you have already filed and received your CLNs, I have a question about DS-4079. Question 6 asks: “When did you first become aware that you might be a U.S. citizen? Question 7 asks: “How did you find out that you are a citizen of the U.S. I am confused by those two questions. I have not believed myself to be a U.S. citizen since October, 1972 when I renounced allegiance to any foreign sovereign or state as part of my Canadian citizenship ceremony. Of course until that time, I believed myself to be only American. So are they asking when in the recent past ie last couple of years, it came to my attention that the U.S. might still consider me to be a citizen, or do they refer back to my childhood (perhaps my Grade 4 civics class!!!!) when citizenship was explained to us.

    1. @Tiger, For those questions I wrote:
      Question 6. When did you first become aware you that you might be a US citizen?: “August 2011 (Born US 19xx. Relinquished 19xx)”
      Question 7. I wrote something to the effect of — “I found out that the US might still consider me to be a citizen from reading an article in the Globe and Mail in August 2011.”

  5. I will have more to say on this later however, I think is a very valid case under US law that no one here is still a US Citizen. Most people discount the US Canada Tax Treaty due to the last in time rule however, when Congress passed both the 2004 and 2008 Expatriation tax laws they “forgot” to put in place a treaty override thus the US Canada Tax Treaty still remains the supreme law on this issue. Will discuss further later tonight.

  6. @Tiger: We had the same reaction to those questions. It makes more sense when you remember that the people who wrote them figured they would be used by people trying mightily to *get* US citizenship not lose it. If you put yourself in the shoes of someone who is trying to convince the State Dept that they are a US citizen the questions all become clearer.
    We just said we had been US citizens from birth until 1973. It is interesting to note that they echoed this back to us on the CLN with the line which says: “That he acquired the nationality of the United States by virtue of his birth in the United States.” That’s a line about half way down form 4083.

  7. @johnnb – now makes so much more sense. Thanks
    @Tim – look forward to your post. Will definitely check in again tonight.

  8. I read that if a dual citizen claims to renounce, then the US government may renounce him/her when he/she tries to enter the US. Would he/she still have to pay the $450 fee and would he/she still be able to visit the US using the other passport? Would, under such circumstances, the CLN be handed out immediately, instead of one having to wait a year or more?
    “The only times in which the US State Department has prevailed in stripping a dual citizen of US citizenship have been in cases where a US citizen living abroad made public statements of an intent to renounce his US citizenship, only to later attempt to re-enter the US.”

    1. Hi SwissPinoy,
      I read the article you referred to, but the wording of that paragraph is pretty vague, so I’m not sure if my input is relevant or not. But I’ll give it a try.
      A port of entry officer does not have the authority to adjudicate loss of citizenship, so Dept of State would have to get involved anyway, which would presumably take time.
      DOS is quite exacting about the specific method one has to use to renounce.
      From the Dept of State website:

      A person wishing to renounce his or her U.S. citizenship must voluntarily and with intent to relinquish U.S. citizenship:
      1. appear in person before a U.S. consular or diplomatic officer,
      2. in a foreign country (normally at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate); and
      3. sign an oath of renunciation
      Renunciations that do not meet the conditions described above have no legal effect.”

      Immigration and Nationalities Act, s. 349(5), states that renunciation is done by:

      “making a formal renunciation of nationality before a diplomatic or consular officer of the United States in a foreign state”

      Unfortunately, they can’t give out CLN’s immediately because after it is filled out by a consular officer, it has to be approved at DOS HQ in Washington.
      For proof in the interim, some consulates are issuing letters attesting that you did renounce there on such-and-such date. If you’re not sure that your consulate does that routinely, you could ask in advance for one. You should get a receipt for your $450. People have reported, from Vancouver and Calgary, that their receipts state it is $450 paid for renunciation of US citizenship.
      After you renounce, you would enter the US under the same requirements as any other citizen of your country of citizenship.

  9. Some information about the Halifax Consulate:
    I have a friend who is trying to make an appointment in Halifax and there has been *nothing* available on the consulate website. No appointments for over two months past and none in the future as far as it goes.
    Today I heard from the friend who had managed to contact the Consulate by email and get a response. Here is what she had to say.
    I just discovered that the U.S. Consulate in Halifax is apparently arranging notarial appoinments by phone rather than online. I’ll know in a couple of days (I need a few days to get all my ducks in a row)
    I probably would have discovered this a week or so ago if I hadn’t been given a bum steer by an immigration lawyer that I had hired. She told me on two separate occasions that they weren’t taking notarial appointments until a new consul was instated. It’s true that there are no notarial appointments for Halifax online, but I think it’s because they’ve change their procedure. They now email an information package telling you what documents you need, asking you to fill out an information sheet for the consulate, and asking you to scan and email them certain documents in advance. Then you phone(!) them for an appointment. My guess is that people were coming in unprepared so they changed their procedure.
    So if anyone has been waiting for appointments to open up you should probably email them instead.

    1. Just wanted to follow up on this. My friend in Nova Scotia did go for her interview in September and she called me on 27 Nov to say she had just gotten an email from State saying that her CLN is in the mail.
      She is a very happy camper.

      1. Well, that is great news! 2 months! That is the 2nd fastest CLN turnaround we know of in Canada. It really looks like overall they are making progress in handling the Canadian CLNs in Washington. Overall, still needs improvement but there does appear to be a trend that the turnaround time for Canada is narrowing.
        And of course, Congatulations to your friend!

      2. @johnnb,
        I thought when Pacifica emailed me that your friend received a CLN it must be the one who was waiting to see if you were hauled away kicking and screaming from the Halifax US Consulate. Now I see you have another USP friend. Congratulations are in store for her — was it another relinquishment? It’s interesting that Halifax is now doing a similar procedure to Calgary, at least part of it. Much more efficient and respectful. Everything is ready to sign if all goes well at the appointment. Thanks, Johnnb. I’m going to add to the Halifax area of the R&R database at Isaac Brock unless I hear from you otherwise.

        1. @Pacifica: She went through the hoops of contacting the consulate and making an appointment which was on 11 Sept. I just emailed her and her CLN came in the mail on 28 Nov so 2 1/2 months total. She was thrilled that it was backdated to 1974 as that was before the birth of her daughter so nothing rebounds onto the daughter.
          @Calgary 411: The woman who was so reluctant had good reason. She was the one who had gotten a US passport on the recommendation of family *after* her relinquishment. On her visit to Halifax she was told it most likely would be rejected so she withdrew and just came home. Not sure what steps she is taking now but they obviously include compliance one way or the other.
          The friend who just got her CLN was one I had mentioned before because while she went to Halifax as I did her procedure was very different.
          I made my appointment online and she was told not to use that method. In her words:
          ” …relinquishment and–I assume–renunciation applicants to the Halifax Consulate should ignore the American Citizen Services online appointments system that you used and simply write the Consulate to request an appointment. This is best done after thoroughly becoming familar with DS-4079, DS-4080 (if applicable), and DS-4081 and after pulling together all the necessary documents. Be sure to include a return email address! The Halifax Consulate loves email. They replied to us by email with attachments for the aforementioned forms plus their own information form (HLF119B) which sets forth the procedure they want applicants to follow. What they basically want is for the applicant to forward by email scans of the completed DS forms plus scans of all ones essential documents. Evidently, they want to see these prior to arranging any appointments. I wasted a lot of time waiting for appointments to open with ACS online system (notarial and other services) that at the time were never going to open. [I see that a few such appointments are now available.] I would have saved time if I had simply written them. At least that’s how it worked with me.
          As for the document scans that we forwarded, I used PDF format and that’s what I would recommend mainly because the Consulate uses PDF itself. Most scanner software will save to PDF.
          I’ve attached a copy of HLF119B. Note that the first sentence of the final paragraph reads: “This service is done by appointment only. Please call 902-429-280, extension 2991 to schedule an appointment.” Obviously, it makes sense to forward the scans first and then call for the appointment.
          The one document we thought they wanted but they didn’t take was my Canadian Immigrant’s Record Card. But since the relinquishment/renunciation process seems to be evolving, I think it’s wiser to have all documents they might possibly request.”
          I’m not sure how to attach a document file here but I am pasting the text of the HLF 119B to which she refers:
          Physical address: 1969 Upper Water St., Purdy’s Tower II, Suite 904, Halifax, NS
          Mailing address: 1973 Upper Water Street, Halifax, NS B3J 0A9
          PLEASE ENSURE THAT YOU COMPLETE THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION BELOW AND SUBMIT IT WITH FORMS DS-4079: Request for Determination of Possible Loss of United States Citizenship,
          DS-4080: Oath/Affirmation of Renunciation of Nationality of United States
          DS-4081: Statement of Understanding.
          1. Current complete mailing address/street address:
          2. Phone number(s):
          3. E-Mail address:
          4. Dates resided in the United States:
          5. Date acquired citizenship of country other than the U.S. and how acquired:
          6. Social Security Number:
          1. Proof of United States Citizenship (i.e. Birth Certificate with filing date, Naturalization Certificate, Certificate of Citizenship, Consular Report of Birth Abroad, etc) and current or expired U.S. passport;
          2. Proof of nationality for country other than U.S. (i.e. Certificate of Citizenship, Birth Certificate, Report of Birth Aboard, etc) and relevant passport. Certificate of Citizenship or Naturalization must include the date of acquisition.
          To assist with the preparedness of your scheduled appointment, it is recommended that upon completion of this Form, and Forms DS-4079, DS-4080 and DS-4081, that you forward scanned copies to along with scanned copies of evidence of your U.S. citizenship, Canadian Certificate of Citizenship (not the Citizenship Card), U.S. passport, and Canadian passport. Please ensure to bring the original of these documents to your scheduled interview.
          This service is done by appointment only. Please call 902-429-280, extension 2991 to schedule an appointment.
          There is a fee of US$450.00 for Administrative Processing of Formal Renunciation of U.S. Citizenship. This fee is paid for at the time of your scheduled interview with a consular officer. You may pay in cash U.S. dollars or the equivalent in Canadian dollars in denominations of $20.00 or less. Fees can also be paid by major credit cards. You can also pay by certified check, bank, or postal money order, in U.S. dollars only, made payable to U.S. Consulate General. Personal checks and Debit Cards are not accepted.
          HLF-119B 07/2012

          1. @johnnb
            I went to Halifax early in November and had received the same form letter. Note that they left a digit out of the last part of the phone number in their letter. The correct number is 902-429-2480.
            Budget cutbacks are likely in the US in 2013 and beyond. The Consulate was dead quiet when I was there. Perhaps those considering relinquishing or renouncing should thing about going to Halifax, to give them some more work to do to justify keeping the Consulate open!

  10. @johnnb, Pacifica and all
    After lying awake half the night, this morning I went online to the Vancouver consulate and booked my first appointment for my CLN. Although they had listed no appointments available until November, they must have had a couple of cancellations for late September I got an appointment for Sept. 21, 2012.
    As I type this, I am actually hyperventilating. I must be one of those people terrified of authority. I would dearly love to be able to bring one of my sons along with me, but as my youngest said – that would be a really bad idea!
    What I have on my list, that I must bring with me to the appointment is:
    Form – 4079, Form – 4081, my birth certificate, my marriage certificate, my Canadian passport, my Canadian citizenship document (I only have the large certificate – type used in 1972). I also have a copy of my citizenship file that shows the landing information but I have no landing card. I have typed out the two oaths (allegiance and renunciatory) to attach and also have attached a one page statement, giving the reasons why I relinquished.
    If anyone can think of any other items I should have with me for that appointment, I would appreciate the information.

  11. Tiger, It will go swimmingly. You have nothing to fear. You became Canadian in 1972 and lost your USCit at that time. No need to deal with the IRS either after you notify State of your prior relinquishing act. IRS has no claim on you whatsoever.

    1. @JustCurious: It is usually a few months for a CLN, not a few weeks. IRS does not approve CLN. US Department of State does.
      Do you qualify to relinquish or would you need to renounce?
      In terms of your question about Tiger, she was required by Vancouver Consulate to provide extra documentation and a second meeting, which she had recently. She is waiting for her CLN. Vancouver has been known for being a difficult Consulate to deal with.
      Vancouver was requiring two appointments to relinquish. Other Consulates require one to relinquish and two to renounce.

    2. @ Just Curious,
      IRS plays no role in determining citizenship status. That is strictly a Department of State matter. A person does not need to be up-to-date on their IRS filings at the time of renunciation.
      IRS requires that a person file their final tax return/s by June 15th of the year following renunciation. That is the 8854 exit tax return, the 1040 for the year of renunciation (for Jan 1st to the day before renunciation), and the previous 5 years 1040s as well. But whether or not this is done, the loss of citizenship remains valid.
      If a person is applying for a CLN because they relinquished their citizenship prior to 2004, it appears that they do not need to do this filing because this law did not exist prior to that date. But it’s not crystal clear, so it’s important to read up on it. Here are a few articles on that.
      Relinquished Before 2004? Applying for CLN now? What are the IRS Consequences?
      Michael Miller Paper on the Exit Tax: Applies Prospectively
      Pre-1995 Relinquishers and the IRS: Three Recent Legal Opinions

  12. @Tiger: Let me second everything Cornwallis said. Your case is even stronger than mine – I didn’t sign the renunciation in 1973.
    The only other thing you should take with you is the knowledge that we are all solidly behind you.

  13. Hi Tiger,
    It sounds like the people you’ll actually deal with at Vancouver are fine to deal with, so that should go well. As far as deciding to do it or stay under the radar, one thing is you never know if the process will be made more difficult and complicated in the future or if they will do something that would make staying under the radar really problematic or impossible. I sure don’t know.
    I think with a CLN in your hand, they can never go back on their word, it’s in writing officially, so hopefully this will bring closure to this upsetting situation. I know when the consul said I hadn’t been a USC since 1979, I felt such a sense of regaining my identity and my life, I felt my spirit lifting right there at the consulate. I felt like I was me again. Everything felt right again. I hope you’ll feel the same way right then and there.
    As for documents, the only thing that strikes me is that Arrow and Renunciant E said that Van wanted the citizenship card, but if you never got one because they didn’t issue them in 1972, I guess that’s because the large document was official in 1972. (By ’79, the large document being issued wasn’t official, but it says that right on it.) Then, again, you have your whole citizenship file, that should be pretty impressive.
    They didn’t ask me for landing papers at Toronto. I think I read that Halifax did, but I don’t recall reading that Vancouver wanted them. I think I read in the Consulate Report Directory that Vancouver sends out a checklist of what they want people to bring but it sounds like you’ve thought of everything already.

  14. *tigerUnder a strict reading of the law there is no need for form DS-4081(used for renounciants)if you have committed a relinquishing act. All you need to do is provide notice on form DS-4079 of your past relinquishing “act”. It is DS-4079 which is actually used to make a determination in the case of relinquishment. However, the State Department for its own reasons(and I suspect to carry some water for US Treasury and IRS)at the very least “prefers” everyone to fill out DS-4081. Notice, the DS-4081 mentions tax obligations while DS-4079 does not. One question to consider is do you want to insist on only filling out form DS-4079. While I believe the experience regarding Arrow’s wife appear to only be a one time occurance  at this point if additional reports come in of similar experiences it would be a definate indication that someone in DC is concerned about all of these back-dated CLN’s.I am “still” working my post I promised over the weekend. 

    1. @Tim
      Looking forward to your post.
      I had another read through form DS-4081 and I certainly can see where a case could be made to not submit that form in any case such as my own – that is, the reporting of an expatriating act from decades ago. Not sure I would be willing to take them on at the consulate though. Bravery is not my strong suit. Quivering in one’s shoes would more aptly describe me.

  15. Thanks to all of you and the words of encouragement.
    I guess none of us will know for quite some time, if the decision to apply for the CLN is the correct decision. It is difficult to think of showing up on the radar of IRS after 48 years. The last tax return I filed was for part-time work in 1964. Now that I think of it, I was so young when I first came to Canada as a University student, that I probably only ever filed a couple of tax returns for part – time work.
    One thing I do know for myself, I could not continue to live with this uncertainty. It has taken a huge toll on my health since January, when I first found out about this mess. Although, I await the Sept. 21st appointment with trepidation, I do think it is the right decision for myself.
    Nice to have a place to share my anxiety with people who have ‘walked in the shoes’.

    1. @justcurious: For what it’s worth my wife and I took out Canadian citizenship in 1973 and applied for a CLN in January of 2012. The CLN arrived 25 weeks later (they seem to be coming much faster now) in July of 2012.
      We have not been contacted by the IRS at all since we sent in our last 1040 early in 1974.
      The test, I suppose, will be what happens this year with us not filing. Since the CLN says we ceased to be citizens of the US in 1973 we see no reason why we should have any dealings with the IRS now.

  16. @Pacifica, Others: As of February, 2012., CIC stopped issuing the wallet sized photo citizenship cards. They have reverted to the letter size paper certificate.
    This has the date of citizenship displayed prominently on both the front and the back. Here is a copy of mine:
    This was issued in March, 2012 after I lost my photo card. A letter which came with it explained this is the only citizenship certificate being issued now. It can be scanned at government offices, but cannot be used as a travel document.
    It should not be folded, which makes it a bit awkward to carry to get a health card or a CLN, Because it gives he date of citizesnhip, it would certainly seem to be good for getting that treasured CLN.

  17. @Pacifica: Here is what Bob Rae, Liberal Leader (no mention of Interim on his letterhead) had to say in a February 13, 2102 reply to me:

    “Liberals believe that the government of Canada should stand up for honest hard working people who have been caught up by overly complex American tax rules. They are not tax cheats and it is time for Stephen Harper to stand up for them.
    Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird should be asking the United States for amnesty against penalties as the IRS’s Foreign Bank Account Reporting requirements were not adequately communicated to dual-citizens living in Canada. In addition, Finance Minister Jim Flaherty should work to amend the Canada-US Tax Treaty so that the IRS does not tax savings vehicles such as RRSPs and RESPs, and instead recognize them as the tax deferred savings vehicles that they are.
    We are also highly concerned that new regulations in the United States will soon force Canadian banks to share personal banking information with the IRS. This raises clear privacy concerns that must be addressed before these regulations take affect in two years time. We hope that the Harper government will act to address these concerns instead of caving into American pressure as has been their past practice.”
    We have raised this issue in Question Period and will continue to press the Conservative government to do the right thing for Canadians.”

    I will try to figure out how to post a copy of the actual letter, as well as a copy of my letters from Flaherty and from the Privacy Commissioner’s Office.

    1. I like Mr. Rae’s reply, it being tailored to the situation, and I certainly agree with what he says about what our government should do.
      The one thing, though, (rant time) is I wish people like Mr. Rae would understand the IRS/US govt is after dual citizens and former citizens. (If I’m not mistaken you made reference to that right in the first line of your letter, that you are a citizen of only Canada.) I am a former USC myself, so I find the retroactivite citizenship aspect particularly egregious, both in principle and personally. But as well, I think all Canadian citizens (including US duals) should be protected by our government (hopefully PRs too, to the extent that is possible). And of course, this FATCA business about the US wanting our banks to collect citizenship data on all people, in order to prove they’re not USCs, would be inflicting foreign law on every Canadian, and that’s really repugnant, a foreign country wanting us to change our laws to accommodate their laws.

  18. @Pacifica: I followed up via e-mail with Mr. Rae to point out that I and many others are not dual citizens. You are correct–it was the first line in my letter.
    I was disappointed Rae did not include TFSAs and RDSPs in his statement about what Flaherty should be doing relating to the tax treaty.
    The good news, however, is that the Conservatives, NDP, Liberals and Green Party all seem to be singing from the same hymn book on this issue–even though they will throw political darts at each other along the way. With that, I think it even more unlikely that Canadian law will be changed to accommodate the United States of Arrogance.
    Does anyone know where Bloc Quebecois stands? I personally don’t care what a party which wants to break up the country thinks, but if the parties were unanimous on this, that would definitely send a strong message to the IRS–especially if they would make a joint statement or even have a vote in Parliament.

    1. @Blaze, glad you made the follow-up to underscore that you are a Canadian only – so that Rae could not dismiss your comments as somehow not a Canadian issue. Though even duals who were born in Canada, and naturalized Canadians deserve the same status and protection on Canadian soil as those with only Canadian citizenship. That way Canadian politicians cannot dismiss this as ‘only’ an issue for ‘US persons’ – thus giving the US-deemed status more significance and power than the Canadian status INSIDE Canada. Most of the commentary in the media treated duals as those somehow choosing their status, and somehow then entirely deserving of whatever the US chose to do to them as a result. And our fellows in Canada tend to dismiss those with US status as if they are only recent US immigrants who ‘should know better’. As discussed on IBS, the latent anti-US sentiment in Canada threatens Canadian duals as if they are somehow tainted, not ‘true’ Canadians, and thus not deserving of the same protections as their fellows. And I would add that longterm permanent residents in Canada, with no US presence or property, or income should owe the US nothing as well – they are using no US services, and benefit not at all from the US citizenship they may have had only from a US birthplace, but little or no US residence – but brought here by parents. They chose Canada over the US by choosing to stay here, paying taxes, contributing to Canada and raising families – their children are Canadians.

      1. The Canadian media always has a certain degree of bias towards duals. I am not sure why exactly but they do. I don’t think that extends into political class with the exception of the fact the media tends to drive public discussion. I think some of it has to do with the fact that many Canadian journalists are wannabe Americans who think if they were American journalists in the far bigger American media market they would be making far more money.

  19. @johnnb
    Thanks for posting the above article. I noticed in the article a link to another article. The second article was about the law firm having two Canadian cases being treated differently at different consulates in Canada because the rules of ‘relinquishment’ are vague in American law. It stated the particular law firm had written to DOS about the need for consistency and perhaps a clearer written expatriation law.
    It will be interesting to see if DOS addresses the issue and perhaps ensures that all embassies and consulates know the ‘rules’ on expatriation. I don’t hold alot of hope that it will happen in my lifetime.

  20. @ all
    I now finally have a confirmed appointment in Calgary (relinquishment) for Oct. 17. I was previously told by my lawyer that they were booking into December, so go figure.
    I was sent a Renunciation Questionnaire – no form number on it. There are 13 questions – name, date of birth, SSN, address, phone, last US address, dates of US residence, how did you acquire US citizenship (birth, or otherwise), other nationality, do you want to provide a written statement of reasons for renouncing, will you swear or affirm the oath of renunciation. They want this form prior to the appointment.
    Has anyone else seen this? I’m thinking that I will send it in, but cross out all references to renunciation and substitute relinquishment. Would this cause gnashing of teeth at the consulate ?
    To bring to the appointment they want:
    “Evidence of your United States Citizenship. This must be presented at the time of your interview.
    – Any U.S. passports (valid or expired),
    – If applicable, your Consular Report of Birth Abroad, Certificate of Citizenship/Naturalization.
    – You should also provide evidence of your Canadian citizenship to show that you will not become stateless by renouncing your citizenship.
    – Due to a recent policy change made by the Department of State, the $450 fee for Renunciation of citizenship is now required at the time of your interview. We can accept US/CDN cash, credit card or U.S. dollar money order, payable to the U.S. Consulate, Calgary. We do not accept checks or debit cards.
    – As an option, you may also wish to provide a written statement regarding your reason for renouncing your citizenship.”
    No mention of Form 4079 which I have filled out and will take along. No mention of Canadian passports which I will also take. I assume the $450 is not applicable.
    Is all this consistent with others’ experience?

  21. @hijacked2012
    As I mentioned last week, my appointment at the Vancouver consulate (I made the appointment online) is for Sept. 21st. The only information I have received from them is a confirmation email, which lists an Appointment UID and Appt. password. As I made this appointment on the website, with the request going to ‘notarial services’, I believe the consulate would be unaware of the reason for my appointment – I could be going to get a document notarized as far as they are concerned.
    You mention having a lawyer. Did he make the appointment for you and if so, that is perhaps how they know the reason for your appointment. Or did you speak to someone at the consulate.
    As has been mentioned elsewhere on this site and also at IBS, the Vancouver consulate requires two appointments as opposed to most other consulates only requiring one appointment. The Vancouver consulate also has very few appointments available. In fact, I went on to the website to see if I could perhaps move my appointment up. It looks like I was lucky to get one in Sept. (must have been a cancellation) as they are booking in November (only 2 still available and only 4 available in December). I went to the Calgary consulate website and there were more than 60 available for September and more than 80 available for October. Very tempting for me to get in my car and drive to Calgary. Just put an end to all of this sooner rather than later.
    I think you are wise to bring along DS-4079 as so many have reported that was the form they used at their appointments. I have also decided to bring with me, a one page statement of why I chose to ‘relinquish’ my U.S. citizenship so many years ago when I became a Canadian. I remember johnnb reporting when he and his wife went to the Halifax consulate, it was suggested they include a statement as to their reasons for relinquishing.

    1. @tiger
      The lawyer booked the appointment and it took forever to get one. There seems to be no logic, ever, in this whole crazy situation.
      We live in the interior of BC, pretty much equidistant from Calgary and Vancouver – a 9-10 hour drive whether you go east or west, so Calgary was the logical choice given that (hopefully) I will just have to go once rather than twice to Vancouver.
      I’m still not sure relinquishing is the safest course of action but if I debate about it much more my husband is going to go mad and I guess I can’t sit on the fence forever waiting for the banks to decide, the Canadian government to decide, the American election to be decided, etc. etc. etc.
      I too will submit a statement of why I relinquished eons ago, and hope that somewhere, somehow common sense will prevail and I will be able stop thinking about this day after day, night after night.
      I’ll be thinking about you on Sept. 21.

  22. @hijacked 2012
    ‘but if I debate about it much more, my husband is going to go mad’ – this comment made me laugh. As I mentioned in a prior post, if my husband were alive, he would have had me by the ear and down at that consulate months ago. I certainly know that if her were alive, he would have gone mad by now. His attitude was there are positive and negative problems. A positive problem is one you can do something about. He would consider this a positive problem. A negative problem was one that you could not do anything about. He had the amazing ability to just put those problems out of his mind.
    I was always the ‘fretter’ in the family. I have always fussed about things and I know that my indecisiveness often drove my husband mad. I, also, know that my three sons (all of whom take after their dad) have been driven nearly mad by my ‘fussing’ these past 8 or more months. Two of my daughter-in-laws have spoken to their respective husbands and explained that ‘mom needs to talk about this and will eventually decide what is best to do’.
    Now that the appointment is made, I can fret and worry about how it will all shake out. What I do know is that a decision had to be made and in many ways, there is a sense of relief that it has been made. Right or wrong, the decision was made.
    My hope is that the CLN will be the end of it. I do not plan on filing any tax forms. Do you?

  23. @tiger “His attitude was there are positive and negative problems. A positive problem is one you can do something about. He would consider this a positive problem.”
    Your husband was a wise man. I, like you, fretted about what to do and thought that “after I got all my ducks in a row” I would make that first appointment. I quickly discovered that after you’ve got some of those duckies nicely lined up in single file, one waddles out of line or a new one flies in and you never get to the point of knowing you are totally prepared. It became apparent that I had a choice to take the first step or else remain in limbo indefinitely. Now, after completing two appointments, I’ve done all I can do to this point. You’ve done well. After careful consideration you’ve made that first appointment and I’m confident you’ll get through it just fine. I’m sure your sons are very proud of you for getting the ball rolling. And, if you do change your mind between now and then, you’ve lost nothing but a little time spent on emailing.
    With regard to what to take, I took my US passport and proof of Canadian citizenship plus everything else I could think of to the first appointment including a filled out Form 4079 and my statement re renunciation. They copied most of what I took and then I did not need to take all of it to the second appointment. The consulate staff treated me with respect throughout the process.
    I think you’ll be grinning from ear to ear on the afternoon of Sept. 21.
    @hijacked With an Oct. 19 date at Calgary, even with the long trip there and back, you will probably complete the process before tiger if they continue to require only one appointment in Calgary. In any case, you’ll each be getting the process started on your respective dates and that’s the important thing. Good luck!

  24. @tiger
    Your husband truly was a wise man, as Ladybug said. I would give a lot to be able to approach problems that way instead of going around and around in circles ad nauseum. As to submitting tax forms after relinquishment, at this point I’m just trying to believe that it won’t rear its ugly head and all of us who have lived virtually most of our adult lives as Canadians will be allowed to go in peace.

  25. @Tiger, Hijacked, & Ladybug. Reading your stories made me smile, and be happy for you. You are all well on your way out of this mess, and you’ll be joining Schubert in having a celebratory meal. Sometimes I feel like I should just DO something, I read the DS4079 form incessantly. And yet, because I suspect they’ll deny it, I feel I have to follow the wisdom of Schuberts metaphor of not waking the sleeping bear. I totally understand the wavering and going back and forth, but from the little I know about each of your situations, it sounds like you’ve done the right thing and you’ll be free of all of this. I’m both jealous and happy for you, at the same time. The more I hear of people getting their CLNs the more positive I feel. I can’t imagine how good you all must feel to be DOING something, and just getting this out of your life.

  26. So, the other day, I was firm in my belief I should not poke the sleeping bear by applying for a CLN. Today, I’m back to thinking I should just get it over with and know one way or another. I became Canadian as a minor, which the US doesn’t count. However, I signed another oath of allegiance when I was 24 and began working for the Federal Gov’t, which does count. So, as of this moment, it feels like there’d be no reason for them to refuse a CLN to me, as I’ve lived only as a Canadian in the decades since. So, then I was wondering, so what IF the DOS refused to issue a CLN to me. Would they pass my name on to the IRS in that case? And if so, what can the IRS do to me? They have no information on me at all. If they ask the CRA about me, the CRA should refuse to send them any info. And the IRS could hardly send out a missive to every bank in Canada asking if I’m a customer. So, really, in the worst case scenario of a CLN, backdated to 1976 or, more probably, to 1984, being denied, what could really happen?
    If anyone have any ideas or information, I’d love to hear.
    Also, on a slightly different note, I ran across an article on Flott & Co “The Accidental US Citizen” from August 16th, where they talk about two of their clients wanting backdated CLNs being handled differently by two US consulates. They say they contacted the DOS to suggest that better guidance should be created, and “To its credit, the Department agreed and is now studying the matter with a view to creating such guidance.”

    1. @outraged.
      Individual decisions. Thank goodness we have so much information accumulated to help us make those individual decisions. From what I see, I don’t think you would have a problem NOW getting your CLN.
      Unfortunately, no one can look into the future and further change of laws for the US. It is my contention, FOR MYSELF, my husband and FOR MY SON, it is wise to get this behind me sooner rather than later. The stress has, for me, been a lesser form of PTSD.
      You may have made up your mind, either way, not to again cross the US border.
      Good luck in your decision and all you’ve contributed to the cause!

    2. A couple of thoughts. I’m no lawyer, but I think I read somewhere that you needed to be employed by a Foreign Government at a policy level or higher before such employment could qualify as an expatriating act. I remember this because I wondered “would a policy analyst position be high enough, or do they mean you need to be a policy “decider”?”.
      And I assume you’d seek out the exact wording your Oath of Employment entailed.
      I’ve always appreciated your posts at IBS, and here too.

  27. @OutragedCanadian
    The US Immigration and Nationality Act states that swearing an Oath of Allegiance when you take a government job is an act of expatriation, just as being naturalized in a foreign country and swearing an Oath at that time, is an act of expatriation. So my thinking is that even if they were to claim that your citizenship oath did not result in relinquishment (as you were a minor at the time), I would think that the Oath you took at age 24 would clearly indicate you are only a Canadian from that date onward. As you mentioned, you have not done anything since that time to negate your relinquishment. I really think you would have a very good chance of the CLN’s approval.
    As I previously mentioned, another deciding factor for me, is I have no idea of how they might change the rules going forward. At the present time, DS-4079 has no mention of taxes on it. How do we know whether or not, down the road, the form gets changed in some way that could adversely affect us.
    And the final deciding factor for me is in the ‘worse case scenario’ that IRS makes contact with me following the CLN, I know that the Canadian government will not aid them in any way.
    Of course, it is a decision that each one of us needs to make for ourselves.

  28. @Outraged: Well, in actual fact, there are only five major banks in Canada, so it would not be that hard for IRS to write to them. I don’t, however, believe they would do that (but then I never thought I would be having to insist that I am not a “US person” forty years after I “permanently and irrevocably” relinquished US citizenship).
    Remember, these points: Your bank cannot under Canadian law ask for your place of birth. Your bank cannot release information to a foreign government without your consent. Your bank has no legal authority for closing your account if you do not give your place of birth or your consent. The Canadian government has shown no indication they plan on changing those laws. If they do, we may have grounds for a Charter Challenge.
    Also, even if all of that happened, FATCA draft regulations provide for an alternative to a CLN–Proof of non-US citizenship and a “reasonable explanation” of renunciation of US citizenship. Tiger and I are fortunate as we renounced US citizenship formally when we became Canadian citizens in 1972 and 1973. We obtained copies of our signed and witnessed oaths from our CIC files.
    However, I personally think a “reasonable explanation” for you would be you renounced under US law when you became a Canadian citizen. Then, you signed another Oath of Allegiance to the Queen and to Canada, which is also considered an expatriating act by US.
    With all that said, if getting a CLN gives you more peace of mind, then that’s what you should do. I think the minor issue is a red herring, but I don’t know what DOS would say about that if they want to be nasty. I think you could at least try to make the point you were 16 and that you fully understood you were voluntarily and with full intent relinquishing US citizenship when you took the Citizenship Oath to Canada and that you have never once reconsidered or regretted that decision. It’s not like you became a Canadian citizen based on a parental decision when you were two with no input into the decision itself. Or, perhaps you don’t even want to mention the “minor” issue to the Consulate. Maybe they would not even do the math. Who knows? The whole thing is just so bizarre.

  29. @DavidM: Welcome. Originally, any employment with a foreign government–no matter what level–was an expatriating act. At some point, the US Supreme Court changed that to mean a policy position with a foreign government. I myself have always wondered what exactly is meant by “policy” position. Does that mean setting policy as an employee; does it mean managing policy as in a management or analyst position or does it mean setting policy as a legislator. Does anyone know the answer to that?
    What Outraged is referring to is the Oath of Allegiance that employees sign to work in the federal and provincial (I don’t know if it applies in all provinces or just some). This is an Oath of Allegiance to the Queen and to Canada. As a Human Resources Manager, I have had employees who were US citizens who refused to sign this because it would affect their US citizenship. The US says this is an expatriating act, but I don’t know if anyone has been able to relinquish based on this alone.
    What is your situation? When did you become a Canadian citizen (or citizen of another country)? Did you do anything after that to claim your US citizenship–i.e., get a US passport, file IRS returns? Or are you an “Accidental American?” Relinquishing is far more difficult for that group.
    If you did sign an Oath of Allegiance, it should be quite simple to get a copy from your personnel file. I think someone at one of the Consulates was told it should be a Certified True Copy, so it is important to try to get that.

  30. @Outraged
    I read at one point that once the CLN was issued THEN DOS notified IRS. So if they didn’t issue you a CLN, presumably they wouldn’t bother notifying the IRS and really, how many resources can they realistically allocate to tracking individual people down.
    I have a bit of a wrinkle in my relinquishment application too which I’ve done a lot of worrying about, but I do have a signed oath of allegiance to the queen from my citizenship file so I’ve decided I’ll have to go with that and damn the torpedos.
    I certainly sympathize with the feeling that today you’re sure you’re on the right course and tomorrow you’re plotting a new course. Why does every step of the way have to be so difficult? Surely the rules should be spelled out somewhere so that even if we don’t like them, we know what we’re dealing with.

  31. @DavidM, thank you and I’m glad you found your way here! I, like Blaze, have read that it used to be just simply signing an oath and working for the feds was enough, until they changed it. I can’t remember when it changed, I might look that up. If I do go through with applying for the CLN, I’ll want all facts in hand. But, of course, I’m still vacillating daily on it.
    @Tiger & Blaze, I really do think I have a good case for CLN, and it’s been the speculation here, about how long before they get even stickier that makes me think I should do it now, rather than wait, which has always been my position in the past. If relinquishments are increasing, then, in response, the DOS may get letter-of-the-current-law finicky, so to speak, in order to slow things down, and look better politically. A couple of other things I’ve been thinking about, as well – if I am successful in getting mine, then my mother’s would be an absolute no brainer (Cdn citizen in ’75, justice of the peace in ’76). I’m thinking down the road several months, if the govt and the banks go along fully with FATCA, then I think we’ll need that CLN. (I’m rapidly losing faith in my govt to protect me.) My mother’s health is not good, and I really doubt it would physically possible for her to go to Calgary which is the nearest US consulate to her (an all day trip). I’ve been wanting to try and find out if there’s a way to get around that physical visit (nothing on their websites), and to figure that out, I think I’m going to have to talk to someone. And, if I do, I may get a blip on the radar. Nothing urgent, but just trying to think my way through these things. I am so grateful I have all of you here to bounce this stuff around with, it makes such a difference. My brain goes into spasms when I think too much on this stuff! Somehow writing things down makes things easier.
    @Hijacked, apparently we’re not alone in wanting the rules spelled out. And while the DOS may, indeed, be working on that, I won’t hold my breath that it will happen any time soon. And, again, it makes me wonder if the outcome of that might not be in our favour.
    My oath of citizenship was,
    “I, Outraged Canadian, swear that I will be faithful and bear true allegiance to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth the Second, her heirs and successors, according to law and that I will faithfully observe the laws of Canada and fulfill my duties as a Canadian citizen, so help me God.”
    The oath of allegiance I swore in 1984 was,
    “I, Outraged Canadian, do swear that I will be faithful and bear true allegiance to Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth the Second, her heirs and successors, according to law. So help me God.” Then I had to sign an Oath of Office and Secrecy, as well.
    Darn it, I call that pretty definitive. For me, by definition, one cannot bear true allegiance to two countries. At least, I can’t.
    I didn’t get a certified copy of the latter two, but I’m sure I can if I have to. On the DOS website, I didn’t find anything that says it has to be certified, just to ‘attach a copy’.
    Well today, I’m inclined to go for it. In two days time, who knows?
    Thanks everyone, I appreciate your responses. It all helps. Tremendously.

  32. I’m not sure if I mentioned this before but there is some question about where the CLN gets processed.
    At the bottom of mine there is a place for the consul to sign and affix a seal – and that has been filled in as of the day of my appointment in Halifax. So it does look as though he approved it that day.
    At the top of the form is a place for a rubber stamp which says “approved” followed by a date almost six months later than my appointment so obviously some processing does take place in Washington.
    Also at the bottom of the rubber stamp there is a line for who approved the CLN in Washington and that is filled in by four sets of initials separated by slash marks. I’m assuming those were by people who checked with passport, voting, and other federal offices before giving approval.
    I do know of a woman who went in to relinquish and was told that because of having obtained and traveled on a US passport after becoming a Canadian she would not be approved for a CLN because they would find a lack of Intent to Relinquish. She left without finishing. I think that shows that the consul won’t send paperwork to Washington unless s/he feels that it will be approved. That gives me hope that anybody who finishes their appointment at the consulate has an excellent chance of getting the CLN.

  33. @johnnb
    Thanks for the details on exactly what is on a CLN.
    I was especially interested in your mention of the woman who went in to relinquish, but withdraw her request because she had obtained a US passport. On Brock someone recently brought up the subject of rejected relinquishment requests. I believe there have been no reports on Brock of rejected requests, at least among persons reporting their experiences.
    It does appear that one can have a fairly good idea if their request will be accepted by the time they leave the consulate. Of course, something could turn up further down the line (D,C.) that could cause a problem.

  34. Back in March, a Brocker reported that went into Halifax to relinquish but was not able to “for various reasons” as he put it. So, he renounced then and there.
    I agree with you, Hazy, that you should have a pretty good idea upon leaving the consulate that your request will be accepted.
    As long as the vice consul knows what they’re doing and are acting in good faith, they will let you know right off the bat if they feel yours is or is not a case for relinquishment. And as long as they appear to be knowledgeable and acting in good faith, I’d trust them (I think people who have iffy cases tend to know that they do — if I felt I had a strong clear-cut case, I’d stick to my guns, though, which could involve speaking with the supervisor and/or doing further research and/or seeking legal advice, etc., and returning for another appointment based on that.)
    I recall at my interview, the consul told me the date that would be on the CLN she was filling out.
    So, it seems you can be pretty confident of the outcome when you leave the consulate. Unless, of course, it were to get overridden in DC, but I could only find a couple of such cases and they definitely were not what I’d call “everyday people” like we are.

    1. missed the editing deadline on my preceding comment … in conclusion … So far I’ve heard of 2 relinquishment requests not going forward at a consulate, but so far have not heard of any relinquishment requests being overridden in DC.

  35. @Hazy2: I had been wondering because I’d seen lots of reports (recently) about people getting their CLNs but not one reporting a rejection. With delays of up to a year or even longer it seemed like a fairly rigorous process must be taking place. Once my friend went and was told that she really should withdraw because it probably wouldn’t be accepted (although she was told it was her decision and they would send it to Washington if she wished) I could see the per-clearance at the consulate was probably almost guaranteeing acceptance unless, as you say, something turned up further down the line.
    I think that makes the case, as others have said, to tell the absolute truth when filling out the forms.

    1. That’s good to hear, how the consulate handled your friend’s request, in that of all of us waiting for our CLNs feel pretty confident, but it’s reassuring that you pointed out that example showing how it indicates pre-clearance at the consulate almost guarantees acceptance.
      Regarding the process in DC, the one year delay was only for Canada, as far as we can tell, and apparently due to a staffing issue in DC. DoS has apparently divided the world into 6 zones for CLNs. Canadian renounce and relinquish CLNs were equally delayed, and now that the Canadian log-jam is breaking up, both renounce and relinquish CLNs are arriving at the same pace.
      They have recently been sending out a Toronto batch and the first Brocker to get a CLN from that batch was a 1974 relinquishment, which arrived in 4 months, beating out some renunciants who got theirs in the following weeks and had been waiting as long as 10 months.
      Outside the Canada zone, we only have two relinquish cases, they each got their CLNs in about a month.
      So, that’s some background on the Canada delay. It’s not that they’re singling out Canadians to do massive research and analysis on our applications. Nevertheless, I completely agree with johnnnb where he says absolutely tell the truth about all questions.
      I just wanted to point out what the Canadian delay is all about, so people don’t worry that it’s a problem with their application that’s holding up their CLN — it seems to be just inefficiency due to a staffing issue. (Fortunately, it appears that they are now breaking up the Canadian logjam.)

  36. @tiger: I think you went to the consulate Friday. Hope it was a reasonably good experience for you. I know you we’re not looking forward to it. Good to have it behind you I bet.

  37. @all
    Does anyone know if tiger’s okay after her relinquishment appointment on Friday? I know how worried she was. Hopefully you’re still out celebrating, Tiger!

  38. I’ve spoken with Tiger and want to let you to know she’s okay and she *really* appreciates everyone’s concern for her. She will post soon, but she has gone offline for a few days. Turns out that consulate is different from the others, so the procedure is more complicated than one would reasonably expect. Her facts are as clear-cut as they come, but it’s procedural stuff, so it’s not over yet, which I find really disappointing. I don’t expect she’ll be writing for a few days, so I want to let you know that she’s okay, and let you know that she *really* appreciates everyone’s support and concern.

  39. @pacifica
    Thanks for letting us know. It’s ludicrous to be causing innocent people this kind of grief and stress.

  40. @all, I have also been wondering about Tiger, I hope she is OK.
    Hope things went well for her..Hope to hear from her soon!

  41. A number of us have been worried about Tiger’s experience, including me. I hope we hear from her soon, with whatever she is willing to share about her experience in Vancouver. As Pacifica mentions, there are indications that Vancouver does things differently and not necessarily in a nice way. For openers, check out the Relinquish/Renounce table at IBS under Vancouver and note the rather striking differences between that consulate and every other one on the table (except Ottawa that is).

  42. Schubert I have noticed that too. I can’t for the life of me understand why that would be though. Every other Consulate other than Ottawa Calgary, Toronto, Halifax, and the one report out of Montreal seem to be similar. I would really like to know what the hell is going on behind the scenes in the US Government because clearly something is.

  43. To all who have expressed concern,
    As most of you know, I had my first appointment with the Vancouver consulate to report my 40 year old ‘relinquishment’, on September 21, 2012. Unfortunately, things did not proceed as I had hoped and quite honestly I was devastated. I had a phone conversation with Pacifica and exchanged emails with Calgary and wish to thank them for reporting to all of you who expressed concern for me. It means so much to know you have someone in your corner.
    They say that anger is one stage of grief. Well, my poor late husband, really got an irate blast from me on the 21st. Damn him, why wasn’t he there with me at the Consulate – that sort of thing.
    I have posted all the details of the visit on the “Consulate Report Directory” thread at IBS. Basically, for a couple of quite ridiculous reasons the Clerk did not accept my Birth Certificte nor my Marriage Certificate. She did give me a contact to get new certified copies. But in typical U.S. narcissistic fashion, the website only accepts U.S. ID (haven’t had that for 50 years) and the phone numbers are unreachable from Canada. My U.S. domiciled brother has today given me a phone number, where hopefully on Monday. I will be able to reach a live person to find out how to get the Certified Certificates.
    Both the clerk, who I dealt with, and the Consul were polite and respectful. However, there is not a doubt in my mind that the Clerk was brand new on the job that morning. She kept having to refer to a manual and constantly asked questions of others sitting behind her. When I asked her why the Vancouver consulate required two appointments – she first said no all consulates required two appointments and that she has only returned from the Toronto consulate the day before, where she had received her training, and that, Toronto definitely required two appts. Gave herself away with that slip. As we know, Toronto and all other consulates in Canada only require one appointment. She also said that ‘you need time to reflect on your decision’. I pointed out to her that I had reflected forty years ago. The Consul also said, two appointments were needed at other consulates. We know that is incorrect.
    I am getting quite cynical and can not help but think that something not very nice is going on here in Vancouver. Perhaps the Consul General, like Carl Levin, thinks all people who leave the homeland are either tax cheats, traitors or both.
    A week ago, besides giving my husband an angry blast, I thought of giving it all up. Today, I feel stronger and so much of that is because of all of you. So a big thank you.
    Thank you for all your messages of concern. I first found IBS in January and I have always gained strength and knowledge from all that you post. I like having you in my corner.

  44. Kafca lives. Be a Tiger Tiger. We’re all rooting for you.
    When you say ‘I thought of giving it all up’ , I think forgetting the whole thing would be a viable option.

  45. @Tiger: I sympathize with your plight re documentation. I had almost the same run-in with the Canadian government when I went to apply for CPP. I had been to my home town and gotten a certified copy of my birth certificate at the city hall. They had looked up my birth in a huge book a la Dickens. With that clear, legible, signed and sealed birth certificate (and all my other papers) I walked into Service Canada and was promptly turned down because of not having a “State issued birth certificate.” I told them it was from the city hall where I was born and was told that was the problem! It had to be one issued by the State. I was born in Massachusetts and they have privatized birth, death and marriage certificates so my wife and I had to pay $40 each to get these horrible photocopied things with State logos at the top. The Canadian government clerk happily accepted these phony looking documents.
    I think many petty bureaucrats just love exercising what little authority they have to help them satisfy some inner self esteem issues.
    Hang in there.

  46. @Cornwalliscal
    ‘I think forgetting the whole thing would be a viable option’. You are not the first to suggest that and I must admit, part of me thinks I should have done my best to ‘forget the whole thing’.
    My fear now is that the U.S. State Dept. (aka the Consulate in Vancouver) has an open file on me. So did I put a target on my back – they now know that Tiger Maiden Name (from the 60’s) is really Tiger Married Name and she is alive and well and hiding(?) in Vancouver.
    Another part of me thinks they don’t have the manpower to do anything about that and I would be quite safe. But then I think about crossing the border – things seem okay now but what will happen down the road – I don’t trust the B*******Ds. And of course, I worry constantly about FATCA. My financial advisor knows I was born in the U.S.A.

    1. Hi Tiger, The way I see it is, yes, you have an open file now, like a point of no return. But you will be getting a CLN, it’s a procedural delay (and I’m not minimising that or how it was handled). So, now you’re planning to overcome that roadblock. The really important thing is that the facts of your life are completely clear-cut, and even the bozos didn’t challenge that. So you will get a CLN and then you’ll never have to worry about what the US does in the future. Probably at the moment you get that CLN application signed and you know it’s en route to Washington, you’ll breathe a sigh of relief — even before receiving the CLN in the mail –because the merits of your case are not in question.

  47. Tiger. We are also hiding in Vancouver. Our financial advisor knows one of us was born down south but he has said ‘wink wink there’s nothing on paper so don’t fret’ Unless you have more than a million in a non RRSP account, an account is only subject to a so called electronic search of their records. RRSPs are sure to be exempted.
    The border has not been an issue. I admit we travel south less than before but we still go. If in the unlikely event of a water landing, sorry I meant in the unlikely event of a letter from the B******s we would simply avoid further contact. They don’t have the resources. They have to deal with thousands or fraudulent refunds to identity thieves and will soon have to deal with collecting medicare taxes. Good luck on that and good luck to you. Cheers.
    Struthio camelus

  48. @ tiger
    I’m sorry that you had a hard time at that first consulate meeting. I think it was to be expected that it would only be the first of two appointments, given the procedure at the Vancouver Consulate, but it’s good that you pointed out to them that you should only be required to have one meeting for relinquishment. Yes, it’s a bummer about the certified documents. I remember many years ago I had to write to the state where I was born to get a certified copy of my birth certificate for my first US passport even though I had the original in hand. However, look at this as a minor delay in the whole scheme of things. The sooner you get those “officially acceptable” documents ordered and notify the consulate that you have them, the sooner you can schedule that second appointment. And, eventually, as many of us can confirm, that very stressful part of the whole process will be over. Hang in there. You can do it!

  49. @Tiger, I agree with everyone, it is a pain in the A@@ right now, but you will get through it and it will happen. It is just another aggravation, I am sorry you have to deal with it. Just keep pushing forward. We are all behind you!!

  50. @Pacifica,
    I know you are correct. I will breathe a sigh of relief when the application leaves the Vancouver consulate and gets sent to DC. Because I know that my case is a ‘slam dunk’. So now I must concentrate on getting those documents and then decide whether to proceed here in Vancouver or to head to Calgary or Toronto.
    Although my Financial advisor does know I was born in the U.S., there is probably not a record of that in my files. If the assets are under the one million (and they sure are under that figure), then FATCA states only an electronic search. So probably that should/could be the end of it. Also, I showed her my citizenship records with the renunciatory oath.
    I also know that the border is not a problem at the present time (at least in most cases), but I do fear it down the line. And I think I am just the personality that I can not leave things unfinished. I just feel without the CLN, I might not get closure. So I will carry on to try to get the CLN.

  51. @Ladybug and Saddened
    Thank you both for your words of encouragement. I know many of my friends, who are not involved in this mess, just don’t get it and wonder why on earth I would make ‘mountains out of mole hills’, but those of us on Maple and IBS ‘get it’.

  52. I was born in the US, came to Canada in 1980 and took the oath of Canadian citiszenship in 1983. I applied for a backdated CLN in mid December, 2011 at the US consulate in Toronto. Originally I was told it would take about 6 months. Last July I was told that the application was not even sent to D.C. until late March and that due to a backlog of about 200 applications from Canada, I could expect a delay of at least 3 months more. A request for an update of my status last week has not been answered. I would be surprised if I have a decision by Christmas! Of course if the IRS gets its fangs into me before I get the CLN, the fact that an application is pending is irrelevant: as far as they’re concerned I am a US citizen and have been required to file tax returns for the last 30 years and comply with the FATCA and FBAR nonsense on pain of having 50% of my bank accounts seized for every year I have been “delinquent” (i.e. if I fail to file for 2 years the IRS believes if can effectively seize all my liquid assets). There’s no going back now, but my fear is that State notifies the IRS of pending CLN applications for just this purpose. Maybe I’m being paranoid and maybe it’s just bureaucratic incompetence but I’m waiting for that knock on the door at 3 a.m. and have little confidence that the Harper government would protect me. Rendition anyone?

    1. Welcome to the club! It’s hard to know the numbers for sure, but there are probably thousands of us already in the pipeline for CLNs and many more to come. The US has really opened a can of us expatriate worms. The IRS may see us as a golden opportunity, but I’m sure the State Department and its consular services are getting a massive headache over us. Unless US tax policy changes drastically, they are going to be processing requests for CLNs in increasing numbers for years to come, and I doubt they have the budget for it. Likewise, I doubt the IRS has the budget or the legal ability to pursue enforcement outside the US, but no one seems to know what might happen to those of us who enter the US.

      1. i would echo AnonAnon’s comments. For all the blustering going on at the IRS, there has been no evidence that moves have been made against anyone, except for those unfortunate enough to enter OVDI.
        The fact is that the IRS has not been immune to budget cutbacks. I suspect State has also been hit. And, it’s likely only to get worse after the election..
        Of course, we don’t know the future and former Americans abroad could be a target because of lack of representation. But, it will be an expensive target to attack. At least for now, I haven’t noticed any drones overhead.
        Torontoguy, you’re application is probably stuck in the bureaucratic morass but will get unstuck soon.

  53. @Tiger, great to see you’re back. Sorry, though, that you’ve been mired in BS-ocracy. To paraphrase, don’t let the b*ds get you down! You will get through this. They can make you jump through their petty little hoops, but you will win out in the end, and that’s what is important!
    @Torontoguy, here’s hoping none of us need fear rendition. I can’t see it, they just don’t have the resources, from everything I’ve read, to go after the little fishes. Please do let us know when (note I say WHEN) you get your CLN, so we can all celebrate vicariously!

  54. @Johnnb: Like you, I wish Mike had found us or Brock first. Or, I wish he had listened to what his wife said about “divine messages.”
    It sounds like Mike was probably a good example of relinquishment. I don’t know if getting an SSN will undo all of that. From the essay, I don’t think he has actually filed with IRS yet, but perhaps he has.
    I posted a comment on Globe website, as have several Brockers. I used my Globe name Kaysa (Blaze was already taken when I registered there a few years ago).
    If Mike hasn’t filed with IRS yet, is it possible he has only disturbed the Sleeping Bear, rather than awakening it. Once he files, the Bear will definitely be awake.
    I don’t know if this letter was also posted here, Saddened sent it to me while I was away.
    Both Ruth and Mike may be oblivious to the looming nightmare of FATCA. Does anyone know how to contact either of them?
    Speaking of contacts, did Calgary411 ever find out what the outcome was for the Andrews sisters (the Canadian grandmas Ambassador Jacobsen said IRS wasn’t after

    1. Hi, Blaze. I have met with one of the sisters. The good US Ambassador to Canada has done NOTHING for either of these sisters. They are in research and contemplation phase.

  55. @all,
    I thought I would post an update regarding my progress toward my CLN. As previously posted, the consulate told me both my birth certificate and marriage certificate were not acceptable. In the case of the birth certificate, it must show both filing date and parents’ names. Although, mine did show those things, the consulate felt my father’s name was blurred and also felt the filing date was blurred. In the case of the marriage certificate, I had presented the Church certificate and although I would expect the ‘evangelicals’ in the Republican party would be quite happy with that one, I was told to present the Civil Marriage.
    As of yesterday, I received both documents and have sent them in an email, as scanned attachments, to the consulate. I also requested my 2nd (and I hope final) interview. Today, I received an email from them that said they had rec’d both documents. The 2nd appt would eventually be set up by their office, but there is a current backlog of file review and my file will eventually be reviewed. So more waiting!

  56. @Tiger, Please don’t get discouraged, it will happen.. Just a little bump in the road or maybe a large bump..
    @all, I hope to relinquish in the near future as soon as I get my Canadian Citizenship. My son the Accidental America born in Canada is thinking of Renouncing. He probably should do it before the end of the year, but he is afraid of the process, he keeps saying what if I say something wrong..I said it is probably not going to be that difficult. He just found out this year that he was a American Citizen and was shocked, he was looking at the Form on the US Consular site and question 7 asks How did you find out that you are a citizen of the United States, (for example did you always know you were a US Citizen?? If not when did you learn you were a US Citizen, did someone tell you?? He said he is having a hard time answering this question. He is just really nervous about the whole process, he is afraid they will not believe him. Also another question he is concerned with is 13 C, Do you have family or Social ties? he has relatives of course but does not and has not been in contact in years, so he is wondering if he should answer yes or no. He really has no interest in the relatives he has there. Never been close to them.
    So any ideas on these question may help ease his mind..I gave him my thoughts on the questions, but he would like to hear from others that have been through the process. He is just very scared about this whole aggravating mess. He is afraid of saying the wrong thing..Thanks all!!

    1. @ saddened
      Regarding Question 7 your son should simply state how he found out that he is a U.S. Citizen. Perhaps he learned through media reports, through a parent who just learned themselves that their child might be a U.S. citizen, though a conversation with a friend or acquaintance or from a accountant or lawyer. As someone stated at Brock, DS-4079
      is somewhat ass backwards as far as giving up citizenship is concerned. A new form should really be used for these situations.
      For Question 13, especially for renunciations, there should be no problem stating that he has a few relatives in the U.S.
      I don’t think it matters if he has had contact with them or not.

  57. Hi Saddened,
    Your son really can’t say anything “wrong” at his renunciation meeting. The consular official will just want to be sure that he is doing this voluntarily and that he is aware of the consequences. You’re not required to give a reason why you are renouncing, but if asked – sometimes it’s better to be conversational than confrontational – he can just say he recently found out he is a USC and he doesn’t want to be.
    The 4079 apparently was designed for people who are trying to claim US citizenship, so some of the questions really aren’t very relevant for a renunciation, or they seem a bit odd.
    As well, answers on the 4079 are not as important in a renunciation as in a relinquishment because if you relinquished and you’re applying for a CLN now, things like voting or using a US passport after your “relinquishment” would indicate it wasn’t really a relinquishment. (Obviously these would be answered “no” by your son, given he didn’t even know he was a USC, just using them as an example.)
    I don’t think the question about family is really all that relevant as expatriating is a personal decision. I would think that most people who renounce or relinquish do have family in the US. FWIW, thinking in Immigration terms – I’m thinking of the “family class” in Canadian Immigration – cousins and such are not included in the definition of “family.” So, I’m not sure if aunts or cousins even are considered family by DoS. If he has no first degree relatives, I’d tend to answer “no,” but that’s just my interpretation. At any rate, if he chooses to answer yes, I think he should write in the provided space something like “cousins” or whatever they are, and he could even put “last seen 1998” or whenever. But I really don’t think family or relatives would have any bearing at all on his renunciation.
    The important thing he should keep in mind is that the vice consul he sees will probably ask a few questions, but simply to be sure that he’s acting voluntarily and with full understanding of the consequences of giving up US citizenship, but would not probe for reasons or act intimidating in any way.
    He should keep in mind that the vice consul does not decide if he should renounce, only that he’s competent to, which is immediately obvious, and that he’s making an informed decision.
    I didn’t renounce, I relinquished, but I get the impression that at a renunciation meeting, the vice consul actually does most of the talking because they want to make sure the person is aware of what they are giving up, so they tell you about that.
    I think I recall you mentioning where you live and, if I remember that correctly, your local consulate understands that people have just gotten mixed up in this through accidental citizenship, and are quite understanding/aware that people are just trying to straighten out their lives, and they’re just fine to interact with. I don’t know if your son has looked into the Isaac Brock Society Consulate Report Directory. If not, there’s quite a few reports of that consulate in the Directory, which I think your son will find reassuring.

  58. @saddened
    The decision your son has to make regarding renouncing is a huge one. I know there are many on this site, who would say, he should ignore the whole thing as his passport does give Canada as a place of birth. I must admit that would be my advice. However, I, too, know that each of us must make the decision that will best put our own mind at ease.
    You ask how to best answer a couple of questions on the DS-4079. Both of the questions you refer to also gave me pause. I was advised that the the question “How did you find out?” was best answered just by something to the effect “I always believed myself to be only a Canadian citizen. However, recent reports in the media alarmed me that perhaps I could also be considered an American”. Some words such as that. As far as question 13 goes – your son needs to answer that question honestly. He does have relatives in the United States. He could state something like ‘I have relatives in the U.S. but have little or no contact with them’. That sounds like exactly what is the case.

  59. @tiger, Thank you so much for your reply, I appreciate it.. My son filed 5 years of taxes this last June. We would probably have done nothing but he was registered US Birth Abroad also 30 years ago.. He was shocked to learn that he was US Citizen (Accidental) and I was shocked because I forgot I had registered him when he was a baby..I almost had a heart attack when I found the papers. So after contacting a US Attorney/US Accountant we were told that he was considered a US Citizen and that he must file his taxes, scare tactics of being scared to death that is what he did. So now we are just wondering through the maze of horror. Another question, Is it best to renounce before the end of the year?? I guess that would mean he would file all final forms June 2013.
    Tiger, Thanks again for the reply, it is very much appreciated..

  60. @all
    Well, I relinquished in Calgary this past week. My experience was certainly easier than Tiger’s was – no question over my somewhat tattered birth certificate, no requirement to show a marriage certificate at all and no second appointment. However, I did find the procedure somewhat intimidating, in part I’m sure because I was so stressed in the first place. The interview with the consular officer was very formal and conducted through glass, and although he was not unpleasant, neither was he particularly friendly. The only questions asked were “Why are you coming forward to do this now” and “When you obtained Canadian citizenship was it your intent to lose your American citizenship”. The interview took about 5 minutes, he said the final decision would be made in Washington, and if approved, the CLN would state that I lost American citizenship when I became a Canadian, in the late 1960’s.
    I’m glad it’s over but I can’t say I will be relieved until the CLN arrives, assuming it’s approved, and even after that there will be the problem of what, if anything, to do about 8854 etc. etc. Mostly right now I feel exhausted from the constant worry over the last year. I was thinking in the motel the night before the appointment how absurd it was to be traveling 9 hours each way to try and convince “Washington” to give a senior citizen, who has had virtually nothing to do with the US for almost 60 years, a piece of paper to prove that she hadn’t been a citizen for decades. You would think at least some of these consular officials might think the same thing.
    I’ve posted full details of the procedure on the Consular visit reports on Brock.

  61. Thanks Hijacked. I’m sure the Consular official was thinking how ridiculous it was too. I’m sure many Consular officials around the world are thinking the same thing.
    If you don’t mind telling us, what did you say when you were asked why you were coming forward now?

  62. @Blaze
    I said that I wanted to avoid possible future banking issues and that I had also learned that it was technically illegal to cross the US border on a foreign passport if you were deemed to be a US citizen, and I wanted to have some documentation that I was no longer a US citizen.

  63. Although I had previously decided not to go through the relinquishment process, I changed my mind. Earlier this week I went to the Halifax Consulate and applied for Certificate of Loss of Nationality, A report of my experience is posted on Brock.
    After considerable reflection, I thought about what I would have done in the mid 1970’s when I became a Canadian citizen. Had I known there was such a thing as a CLN, I would have applied for one right away. In a sense, applying for a CLN was the culmination of a process started more than 3 decades ago.
    Most people I know in the real (as opposed to the internet) world have tried to ignore the situation. One person is thinking about relinquishing, several others, whose tax situation is extremely simple, decided to become compliant and are considering renouncing. I suspect when something happens to really force the issue, as has happened in Switzerland, more people will consider their options.
    At any rate, I’m not going away. I continue to be interested in the issues raised here and at Brock and will be writing letters or sending emails to anyone who may be able to influence the situation for expats in Canada.

  64. @ all
    I am wondering how others feel about the wording of #10 on Form 4081 Statement of Understanding Regarding Consequences……… of Relinquishment of US Citizenship, which says “With regard to US taxation consequences, I understand that I must contact the IRS”. Do you take that to mean that you are agreeing to contact the IRS, or that if you have questions, then contact the IRS. If you are issued a CLN, your name goes to the IRS anyway, so why contact them. My inclination is to do nothing and hope for the best, but on the other hand, I did sign the form…..
    What are other people going to do who have their CLN in hand – Johnnb? Arrow?, anyone else?

  65. @hijacked
    My interpretation, and my wife’s, is that means if you have questions about taxes, you contact IRS, you don’t contact State.
    If your CLN is a decades-ago relinquishment, as is my wife’s, State has (or will) certify that you haven’t been a US citizen for all those years. There is therefore no reason IMO to contact IRS, especially if you’ve not worked in the US or earned any income from the US (non-citizens who do those things generally have to “contact” the IRS too).
    If, as you say, your CLN is forwarded to IRS, that CLN has your current address on it. If IRS wants to contact you about something, they can and probably will, easily enough. Then you reply accordingly. Why should you contact them, if you don’t think you have any reason to do so? There can be no “taxation consequences” if you’re not a citizen, haven’t been for decdes, have no income there and don’t reside there. (If you renounced it’s a different story, IMO.)
    IMO if they were serious about your “agreeing” to contact IRS no matter what, there would be a deadline specified. E.g., “within sixty days of receipt of the CLN, or no later than the next April 15, whichever occurs first” or whatever. There is no deadline. It’s open-ended. That’s not a binding commitment to contact them, IMO, that’s an advisory that State doesn’t want to hear from you about taxes, and they’re telling you that you might (depending on your situation) still owe taxes to IRS and you need to sort that out with IRS and not with State, if you aren’t sure about that.
    I used to be a Canadian federal bureaucrat. I’ve written directives or letters asking/telling people to do things before I do something else. I’ve always set a deadline of some kind. If you seriously want someone to do something in officialdom, you set a deadline or you’re wasting your breath and keystrokes. But maybe bureaucrats in the Exceptional States of America work differently.
    However I’m not a lawyer, this isn’t legal advice, and you might want to speak with a lawyer about this.

  66. @Schubert
    Thanks. That was my interpretation when I signed the form, but then I started second guessing. My CLN, if and when it arrives, will be dated over 45 years ago. I agree that if they want something, they can contact me.

  67. I hope I’m not pre-empting her, but this is too good not to share.
    Many of you on Maple Sandbox will remember Pacifica777, who is active on IBS and has been at this battle as long or longer than most of us, including me. She’s a fellow refugee from the ExpatForum as well. We both live in Ottawa, and she, her husband, my wife, Deckard and I have become friends and get together in person every few months — we all met over this FATCA and citizenship swamp.
    Pacifica got her relinquishment CLN in a late Canada Post delivery yesterday. It came through the Toronto consulate, dated her expatriation from when she became a citizen of Canada in 1979, and it took about six and a half months from her interview in Toronto for her CLN to arrive.
    Huge congratulations are in order. This will be a huge relief to Pacifica and her husband, both of whom have suffered a lot of stress and anxiety over all of this. But I don’t need to tell readers on this forum about that, I’m sure — everyone has gone through that nightmare.

  68. I hope I’m not pre-empting her, but this is too good not to share.
    Many of you on Maple Sandbox will remember Pacifica777, who is active on IBS and has been at this battle as long or longer than most of us, including me. She’s a fellow refugee from the ExpatForum as well. We both live in Ottawa, and she, her husband, my wife, Deckard and I have become friends and get together in person every few months — we all met over this FATCA and citizenship swamp.
    Pacifica got her relinquishment CLN in a late Canada Post delivery yesterday. It came through the Toronto consulate, dated her expatriation from when she became a citizen of Canada in 1979, and it took about six and a half months from her interview in Toronto for her CLN to arrive.
    Huge congratulations are in order. This will be a huge relief to Pacifica and her husband, both of whom have suffered a lot of stress and anxiety over all of this. But I don’t need to tell readers on this forum about that, I’m sure — everyone has gone through that nightmare.

  69. No problem, Schubert, thanks for spreading the good news! I’ve just been floating around on a cloud the past few hours!
    It was a real surprise! I filed my application in May. So, in October I e-mailed the consulate and they said it hadn’t been approved yet. I knew that DC had approved a Toronto batch July 15th, which people received between late August and early October. So I figured I’d just missed the cut-off for the July 15th batch and it would be several more months at least.
    Then my husband and I were going to the library and grocery this afternoon (Saturday) and, walking through the lobby, I saw a brown envelope in my mailbox. We didn’t get any mail yesterday afternoon. Now, I guess that the postman must have been late yesterday. I was so delighted I actually shrieked with joy!
    Funny thing, back when I actually relinquished my citizenship in 1979, leading up to it my thinking basically was, “You have two good countries. Choose one.” The day I actually became a Canadian and relinquished 34 years ago was not emotional for me, it was a logical progression of my life. I was neither happy nor sad to lose my US citizenship. But times have changed, specifically the US’ attitude has changed – and so getting that CLN was emotional and joyful! It was a sense of relief that I could not have imagined in my wildest dreams when I chose between “two good countries” many years ago.
    What a year this has been,– what a delight to see the reality of my life on paper!
    Thanks, friends, both here at the Sandbox and at Brock you have been really supportive with information and moral support through this!

    1. What great news! Welcome to the CLN club. It has a very liberating feel to it. All you went through has now been rewarded. It should not be necessary to jump through so many hoops but My wife and I are so happy for you.

      1. Thanks, John and Mrs. John! It sure does feel liberating to see it in writing! With my loss of citizenship dating back so far — I know you are “long-timers” too — it felt like being in some weird limbo for a year and now my life is back on track.

  70. Thanks for all the info you have shared about relinquishing your US citizenship.
    I have been a landed immigrant in Canada since 1977 and took Canadian citizenship in 2009. I have an appointment to relinquish in December but am having panic thoughts. I have not filed with the IRS since 1977. Do I understand correctly that if you renounce you have to file 6 years of US taxes and if you relinquish you do not have to file any taxes? I just want to do this in the right order since the IRS is so understanding and forgiving!!

  71. @ Quebec: You should perhaps check with a qualified cross-border immigration lawyer (preferably one based in Canada) to verify the following, since I am not a lawyer and this is not legal advice I’m giving.
    It is my understanding that anyone who relinquished US citizenship after 2004, whether by taking foreign nationality, by an oath of renunciation, or by any of the other potentially-expatriating acts under US law (e.g., swearing an oath of allegiance to a foreign government, serving in the public service or armed forces of another country, etc.) must be tax-compliant (must have filed tax returns and probably also FBARs) for the past six years and complete an IRS form 8854. If you relinquished your citizenship prior to 2004, I don’t believe these requirements exist or can be enforced legally.
    When I say “must be compliant,” that is within the perspective of US tax law. It is my understanding that your tax compliance requirements under that law do not affect your rights and decisions made concerning your citizenship, i.e., how your CLN application (relinquish or renounce) would be processed. You can’t be denied a CLN on the basis of taxes, though as State form 4081 says, receiving a CLN does not necessarily free you from tax obligations under US tax law.
    Obviously, anyone who renounces today is going to be “on the hook” for the filing requirements.
    So my interpretation, unfortunately, is that since you did not take out Canadian citizenship until 2009, you are “on the hook” for these filing requirements whether you file for relinquishment or for renunciation.
    However, bear in mind that Minister Flaherty and CRA officials have pointed out publicly (and Minister Flaherty in writing) that filing/reporting requirements and tax liabilities (including penalties) are not enforceable in Canada by CRA for claims against you during a time when you were a Canadian citizen, nor at any time if you became a Canadian citizen before November (I think) 1998. So I’d be inclined to say that, as long as you remain on Canadian soil and stay off US soil or the soil of another country that has a different extradition or tax treaty than the ones Canada has with the US, you probably wouldn’t have any form 8854 penalties enforced against you, nor tax liabilities for the years 2009 to the present. I don’t think Canada has any way to enforce, nor will to enforce, filing requirements, but it’s conceivable that the IRS might impute or claim tax liabilities or penalties against you under the six-year provision for the years 2007 and 2008, and that CRA would under the tax treaty be required to collect those penalties or liabilities against you under the treaty, if IRS asked CRA to do so.
    Flaherty has also stated in writing, as recently as last Thursday (November 8) in a letter to me posted elsewhere on this website, that CRA will not collect or enforce, on behalf of the IRS, FBAR non-filing penalties against anyone in Canada, citizen or not, for any year.
    But check this with a lawyer to be sure I’m right. Then talk with the lawyer and maybe an accountant about what your best course of action would be, in your particular situation.

  72. I don’t pretend to know all the qualified people, but I’ve already pointed several people, on this and on the IBS site, to the following lawyer as a start. She’s in Toronto. I don’t know any lawyers in Quebec. She has done telephone consultations, and her hourly rate isn’t cheap though I understand she’s reasonable in terms of billable hours. She has a lot of experience in this area, I’m led to believe.

  73. @Blaze
    I am in a similar situation – relinquished my US citizenship when I became a Canadian citizen in 1974 – but have no documentation of this. You mention in your reply on Aug 31st that you obtained copies from your CIC file – exactly how did you get this information – I initiated a search of my Citizenship Records with the CIC – will it come as part of the search?
    Thanks in advance

    1. Charlie
      I sent a freedom of information request to CIC. I received a copy of the entire file including the oath of allegiance It took 5-6 weeks. The quality of the copies is not great because the records are copied from microfiche but most of mine was legible.

  74. @Charlie: Welcome to Maple Sandbox. Here is a link to the form for requesting information from your citizenship file.
    I became a Canadian citizen on April 27, 1973. Until April 1 of that year, people becoming Canadian citizens were required to renounce other citizenship. Even though my ceremony was a few weeks later, I remembered an Oath of renunciation. Sure enough, it was there in my citizenship file. I don’t know how any Canadian bank could refuse to accept that as proof of renunciation of US citizenship (if they dare to ask about my place of birth).
    I don’t know if the forms would have still be in use in 1974, but it is certainly worth checking.
    Tiger and I both used the form on the website, but mailed it in. She had hers faster than I did.
    As someone (Schuert maybe?) said, in 1970s, USA wanted to penalize us for daring to become citizens elsewhere by stripping us of US citizenship. Now, they want to punish us by arbitrarily reinstating our citizenship without our knowledge or consent.
    Good luck. I hope you will continue to hang out with us here at Maple Sandbox.

  75. @Charlie,
    I received mine a bit faster than Blaze did because I agreed to have them email me the file. As Hijacked said, it is not the greatest copy as it is from microfiche, but it was accepted by the Vancouver consulate. Like Blaze, I had to ‘renounce’ my U.S. citizenship when I became a Canadian (Oct. 1972), but even if you only became a Canadian in 1974, that act in itself, was an ‘expatriating’ act re the rules of the U.S. at that time. As long as you have done nothing since that date to negate the relinquishing act ie, voted in a U.S. election, applied for a U.S. passport, files U.S. tax returns, then you ‘relinquished’ your U.S. citizenship on the date you became a Canadian. The U.S. Immigration and Nationality Act changed in the mid to late 1980’s and becoming a citizen of another country only was expatriating if YOU could prove that you INTENDED to relinquish your U.S. citizenship. Prior to the date in the 80’s, the burden of proof would have been on the State Department to prove you DID NOT intend to relinquish. Hope this info all helps.

  76. @Blaze, Tiger
    I vaguely recall renouncing my US citizenship at the time I became a Canadian citizen so hopefully it is in the file. How long did it take to get the electronic and mailed copies – I was looking at the search for citizenship records thinking it might provide the information I was looking for and the turnaround time frame is 4-6 months. Was it the same for accessing one’s CIC file?

    1. Charlie: It only took a few weeks for the information from my citizenship file. I also asked for copies of my landed immigrant records.
      I lost my citizenship card last year and applied for a new one. CIC said it would take about 10 months. I had it in about 6 weeks.
      CIC no longer issues photo citizenship cards. They now issue a certificate. The advantage of this for our purposes is that the photo cards only gave date of issuance. The certificate gives the actual date of the citizenship ceremony.
      Here is my new certificate.
      As Tiger has pointed out, you did relinquish in 1974 even though you did not get a Certificate of Loss of Nationality. Provided you have not done anything to reclaim US citizenship–i.e. get US passport, vote in US election or file IRS returns, you should be able to get a CLN if you apply for one. That would be backdated to 1974.
      I personally have decided not to apply for CLN. I am determined not to go anywhere near a US Consulate or IRS. Others have applied and have been considerably relieved when their CLN arrived. In fact, they’ve usually been doing the Happy Dance.
      Is your concern about filing with IRS or is it about FATCA or both?

      1. @Blaze
        Thanks for the info re turn around time – did you get the fast turnaround because you asked for an electronic copy, or was getting the paper copy fast as well.
        Recently I changed investment firms and as part of the application, I was asked my place of birth. Once my investments had been transferred to the new investment firm, they informed me they could not process any transactions without my filing the W-9 form which requires that I apply to the IRS for a tax number. I had certainly been aware of the citizenship issues and had planned to just ignore them, but now I don’t have a choice. This site and your and others contributions has certainly help me get up to speed quickly so thanks. I still can not believe that even though it is not a requirement yet (at least that is my interpretation of what I have read) that my new investment firm is inflexible about the IRS form. So I am going the CLN route and hoping my CIC file has the documentation that yours did.
        Thanks again

        1. Charlie: I received the paper copy of my citizenship certificate via Canada Post. I don’t think they send them electronically.
          However, I submitted the application for the citizenship certificate on line. It is important you give as much information as you have–i.e, date of citizenship, place of citizenship, etc. I think doing that helps to speed up the process.
          I thought mine could be further delayed because I reverted to my maiden name after my divorce in 1978. My original citizenship was in my married name. I sent a copy of my birth certificate, copy of my divorce decree and a notarized statement that I have been using my birth name for over 30 years, along with a copy of my driver’s license to confirm that. The new certificate was issued in my birth name and it did not seem to slow down the process.
          It is my understanding your investment firm has no legal right to demand information on your place of birth. Some of us are considering legal action together, but didn’t think we needed to do it quite yet. In fact, we have been told “don’t lawyer up now” and “it’s premature for legal action.”
          Even the draft FATCA regulations state there are alternatives to a CLN: A non-US passport or other proof of non-US citizenship and a “reasonable explanation” of renunciation of US citizenship.
          If your citizenship file has a copy of the renunciation oath, I don’t see how a Canadian investment firm could refuse to accept that, (but I also didn’t think they could legally demand to know place of birth–and they did).
          Whatever you do, do NOT get a US tax number! It is possible that would be considered to be reclaiming US citizenship.
          So, are your investments in limbo now? What a nightmare this is.
          You may want to consider contacting Abby Deshman at Canadian Civil Liberties Association
          I have been in contact with Abby. I have submitted significant information packages to her and initially was optimistic CCLA would try to do something proactively. Eleven weeks ago, Abby e-mailed me that she would advise me “tomorrow” what CCLA would e able to do. Nothing further. Once an IGA is signed, it could be too late. It may be useful for her to know that investment firms are already demanding to know about place of birth of Canadian citizens and refusing service if the Canadian citizen does not agree to release of personal financial information to a foreign government.
          Please continue to participate at Maple Sandbox and let us know what happens.

        2. Charlie, Seems to me that your new investment firm is not the kind of people I would want to deal with. They had no business asking your place of birth. They should have accepted your reasons why you are not a US person. Above all, don’t do anything to jeopardize your previous loss of US citizenship. Consider telling the investment firm to bugger off.

  77. @Charlie, I received my citizenship file about 5 weeks after I sent in my request this summer, so it didn’t take very long. Unfortunately mine doesn’t contain an oath of renunciation, as by 1976 things had changed. Fingers crossed that yours does!

  78. @Charlie, it goes to intent if there was an oath of renunciation in your citizenship oath, but if there was not an oath of renunciation in the oath of citizenship at the time you became a citizen, you still have nothing to worry about. Lots of us have gotten CLNs after the renunciation part was taken out of the oath here.
    Either way, you’ll explain your intent to relinquish in 1974 in question 18 of the 4079.
    It’s definitely a case of actions speak louder than words. If your post-relinquishment actions (and non-actions) show that you did intend to lose your citizenship, you’ll be getting a backdated CLN, and the consulate will tell you that at your meeting. The consulates are generally quite pleasant to deal with about expatriation. I guess you’ve read don’t go to Ottawa — walk to Montréal if you have to — and Vancouver’s been having administrative issues with lengthy time delays and picky-picky documentation requirements. I’ve been told that Vancouver’s started making some changes a few weeks ago to fix this. If they do that, they’re fine — apart from these procedural matters, which have been seriously frustrating, the staff at Van is quite pleasant to deal with and they understand how to do a relinquishment.

  79. Victoria has a fabulous description of US citizenship. She says it is “like having sex with a gorilla.” Not a lot of fun, (unless you’re a gorilla, of course).
    Victoria has lived in France for 20 years, yet owed over $9,000 to IRS for 2011, when she was unemployed and receiving French unemployment benefits. This is because unemployment insurance does not qualify for FEIE. Victoria is being treated for cancer in France making it difficult for her to seek work now.
    Is it any wonder why Victoria thinks she has been “royally screwed?” By a gorilla no less.
    Victoria, my advice is get your French citizenship and relinquish US citizenship. You will be much happier and the gorilla will no longer be able to rape you and your family.

  80. @Charlie,
    I echo what you have been told above. DO NOT get a U.S. Tax ID number or do anything else to negate your ability to apply for a CLN based on a long ago expatriating act. Listen to what Pacifica said – even if your Citizenship Oath did not contain a renunciatory oath (and it probably did not in 1974), as long as you became a Canadian voluntarily and with the intent to relinquish, AND have done nothing since that date to indicate that your intent was to retain U.S. citizenship, then you are entitled to a back-dated CLN.

  81. I got good news on my ‘other’ blog. SB was successful in obtaining a CLN based upon the oath taken to work for the federal gov’t in the 80’s. SB’s supervisor at the time discussed the implications to US citizenship at that time, so SB was aware. When applying for the CLN, SB had to provide a copy of the oath, obtained from Library and Archives Canada. I don’t know if it had to be a notarized copy, hopefully SB can update me on that.
    I think this is very good news, indeed. One of the main reasons (which I’ve mentioned before) that I haven’t already applied for my CLN is that I wasn’t sure it would be accepted based upon working for the fed gov’t. Yahoo. Thank you SB!

  82. @all, I’d like to join this discussion by describing my circumstances, which seem to be quite different from most of yours. At the moment I’m not asking questions or seeking advice, more explaining.
    Later I’ll move on to my appointment to renounce and the questions that I have about that.
    I married my Canadian wife in January 2006 while I still lived in the States and began the Permanent Resident application process right away. I moved here in the summer of 2007, left some liquid assets in the states, and earned my PR in November of that year. In December 2010 I applied for citizenship – within days of becoming eligible, the few extra days in case my math was off – and became a Canadian citizen on November 30 last year.
    Of course I’ve filed tax returns here. I’ve filed returns in the states as well. Here’s the problem. Through our 2010 return I filed them on only the stateside accounts, learning only this year I had to include my and my wifes’ Canadian accounts and income.
    I have catching up to do, which I will do. Fortunately I have copies of account records going back to the year I moved here. I spoke with a CA who does cross-border taxes. I had the distinct impression that he would insist I join the OVDI, and he quoted me an estimate of $1000 per tax year – more if the year presented difficulties, and this year will be challenging.
    That was very distressing because we are not wealthy by any means. I’m an Administrative Assistant with a corresponding income and my wife is a seasonal agricultural worker, so it isn’t as though we are rolling in the dough. Our account holdings are such that we hardly register on FATCA radar. Having said that, we do register.
    We are certainly not whales. Nor are we minnows. We are more like plankton.
    My wife, who is perhaps the kindest, sweetest person I have ever known, is furious at the situation.
    So because of this, because of the LCU involved in preparing US tax returns for the rest of my life, because paying someone to do so isn’t a good option, most importantly because Canada is my home, renouncing is definitely the best of the not that great array of options.
    My stateside siblings understand. Most other people I’ve discussed this with seem to understand. My wife played devils advocate and while not entirely happy about it, accepts my decision.

  83. I do remember your situation from Brock now. I can certainly understand why your “kindest, sweetest” wife is furious. Seems to be a world-wide spousal reaction.
    I know you said you weren’t going to ask any questions. However, I am going to give you an answer to a question which you didn’t ask. I hope that’s OK.
    But, before I do, I want to clarify a couple of points. So, I need to ask a couple of questions. Have you since November, 2011 applied for or used a US passport? Did you vote in this year’s Presidential election?
    If the answer to those questions is No, you should be able to relinquish, rather than renounce. If the answer is Yes, you may have to renounce.
    I’m quite stunned at a recommendation of OVDI. My advice (non-professional) is to stay as far away as you can from OVDI.

  84. @Blaze, yes, that fine to ask your questions! I am here to learn, and at some point to possibly help others.
    I have used my passport three times. Once to attend my mom’s memorial service in January (did not yet have my Canadian passport), once on a personal errand, and once to visit a sibling (I did this after deciding to renounce and knowing it might be a while before I could visit again).
    After considerable thought and consideration, I did not vote. Who I might have voted for is beside the point. The act of voting could very reasonably have been taken as evidence – if not proof – of my intent to retain ties to the States.
    Given the circumstances it appears that the clearest and best way forward is to renounce.
    I should clarify my comment about the CA and OVDI. The CA did not explicitly recommend it. We have not proceeded beyond a very general discussion of our circumstances. During that discussion OVDI came up in passing. My subjective impression was that the CA would recommend (perhaps insist on) my joining, and there was no opportunity to say that I intend to stay away from it. I’m unsure if I want to proceed any further with this CA for two reasons.
    First, as I have read here or elsewhere (don’t remember where), CAs must work with the IRS and may feel professionally or legally obligated to get their client into the program whether or not it is in the client’s best interest, otherwise the CAs relationship with the IRS may become a little sticky. I have no desire to join OVDI and run what I see as a significant risk of being bankrupted. My little paranoid voice tells me that if the CA recommends OVDI, I say ‘No thank you’, the relationship ends, the CA is not legally bound to confidentiality as an attorney and client are, and may become an adversary.
    Second, as mentioned earlier we are plankton. What we want more than anything is to live our simple life with our dogs. While getting professional help to get our filings up to date may be not only prudent but eventually necessary, the financial cost involved would take a significant chunk out of our resources. So we are, for now at least, recoiling from that course of action.
    That’s not to say we are ostriching. I have my renunciation appointment. More about that, and my questions about it, tomorrow.

  85. Ex tex. 1. renounce. 2 don’t file amended returns. 3 Carry on. 4. OVDI is a trap. Stay the h*** away!!! 4. File correct returns for 2012. File exit tax return (nothing owing). You will be free

  86. @Extex, I have to echo Cornwalliscal, stay away from OVDI. Of course, with the qualification I’m just a plain jane citizen and have no financial expertise. I say this from reading other people’s experience with OVDI. I would be highly highly shocked if the CA reported you to the IRS or became an adversary. If you simply say you’ve found another CA that you prefer, there is nothing that the 1st CA can say about that. It’s your right to work with the person that you feel most comfortable with and that you feel is the best fit for your particular circumstances. In my mother’s situation, the CA firm had been pushing her to either do a quiet disclosure, or enter ovdi, and we convinced her that in her situation it would be a huge mistake (she unmistakably gave up her US citizenship in the early 70’s) and many, many months later, as far as I know, the CA firm has not done anything to punish her for that decision.
    I have no experience or knowledge about whether you should file (or not) amended returns, but my personal position is that you should, indeed, as you intend, shed your US citizenship, and that, as I’ve said, you should not enter any OVDI program.
    Unsolicited advice, but something I personally try to do, is remember that there is a life outside of all this, and our dogs can remind of us this. When I get too het up, I take mine out for long walks, and the sheer joy they take in living in, and enjoying, the moment is something I try to emulate. Although we can’t afford to be ostriches, a mental break is really healthy and necessary, and dogs are exceedingly good at providing that!

  87. Although this is the Relinquish and Renounce thread, some attention has turned to OVDI. I think it may be worth posting the comments I made to Just Me at Brock earlier this year about this form of VD. Here they are:
    VD (Voluntary Disclosure) is just like the other VD. It’s Risky, Bad For Your Health and Highly Contagious. For some VDs, there is no cure. TAS may provide some symptom relief, but VD is insidious and will recur.
    The standard IRS prescription, (written in illegible handwriting–but finally interpreted) is “Give Us Your Money!”
    Anyone with VD is treated like they are dirty. They are told to “Come Clean.” They are told by the stalking spouse they divorced long ago “It’s Your Fault.” They are accused of “Cheating” when it’s Congress and it’s IRS illicit lover who are the Real Cheats–in bed together behind your back, refusing to communicate with you and spreading VD with no discretion or scruples.
    Claiming “I Didn’t Cheat” or “It Didn’t Mean Anything” won’t help you. After you get VD, you will not be able to plead “Not Guilty.” Anyone who enters VD will be tortured until they pay up. Anyone considering VD should be notified they will be reported to the proper authorities for further persecution.
    Explaining “But the US Consulate told me I was renouncing my US citizenship” won’t work in VD. The Consulate has the constitutional right to lie. You were dumb to believe them. You are the sinner because you trusted and believed the Consulate’s deceit all these years. Don’t get trapped again. Don’t get infected with US VD! .
    Protect Yourself. Know The Risks. Take Precautions. Stay As Far Away From VD and the US as You Possibly Can. Keep Your Money In The Country Where You Live. Always Use A Safe (for your money, of course!).
    Be Responsible. Warn Potential Partners. Avoid Passing VD Onto Your Children Born Outside US.
    Today, the question isn’t “Do You Have an STD?” It’s “Where Were You Born?” If the answer is anywhere in US, knowledgeable potential partners will turn and run for fear of catching your VD. There is no possibility of marriage. Possible mates fear having their lives and finances ruined by your VD. No one wants to come near you. You are destined for a life alone.
    The only one who wants to screw anyone with VD is IRS. When IRS finishes with you, they toss you aside. IRS rapidly moves on to their next conquest. They gleefully spread VD that originated with them onto others.
    Instead of preventing greater spread of VD, elected officials in Congress get their kicks as a voyeur cheering IRS on.

  88. @cornwalliscal and outraged, thank you for your suggestions. I intend to stay the heck away from OVDI unless a compelling case can be presented to engage in it. It would have to be a VERY compelling case indeed.
    @ outraged, you are absolutely right that there is life outside of all this. Our three dogs are living, breathing, sometimes mentally challenging, oftentimes amusing, reminders of that, and I am very grateful to have them.
    @Blaze, thank you for reposting that grimly amusing description of VD. How very apt it is.
    As I mentioned, I have a renunciation appointment scheduled next month. I scheduled the appointment via the consulate’s online appointment scheduling system, selecting ‘Notarial/Other’ as the purpose. It’s interesting that renunciation is specifically mentioned as a reason for a consular visit and such requests are directed to the ‘Notarial/Other’ calendar.
    I downloaded Forms 81606, 81607, and 97025 from here. I’ve reviewed them, will print them for hand-completing and to serve as reference documents for when I complete them online. I have read the consular visit reports on IBS as well as the web guide to renunciation, though I need to revisit both for a refresher. A few questions and comments now, and apologies if they are redundant.
    It’s interesting that of the 18 TO visits reported on IBS, only three clearly indicated a second visit.
    I can’t send the forms in advance, I take them with me, correct?
    Do I complete as much of Form 81606 as possible before the appointment, it is it entirely completed at the appointment? Of course I will not sign and date it until at the consulate.
    Ditto Form 81607.
    Ditto 97025. (I am amused by Question 6: When did you first become aware that you might be a US citizen?. Uh, well, not to be flippant, but maybe when JFK was assassinated and I saw all of the flags flying during the funeral procession. Maybe when I understood that I lived in the States. I don’t know!)
    I will make copies before going to the consulate; can I request copies there after they are completed? I imagine the copies made there won’t be free.
    I guess this is it for now. Thank you very much for helping me.

  89. Hi Extex,
    I remember you from Brock a while back (last summer?). Glad to hear that you have an appointment soon.
    Toronto has been requiring 2 visits for renunciation, as most consulates traditionally have. During the past year, quite a few have switched to just 1 visit for renunciation. We heard a few weeks ago that Toronto had switched, or would soon switch, to 1 visit, but no Brocker has been there since then, so we don’t know for sure. The relinquishments have always been done in 1 visit there.
    Toronto just wants you to bring the forms in, not in advance. You’ll meet first with a clerk (5-10 minutes), who will take your forms and ask you to sit in the waiting room. While you’re waiting, the vice consul will read over your forms before s/he meets with you.
    97025 (DS-4079). Questionnaire.
    A few questions are a bit odd to answer because they use the same form for people who want to lose US citizenship and people who want to claim it. So “how did you find out?” really applies to those who are trying to claim it (eg, an accidental American). You can just put something like “since my birth in the US.”
    81606 (DS-4083). Oath.
    81607 (DS-4081) Statement of Understanding of Consequences.
    It’s not as important to fill these two out in advance (as the 4079 is), but I recommend doing so. These have a line or two you can’t fill in, but they can fill those two lines in by hand – or if they prefer to enter it into their computer, it saves both of you time if they can look at a hard copy in order to do that instead of asking you questions verbally.
    No, unfortunately they won’t give you copies of your signed documents. You’ve probably read in the older reports that Toronto was giving people a photocopy to take home. They stopped doing that last winter. I wasn’t aware of any other consulate that was doing that (though there may have been some). I have the feeling that headquarters may have told them they’re not supposed to do that. I believe all consulates give you a receipt for the $450. Also someone reported being told by a VC (at Toronto, I believe — not sure where off the top of my head) that when your CLN forms are filed, it goes into a database. (So there’s a record of it accessible when you cross the border and don’t have a US passport, for example.)

  90. Hi Extex,
    Re, OVDI, I agree with everyone else – steer clear!
    If your CA is comfortable with you doing quiet disclosure or something else that’s not OVDI, stick with him/her. If they’re not, choose someone else, or do it yourself. Don’t worry about the CA becoming an adversary — clients do come and go, as long as the client pays their bill, professionals don’t mind a client moving on and don’t give it another thought (unless it’s a long-term client and/or a big revenue source for them, in which case they may think about it, but they won’t get nasty – it’s just part of life.)
    “Of course I’ve filed tax returns here. I’ve filed returns in the states as well. Here’s the problem. Through our 2010 return I filed them on only the stateside accounts, learning only this year I had to include my and my wifes’ Canadian accounts and income.”
    I don’t know much about US tax – so take my input with caution – but I don’t think you have to include your wife’s income. Joint accounts on the FBAR, yes. But I don’t think you need to report her income, unless you file jointly. Probably best not to file jointly. Someone else probably knows more than me about this. But I wanted to point it out as it sounded odd to me.

    1. You are all saying to stay away from OVDI like it is the plague. What is your opinion on the new streamlined filing that became law in September. I need to get compliant with the IRS so I can relinquish-renounce. I know the streamlined is only for 3 years of taxes and 6 of FBAR, but it would be a start and sounds less dangerous than just filing 5 years of taxes late out of the blue.

      1. @Quebec: Before you think about getting compliant, what is the date of your expatriation (i.e. becoming a citizen of another country, etc.). Depending on that, you may have already relinquished and may just need to go to Consulate and apply for a CLN backdated to date of relinquishment and would have no obligation to become compliant with a foreign government.
        If you expatriated before 2004 and you have done nothing to reclaim US citizenship since, that would likely be the best route for you.
        If you can give us a few more details, we may have other suggestions for you.
        OVDI is like the plague (or just like the other form of VD). There are other options. I cannot comment on the new process, but perhaps others can.

        1. I didn’t take Canadian citizenship until 2009, even though I have lived in Canada since 1977. I have not filed US taxes since 1973, nor voted, but as I live 10 miles from the US border and have an aging mother in Vermont, I applied for a passport card in 2009 because the US Government told me I could not cross the border on my Canadian passport. I have used that card to visit her. From what I have read I need to file taxes and FBARS with the IRS or I will never be able to renounce-relinquish my US citizenship.

          1. If you didn’t take Canadian citizenship until after 2004, you would fall under the current s. 887A of the tax code regardless of whether it’s a renunciation or a relinquishment. (It’s not so clear if that applies to relinquishments which occurred prior to that year and even less so prior to 1994, when the forerunner of the current 887A was enacted.)
            So you would have file the exit tax form (8854), on which you have to certify that you have been tax compliant for the past five years. Dept of State is supposed to send a copy of each CLN to the IRS, so that would tend to put someone “on the radar.”
            You don’t have to have filed back tax at the time you sign your CLN application forms at the consulate. The exit tax form (8854), on which you certify that you are tax compliant for the previous five years, is not due until June 15th of the following year.
            It’s definitely a real pain, but you wouldn’t necessarily get hit with taxes (depending on your financial situation) or penalties (a lot of the penalty threats seem to be scare tactics as people have been backfilling during the past year and not getting hit with penalties).
            But it’s definitely a situation where you’d really want to research and evaluate your situation before deciding what course of action to take. A lot of the readers here are going through, or have gone through, similar situations, so ask your questions – people can steer you in the right direction for useful sources of information and let you know how things have worked out for them.

          2. Based on this information, you will need to renounce rather than relinquish. Relinquish means you intended to give up US citizenship when you expatriated by becoming citizen of Canada.
            Because you got a US passport card, DOS would likely consider that as evidence that you did not intend to relinquish.
            Your other option, of course, is to do nothing. CRA will not collect FBAR penalties on any Canadian citizen or Canadian resident. They will also not collect US taxes for IRS on any Canadian citizen (even if also US citizen). However, because you did not become a Canadian citizen until 2009, that would only apply from that point forward.
            Whatever you do, don’t go into OVDI. That program was not intended for people like you. (That is friendly, but non-professional advice).
            There are others who have filed 5 years of back returns with no consequences other than the high costs for legal or accounting fees. In some cases, they actually got money back from IRS from the stimulus program for 2008. Are any of them willing to post their experience here?
            I am not able to comment on the new program myself, but this is what Moody’s said about it.

  91. @Extex and Pacifica:
    ‘Twas I who reported that a vice-consul in Toronto told my wife during her relinquishment interview that he had opened a file on her CLN application on State’s database,that part of which he said the border folks have access to on their computers. This was in answer to her question about what to do if a border guard asked her why she had a CDN passport with US birthplace and wasn’t travelling on a US passport. (He actually said to her “you’re not an American, you’re a Canadian” which made her heart jump for joy…)
    Once you’ve sworn either the renunciation OR the relinquishment oath at a consulate, there’s no way State can or would want to issue you a US passport, and it would be absurd for a US border guard to be asking for a US passport from that point onward. Hence the file notation and access to the border types ….
    Honestly I have to wonder whether, given what my wife was told about their databases, you even need a CLN with you at the border once it’s been issued. Presumably the fact it’s been issued eventually also goes on their computer, so all the border has to do is check their computer to know you’re no longer one of the “theirs.” However computer systems crash and malfunction, so I’d still travel with the CLN once I got it …

  92. I am reporting my Son’s renounciation on Dec.13th,2012 at the Toronto US Consulate. He is a
    Dual US/ Canadian Citizen, born in Toronto and always lived in Canada.(Accidental American)
    Never had a US Passport and until recently only got the SSN for reporting purposes only. I had
    reported him as Birth Abroad of US Citizen.
    This is his experience. He arrived at 225 Simcoe Street, Toronto about at 1:30 for a 2:00 oclock
    appointment. He waited outside in the shorter of the two lines. After entering, he went through
    the Security walking through the metal detector and emptying his pockets of any keys etc.
    He was sent up to the counter where he informed the clerk that he was there to Renounce his
    US Citizenship, she took all papers Birth Certificate, Birth of US Citizen Abroad, Canadian Passport
    and forms DS-4079,DS-4080,4081,& 4083 and told him to be seated and that it would take
    about 30 minutes to type up all his information. He also paid the $450.00 (Best Money Ever
    Spent). She also told him not to be concerned if others came in behind him because they were
    there for other services and not Renunciation. So he watched Seinfield on the TV with a Big US
    Flag standing in the corner and also watched some of the staff put up Christmas decoration.
    He said after 1 hour he went back to the counter and asked the clerk what was taking so long and if there were any problems (he asked in a nice and respectful way). She said they were really sorry but they were having difficultly with one of the appointments. She said we will be with you soon.
    So after waiting another HOUR they called him up to the counter and asked a few questions,
    and if he was sure he had read all the information about Renouncing and all the consequences.
    He saids yes I have read it all. So they had him sign all papers which took about 5-10 minute.
    He had to raise his right hand and read the oath and sign it. She said OK that is all. He thanked her.
    He asked how long it would take for the CLN to arrive, she said IF approved it would be
    between 4-6 months. She said she would email or call to let him know when it arrives and if he
    wanted to pick it up or have it mailed.. He said the clerks were very nice and really kind.
    I do want to thank Pacifica777, Calgary411, Nobledreamer, Petros and Blaze for all there support
    and wonderful advise. They helped so much with this process.
    I also want to thank everyone at Isaac Brock and Maple SandBox, the help they have given us
    all is just priceless.. Thanks from the bottom of my heart!! My son said he is so grateful and to
    thank everyone for him!!
    — Saddened

  93. Thanks for posting that Saddened. I hope it helped to make you happy, as well as your son.
    I also hope your Canadian citizenship will come through soon so you can also join the list of relinquishers.

  94. @Blaze, Thank you! Yes it did make me happy that my son finally renounced, I can’t wait until I become a Cdn.Citizen, then off to the US Consulate I will go in a run!!

    1. When you know the date of your Canadian citizenship ceremony, I suggest you call US Consulate and book an appointment to advise them of your relinquishment the next day.

  95. Good news – I’ve posted on IBS the details of receiving my CLN yesterday. It took nine months from start to finish. I just wanted to thank everyone at Maple Sandbox for your contributions to my sanity over the past year. It seems like a long haul, and of course there’s still the parting dance with the IRS. I plan to start getting all my information together early in the new year so I can fill out those forms and say a final good bye to Big Brother asap. I hope that the New Year brings further positive resolution to this chaotic situation so many of you are dealing with. Right now, I’m feeling very good!

  96. Congratulations Ladybug! I will always be so grateful to you for the time you so quietly and simply crawled into our lives at Brock and told us about your husband’s letter and CLN. Many of us who relinquished decades ago now sleep better because of that.
    I hope you will occasionally check in with us and let us know how you are doing.
    I hope Ladybug’s future blooms bright free of FATCA, FBAR and whatever other F’s the US tries to throw at her or at us.

  97. A friend in Ottawa contacted the embassy to book an appointment for telling them she relinquished back in 1974. They gave her a 15 minute appointment for this morning and told her she’d have to book a follow-up appointment to finalize.
    However, when she arrived today with all her paperwork filled in and all documentation in her hand they said they could do it all in one visit. No questions were asked about her answers on the forms and she was out in 90 minutes.
    She says the staff was courteous and efficient – even jocular at times. They understood the difference between relinquishing and renouncing and the consular officer told her that the paperwork would be sent to Washington DC today, and that she could expect to hear from them (Embassy) within a few *weeks* when her CLN arrives!!
    A few weeks??? If that is so the Ottawa embassy has dramatically changed their attitude and procedures as has Washington.
    When she gets her CLN I’ll post a follow-up.

    1. Very interesting and very positiive! This sounds like a major breakthrough.
      Update 4.53 pm. I just re-read it. This sounds like a more than major breakthrough!

      1. Fingers and toes crossed! Could Vancouver be next for a change? I pray and hope. I would actually cancel plans if they were to phone me/email me to move my 2nd appt. forward. Waiting more than 1 year for a 2nd appt. is obstruction – any way you look at it.

  98. Just thought I’d report that I received a comment on my other blog from someone who succeeded in obtaining their CLN backdated to 1984 based upon a sworn affidavit of obtaining Canadian citizenship in 1984 and swore an oath of allegiance with the intention of relinquishing US citizenship, and had taken no actions since that time that negated that. It took a year to get the CLN, but it was received, and the affidavit evidence was not challenged.
    Good news!

  99. Reporting on my visit to the US Consulate in Toronto to renounce my citizenship. As you may recall I immigrated to Canada in 2007 and became a Canadian citizen in November 2011.
    At about 1:48PM I got off the TTC Spadina Line at the St. Patrick station for my 2:00 PM appointment. The day before my appointment, my wife (abbreviated to DW) and I had scoped out the stop and surroundings, so I knew where to go and how to get there. Doing this advance scouting turned out to be a big stress reliever. Bless my DW for having the perspicacity to suggest checking the ‘ground truth’ on the day before.
    I emerged from the TTC station, walked west perhaps 60 meters on Dundas, turned left on Simcoe past the Tim’s, and went about 300 meters to the consulate entrance. I was quite surprised to be greeted outside by what seemed to be a private security guard – I expected a Marine.
    Anyway the security guard checked my pre-printed appointment confirmation and US passport, and directed me inside.
    Inside the entrance another guard asked if I had any electronic devices. Already knowing the drill, I had none and said ‘Nope.’ I emptied my pockets into a standard tray, piled my coat on the top, and walked through the metal detector. My metal belt buckle set off the detector. I was ‘wanded’ to ensure that that was all the metal I had, which was fine.
    After gathering my belongings I was directed through a door. The result was a little confusing. There was a large room and it took a moment to figure it out. On the left side was a waiting area, in which perhaps 18 people sat. A low wall divided the room, left side from right side. Eventually I realized the room was divided into on the left people applying for US visas, and on the right US citizens and the service(s) they required. I walked up the right side to the end, spoke to the security person, and was directed through another door and to take the elevator to the third floor.
    On emerging I was asked by a gentleman behind a window (kind of like a bank of bank teller windows) to step up. He asked why I was there, and said that I was renouncing my US citizenship. He gathered some forms, put the into what appeared to be a Clear-Vu type binder, gave me a slip which had a number, and asked me to wait until my number was called. My number was prefaced with “C” which I guessed to mean Citizen. So I entered the waiting room.
    When a number was called, an LED annunciator showed the number called along with the window number (for example, C999 4; being Number C999, Window 4).
    I waited perhaps five minutes before being called to the same window I had gone to. The female Consular Officer (CO) asked to confirm that I was there to renounce my citizenship. My CO then stated that this was a very serious and a significant event (I am paraphrasing) and wanted to ensure that I was aware of the significance of this and that I would need to return to the consulate after considering the gravity of my act. She then drew out a blank copy of the Determination of Citizenship form and began describing it. I interrupted and said that, well, I had already completed a copy and drew it out of my interview folder.
    She (admirably) quickly realized that I was prepared and apologized for being unaware that I had completed the form. I added that I also had completed the ‘Awareness Of The Seriousness’ and the ‘Oath of Renunciation’ forms. I confirmed that I had signed none of the forms. She apologized gain for being unaware that I was prepared (apparently the gentleman who originally helped me should have asked whether I had completed any forms), and that it appeared I had already given some thought to what I was doing. I replied that I had considered this for some time and added ‘Not a problem.’
    She then said that if I wished, this could be taken care of within an hour and therefore would not need to return. I replied that yes, I would be pleased to do so. She asked if for my complete documentation and I handed over my Determination, Awareness, and Oath forms as well as my US and Canadian passports. (I also had copies of my Canadian Citizenship Certificate, Immigration Minister Kenneys’ letter, marriage certificate, birth certificate. I decided ‘on the fly’ they were unneccessary.) She said that there was a $450 fee and asked if I had the funds. I replied that I did and she replied that she would alert the cashier and asked me to wait where I was.
    She returned and and said for me to go to the cashiers’ window, which is the far right window of the bank of (I believe) five windows. She asked for my number and I said I had given it to the CO. The cashier was a bit flustered, walked away for moment, and returned with a new number slip and said this one replaced the previous slip. She stated the $450 fee and I handed over the four crisp $100 and one $50 USD bills which my DW had gotten from our bank the previous week. I was privately amused that the cashier held each bill up in front of a ceiling light and carefully examined it. She then ‘rang it up’, said that the receipt would go to the CO and asked me to return to the waiting area.
    During the about 20 minute wait, I chatted with two people who were also renouncing, and with someone and a companion whose US passports had been lost over the weekend. This person was very curious yet not at all antagonistic.
    When I was called up to Window C I greeted the same CO. She returned my Canadian passport, explained that all three forms had been copied and each form had been ‘sealed’. She also made a joke which I found amusing; I think I chuckled. She asked me to sign and return the Determination and Awareness Forms, which I did. She then asked me to read the Oath document and if I then wished to proceed, to raise my right hand and read the oath aloud. I read the form, raised my right hand, read the oath (with a few stumbles), signed both copies, and returned them. She explained that it would take about four months for the State Department to return the CLN, and that I would be contacted about whether I would like to pick it up or have it mailed. (A brief aside: I live about 3 1/2 hours away so it will be the latter). She returned the receipt for my payment and said that I might want to make copies, since it is heat-transferred and can quickly fade into unreadability, and to keep a copy with my Canadian passport as proof of the transaction as well as why I am travelling on a Canadian passport and have a US birthplace. My ‘internalized’ implication was that the receipt would minimize the hassle of entering the States.
    She then said that we were done. I then thanked her for her professionalism and her sense of humour, both of which made a potentially stressful situation much less so.
    And I was done. Took the elevator back to the first floor, down the corridor, through the door and turnstile. I was in the consulate for almost exactly an hour. It was far less stressful than I had mentally prepared myself for (earlier in the day my DW observed that I was ‘in a mood’ for which I was most apologetic).
    I want to thank the IBS and Maple Sandbox for providing support and resources which were an enormous help in understanding the issues, helped me clarify and sort through my options, and give me the courage to act. Thanks also to my DW and my siblings in the States for being so supportive.
    I do not smoke. In recent years though I have acquired the habit of smoking a cigar to mark momentous life events which include moving from the States, obtaining my Canadian citizenship, my mom dying. This is certainly worth a cigar.
    Cuban, of course. 🙂

  100. @Extex, congratulations on your completed renunciation. And thank you for the very detailed account of your trip, and I am positive that others reading will find this extremely helpful, and will help to alleviate some of the unspoken stress around taking such a big step. It’s great to hear that you were treated courteously and professionally and there was no unpleasantness. I hope you thoroughly enjoy your cuban cigar!

  101. @ Extex,
    What a great detailed account! It gives an exceptionally clear idea of what to expect.
    Just as you mentioned that scoping out the location the day before was a great stress reliever (a good tip for others, too), your story, being so detailed, will relieve a lot of stress for other people planning to expatriate at Toronto. Also the fact that the CO was so personable (typical Toronto) should relieve some stress, too 🙂
    I’m glad everything went well for you! And thanks for sharing!

  102. @ outraged and pacifica, thank you for your kind comments. I do hope that my story will help people who do renounce prepare, have a better understanding of what to expect. and to be a little less stressed.
    I will cross-post my story on IBS and encourage them to add my data to the Renunciation/Relinquishment spreadsheet.

  103. Thanks Extex for that detailed information. Enjoy your freedom.
    I always discourage smoking. In this case, however, a Cuban cigar is definitely called for. In fact, why not smoke a whole box of them along with a strong drink to toast your liberty.

  104. Better yet, Extex can celebrate when his CLN arrives by exercising freedom that Americans can’t exercise (legally, that is, or without being harassed beyond belief on their return) — he can actually go to Cuba for a nice holiday and get great cigars cheaper there than he can here, I suspect!
    Canadians can go to Cuba; Americans can’t. In fact, now that he’s sworn his oath of renunciation, turned in his US passport, and has only his Canadian passport and his receipt for his $450, I’d say he’s good to go to Cuba any time he wants to now. Can’t see how the Yanks can complain about that!
    Might be a nice break from February weather in Ontario …

  105. Hamid Karzai’s brother Mahmud has renounced U.S. citizenship according to Radio Free Europe.
    Mr. Karzai says he did so because he has lived in Afghanistan for 12 years and he “might become politically active” at some point in the future.
    I wonder if the wealthy entrepreneur knows about FATCA or FBAR or if he is subject to an exit tax.
    It will be interesting to see if there is any reaction from Schumer, Casey, Reid, et. al on this one.

    1. Blaze, Mahmoud/Mahmud Karzai and many of his Karzai family members are American citizens and lived in the US for many years, investing in real estate, restaurants, etc. He also owned 7% of the bank of Kabul. They will certainly know about the exit tax, etc.
      I’m sure his FBARs and FATCA form 8938 would have been interesting for the IRS and Treasury to try and verify.
      Did the US just let him go, in order not to open up a much bigger can of political worms? See; “…some of the people who owned large stakes in the bank and received millions in loans with no expectations that they would repay them, including President Karzai’s brother Mahmood Karzai, and Haseen Fahim, the brother of the Afghan first vice president, have escaped indictment. “….
      “…Karzai, 57, is a wealthy entrepreneur whose business interests include banking, mining, and real estate.
      He lived in the United States for many years and reportedly has owned restaurants in San Francisco, Boston, and Baltimore.
      Media reports say Karzai controls a 7 percent stake in Kabul Bank, Afghanistan’s largest private bank.
      Last year, an independent audit found that Kabul Bank was involved in a fraud that sent nearly $900 million outside Afghanistan. Karzai denied any wrongdoing….” from
      See also Mahmoud/Mahmud Karzai called for the US to bail out the bank of Kabul
      Afghanistan, and the corruption there is a problem for the US. I doubt we will hear anything from the US, or Schumer, Levin et al about Mahmoud Karzai’s renunciation, or asking about whether he properly reported his offshore bank accounts (he also was living in Dubai), or his 7% share of the Kabul bank.
      Funny, that they will lambast Saverin – who had paid up his taxes in full, but leave the Karzais alone.
      They will harangue ordinary US duals born abroad – who’ve already paid tax where they live, and have only local bank accounts, but leave Karzai alone?

    2. @Badger: Typical. Same reason they don’t seem to be willing to go after Mitt Romney’s offshore accounts.
      Plus, the new Secretary of Treasury had investments in Cayman. Jack Lew was also in charge of a Citi Bank division that had over 100 Cayman-domiciled funds.
      His defense was “I’m a moron.” That got Lew appointed to the most senior financial post in US and perhaps in the world.
      Richard Nixon’s “I am not a crook” did not work out too well. “I’m a moron” is far more effective to stay out of trouble, rip off the public and get appointed to senior positions.

  106. @Extex and others:
    More are joining the crowd.
    Six members of Israel’s Knesset must renounce citizenship to take office. Two of these must renounce U.S. citizenship.
    Dov Lipman said giving up his American citizenship is one of the hardest things he’s ever done. I suspect he does not yet know how hard IRS can make it for him if they decide to.
    Mr. Lipman may be grateful as he learns about FATCA, FBAR, etc. I hope he’s not subject to an exit tax.

  107. Talking too much about Tina Turner’s renunciation can be dangerous in the Twitterverse.
    Our good friend Just Me (known on Twitter as FATCA_Fallout) was suspended from Twitter yesterday.
    He thinks this is because Twitter determined he was a Bot because he tweeted too many replies to discussions about Tina Turner’s renunciation.
    FATCA_Fallout was reinstated today, but his followers and those whom he was following have been wiped out of his account.
    So those of you who were following him (or those who want to) can help him out by signing up to follow him again.
    Yesterday Al-Shabab militants were also suspended from Twitter for tweeting a death threat on Kenyan hostages. I can assure you FATCA_Fallout was not one of them. I’m sure, however, IRS considers FATCA-Fallout a radical for standing against the FATCA Attack on “US persons” who choose to live their lives outside of US.
    FATCA_Fallout may have temporarily had his chirp silenced by a sealed beak, but I hope he will soon be tweeting up a storm again.

  108. I think I might write a book. Working title “Catch-4081”
    It’s a story about a guy who goes to a US consulate to renounce his citizenship and is refused. He argues that every US citizen has the right to renounce their citizenship. The consular official says that is not entirely true and that crazy people are deemed not to have the ability to form intent and hence he cannot be allowed to renounce.
    “But I’m not crazy.” he replies. “Of course you are.” says the official. “You’d have to be crazy to want to give up your US citizenship.”

  109. @johnnb, several of us must be thinking along the same lines. There is potential for a whole literature here.
    Here’s an outline for a play I’ve been working on while awaiting the arrival of my CLN. I’m sure many others can relate.
    The ending obviously leaves it open for a sequel. 🙂
    Escape from the Orwellian Zombie Rabbit Hole
    Act I
    Born in the U.S. of A.
    Child of World War II
    Dutifully Liked Ike
    Scared of nuclear war
    Impressed by Sputnik
    Inspired by Kennedy and King
    Disillusioned by Vietnam
    Disgusted by Nixon
    Act II
    Welcomed by Canada
    Taken with Trudeau
    Reborn Canadian
    Embarked on career
    Raised family
    Retired pleasantly
    Act III
    Horrified at 9/11
    Appalled by Bush and his crones
    Droned by U.S. taxceptionalism
    Ducked down the consular rabbit hole
    Filled out the Kafkaesque forms for
    Certifiably Leaving the Nightmare
    Hopefully free from the zombies.

  110. Here’s more on Tina Turner wanting a divorce from US.
    As many of us know, “permanent and irrevocable” divorce does not mean much to US. Decades later they unilaterally decide they want us back even when we are happily remarried to another country. Isn’t bigamy illegal in US?
    Most of our situations are different from examples in this story. But, the abusive spouse demanding money is the same.

  111. @all,
    Many of you may remember that I had my first appointment at the Vancouver consulate to apply for a backdated CLN last September. you might also recall that I had difficulty with several documents not accepted. In December, they contacted me with a date for the 2nd appointment to take place in October, 2013.
    The log jam at Vancouver might be starting to break up. Certainly, with the help of Calgary and Pacifica, Ms. S. Johnson of the U.S. consulate, Ottawa has intervened in Vancouver to move things forward.
    I was contacted this past week by the consulate, and told that my 2nd appointment for “Relinquishment” would be moved forward from October, 2013 to April, 2013.
    I will report after the appointment how things have gone. I certainly am very, very eager to get all of this behind me.

    1. Hi Tiger,
      Really glad they moved up your appointment — after 40 years of NOT being a USC, it will be super to have this all over with! I suspect most Americans weren’t even born yet when you were last a USC.
      Bloody pain they stretched out dealing with your CLN application this long, but I’m glad it’s almost over now. I hope this indicates that things are starting to move overall for everyone at Vancouver — but I’m especially happy for you knowing what a hassle you got from them and that the whole point is just to recognise the long-existent reality of your life. I know how weird and disorienting it feels to suddenly find one’s legally-terminated citizenship playing any role, let alone the upheaval and chaos of this, after decades of normal life.

    2. Fabulous news Tiger.
      Did you leave your lipstick at home or did they seize it from you so you couldn’t use it to attack the staff? (I remember someone at Brock reported the woman ahead in line either had her lipstick taken away or had to leave the Consulate to get rid of it)

    1. @all,
      I promised Blaze I would post after my 2nd appointment at the Vancouver Consulate for my CLN (backdated to 1972).
      The appointment was today and although, I am exhausted, it is now finally finished.
      I was treated politely, and with professionalism by both the clerk and the station chief. The station chief did ask me to confirm that I had completed the expatriating act (in 1972) voluntarily and with the intent of relinquishing my U.S. citizenship. And that I had done nothing since that date to negate the expatriating act – and he mentioned applying for a passport, voting in a U.S. election as actions that could result in negating the relinquishment.
      He also mentioned a possibility of tax consequences and the consequences of not being given the privileges of a U.S. citizen etc.
      He also told me the process had been speeded up and although there were no guarantees on when I would receive the CLN, on average they were now being received in approximately 3 months.
      I was in the consulate for approximately 1 1/2 hours with most of that time in one of two waiting areas. The actual face to face meeting time with either the clerk or the station chief would have been less than 30 minutes.
      I am very happy that I made the decision to pursue this as I am the sort of person who does not like things hanging and unfinished.
      Now I wait but I think I will wait with less of a heavy heart, knowing that I am close to the end. When the CLN arrives, the first thing I plan on doing, is putting the original in a safety deposit box and framing a copy.

  112. A follow up to my 3 January post about a friend in Ottawa who had an appointment that day to inform them of relinquishing back in 1974. She picked up her CLN at the post office this morning – two months and a day after her appointment and one of those months a short one.
    The CLN was, as usual, backdated to the date of her expatriating act.
    Just thought this was one more piece of evidence that things have turned around quite a bit in Ottawa.

    1. That is super news, John! Incredibly great that Ottawa is following procedure — and also terrific that there seems to be a pretty clear pattern of CLNs now arriving to Canada in about two months, which is a major improvement from a year ago! Brock also got a report recently from someone renouncing at Ottawa with no problems too.
      BTW, I made reference to your friend’s experience last month in the introduction of the Ottawa section of the Consulate Report Directory – basically lifted the travel advisory 🙂

      “UPDATE 2013.02. THIS IS GOOD NEWS! As of 2013, it appears that Ottawa is now using standard procedure to handle CLN applications. They have also switched to doing this in one meeting. Time span from booking to completion is now within 1 month, down from 1 year. They no longer routinely require interviews (face time) of 2-3 hours. Maple Sandbox received a report indicating they processed a s.(1) relinquishment smoothly and pleasantly in January 2013 — they apparently are no longer insisting (erroneously) that the law does not recognise previous relinquishment. I have also received an e-mail from a client of the Ottawa consulate in January 2013 describing satisfactory service at Ottawa, service typical of any consulate — a sharp, and welcome, change from any information I’d received as recently as December 2012. Based on these and the following report, it seems that some major changes occurred on or about the beginning of the new year!”

  113. Hello everyone – I’m glad to see that while this initial post was made a few years ago, people are still commenting on it. You all seem so knowledgeable; I wonder if you can give us some quick information, as we’ve been reading conflicting things online (or just not understanding what we read!).
    Here’s our situation: I am Canadian-born, Canadian citizen, so I am not directly affected by this.
    My husband, on the other hand, was born in the US in November, 1959. His parents were Hungarian refugees, living in Canada. His mother went to the US in November, 1959, to attend her sister’s wedding and while she was there, my husband was born (a miscalculated duedate). I don’t know exactly how long they were there, but it was certainly less than a month.
    He has a certificate of Canadian Citizenship dated January, 1963 – making him just over 3 years old at the time. I’m presuming that this is when his parents also became Canadian citizens.
    As far as I know, he’s never considered himself an American citizen – never resided there, owned property, worked, paid taxes, applied for a SSN, applied for a passport, etc. He has traveled into the US using his Canadian passport on many occasions, by land, air and sea.
    Last July when we were crossing the border (we live in BC) an American guard said to him, “Where’s your US passport?” (not, “Do you have a US passport?” which would have been less rude, but let’s not go there.) Of course he stated that he didn’t have one, had never had one, wasn’t an American citizen, to which the guard replied, “If you’re born in the US, you’re automatically a US citizen.” We had never heard such a thing. We were allowed to proceed, but since then he has been very concerned about what will happen next time we try to cross together. Someone he met last summer at a gathering was the first to tell him about some of the recent changes.
    Reading this article about renunciation vs. relinquishment leads me to believe that he has already relinquished…however, then in one of the comments I read something about if you became a Canadian citizen as a minor, that could be a problem.
    Based on your knowledge and experience, what would people here suggest is the route he should follow? If he does apply for a CLN, can he expect to face any tax issues?
    Thanks for any advice you can give.

  114. @WifeofAmerican??? On the face of it, unfortunately, it does sound like your husband might be considered a US person by the IRS, although there are a number of mitigating factors he’ll have to research. I was born in the US, came to Canada when I was 6, and became a Canadian at 16, thinking I was giving up, irrevocably, my US citizenship. It’s only since all of this mess came to my attention that I discovered that the IRS probably would consider me still a US person, because the US govt does not recognize that a minor can give up their citizenship (except in extreme, and rare circumstances). So, what I say here is what I’ve learned in my reading online, both from other people’s accounts, and comments. and from the US govt websites.
    If your husband worked for the Canadian government as an adult, and swore an oath, that might be enough to get him out of it. I did have one person tell me that in circumstances almost identical to mine, that a certificate of loss of nationality, CLN, was received based upon swearing that oath to our govt as an adult. So, I am hoping that’s enough to get me one, as well, but I haven’t had the gumption to apply for a CLN yet – I’m still hoping our govt will protect us and it won’t be necessary.
    I’m also going to quote a bit from another person who wrote that he came across a ‘vital contemporaneous statute about having my US citizenship lapse if I did not return to the US to establish permanent residence by my 25th birthday… While this age-25 statute was removed in the 1986 amendments, it is still honoured, even today. ‘ I don’t know much about this, I’ve done some reading but found it pretty convoluted, and I also haven’t heard if this person successfully obtained a CLN based upon this or not.
    I, also, have been hassled a bit at the border, because my CDN passport shows a US place of birth. I even had my CDN passport thrown on the floor once by an irate border guard. However, other people, within the last several months have reported crossing the border with no hassles at all, so I think it depends upon the individual, and his mood that day.
    Whatever your husband does, my personal opinion is that he should not, not, not, do anything to acknowledge any citizenship ties to the US. The only way people like your husband and myself are ever going to be discovered by the IRS is if FATCA comes through and our banks ask us about ties to the US and we answer honestly, and the banks report on us to the IRS. Some people believe FATCA is going ahead, others don’t, and I’m playing a waiting game.
    Your husband could also consult a citizenship lawyer, but that can be costly, and he’ll have to make sure he researches well and engages a lawyer who is well versed in this issue and its complexities.
    I urge you to read a lot both here, and at, and renounceuscitizenship. There are a number of sites with really good information, and first hand stories from people that might help determine your husbands course of action.
    I’m really sorry to hear that another one has been caught up in this mess. It can be very stressful, especially when first finding out about it, so take your time, research, and remember that people who truly know the pain of dealing with this are here to offer support, comfort, and, oftentimes, outrage.

    1. Thanks Outraged Canadian – I’ve just read through your blog!
      From the reading I’ve done – here, on Isaac Brock, and on your blog – it seems that the point that is going to be hardest to deal with is that he was a minor when he became a Canadian citizen. I wish that “age 25 statute” and points about laws changing after certain dates were clearer in regards to his situation. I also wish that he could get some clear answers without having to be “on the radar”. It is so clear from his behaviour in 53 years of living in Canada – his entire life! – that he has never considered himself to be a US citizen, never tried to be anything but Canadian – however, does that trump the “didn’t voluntarily relinquish because he was 3 years old”? I wish that answer was easy to find.

  115. @Wife, I wholeheartedly agree with you. I wish it was straightforward and easy. None of this is – on purpose. I believe the IRS wants us to be confused and uncertain, that way more of us law-abiding Canadians are likely to react in panic and try to come into a compliance that doesn’t/shouldn’t apply to us!

  116. @WifeofAmerican??? Outraged’s advice is good, but I would add a point to it. Unlike Outraged, it seems your husband may have been a dual since birth.
    He was born in US to Canadian parents. Unlike Outraged, he did not swear an oath of allegiance to Canada, which US considers an expatriating act which qualifies for relinquishment.
    It seems he would need to renounce rather than relinquish unless he swore an Oath of Allegiance to the Queen as part of federal or some provincial government employment. That is worth an attempt at relinquishing.
    As Outraged said, he should NOT do anything to acknowledge US citizenship. He should NOT get a US passport, vote in US election, get a US SSN or file US tax returns.
    Under Canadian law, Canadian banks cannot accept a foreign birth certificate as ID for opening accounts and they cannot demand to know your husband’s place of birth. As you may know from reading here and elsewhere, if they begin to do that, some of us are prepared to launch a lawsuit. If the government changes the laws, we are prepared to launch a Charter of Rights and Freedoms challenge.
    Your husband is ideal person for such a challenge. He was essentially a “border baby” who has always lived, studied and worked in Canada as a Canadian citizen.
    I continue to believe we may see some form of a watered down version of FATCA in Canada, but I don’t believe banks are going to start to demand information on place of birth. Others don’t share my optimism, so it’s difficult to know who is correct.
    OMGhe’sstillanamerican had a similar situation to yours. Her husband came to Canada with his mother as a young child and became a Canadian citizen as a teen (I think that was the situation). That was different from your husband in that he did swear the oath, even though he was a minor at the time.
    OMG was an active contributor to Brock for a while, but then she stopped. We only heard from her once here. I loved her wit and miss her participation. Has anyone heard from OMG? I miss her and hope she’s OK. Best of all, I hope she simply decided to get a life again and stop worrying about some a foreign government’s financial terrorism.

  117. I so happy to find this web site. It is the answer to my prayers. I am american born and came to Canada with my american born husband as a refugee in 1969 under Prime Minister Trudeau’s amnesty for draft dodgers and deserters. We were accepted and our first son was born three months later. We got our landed immigrant status formally in February 1970 when I was able to take the xrays for my medical exam. Our second son was born in 1973.
    I kept filing us tax returns up until we became citizens in 1993. I have never had a us passport, only Canadian. Never worked in the USA since leaving in 1969.
    Unfortunately in 1998 we were hit with a double whammy with my husband and son diagnosed with terminal cancer two months apart.
    Our son died in 1999 and my husband in 2001.
    My husband’s company gave him a good buyout instead of a pension five months before dying.
    I retired at 57, fours after he died, I have all his buyout money in rrsp GICs. I cash some each for the twelve years.
    I am uncertain how to approach relinguishing my US citizenship. I live in northern Ontario and would go to Toronto to do it.
    Another factor is my older son lives in UK since 2011. I wonder if he should do anything.
    I live off CPP, Old Age Pension and a company pension. I share utilities living with a friend. I sold my home in 2009 and banked the procceds in high interest accounts to be ready to buy a home again. If I turned my rrsps into rrifs would that benefit me? I am so worried the US will take a lot of my savings. My husband was a blue collar worker and worked long hours outside and never enjoyed retirement dying at 54.. Our son died at 26.
    I appreciate any advice on what to do. I found about the FATCA last fall and have been worried what to do. Thanks for your help.

  118. I so happy to find this web site. It is the answer to my prayers. I am american born and came to Canada with my american born husband as a refugee in 1969 under Prime Minister Trudeau’s amnesty for draft dodgers and deserters. We were accepted and our first son was born three months later. We got our landed immigrant status formally in February 1970 when I was able to take the xrays for my medical exam. Our second son was born in 1973.
    I kept filing us tax returns up until we became citizens in 1993. I have never had a us passport, only Canadian. Never worked in the USA since leaving in 1969.
    Unfortunately in 1998 we were hit with a double whammy with my husband and son diagnosed with terminal cancer two months apart.
    Our son died in 1999 and my husband in 2001.
    My husband’s company gave him a good buyout instead of a pension five months before dying.
    I retired at 57, fours after he died, I have all his buyout money in rrsp GICs. I cash some each for the twelve years.
    I am uncertain how to approach relinguishing my US citizenship. I live in northern Ontario and would go to Toronto to do it.
    Another factor is my older son lives in UK since 2011. I wonder if he should do anything.
    I live off CPP, Old Age Pension and a company pension. I share utilities living with a friend. I sold my home in 2009 and banked the procceds in high interest accounts to be ready to buy a home again. If I turned my rrsps into rrifs would that benefit me? I am so worried the US will take a lot of my savings. My husband was a blue collar worker and worked long hours outside and never enjoyed retirement dying at 54.. Our son died at 26.
    I appreciate any advice on what to do. I found about the FATCA last fall and have been worried what to do. Thanks for your help.

  119. Hi Darlene,
    Up to the point where both your husband and son died – something I can’t even imagine – your story is very similar to that of my wife and I.
    Both of us were born in the US and we moved to Canada in 1968 because of the draft. We applied for Canadian citizenship at the earliest possible date (which was five years waiting period at the time) and became citizens late in 1973.
    Only heard about the whole FATCA mess late in 2011 and, after a bunch of asking questions and reading web sites we both went to the US consulate in January 2012 to ask for them to recognize that we relinquished our US citizenship when we became Canadians. We got our CLNs (certificate of loss of nationality) six months later. The consulate visit in Halifax was professional, brief and even friendly – much less stressful than we feared.
    If you want to go that route you have to realize that there are two aspects: Citizenship and taxes.
    For citizenship they want to know if you became a Canadian voluntarily. In every case I’ve heard of they just take your word on that. They also want to be assured that you became Canadian with the intent to relinquish your US citizenship. That’s more problematic so what they do is ask you to fill out a questionnaire (DS-4079) which asks a bunch of questions about what you have done since you became a Canadian. If you haven’t done anything which would indicate that you meant to keep your US citizenship then it’s pretty straightforward and you’ll get your CLN. The questions are all about whether or not after you became Canadian you applied for a US passport, registered your children as US citizens born abroad, paid US taxes, kept a residence or job in the US…you get the idea.
    Getting the CLN is the first step but taxes are also problematic. Like you, my wife and I paid both US and Canadian taxes until we became Canadian citizens and stopped after the 1973 tax year. We sent a cover letter with our 1973 taxes saying we no longer considered ourselves US citizens but never heard back from them.
    There is much conflicting opinion and no definitive court decision which says we are off the hook for US taxes but my wife and I have no intention of filing any returns as our CLN says we stopped being US citizens in 1973. There is a rule that says you don’t lose your US citizenship when you perform the relinquishing act but rather when you tell the US about it so for us that would be 2012 rather than 1973 but making laws retroactive 40 years is, in my opinion, absurd. It makes a mockery of any legal system. However, I don’t want to mislead you so you should know that the possibility exists that at some time in the future they may ask for us to file.
    If you want to go the CLN route your first step would be to download a copy of DS-4079 and look through it and then follow the advice given at the web site for the Isaac Brock Society for consulate visits to the Toronto consulate.
    My wife and I wish you the best in your effort to get clear of this stress.
    John Gahagan

    1. John, thanks so much…I will start with the downloading of DS-4079. It seems so daunting but I will do it.

  120. Hi Dar,
    I’m glad you found Maple Sandbox!
    I’m really sorry to hear about you having this stress after having lost your husband and son. I know it’s really scary to find out about this US mess (I relinquished in 1979 and found out about this mess in 2011). There are a lot of us caught up in this, so we’re sharing our experiences in navigating the system. I think you’ll find some good help and support here.
    I can tell you a bit about the Dept of State side of things, which I’m stronger on than I am on the IRS side.
    From what you’ve written, it sounds like you clearly did relinquish in 1993. Don’t let the 4079 spook you. It’s pesky, but bear in mind DoS is not trying to trick you or hold you in retroactive citizenship against your will. They’re actually quite decent to deal with. And with so many long-ago relinquishers in Canada, the consulates here seem very aware that we just got hit by a bolt of the blue by new US laws/policies that we never could have seen coming and are just trying to get our lives back on track as quickly as possible (except Vancouver which has a longer dragged-out procedure).
    When you go to your consulate meeting, you’ll first meet with a clerk for about 10 minutes, who takes your id documents and photocopies them, and takes your 4079 (questionnaire), 4081 (statement of understanding of consequences) and statement (optional, you can write one to bolster your 4079). You then wait in the waiting room (time varies, seems to usually be no more than a half-hour). The vice consul reads your documents before meeting with you. The meeting with the vice consuls at Toronto seems to run about 10-15 minutes.
    Toronto has a terrific reputation. I applied for my CLN there and they were delightful to deal with. There’s usually about a 4-5 week wait time to get an appointment there. I don’t mean that you should do things in a rush — I mean when you decide to make an appointment, it does not take long. As John suggested, take a look at the the Consulate Report Directory at the Issac Brock website. It has about 16 pages of Toronto reports.
    After you sign the papers, the CLNs usually arrive in a few months now (they were taking a year at one point), but it does vary a fair bit. Also at Isaac Brock, you can see a timeline chart of how long it has/is taking people to get through the process from booking their appt, to having their appt, to receiving their CLN, also arranged by consulate location.

  121. Dar.
    2 things. You may or may not want to get a certificate of loss of nationality. That’s optional and up to you. If you do, when you go to the consulate it is to inform them that you RELINQUISHED your US citizenship in 1993.
    You do not need to contact the IRS in any way shape or form. There are numerous opinions from lawyers and others documented at the IBS website that you are home free. see for example
    Also try to find a post on IBS on Feb 15 2013 by Lagoon. ( I don’t recall which thread) He consulted 3 different lawyers who agreed that there was no obligation to contact the IRS.

    1. KalC, That is really important information, given the date of Dar’s relinquishment.
      Lagoon’s comment to which you refer appears here on the Did you Relinquish Before Feb 6, 1995, thread.
      It also resulted in a separate thread being started Pre-1995 Relinquishers and the IRS: Three Recent Legal Opinions.
      We also have a post on Maple Sandbox, Relinquished Before 2004? Applying for CLN now? What are the IRS consequences? The IRS has never taken a definitive position on this since the current law came into effect, but this post links to an article by US tax lawyer Michael J. Miller, which points out the legal, as well as common sense, absurdity of a retroactive application position. And Brock has one about this article as well, Michael Miller Paper on the exit tax – Applies Prospectively.

  122. @ Dar
    This is no substitute for professional legal advice, however the following is widely accepted as factual and may provide some peace of mind.
    No foreign government has the power to collect taxes or penalities directly from Canadian residents in Canada. Only the government of Canada can enforce tax collection here. The US cannot directly take money from your Canadian bank accounts, seize wages or payments, or attatch any Canadian asset.
    Further, Canadian courts generally do not enforce foreign tax revenue claims, especially against Canadian citizens resident in Canada.
    Under the Canada – US Tax Treaty, the Canadian government will NOT assist in collecting US taxes or penalities from any Canadian citizen, unless the tax debt arose before they became a Canadian citizen. This was first reported by Don Cayo in Vancouver Sun and has been stated repeatedly by Finance Minister Jim Flaherty in his letters to Canadians on this issue.
    For more information see article titled: US Tax Collection in Canada – Erin L. Frew and S. Natasha Reid in Canadian Tax Highlights, the newsletter of Canadian Tax Foundation September 2011. This is subscription only, but libraries and tax professionals should have a copy.

    1. Does not FATCA make Canadian Banks give the USA government the information on the bank accounts of what is considered as Americans?

    2. Dar. 1 fatca isn’t law. 2. There are numerous exceptions. 3. You are no longer an American. Stop worrying about it.

  123. Dar: I’m happy you found us. You are among friends here. I hope you will learn and explore with us as we stand up to IRS bullies together.
    I am sad to learn of the loss of your husband and son so close together. I can’t even imagine how difficult that was for you.
    I hope we can help to alleviate some of your anxiety here at Maple Sandbox about International Robbery Society.
    As others have said, it appears you have a strong case for relinquishing, rather than renouncing. Many have chosen to apply for a CLN. I personally am determined not to go anywhere near US Consulate or IRS.
    When I became a Canadian citizen in 1973, US Consulate told me clearly, firmly and directly that I was “permanently and irrevocably” relinquishing US citizenship. Like you and many others I was stunned in 2011 to learn they want to reclaim me and my money just as I am entering retirement. I simply don’t trust them and have chosen to stay away from Consulate and use other Canadian means to protect myself. Others have decided a CLN is what gives them the most sense of security and peace of mind. It is a decision only you can make.
    Your best protection from IRS is your Canadian citizenship. Canada’s Finance Minister and Canada Revenue Agency have said repeatedly that CRA will not collect penalties for IRS from any Canadian citizen or resident and they will not collect any tax liability for IRS on any Canadian citizen if the liability is from a period where the person was a Canadian citizen.
    IRS has no jurisdiction in Canadian courts. In fact, Canadian courts have said under no circumstances will the revenue laws of a foreign country be enforced directly or indirectly in Canada. That case was a long time ago, but it related specifically to IRS trying to collect taxes from a Canadian citizen in Canada.
    In another long ago case involving IRS, Canadian courts found just because a Canadian bank chooses to do business in another country, that does not release them from the application of Canadian laws in Canada. The IRS attempt to seize money through TD was denied.
    The most important thing you can do is to do nothing. Do not get a US passport, do not vote in US elections and do NOT file with IRS. Doing any of those things will most likely be interpreted that you intended to retain or reclaim US citizenship.
    In terms of your son, he was born in Canada. His birth certificate is Canadian. There is no reason a bank in UK or Canada should consider him a US person. Therefore, it’s even more important he does not do any of the above things that could cause the IRS to consider him a US person.
    FATCA is the monster lurking over our shoulders. However, current Canadian banking, human rights and privacy laws prevent banks and credit unions from asking about our place of birth or citizenship. The government has shown no indication they will change those laws. At the same time, the government has not said clearly that it will not change those laws, which is causing some increased anxiety.
    However, some of us have consulted one of Canada’s most prominent constitutional lawyers. He has advised if the banks violate those laws, we have grounds for a lawsuit against the banks. If the government changes those laws, we have grounds for a Charter Challenge against the government.
    He has advised us “Don’t lawyer up now.” Canadian Civil Liberties Association is also on board against FATCA, but have advised it is “premature for court action” until we learn what will actually happen.
    Another leading Canadian constitutional lawyer has made a submission directly to Finance Canada outlining all of the reasons why FATCA violates Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and other laws.
    Some of us have made sure our banks, credit unions, Canadian Bankers Association, politicians and others are fully aware of our plans to take legal action if we have to. I hope that will not be necessary, but there is strength in numbers if we are forced to do so.
    I hope being here is giving you some reassurance IRS cannot simply storm into Canada and seize your savings directly or indirectly through either your bank or the Canadian government.
    I also help learning some of this information helps you to sleep better. Far too many of us have lost far too much sleep over this issue.

  124. I agree with everything said above but with some warnings.
    If you have any assets in the US (land, bank account, investments, home or cottage etc) the US can and will confiscate if they find you in arrears to pay back taxes they claim you owe and any penalties they deem proper. It would then be up to you to go to court to recover your money or property. This would include future money and property if you expect an inheritance from someone in the US.
    If you rely on staying in Canada so the IRS cannot collect taxes or penalties and they take legal action in the US to recover that money then you revert back to the situation of a draft dodger in the sixties and most of the seventies in that you are at risk if you enter the US; and that includes an accidental re-routing of an airplane to land in the US when it wasn’t scheduled to do so.
    While the US may not be able to collect from a Canadian bank in Canada they can (under proposed US legislation) go after money that that bank has invested in the US for any of its clients. This has led to banks in some countries (I have read about Switzerland, Israel and a bit about Germany) to refuse accounts to US persons – and that means anyone who cannot prove they are *not* a US person. In the What’s New section I have mentioned that when my wife and I opened new investment accounts at Scotia McLeod there was a preprinted question on the form asking if there was any reason the US might consider us US persons. If you were to lie on that form it could be considered fraud and Canadian courts might not protect your assets.
    There have been no court cases yet on retroactivity of laws designed to reclaim those of us who knew we had relinquished years ago and are now being redefined as US citizens yet again and against our will.

  125. @Dar: Johnnb’s advice is good. I neglected to mention the very important point about US investments. When you said high interest savings,, I made an assumption your savings are all within Canada.
    As Petros has often said at Brock, “keep your ass and your assets out of US.”
    I keep my assets out of US, but my ass does go to US to visit my elderly mother. After her death, I may never return to US again. However, I have not encountered any problems crossing the border on my Canadian passport with US place of birth. Twice (once in 2004 and once in 2011), I have been advised to get a US passport, but I have ignored that and have continued to travel on my Canadian passport many times with no problem and no further mention of the need for a US passport.
    Do NOT get a US passport. If you do, you will be caught up in the nightmare Calgary411 is dealing with.

  126. @Dar, I’m so very sorry that this additional worry has been dumped on you, after all of your other troubles. I know that’s a mild word for what you’ve ben through, and I can’t imagine your heartache and stress. You’ve been given really good advice here, and I don’t have much to add except to say that you should take your time and do your research and only make a decision once you feel comfortable with it. There are some really good sites with very good information, including the Isaac Brock Society. As people here know, I waver back and forth on whether to apply for a CLN, as I don’t want to come to the attention of the US govt, but part of me just wants to get this over with. And frankly, since I do go back and forth I don’t think I’m ready to make a decision yet. I still have some small hope that our Cdn govt is going to do something to protect our rights, and our finances, as Cdn citizens. Hang in there, and when you need information, or just simply someone to talk to who knows what you’re going through – we’re here for you.

    1. thank you so much. Outraged Canadian and all of you. I will be reading this website frequently. I have my son now looking into this. He has different circumstances than me. I told him he should look into it because He will want to have an inheritance if I have anything by the time I die. I have never worked in the USA after coming to Canada. and do not have any US bank accounts or property.

  127. Dar. johnnb exaggerates the problem. Quoting him:
    ‘If you have any assets in the US (land, bank account, investments, home or cottage etc) the US can and will confiscate if they find you in arrears to pay back taxes they claim you owe and any penalties they deem proper.’ and
    “then you revert back to the situation of a draft dodger in the sixties and most of the seventies in that you are at risk if you enter the US; and that includes an accidental re-routing of an airplane to land in the US when it wasn’t scheduled to do so.”
    This last bit about an accidental landing in the states is sheer nonsense.
    How in earth can the US touch you? They don’t know you exist. They can’t go to a judge and say “there’s this lady up in Canada and perhaps she should have sent us some money so please Mrs. Judge will you please give us the right to take her money and arrest her if her plane should be rerouted” This is scaremongering and there is too much of it here and on IBS.
    That’s not how it works. You can still visit the states.You are/ will be fine.

    1. I think it may be KalC’s reading comprehension rather than my exaggeration which is at fault here. I was speaking to the point of whether the US could recover taxes and penalties in Canada. Kalc says no way and don’t worry. My three points were addressing that scenario – that the US already knew about you and was trying to collect taxes and penalties from you. In that case a trip to the US or a diverted aircraft could be a major problem for you. It did happen at least once that I know of to a draft dodger in the early seventies. Nonsense is ignoring a potential serious problem.
      It would not be scaremongering to warn against visiting the states *if the US already knew about you and was trying to collect taxes and penalties.* That was the premise and to use language such as scaremongering, nonsense and exaggeration is not appreciated nor is it productive.

  128. @Dar: I hope all of this hasn’t confused or scared you further.
    Kalc and johnnb are both valued contributors who are supportive of others. Their different takes on this issue likely comes from different perspectives.
    The real scaremongering comes from the Canadian media, who like to regurgitate IRS press releases about FATCA, tax cheats and tax evaders. Very few have done any research or reported on the rights of Canadians in Canada.
    In your situation, it seems you do not owe any taxes to US. It seems you do not have any US investments, income or property. So, there is no reason IRS should know about “this lady up in Canada.”
    There is even less reason for IRS to know about your Canadian-born son living in UK. I understand British banks may have information on place of birth, but he was born in Canada. How would a British bank know his mother was born in US? Does he have a US passport? Has he given that to his British bank? If not, they would have no reason to provide information about him to US.
    Plus, even FATCA regulations are silent on the topic of US citizens who were born outside of US to US parents. I don’t think that was an oversight. I don’t think IRS has any intention of pursuing them unless they choose to put themselves in the range of IRS.
    You should have no difficulty visiting US if you choose to do that on a Canadian passport with a US place of birth. It is possible a US border guard will suggest (some gently, some roughly) you get a US passport. Ignore that advice. Currently, from information posted here on another thread and my own experience, that seems to be happening only in a minority of situations.
    If it would give you greater peace of mind, consider applying for a CLN. Based on what you have said, you should have no difficulty getting one backdated to 1993. Some folks did that quickly. I recall Johnnb being one of the first brave ones to do that. Some of us watched to see what happened to him. A few months later, he and his wife had a CLN backdated to their date of Canadian citizenship in 1973.
    In terms of your question about the law requiring Canadian banks to report you to US, it’s a foreign law. It currently has no legal status or validity in Canada.
    Even if Canadian banks do try to comply, they cannot under current Canadian law ask where you were born or release information to a foreign government about you. Many believe Canada may change laws to accommodate US. I personally do not think that will happen. If it does, that is when we together “lawyer up” and fight it every step of the way. The groundwork has been done. A leading constitutional lawyer and Canadian Civil Liberties Association are on standby for us.
    I am confident we would win a legal challenge (if it comes to that, but I don’t think it will.)
    The banks and government may not be saying it, but they also know we would win any legal challenge to FATCA (which I call Foreign Attack To Control All).
    I hope learning and exploring with us in the Sandbox helps relieve some of your anxiety.

    1. Blaze, thank you so much off for your prompt answer. I can breathe easier now. I take it I can keep my retirement money intact and not have to worry about cashing in RRSPs . I was at the point I would rather pay Canada the income tax due that the USA by taking it out in a big lump sum…My son is looking into this for himself too. I do not plan to visit the USA now, since my son lives in UK. I have Canada to explore and Europe. I know some of you have family in the USA…I just have estranged siblings who do not think like I do. They have an animosity to Canada and me. here is no one to go back to. I saw a lot of the USA on travel trips and am content that I have seen a lot. Perhaps I will do a CLN but I will keep a watch and also be on this website for further info. Thanks again all of you who sent me advice.

  129. Blaze you are so much more eloquent and patient than I am. Well said. I think you very clearly covered it all .

  130. @Dar: Do NOT cash in your RRSPs. RRSP’s are exempt from FATCA reporting even if your bank somehow tries to find out where you were born or if they try to rat you out to US. Remember, if your bank does either of those, they will violate Canadian law and you will have grounds to join in a lawsuit.
    Enjoy exploring UK and Europe. They are far more fun and welcoming to visit than US.
    Breathe easy. Sleep well. Chase away the IRS Monster and FATCA Fiend. Hang out with us in the Sandbox.

    1. A friend up here did apply for CLN and had to do 6 years of FBUR and 3 years of income tax back reports. He said he had to declare on the form his and wife’s RRSPs He came up later than me and became cdn citizen in 81. so many scenarios.

  131. @Dar: FBAR is different from FATCA. FATCA regs exempt RRSPs.
    Did your friend relinquish or renounce? There is a difference. Did he get a backdated CLN?
    He may have received bad advice about what he was required to do if he became a Canadian citizen before 2004 with intent of relinquishing US citizenship.
    Because he became a Canadian citizen in 1981, the US at that time considered he automatically relinquished US citizenship. A later US Supreme Court case in 1986 changed that law, but he was under no obligation to take back his US citizenship. Because 1981 was way earlier than 2004, he had no obligation to file back income tax returns FBARs, etc. to confirm he relinquished in 1981. Was his wife also born in US or was she born in Canada?
    Johnnb, Pacifica and many others simply advised US Consulate that they relinquished decades ago and got their CLN without filing anything with IRS. That is what you should also do if you decide to get a CLN.
    Unfortunately, many Canadian accountants and lawyers do not seem to be aware of the difference between relinquishing decades ago and renouncing today and they give people very bad advice. That may be what happened to your friend. Many Canadians have been caught in that trap.

  132. they both were born in the USA. They relinquished and went to Ottawa once and now will be going back when the papers go through. They did all the paperwork themselves without lawyers or accountants..
    If I decide to get the CLN it would put the light on my son. He is not yet a British ciitzen…He still has a couple years till that happens.
    It looks like I just made it..becoming a Canadian in 2003.

  133. Blaze and all,
    You have just done a fantastic job on advising Dar and turning her perceptions around. You have helped return her to sanity. Kudos.
    How many out there need to read what you and what Isaac Brock have built in the last short while? Little by little, some of us are getting the critical information we need to make our decisions, the support we need that, I’m sorry, just is not found elsewhere.
    Little did we know what it really means to be a US person living or born outside the bounds of the USA. Thanks for all you and your site have done and continue to do for others like us. It is important work.

  134. @Calgary411: Thanks for your comments.
    Dar: Calgary is one of those folks who was caught up in an IRS trap when a US border guard badgered her into getting a US passport so she could visit family in US even though she, like most of us who became Canadian citizens in 1970s believed she was no longer a US citizen. Then a Canadian accountant advised her she had to file with IRS. She has been living a nightmare ever since for both herself and her adult developmentally delayed son. She is now a strong advocate and spokesperson for others not to fall into that quagmire.
    Who advised your friends they had to file? My understanding is they were under no obligation to do so.
    Did they do that because of the reports in the Canadian media or did the Ottawa Embassy advise them to do that? Do you know when they did that? . My understanding is the Embassy has been very difficult to deal with in the past, but there may have been some recent improvements.
    I don’t think getting a CLN now would cause problems for your Canadian-born son living in UK. Perhaps others who have more knowledge of that than I do (like Pacifica, Johnnb or Schubert) could comment on that.
    Now I’m going to ask you a question. Where did you manage to find high interest savings? I didn’t think there was such a thing in today’s world. Remember the days when we were young and paid 18% on our mortgages? Now that we’re older with savings, we’re lucky if we can get 2%.

  135. I got my high interest savings in on line Ally, which is kickng everyone off now as RBC as bought it. and Cdn Tire….It was at one point 2 percent. It is 1.5 percent at the moment.
    The friends read up online on how to do this. I called them because I heard about it. and not sure what to do.
    I went to a Toronto democrats abroad meeting (found them on bloor street when visiting my son on Obama’s inauguration day night) they emailed me about a meeting about this FBUR etc. I went and accountants were there , one wanted $600 per year to file…and said it would be a few thousand dollars to do it. I gave up on that. He put the fear on the group of us there.

  136. @Dar: That’s exactly the kind of “scaremongering” I was referring to in my response to Kalc and Johnnb. The scaremongering is not coming from John and others trying to help.
    It is coming from IRS and Congress in their constant barrages about going after tax cheats and tax evaders. Then, Canadian media picks up on IRS news releases and reports anyone in Canada who was born in US must “come clean” or face severe consequences.
    You have nothing to “come clean” about. You are a Canadian citizen paying taxes in Canada. You have the same rights as all other Canadian citizens and residents. You have no obligation to a foreign government just because of where you were born.
    I’m still curious about who told your friends they had to file returns and FBARs with IRS even though they had been Canadian citizens since 1981.
    Don’t get caught up in the IRS terror tactics (Sorry Kalc,that is not “scaremongering,” but reality in terms of what many Canadians are feeling).

  137. I told them what the meeting told me. but they went further and found all kinds of websites and sent them to me. I guess they talked to Ottawa US embassy who advised them what to do.
    I am going to sit tight for a bit. And keep on reading your website. I learn something everyday .

  138. @Dar: It’s unfortunate your friends did not find Maple Sandbox or Isaac Brock Society websites before they filed with IRS.
    Was the Democrats Abroad meeting after this year’s Obama inauguration or after his inauguration in 2009?
    I’m glad you have learned from information here. I hope you will continue to hang out with us. More importantly, don’t let a foreign government control your life.

  139. The party was open to the public…I signed up for email. It was was the 2009 inauguration. Sometimes I regret going but I still get their emails..They sent the one about FBUR for May 10, 2012 meeting in Toronto. Ever since I went I have been so upset . The presenters at the meeting were Lawrence and Associates and Investors Group.
    So now after reading all the comments here I feel it was a cash grab.
    In my case where I never plan to go back to the USA and have no property or inheritance I think maybe I should lay low.

  140. @Dar: That’s exactly what you should do. Don’t put yourself in the range of IRS. You have no obligation to US.
    Resume your life, visit the UK and Europe and enjoy your retirement.

  141. @ Dar,
    Re: “If I decide to get the CLN it would put the light on my son. He is not yet a British ciitzen…He still has a couple years till that happens.”
    I see you’re planning to lay low, but since you asked …
    I don’t think it would cause problems your son in the UK if you applied for a CLN. I don’t think DoS has the slightest interest in using information from the 4079s to track down children born and living abroad. Actually the only thing about children in the 4079 is question 13(f) “Have you registered your children as citizens of the US? Yes/No.” If a person had done so after the date they’re claiming to have relinquished, that would be indicative of not having relinquished. I think it’s just there in the yes/no list of questions to determine if a relinquishment had occurred.
    Children should not come up at the consulate meeting (although Ottawa was into asking about children and taxes, along with other improper behaviour in 2011-12; apparently since Jan 2013 they are now conforming to standard procedure).
    The information that DoS must share with IRS, according to law, is a copy of each approved CLN (DoS Manual on Interagency Reporting Requirements). So, nothing there to tip them off.
    Don’t know what the future may bring as the US govt is getting weirder and weirder, but I think it’s safe at this time.

  142. @Pacifica and Dar
    I can confirm what Pacifica has said, from conversations I’ve had with a couple of relinquishers who have been through the process, and also with a knowledgeable lawyer.
    Question 13f about children is strictly to determine whether, since your allegedly expatriating act, you have attempt to assert US citizenship for one of your children. Legal advice I’ve heard is do NOT make false statements on form 4079; since Question 13f doesn’t specify WHEN you might have registered a child, it would be a false statement (on a sworn legal document; to do so would be a criminal offense) to say No if in fact you had registered a child. But if you did register a child as a USC BEFORE you became a non-USC or performed another expatriating act, that has no bearing at all on your expatriation nor does it in any way undermine your claim that you intended to relinquish your USC when you did relinquish it. How can something you did years before relinquishing possibly be deemed contrary to your decision years later? My advice is to tick “yes” on that box if you EVER registered a child as USC (if you in fact did), but to ink-in underneath that question “but before YYYY” where YYYY is the year you expatriated. I know of at least one case where someone did this, and I also know there were NO follow-up questions during the interview about that response nor about the children. The individual now has a relinquishment CLN, and neither the individual nor the individual’s children have since been contacted by any US officials in this regard as far as I’ve heard (and I’m pretty sure I’d hear about it).
    I wouldn’t lose sleep over this, though I understand the concern as the individuals I know in this situation have agonized over it until getting legal advice on the matter. If in doubt, speak with a lawyer (I’m not a lawyer, and you shouldn’t ever do anything on the basis of second-hand legal advice). But as far as I understand, it would be very unusual and capricious for a consular officer to make a big deal about this if the registration occurred before YYYY. There have been reports of a few nasty and capricious officers (though not so far about Question 13f matters), but they’ve been very few and far between in the IBS reporting site. That isn’t to say it couldn’t happen, of course. But it shouldn’t, and I think you would be on firm grounds if you refused to provide detailed information on your children — that isn’t requested on form 4079, and I think it’s fair to challenge any attempt to drill beyond what’s on that form. The interview and form are all about YOUR expatriation and citizenship status and have nothing to do with those of your children or your spouse or ex-spouse or your parents or anyone else on the planet.

  143. Thanks for the helpful advice The boys were registered when babies. and they went to register for draft when they were 18 but before I came a citizen….One son is dead so I just am concerned about the one in UK.
    I have no one left in the USA that I care to see or communicate with and no plans to ever visit the USA again. I will wait and see. My frame of mind can not deal with nastiness..

  144. You my recall that in January I visited the Toronto Consulate to apply for my CLN.
    It came through, much more quickly than the stated 4-6 months! I got a phone message that it was available and did I want to pick it up or did I want it mailed. Since I live several hours from Toronto, mailing was the only real option. I left voice mail with the consular official to that effect.
    Three business days later it arrived. Included in the package was a cover letter stating that my application for the CLN was approved; the letter provided the details and added that I needed to sign and either 1) return the original as acknowledgement of receipt; or 2) sign, scan, and email the letter to the email address provided. I chose the latter.
    I’m free. I still have to file tax returns for 2012 and the 14 days of 2013 that I was a citizen but I’m done. Hooray!
    Here is the timeline.
    14 January 2013: Consulate visit
    27 March: State Department approved application
    15 April: date on Consulate letter
    18 April: voice mail from Consulate
    19 April: return voice mail
    23 April: package in my Canada Post PO box
    27 April: letter signed, scanned, and emailed
    I took those last few days as a check: this is what I really want to do, right? Even the answer was a foregone conclusion, it did not hurt to make absolutely certain.
    After emailing the letter, mowing the yard, patting my beloved dogs, and chatting with my marvellous wife, we had a beer on the deck and I smoked a cigar.
    Now on to the next battle, which is to blunt if not stop FATCA’s effect on us.
    I plan a trip later this year to the States for a reunion with my siblings. It will be interesting to see what happens at the border when I present my Canadian passport with CLN.
    I will crosspost over on IBS so the spreadsheet can be updated.

  145. @extex
    First, let me add to those of others, my congratulations on getting your CLN in quick time.
    On the subject of border crossing: may I offer some advice?
    I’ve had a relinquishment CLN for more than 35 years (I’m probably the real grandfather on this), and my wife has had her relinquishment CLN (backdated to the 1970s) for about a year now. We always carry photocopies of our CLNs with us, but on crossing the border (land or air, doesn’t matter) we only show our Canadian passports. So far we’ve never had to show a CLN, even though both passports clearly identify us as US borns. For that matter we’ve never had any hassles about our passports from US Border Patrol. But we do know people who have.
    My wife was told by the consular officer she dealt with that once you apply for a CLN, never mind get one, the State Department computer file on your case is cross-posted to the Border Patrol’s database and should be accessible to any border guard at any crossing. So they should know, if they bother to check your name and passport on their system, that you have a CLN and there’s no basis for them asking why you aren’t carrying a US passport. So in theory at least there’s no reason to present your CLN (copy) to them, unless they ask for it, fail to check their computer, or otherwise start to hassle you. Which shouldn’t happen, unless the border guard is a bully or otherwise having a bad day for some reason.
    I’d hold off presenting the CLN unless it’s necessary. Tempting though it might be to rub their noses in the CLN, it might be taken as provocative or otherwise in the wrong way and result in a delay in getting across. At least that’s my thought on it. Particularly if your CLN was a renunciation, I’d suggest discretion being the better part of valor. Even though our CLNs are relinquishments from decades ago, we don’t intend to raise a fuss about it unless we are backed into a corner. However, with a CLN, my understanding is that they are supposed to treat you the same as any other Canadian (wherever born) who is crossing on a Canadian passport. If they ever don’t, if it were me I’d raise a big fuss later with my MP and with both Foreign Affairs Canada and with Citizenship and Immigration Canada. I’d ask for Canada to file a formal complaint with the US ambassador over the situation (whether that would happen or not under this government is another story, but it’s what I’d ask).

  146. @ dar: I became a Canadian citizen on 11 November 2011, filed US taxes for that year, am preparing to do the same for this year.
    @ Blaze: As a matter of act it was Cuban – a Partagas to be exact. A not bad smoke 🙂 though not the best.
    @ schubert – Thank you for your wise suggestion. I want to be neither the cause nor the focus of A Scene when crossing into the States. So yes, you are right. I will present my passport, and have in reserve a copy of my CLN handy to present only in case it is needed.
    I have pondered doing a dry run in the next few months. I live a short distance from the border. Because my siblings live in the States, I want to have the liberty to visit. I have thought of going for a day visit or an overnight in order to 1) get that first new, different crossing experience out of the way; 2) do the first crossing at a familiar, low-traffic location. Finally, friends live literally on the border and highly recommend a restaurant just across in the States. It would be good to find out how good that restaurant is.

  147. @extex (not sure what happened to your reply to my last post; it was there when I wrote the following, and now I can’t see it … anyway, here’s my reply to your reply)
    Sounds like an excellent plan to me!
    I’m going to cross-post the following to the thread I started on Maple Sandbox some time ago about border crossing, but I just noticed on the Isaac Brock Society site that someone whose moniker I recognize reports she renounced in February 2012 and filed an 8854 this January, her name IS on the latest Federal Register Name and Shame list, and she has crossed into the US on her Canadian (I think but definitely not US) passport showing US birthplace three times now since renouncing. No problems any of those times, border guard on the last crossing was very polite she said. So you should be just fine, but it’s always best to stick your toe into possibly cold water before jumping in over your head …
    As I noted in my reply to that person on the IBS thread, I’m wondering now whether she is on that list because she has a CLN or because she filed an 8854 (which I don’t believe anyone who relinquished before 2004 needs to or is likely to file before, during or after getting their CLN). If you read carefully the summary statement at the beginning of those Federal Register lists, the statement never actually says “these are the people who IRS knows got CLNs” it says “these are the people for whom IRS has information have expatriated in the past quarter” or words to that effect. Obviously if you submit an 8854 to IRS, IRS will therefore know you’ve expatriated, since no one except an expatriate or maybe a former green-carder who forgot to cancel out the green card when it expired, is going to submit one of those forms.
    BTW the person who reported this says she definitely is not a “covered expatriate,” i.e., her financial status as reported on form 8854 doesn’t qualify her for the “exit tax.” So that list isn’t limited to whales; there are minnows being reported on it.

  148. Ooops!! I accidentaly deleted Extex’s comment when I was removing some spam.
    Thanks for catching that, Schubert. Many apologies Extex.

  149. @Blaze. Glad to know there’s a simple explanation; I was sort of concerned that my second post made no sense to anyone except to Extex and me, suddenly …
    These things happen. Then there was the time a few years ago, when I was too tired to be doing it, when I was running what was supposed to be routine maintenance on my wife’s computer and inadvertently pressed the Del key when I had high-lit “c:/program files” in Windows Explorer without noticing. Windows popped up a message saying “are you sure about this?” and without stopping to see what it was getting upset about, I just clicked Yes thinking dammit and then NOOOOOO when I realized what I’d just done. Fortunately we had a full drive image on a backup drive from the day before, so six hours later I had restored the hard drive … And I’ve only been messing with computers for about 45 years now … Happens to the “best” of us.

  150. (Note from Blaze) Content of reply has been modified with xxxxxx to remove any identifying information about Ms X who asked to have the content of her post above removed.
    @MS X
    Welcome to Maple Sandbox. You are among friends here.
    My first advice to you is Do Not Panic. I know it’s difficult when you first begin to learn about these many IRS issues.
    You say you were naturalized in US when you were three. That seems to indicate you were not born in US. Where were you born?
    You are correct that it seems you will not be able to relinquish because you had a US passport after you became a xxxxxx citizen. However, if you were born outside of US, that means your xxxxxx bank would have no way of knowing that you have US citizenship.
    I am not as familiar with the situation in xxxxxxx as I am with the situation in Canada, so it is more difficult for me to give you advice. I hope xxxxxxx, who is an American who has lived in xxxxxx for over 20 years, may be able to give you more insight into that than I can. She attended a meeting on FATCA in xxxxxx today.
    If you weren’t born in US and you don’t tell your bank you became a US citizen when you were three, I don’t think there is any way they could determine you are a US citizen under FATCA.
    If you have never paid taxes in US and you don’t have a TIN, I don’t see how IRS could try to pursue you in xxxxx.
    Lawyers who commented at Isaac Brock Society in the past have said IRS is not after people like you.
    My personal advice to you is to do nothing. IRS is not interested in you and don’t have the resources to pursue people like you. I am not a lawyer or an accountant and am not qualified to give legal or accounting advice. My advice is simply based on common sense.
    I hope that gives you some reassurance. I also hope when xxxxxx sees your questions, she will be able to give you more input from a xxxxxx perspective.
    I realize it is now late in xxxxx. Most importantly, don’t let IRS rob you of sleep tonight or any other night. They have done that to far too many of us for far too long.

    1. (Note from Blaze) Content has been modified with xxxxx to remove any identifying information about Ms. X, who asked her comments above to be removed.
      @ Ms. X
      Great advice from Blaze. And especially the first line, Do Not Panic. From what you’ve written, I tend to agree with everything else Blaze wrote as well. In particular, I think you’re safe in that a bank, seeing your place of birth is outside the US, would never think that you had any connection to the US. I also can’t imagine IRS harassing you because they really don’t even know you exist, not having a SSN/TIN, etc, although I also am not qualified to give advice, so just based on what I’ve read on the topic and common sense.
      It would be nice to officially cut the tie – the renunciation part (Dept of State) is very simple and not dependent on tax compliance – but the IRS side of it is complicated. A person could renounce and just ignore the tax stuff. Dept of State does send a copy of each approved CLN to the IRS, however. (Whether IRS does anything about it or even looks at them is questionable – they really do have limited resources — but they are made aware that a person has renounced.)
      As it is, it does sound like you’re pretty safe from detection, having a non-US birthplace and no ties to the US.
      I deleted what I think is your last name, so only your first name is visible. If you’d like it changed back, let us know, no problem.

    1. Hi Ms X
      I’m at work now, so I’ll reply for sure in a few hours, and also some other people may reply in the meantime.
      Just a quick point, you can renounce without a TIN. Also you can renounce even if you have not filed tax forms. Many people do that. Department of State does not care about a person’s tax status. As for IRS, you’re supposed to have the tax forms filed by June 15th of the year following renunciation.

    2. Hi Ms X
      I know that some of us with no connection to the US opt to renounce (or apply for a CLN based on their long-ago relinquishment) and that others prefer to “stay off the radar” – it really depends on each person’s situation and what they feel most comfortable with.
      Here’s some general information about renunciation and tax compliance.
      Dept of State only concerns itself with matters of citizenship. So, you do not need a TIN to renounce nor do you need to be in tax compliance. They don’t even ask. In fact, the renunciation meeting tends to be brief with the focus on that the person is aware of the consequences of renunciation and that their documents are in order.
      A person then needs to “log out” of the IRS system. You have until June 15th of the year following renunciation to file all required forms with the IRS. If a person does not “log out” of IRS, it has no effect on their loss of citizenship. So the citizenship loss and the CLN remain valid.
      Because a person’s US citizenship ends the day they renounce, they can incur no future obligations to the IRS from that day forward. But they still are responsible for obligations to IRS prior to that day and for the any exit tax obligations.
      The procedure for logging out of IRS is:
      * 1040s for years 2008-2012 (because you have to certify on the 8854 that you have been in tax compliance for the previous five years)
      * 8854, the exit tax form.
      * 1040 for year 2013, covering Jan 1st to the day before renunciation
      * 1040-NR, for year 2013, covering renunciation day to Dec 31st, ONLY if you have US source income and you only report US source income on it. (The NR stands for non-resident, and this form applies to any non-resident alien who has US source income.)
      What would happen if a person renounced and didn’t do this? I really don’t know. I’d tend to think that IRS is not going to bother going after minnow-expatriates — strictly for logistical reasons, cost-benefit analysis of the difficulties and even impossibilities of international collection. But of course if a person does file this stuff it ties up every loose end.
      Also you can find out more about renouncing in the Isaac Brock Society’s Consulate Report Directory.
      It has 120 pages of people’s stories about their renunciations/relinquishments and how things are done.

  151. Thanks Blaze, for info here you need an ID to get a bank account, on your ID is your place of birth, without an ID you cannot get an account.

  152. (Note from Blaze) Content has been modified to remove any identifying information about poster who asked for her above comments to be removed
    @Ms X: Your place of birth is xxxxx That should not raise any questions about whether you are a US citizen.

  153. Hi Ms X,
    That is interesting. I think it might be worth trying the relinquishment process.
    The decision on if a person had relinquished their US citizenship is based on the balance of probabilties. I can’t say it’s likely, but I can say there may be a possibility.
    I know two cases of people who got a relinquishment-based CLN who had got a passport after having naturalised elsewhere. In one case, the person got his because was told by Homeland Security at the border that he had to get one because he was born in the US. This was pretty straightforward, in that he had been given incorrect information by the US govt itself. The other person I don’t know as much about it – also a Canadian, he thought he was supposed to use his US passport because he was born in the US (I don’t know who told him that)
    In your case, although you were not a minor, you were young under parent’s influence. That might work in your favour. The fact you also entered on an immigrant visa on a xxx passport certainly indicates you didn’t consider yourself a US citizen might indicate that once you were a bit older you realised that you had been unduly influenced by your father.
    I sure don’t know if these reasons would be accepted, but I don’t see any harm in trying.
    I am aware of three people who tried to get a relinquishment-based CLN, who were told that they did not fit the criteria, and renounced instead at the same meeting.
    I am also aware of two people whose relinquishment did not exactly fit the criteria – in these two cases, the consulate officers contacted Dept of State headquarters for advice. These took a few weeks/month to get an answer. One was deemed to be a relinquishment, the other wasn’t.. So one went back to the consulate to sign the forms for relinquishment and the other went back to his consulate to renounce.

  154. Hi Ms X,
    (1) You would have to get a TIN to file with IRS. They can’t process the forms without one.
    (2) Many people just send in the previous years forms with no letter of explanation. Some do send a letter. If you send a letter, you could explain that you didn’t know you were supposed to file or didn’t realise you were still a US citizen. Good idea to read here and at Brock what people have chosen to do and how they’ve done it (eg, some who wrote a letter mention what they wrote in it; do you file each year in a separate envelope (I can’t remember), things like that, etc).
    (3) Some people have done this (sent in several years overdue tax forms) over a year ago now, and no problems at all from IRS. So, I don’t foresee problems. Nevertheless, I would be cautious and do a lot of reading, particularly of people’s experiences of how they did it.

    1. Hi Pacifica
      Please tell me if you renounce without a tin, can you ask for one after having renounced, and I do not understand ” some people have sent several years over due tax forms” you mean they have sent them in one envelopp all together .
      By the way I printed the tax forms and it really seems completelyunintelligible to me, I am aware I will not be able to do this by my own.
      I will try the relinquishment process by writing a letter which will be very difficult for me to write correctly and I will see, I have to be quick now, do you think the letter has to be written by hand or with the computer and do you think it has to be a long explanation or more a short one.
      Thank you so much for your answers, that is so nice from you

  155. (Note from Blaze) Content has been modifed with xxxxxx to remove any identifying information who asked for her comments to be removed.
    @Ms X: To relinquish or renounce, you must go to a US Consulate. You cannot do it via a letter to a US Consulate or to US Department of State.
    I continue to think you would be best to do nothing because you were in born in xxxxxx. However, it is important you do whatever gives you the most peace of mind.

  156. Hi Ms. X
    I would strongly suggest do not contact the US govt (consulate or IRS) yet. Make sure you have a clear view of the process before you formally start it, because you have several options in how you will proceed.
    Time is important. But you have some time. If you renounce, your loss of citizenship is effective that day. The CLNs arrive in a month or two. Meanwhile, you have a receipt from the consulate for the $450, which states that it’s for renunciation, and people have used that if they needed proof before their CLN arrived.
    You can absolutely renounce without a TIN or SSN.
    As I understand it, “US persons” use their SSN as their TIN. The TIN is for “non-US persons.” So, a person who renounces and loses their citizenship is a “non-US person.” As you never had a SSN, you should be eligible for a TIN, just like any other “non-US person.” [If a person had a SSN, however, they continue to use that for filing taxes after the date of loss of citizenship. Eg. one’s final tax forms, and also if one has US income after loss of citizenship.]
    But this is an area I don’t know much about. That’s just how I understand it. It would be good if someone else confirms this.
    I think it’s recommended to send each year in a separate envelope, from what I read – I don’t know for sure.
    To give you an idea of the procedure, these are the forms that are used.
    These are the forms for renunciation
    4079. Request for determination of loss of citizenship. Important for relinquishments, is not strictly required for renunciations (according to the DOS procedure manual) but it seems most consulates ask for it. This has four pages of questions, requiring dates; it’s best to fill it out in advance of your consulate meeting.
    4080. Oath of renunciation
    4081. Statement of understanding of consequences
    4083. Certificate of loss of nationality
    If you have already relinquished your citizenship (eg. upon obtaining citizenship in another country) and are now applying for a CLN:
    4079. Request for determination of loss of citizenship. This has four pages of questions, requiring dates; it’s best to fill it out in advance of your consulate meeting.
    4081. Statement of understanding of consequences
    4083. Certificate of loss of nationality
    Statement. Not necessary, but a good idea to supplement your 4079 with a written statement to show that your relinquishment was intentional and that your post-relinquishment conduct has been consistent with relinquishment.
    Whatever, don’t rush! A week or two won’t make a difference.
    And as Blaze pointed out, you also have the possibility of doing nothing because of your non-US birthplace, a suggestion also worth considering. I can see that one person in your situation would get peace of mind with a CLN and another person would get peace of mind without it. It is such an individual decision.

  157. @all,
    I haven’t posted at the sandbox for quite some time. However, I did want to let you know that I received my CLN by express post on Monday from the Vancouver Consulate. It shows my expatriating date of 1972. I first contacted the m in August 2012 – 1st appt. was Sept.2012, 2nd appt. April, 2013 and receipt of CLN approximately 2 1/2 months later.

    1. Fabulous news Tiger! It’s great to have one piece of good news this morning after the information WhiteKat, Calgary and Tim have posted concerning information Marie provided at Brock.
      “You wanna fly, you got to give up the s..t that weighs you down.”
      ? Toni Morrison, Song of Solomon
      Congratulations on dumping the crap the US has tried to pile on us! Time to soar!
      I hope you will check in with us occasionally and let us know how you’re doing.

  158. Just thought I’d post an update to the helpful folks here – I had posted a few months ago about my husband (born in California while his mom was on a visit to relatives, became Cdn. citizen at age 3 – his parents were not citizens when he was born, as they were Hungarian refugees) – he had been challenged by a US border guard last summer: “Where’s your American passport? You ARE a US citizen if you were born here.” We have taken the advice we received here to just lie low and not worry about things. Anyway, last week he crossed the border for the first time since then and not a single question about citizenship. He was greatly relieved, and I know that we will plan future trips to the US with much less worry. He had his comment all prepared, that he was only there for 2 weeks as an infant, has never considered himself a US citizen, done anything to benefit from being a US citizen, etc….so nice not to have to use it! Thanks to all here who were so reassuring to us – such a great site!

    1. @Wifeofamerican??? So glad to hear you had no trouble crossing the border.
      I’m still hopeful Canadians born in US will not be sold out to FATCA by our banks.
      Please continue to hang out with us for updates and to share your experiences with others.

  159. @ Blaze…..
    Canadian banks have already sold out to FATCA. They have invested hundreds of millions of dollars already in software to document FATCA requirements. It starts in 2014.
    @Ms X
    A driver’s licence should suffice in getting a bank account. Driver’s licences don’t show birth places. Existing accounts do not have a record of US nationality, so the question remains whether existing accounts will have their US citizenship documented. Are they going to ask their millions of account holders in turn? I doubt it, but they just might over time.
    New accounts starting next year could be problematical. The question will be there. The question is whether a new account applicant should be required to answer the question given our constitution’s prohibition of discriminating against Canadians based on their origins. Account applicants could argue that it would be against their constitutional rights to be forced to answer the question. Are dual citizens, like Jews in Nazi Germany, going to be forced to be tagged and given some special form of identification? Given American pressure, the banks will probably cave in. Swiss banks already have.
    @ the forum in general.
    I am not at all sure about my status, and I am taking steps to ascertain it. I came to Canada from the States (where I was born) as an infant in 1949 and have lived here ever since. My parents (both now deceased) were both Canadian. They registered my birth as a Canadian shortly after I was born. I have no conscious memory of any life but a Canadian life.
    In 1971 I worked for the Canadian government for which job I am quite sure I had to give an oath of allegiance to Canada and the Queen.
    When I was 24, I filed a Certificate of Retention of Canadian Citizenship. My number one priority was (and always has been) to make sure I am Canadian. I have never felt any hostility toward the United States, and in 1977 I went to the US consul in Toronto to ascertain my status. I did so because I was infatuated with a South Carolina girl and was thinking of getting together with her. The Consul told me I was still a citizen, so they gave me a passport. I never used it, and as things turned out I never went to the States to live. My infatuation with that girl was not reciprocated. I have never travelled on anything but a Canadian passport. I got another US passport in 1989 because I was under the mistaken impression that I needed one to travel to the States. I never used that one either. Both those long-since expired US passports have been lost.
    That was it between me and the United States. I never worked there. I never owned property there. I never went to school there. I have no family there. My social ties there are almost non-existent. I don’t vote there. I rarely travel there. I don’t read, listen to, or watch their news. American life in general is of no interest to me.
    My lack of interest in US events (I am retired and live in an isolated location) is such that only recently have I found out about the FBAR. So now I am taking (or have already taken) the following steps:
    (1) I engaged one of Canada’s foremost tax lawyers to prepare, on a pro-forma basis, 5 years of US taxes. I have no taxes owing to Uncle Sam. Their foreign tax credit (FTC) and Foreign Earned Income Exclusion (FEIE) cover me six ways to Sunday. I have also prepared the FBAR forms. I have not filed these yet, pending further steps.
    (2) I have prepared form DS-4079 and DS 4081 to relinquish. I have an appointment in 2 weeks to present them. I also have renunciation forms at the ready if I need them.
    (3) I have carefully explained that my reasons to expatriate are not motivated by taxes. After all, taxes are higher here in Canada. I would also be foregoing about $17,000 in unused tax credits in the United States.
    (4) I have not yet filed the tax returns and the FBAR’s, but they are at the ready to file if need be. I want to ascertain my status from form DS-4079 first. According to DS-4079, filing tax returns would be contrary to one’s intent to relinquish. If they advise me I am still a citizen whether I like it or not, I will file the tax returns and the FBAR’s, book another appointment, and then renounce. I think I have at least an even chance of just relinquishing. I am not an evasion threat to them. I am absolutely above board in all my tax dealings with Canada Revenue Agency.
    The one strike against me in trying to relinquish would be those two US passports. One I got because I was young, horny, and infatuated with a girl. The second I got because I was misled as to its necessity. But if I cannot relinquish, I will then take the necessary steps to renounce.
    My lawyer advises me that it is safe to file the FBAR’s for the rest of 2013. He advised me that IRS is not chasing people in Canada on these if they owe no taxes and if they are up to date on their Canadian filings. People who don’t owe taxes don’t represent an evasion risk to them. They want to focus their energies on people who wilfully hide their money in tax havens. Canada is the very antithesis of a tax haven.
    Whether a person relinquishes or renounces, I think it is important that it is done with an attitude of good will. I bear no ill will against the United States any more than I would to any other foreign country. I certainly don’t have tax reasons. Tax wise, I would be better off to go south and leave Canada behind. But, to me, the United States is a foreign country just like any other.
    One way or the other, I think it would make life so much simpler to have that Certificate of Loss of Nationality in my hot little hand before the end of calendar year 2013. If I have to wait until later in 2014, that’s OK too. I will just stay compliant with them. Unless I win the lottery, there is no chance I will ever owe them any money anyhow. I don’t really expect to win the lottery. I can’t even remember the last time I bought a ticket.
    There is one strange and ironic thing about all of this. We expats have a greater burden of documentary proof with Uncle Sam as non-residents of the United States than Barack Obama has had in producing an original birth certificate or disclosing his college records. Apparently it is easier to occupy the White House than it is to expatriate from the United States of America.

  160. Arctic Grayling. You do not need to file taxes or fbars before you renounce. You can file them later if you choose but why bother? No harm I suppose since you’ve already paid the accountant/lawyer.
    In any case as Petros will tell you there is no need to file fbars. Again their is probably no reason not to. They might ask for a reasonable cause letter. Sounds like you’re all set.

    1. Are you sure about that? Is there a reliable legal opinion on this?
      See my comments that I addressed to Blaze.

  161. @ArtcicGrayling: Ms. X is not in Canada. The country where she lives and is a citizen requires a birth certificate to open a bank account. However, she was not born in US, so her bank has her non-US birth certificate.
    As you have read above, Pacifica and I both encouraged her to take a low profile. She is still in the process of deciding what her next step will be.
    You are correct that Canadian banks cannot legally ask for your place of birth or other citizenship. Doing so contravenes Canadian banking, privacy and human rights laws. However, some banks, investment firms are asking if customers are a US person for investment accounts.
    Three of us consulted a prominent Canadian constitutional lawyer last year. He advised if banks violate our rights, we may have grounds for a lawsuit against the banks. If the Canadian government changes the laws to accommodate a foreign government, we may have grounds for a Charter Challenge. He is “on stand-by” for us if we need him.
    It’s possible the Oath with federal government could help in relinquishing, but you would probably need a copy of it. You may be able to get it through your employment file.
    The long-expired US passport may be problematic to relinquishing. It sounds like you are prepared to renounce if necessary. I hope you will keep us informed about what happens. Are you willing to say which Consulate you will be going to?
    Good Luck!

  162. @ Blaze…………………
    I seriously doubt there would be a copy of my oath in the government records now. That was 42 years ago, and I was only a summer student. I am not willing to go to the trouble of obtaining the document. If the consulate is not prepared to accept my statement, I will live with that without complaint. I have, in any case, all my ducks in a row to either relinquish or renounce.
    I am also aware that having had passports poses a problem. But to me, that is like asking a person whether he smokes now, or has ever smoked. I have smoked, but I don’t smoke now. I have not smoked for 30 years. I only smoked the occasional cigarette, but if somebody asks if I have ever smoked, the truth is “yes”. I have answered all questions on the form DS-4079 honestly. If the question is asked in the present tense, I answer in the present tense. If the question is asked in the past tense, I answer in the past tense.
    For example, there is the question: “Do you have family or social ties in the United States?” The question is asked in the present tense. The truth is I have none. Years ago I had a cousin who lived there, but she is in Canada now (has been for 40 years). Years ago I was infatuated with a girl from there. I even met her family. I even thought I would like to marry her. So I had ties, but I don’t have them now. I don’t even know if she is still alive or whether she ever married somebody else.
    The question about the passports is asked in the past tense, so I answered honestly in the past tense. I had them. I never used them, and now I have lost them. I don’t have them now.
    The questions about other ties to the United States (question 13) are all in the present tense.
    I think anybody who fills out those forms should be wary of the distinction, and utilize the grammatical distinctions in answering the questions to their best advantage. I am not lying. I HAD social and family ties, but I don’t have them now.
    Anybody who voted years ago, but does not vote now, can honestly answer that question as “NO”. The question is posed in the present tense.
    The questions about property in Canada are asked in the past tense. I had property and a residence in Canada, but I don’t have them now. Since retirement I gave them away to my Canadian-born children. So I answered the question honestly. I answered in the past tense. The truth now is that I don’t own property anywhere. But the question was posed in the past tense.
    As far as not filing the FBAR”s, I would like a definitive legal opinion on that. If it becomes necessary to file those NIL tax returns, I will file the FBAR’s also. My RRSP and other financial information is in the tax returns anyway. By filing the FBAR’s, I would not be disclosing anything further than what is already in the tax returns.
    To renounce, my understanding was that the tax returns had to be filed first. Are you telling me that the actual timing of the filing is not relevant? In any case, my tax lawyer recommends sending them in my registered mail and keeping a copy of the sender’s receipt. He recommends likewise for the FBAR forms. If I need not file first, I will certainly take the renunciation forms along with me to the appointment in 2 weeks. I am going to the Calgary consulate. I don’t live in Alberta, but I will be in the area there on another matter at that time anyway.
    In any case, I agree with the lawyer. I think its important that a tax filer retain documentary proof of filing for at least the time it takes to complete the renunciation or relinquishment. The reason is simple. According to my lawyer, the IRS does not send out a Notice of Assessment like CRA does in Canada. So it is good to have PROOF that you filed.
    But for me, filing tax returns is a last resort. I would prefer to relinquish, but I will file and renounce if I must. I don’t really want to file them. I don’t wish to file them because I honestly believe that it is not the legitimate concern of a foreign government what I do in my country. The United States are a foreign country. Canada is my country. Canada is the country in which I am a citizen, in which I have always worked, in which the entire conscious memory of my life rests, in which I have raised a family, and where I have always completely and honestly filed my Canadian taxes (every year since 1966).
    Having said that, I really like American people. My occasional contacts with them over the years has always been a good experience. What I find striking though is that renunciations are sky-rocketing under Obama’s watch. So much for “hope and change”. I put the blame for this mess squarely on Obama’s lap. He is the man in charge, so he has to take the blame. His regime is chasing people away.
    Americans are nice people, but most of them are not the brightest bulbs in the room. With the dilapidated state of much of their public education, that is not surprising. Most of them are probably not even aware of this issue.

  163. @ the forum in general……………
    A question………
    Do we really have a class action suit in the works against Canadian banks and other financial institutions? Do we have our ducks in a row to do that?
    Are we at the ready?
    I am of the opinion that the action should proceed forthwith, without any further delay. What does the lawyer think? What do members of this forum think?
    I am ready to sign up now. I am absolutely ready to never cross the US border again in my life. For putting me to this trouble, they do not deserve one thin dime of my tourist money anyway.
    I am not a lawyer, but my understanding of Canadian law tells me that for a civil suit like that to proceed and be successful, there must be damages. In the case of those of us who have paid lawyers and accountants over this preposterous issue, we should be able to show damages. This bullsh1t has cost lots of us in here lots of money and angst for absolutely no legitimate reason. The question is whether the court would make the connection between the money we have spent over this angst versus what the banks are doing.
    The banks’ lawyers would argue there is no connection, but I think there is a connection, especially for those of us who are taking steps and incurring costs to renounce. For me, the costs, including travel to the consul, legal fees, and lost income are approaching the $10,000 mark. I am doing this because I want to be able to truthfully tell any Canadian financial institution that I am not a US citizen. I have incurred these costs to avoid a potential perjury charge. Of course, the banks would argue that they are not the guilty party, and that Uncle Sam is. In that case we should file our suits in both US and Canadian courts, with Canadian banks and both governments named as co-defendants.
    I would argue, that by caving into foreign pressure, and thereby violating the Supreme Law of the Land, Canadian banks are also guilty. So is our own Federal Government.
    We are asking for nothing special. We are merely asking for the same rights as afforded to other Canadians who obey Canadian Law.
    The point is we shouldn’t have to answer the question to Canadian banks at all, not in Canada anyway. I am incurring costs to protect my rights under our Canadian constitution, which is the Supreme Law of the Land. There should be no such costs. Therefore there are damages.
    I think this topic needs to be thoroughly vetted here in this forum.
    Where are we in all of this?

  164. @ArticGreyling: Yes, three of us together consulted a prominent constitutional lawyer. I know of at least one other person who consulted the same lawyer independent of the three of us.
    The lawyer has advised us we do not have grounds for a lawsuit or a Charter Challenge now because we do not yet know for certain if Canadian banks will violate Canadian laws or if the government will change those laws. That is why nothing is proceeding at this time. He has maintained that position in more recent contact with him.
    In addition, I contacted Canadian Civil Liberties Association. Here is their announcement which followed my contact with them. This includes a link to their Open Letter to Finance Canada.
    Many individuals are prepared to join in legal action if it becomes necessary (which I am still hoping it won’t).
    The lawyer we consulted “is the best interpreter of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. No one, perhaps, has had more influence on contemporary Canadian life and values.” Plus, he “really, really hates to lose.”
    In case you haven’t seen it, another leading constitutional lawyer and scholar wrote to Finance Canada outlining his concerns about FATCA.
    I’ve been told Peter Hogg and Joe Arvay have been on opposite sides in the past. On FATCA, they are of like mind.
    Please keep us informed about your relinquishment/renouncement and keep checking back for updated information.

    1. Remember. We will most likely have to be able to show damages. Everybody should keep careful records.
      If you have consulted with the lawyer, have you made the point about financial damages that many of us have incurred already? To me, they very fact that such a law is even being considered is grounds for civil action. Their mere consideration of such a law is causing people angst and financial damages now.
      At this point I still plan to go ahead with the relinquishment/renouncement. But there is a fly in the ointment. We are unmistakably blowing our cover. Even if we owe those guys no money, there is still nothing, as far as I know, that would preclude them coming after us, even years down the road, and even years after we relinquish or renounce. They could even come after our estates after we die. They have gone to absurd and criminal lengths so far. I would not dare speculate how far they will or will not go in the future.
      Who knows? If it were in their interest they could simply change the citizenship law on those who renounce.
      There has been speculation by that MNP tax specialist that the IRS will start making examples of us starting in 2016 or 2017. There is nothing, as far as I know, in their law that would preclude them from doing that. Who will they chase? Will they chase delinquent FBAR filers even if they owe no taxes? Will they chase those who refuse to file FBAR based on principle and Canadian sovereignty?
      As I mentioned in another thread, the refusal of Canadian courts and CRA to collect fines is of no comfort. The IRS could simply demand from Canadian banks the right to seize assets (while we are alive, or from our estates and heirs after we are dead) or impose draconian penalties on them in their American operations. The banks will cave in. So will our government. Our courts will be powerless to stop it. Of that you can be sure.

    2. @ArticGreyling: No, we did not discuss with the lawyer the possibility of recovering damages. That was because the three of us who consulted him have not had any damages. We have not filed anything with IRS or assumed any financial costs to lawyers or accountants.
      I am not a lawyer, but I wonder if it would actually be possible to make the case those damages were caused by either the Canadian government or Canadian banks. Anyone filing now seems to be doing so based on the demands of US for them to do so. So, I personally don’t know if a case would have merit for damages in a Canadian court at this time. (I stress that is only my personal view).
      There have been court cases in the past where Canadian courts have clearly shown IRS has no jurisdiction in Canada. In one, IRS was trying to force TD to take funds from the account of a Canadian citizen in Canada and submit it to US. The court refused.
      I understand your anxiety about the US at a later date refusing to recognize earlier renunciation.
      Many of us (myself included) were told clearly, firmly and directly by US Consulate we were “permanently and irrevocably” relinquishing US citizenship when we became citizens of Canada or other countries.
      That was the law until a Supreme Court decision in 1986.
      That is also the reason I personally am not prepared to go anywhere near a US Consulate or IRS. Their past behaviour has shown me clearly they can’t be trusted.
      Many others have made different decisions and want that CLN in their hands. We all need to do whatever will give us the most peace of mind.
      With that said, I have a copy of my signed oath from my Citizenship and Immigration file. At the time (1973), I was required to renounce any other citizenship. My signature is witnessed by a Canadian citizenship official. I don’t see how any Canadian bank could refuse to accept that as proof I am not a “US person.” I consider that my restraining order. At the same time, I also realize restraining orders often do little to deter a stalking abuser.
      I am still optimistic Canadians citizens and residents will be protected by Canadian laws and Charter of Rights and Freedoms. I know others consider me naive for that view, but it is where I am putting my faith until I have something concrete to show me differently.
      Many people believe if Canada was not going to sign an IGA which violates our rights, they would have said so by now. The flip side is if they were going to sign an standard IGA, wouldn’t they have simply done it by now?

  165. Arctic Grayling. Yes I am 100% certain that you can renounce before you file tax returns. This has been discussed at length . The State dep’t are not allowed to discuss taxes except to tell you that after you renounce you should contact the IRS.
    Your CLN is not contingent on filing taxes. If you choose to file that’s up to you. Probably not a bad idea because if you don’t, you would be considered a so called ‘covered expatriate’.
    As far as FBARSs, they are under a different title. Once you are no longer a us cit, there is no reason to file them. Many people have argued,and I agree, that there is no need to back file them if you renounce. Ask yourself-what are they gonna do?

    1. So…if I understand this correctly, I should, in the event I cannot simply relinquish, do the following:
      (1) Appear at US consulate and renounce.
      (2) File my five years of tax returns at my leisure, but in any event before the end of 2013. Actually, there is nothing owing, so I can file them any time I choose?
      (3) File the FBAR’s soon (before the end of 2013) to be sure that I fall within the amnesty that I understand extends to Canadians until the end of this year?
      (4) In April of next year, file my 1040 tax return for 2013 (i.e., for that portion of the year in which I am a citizen).
      (5) In that 2013 income filing will be the form 8854, in which I will be able to certify that I have fulfilled all tax filing obligations for the last 5 years.
      (6) My net worth is (and will be) less than $2 million and my unrealized gains are (and will be) less than $600,000.
      (7) I will be fully compliant, and not a covered expatriate. Uncle Sam can kiss my ass goodbye?
      (8) I will be able to travel through the States in the meantime with a COLN? Will I be a covered expatriate in the interim?
      What is Uncle Sam going to do if I don’t file the FBAR’s? I thought filing those things was a condition required to be compliant. Is it correct to state that I would not be tax compliant if I don’t file?

  166. They can’t simply take your money from a Canadian bank without a Canadian court order. Which they wouldn’t get. Be serious.

    1. What makes you think they wouldn’t get it? Just because a Canadian bank would not a get a court order, what makes you think that a US branch of the same Canadian bank would not get a court order from a US court to cough up the money?
      I don’t think that is far fetched. After all, 10 years ago, who would have thought that another country would so brazenly ride roughshod over our sovereignty like Uncle Sam is doing now? They really don’t give a rat’s ass about our Supreme Law of the our country. Even the Swiss, long known for their discretion and secrecy, have caved in. One Swiss bank paid about $800,000,000 in fines. Do you think that the opinion of a Swiss court mattered in that transaction? It didn’t have to matter. I think it was the American operations of that Swiss Bank that had to pay the money.

    2. Arctic. I think you are confused. A US court order doesn’t give a Canadian bank the right to pay out your money. In any case, it’s moot. You will have renounced, you will be compliant. You won’t be a covered expatriate. FBARs are not necessary in order to be compliant. And yes they can kiss your ass goodbye

  167. @ Arctic Grayling,
    A lot of people renounce as soon as possible to stop the clock and then file the back tax forms. To avoid being a covered expatriate, you have until 15 June next year to file your 8854 exit return, on which you certify you have “complied with all of your tax obligations for the 5 preceding tax years.” DoS doesn’t care about tax and won’t ask (the question re tax on the 4079 is simply to aid them in determining a person’s connection to each country).

    1. @ Pacifica:
      I understand your point, but are they trustworthy enough to really stop that clock?
      This is tantamount to a home invasion. Would you trust the undertaking of somebody who is trying to rob you?
      People who burglarize and invade people’s homes are put in jail. Obama is the home invader here. He is invading our homes.
      He is the man in charge here. He is the head of state and head of government that is committing this criminal act. That makes him the head crook. I don’t trust the word of a crook.

  168. @ Blaze…….
    I will address each one of your paragraphs in sequence.
    You wrote:
    No, we did not discuss with the lawyer the possibility of recovering damages. That was because the three of us who consulted him have not had any damages. We have not filed anything with IRS or assumed any financial costs to lawyers or accountants.
    My Reply:
    Then can I suggest that you do? If you tell me the lawyer’s name, I will ask him myself.
    You wrote:
    I am not a lawyer, but I wonder if it would actually be possible to make the case those damages were caused by either the Canadian government or Canadian banks. Anyone filing now seems to be doing so based on the demands of US for them to do so. So, I personally don’t know if a case would have merit for damages in a Canadian court at this time. (I stress that is only my personal view).
    My reply:
    Your point there would almost certainly be the position of either CRA or a Canadian Financial Institution (CFI) in the event they are named as co-defendants. My answer to that is they would be liable because, by going along with FATCA, they will have contravened our constitution by making second-class citizens out of an identifiable group of people.
    You wrote”
    There have been court cases in the past where Canadian courts have clearly shown IRS has no jurisdiction in Canada. In one, IRS was trying to force TD to take funds from the account of a Canadian citizen in Canada and submit it to US. The court refused.
    My reply:
    I suppose that provides some comfort, but my concern would be if FATCA is ratified, that earlier Supreme Court position would no longer be valid.
    You wrote:
    I understand your anxiety about the US at a later date refusing to recognize earlier renunciation.
    My reply:
    They possess the power to do pretty much anything they want. They are certainly not the “Land of the Free”. They are not even free to leave.
    You wrote:
    Many of us (myself included) were told clearly, firmly and directly by US Consulate we were “permanently and irrevocably” relinquishing US citizenship when we became citizens of Canada or other countries.
    My reply:
    They can promise anything they want. I don’t trust them. Unless they issued that statement in writing, I am afraid you might be on the hook. In any case, essentially, in my book, they are no different from a criminal thug committing a home invasion. They are trying to invade my home. I don’t trust people who try to do that, no matter what else they say or do.
    You wrote:
    That was the law until a Supreme Court decision in 1986.
    My reply:
    Yup. They changed their minds. Right?
    You wrote:
    That is also the reason I personally am not prepared to go anywhere near a US Consulate or IRS. Their past behaviour has shown me clearly they can’t be trusted.
    My reply:
    So obviously you don’t trust them either. There is no reason any sensible person should trust them. I wonder about the wisdom of going near a US consulate. The good news is, according to my lawyer, the DOS does not communicate with the IRS.
    So the question is, should I go in 2 weeks, or should I not? I have not been inside a US consulate for 24 years. I don’t think anybody really knows the answer to that.
    But to me, not being able to trust them should be a pretty persuasive argument to a Canadian Court.
    You wrote:
    Many others have made different decisions and want that CLN in their hands. We all need to do whatever will give us the most peace of mind.
    My reply:
    I am certainly wrestling with that one.
    You wrote:
    With that said, I have a copy of my signed oath from my Citizenship and Immigration file. At the time (1973), I was required to renounce any other citizenship. My signature is witnessed by a Canadian citizenship official. I don’t see how any Canadian bank could refuse to accept that as proof I am not a “US person.” I consider that my restraining order.
    My reply:
    I hope you are right. An argument against that would be that a US citizenship court may not recognize the authority of the Canadian official. Maybe your bank will not either.
    So that raises some other questions. How will Canadian banks go about documenting their US citizen clients? Will they just assume that everybody is unless they can prove otherwise? Can we get passports that do not show our birthplace?
    I think we can argue that a Canadian passport showing our birthplace is a contravention of the constitution. I think we should be able to demand a passport that does not show our birthplace. But then the bank, to keep Uncle Sam happy (or to bend over for him) could simply demand that all account holders produce a birth certificate and proof of legal residency in Canada.
    You wrote:
    At the same time, I also realize restraining orders often do little to deter a stalking abuser.
    I am still optimistic Canadians citizens and residents will be protected by Canadian laws and Charter of Rights and Freedoms. I know others consider me naive for that view, but it is where I am putting my faith until I have something concrete to show me differently.
    My reply:
    I am not trying to be condescending, but I am sorry, I think you are naïve. I think you are also naïve to think that the DOS would recognize the authority of a Canadian Official. I do, however, think you have an excellent case to relinquish. But to do so, you put yourself on their radar. You don’t trust them. I don’t blame you.
    You wrote”
    Many people believe if Canada was not going to sign an IGA which violates our rights, they would have said so by now. The flip side is if they were going to sign an standard IGA, wouldn’t they have simply done it by now?
    My reply:
    The problem is, most other countries of any import already have.

  169. Lawyer: (Joe Arvay)
    You are correct, I don’t trust US. That’s why I am not going anywhere near them. I will continue to be “naive” and believe if my Canadian bank and credit union ever demand to know about my citizenship, I will give them my Canadian citizenship certificate and renunciation oath. I don’t care about American courts–only Canadian ones.
    Banks have no legal authority or right to ask about place of birth or other citizenship. So, the question is how will they gather that information. In many countries, a birth certificate is required to open an account. In Canada, a Canadian birth certificate may be used, but it is not the only ID which may be used. A Canadian bank cannot accept a foreign birth certificate as ID for opening an account.
    It is possible to get a Canadian passport that does not show place of birth. I asked for this about 8 years ago. I was told Canada can and will do that. However, there are 16 countries that will not admit anyone on a passport that does not show POB. US is one of them. Because I have an elderly mother in US, that was not an option for me, but it may be for others who do not travel to US.

  170. No, I can’t name those countries. I only know I asked the woman at Canadian Passport office if I could have my new passport issued without showing my place of birth.
    She replied “We can do that, but there are 16 countries which will not admit anyone with a passport which does not show place of birth. The United States is one of them.”
    I did not ask her what the other 15 were because I knew for my purposes, I would have to have my place of birth on the passport.
    Someone in the Passport Office may be able to give you that information. Of, if anyone else here knows, perhaps they will share it.

    1. @ Blaze…..
      In your experience, do border guards give you any grief when you enter with your Canadian passport?
      I happened to me once, but when I explained that I was only transiting, and was on my way to Canada, he sent me through.
      I was told that a couple of years ago, people cross from Windsor to Detroit on Canadian passports that showed US birth places were being detained to see if they had filed taxes.
      I have no idea whether these reports are true, or whether it is just fear mongering.

  171. @ the entire forum.
    I am thinking of rescheduling my relinquishment/renunciation to a more convenient date. I am even wondering if I clicked for the correct consular service.
    When I clicked for the appointment I have now, I clicked on “notarial services”.
    Is this correct? Or should I be asking for another type of service? Who in here has experience with those guys?

  172. Notarial services it is. My wife and I went through the process in January 2012. It was confusing at first but actually quite easy once we got the vocabulary straightened out.
    The consular staff in Halifax were professional and even co-operative and friendly. It took almost six months for us to get our CLN’s but the time seems to be much less recently.

  173. @Johnng Thanks for sharing that. Good to have you commenting again, even if it is only occasionally.
    @ArcticGrayling: We are not aware of anyone who has been asked about taxes at the border.
    Calgary411 was bullied into getting a US passport a few years ago by a US border guard even though she believed like I did that she relinquished US citizenship decades ago. Her life became an IRS nightmare after that. She has now formally renounced.
    I was told by a US officer I was still a US citizen when I applied for a Nexus card in 2004. I insisted I wasn’t and she issued my Nexus card to me as a Canadian. She was polite and respectful and told me if I entered as a US citizen, I could return any time I wished, stay as long as I wanted and not have to say where I was going. I truly think she was trying to be helpful, but I did not follow her advice as I consider myself only Canadian.
    I had no further issues crossing the border until 2011 when another border guard politely told me I should have a US passport. I had only just learned of the IRS issue then, so I simply smiled, nodded and went on my way. I did not get a US passport. I have crossed several times since then with no mention of place of birth, need for US passport or taxes.
    Schubert started a thread last year on experiences crossing the border. Both he and his wife have a CLN, but they have not had to use it. Likewise, Johnng and his wife and Tiger have not had to use their CLN when crossing (although they travel with it in case they need it).
    Here is that thread which shows most people have had no problem entering US on a Canadian or other passport showing US place of birth.
    Pacifica has reported that if people got a US passport because they were told by a US border guard that they had to, they were still able to relinquish because they did so based on misinformation.
    Unfortunately, Calgary411 did not have any of this information when she got her US passport and later began filing US tax return at huge expense to her financially and emotionally.
    In terms of Consulates, Pacifica is one of the most knowledgeable. You may want to check out the thread at Brock where people share their experiences at different Consulates.
    In Canada, Vancouver Consulate and Ottawa Embassy were known as the most difficult to deal with, but there seems to have been some improvement especially after Pacifica and Calgary411 made contact with a US official.
    The thread is so long it is in two parts.

    1. Naivety is not a good trait for US Persons Abroad. We need to make all of our decisions with lots of research and best information. Maple Sandbox and Isaac Brock help along the path of many twists and turns and consequences.
      If my experience being told “I would be allowed to cross the border this time but “in future would need to cross with a US passport” (and so intimidated me) helps others know how to react, it was in a way worth it. I don’t want it to intimidate others. Had I only known then what I know now the substantial cost to me would have been gone — RELINQUISHED!

    2. @ Calgary411 & Blaze….
      I must say that the last two posts have been most helpful to me. It brings me back to form DS-4079 and the precise content of the questions.
      By answering the questions precisely, I am feeling confident that I can relinquish.
      (1) Any question asked in the past tense should be answered in the past tense.
      (2) Any question asked in the present tense should be answered in the present tense.
      I have given absolutely honest answers to all of those questions. Like I said, some of the questions are analogous to “Have you ever smoked?” or “Do you you smoke now?”. For me, the answer to the former is “yes”. The answer to the latter is “no”.
      Back to my concerns about the passports I had. It asks when the last passport was issued. I answered honestly. It asks for the number. The truth is I don’t have it. I lost it. That is what I answered, because it is the truth.
      Now I can honestly say that the last passport was obtained based on misinformation. That is truth. I was also told by a border guard that I needed it. Bloody hell, years later on a domestic flight from Miami to Denver I was even told by security people that I needed one. That is misinformation.
      On form DS-4079 I am not going to say anything about the passport issued in 1977. I don’t have to. The form doesn’t ask anything about it. It only asks about the last one.
      So folks….I am not a lawyer, but I know enough about English grammar to be confident in the advice I am giving here. To relinquish, answer the questions on form DS-4079. Answer only the question!! Do not volunteer information that the question does not ask!
      For example: years ago you may have voted. But the question about voting is in the present tense. It asks “do you vote?” It does NOT ask “did you vote?”. Years ago you may have had family ties and/or social ties. I had them, but I don’t have them now!!! The question is in the present tense.
      I reiterate: Do not volunteer information that the question does not ask….unless it reinforces your position! I will add the bits about the misinformation and my certificate of retention of Canadian citizenship. They both help my case.
      Thanks for your input folks. You are being most helpful. I hope that others will benefit from both your thoughts and mine.
      I do plan to stick around.

  174. @ArticGrayling: I hope you are able to relinquish, but it could be a problem in that you never committed an expatriating act–i.e. you did not Swear an Oath of Allegiance to become a Canadian citizen because you had citizenship through your parents.
    I don’t know if they will accept working for the government as a summer student as an expatriating act. It’s worth a try, but be prepared in case you have to renounce.
    Glad you will be sticking around.

    1. @ ………….Blaze.
      In the early 70’s I was travelling overseas on a Canadian passport. I lived and worked in both Germany and Switzerland. I filed a certificate of retention of Canadian citizenship. I HAD to do that or I would have LOST my Canadian citizenship.
      My dad became aware of the situation, sent me an urgent telegram, and told me to get myself over to a Canadian Consul immediately. If I did not do that, I would (because I was not physically present and resident at the time in Canada) have automatically lost my Canadian citizenship on my 24th birthday, which at the time was only a few days away. I was living and working in Germany at the time. I jumped on a train and went to the consul in Stuttgart. I got it done!!
      If I recall correctly, I had to swear an oath at the consul when I was issued that certificate. I didn’t keep a copy of that oath, but I most certainly had to reaffirm my Canadian citizenship, and I most certainly did keep a copy of that Certificate of Retention. Keeping a copy of any oath was not my priority at that point in my life. My priority was to continue to be able to legally travel on my Canadian passport. I walked out of that consul’s office being able to do that.
      That, to me, was an affirmation of my Canadian citizenship, the maintenance of which has always been my first priority. That document I have!! That document I can produce to the American consul. I have used that document ever since to renew my Canadian passports.
      At the time, I thought I would be a stateless person if I didn’t do what I did!! I hadn’t even inquired about about US status. I thought, at the time, that I had already lost my US nationality by travelling on a Canadian passport.
      The thought of going hat in hand to the Americans for a passport at that time had no appeal. I would have felt like a fool begging for biscuits. If I had lost my Canadian citizenship, and if the Americans had given me a passport to travel back to North America, I would have used it to enter Canada.
      The other expatriating act was working for the Canadian government in 1971. I was only a summer student, but I had to be a citizen to take the job and I gave an oath of allegiance to Canada and Her Majesty. However, I never kept a copy of that oath.

  175. @ArticGrayling: Well, that may all help.
    I wonder if Citizenship and Immigration Canada would have a copy of anything you signed in their files. Several of us were able to get copies of our signed oaths through an Access to Information request. It is very difficult to read, because it was stored on microfiche, but it is certainly legible.
    You can apply on line or with a letter to CIC. It took a few weeks for the documents to arrive. There is a $5.00 fee. It was the best $5.00 I’ve ever spent.
    You likely would not have been given a copy of the Oath which you signed working for the federal government. . I worked in Human Resources for a provincial government and those those Oaths were kept in the employee file. We would have given a copy if we had been asked, but I never was. In fact, my former colleagues were quite stunned when last year I asked for a copy of two of my Oaths–one from 1975 and one from 1985. They were able to provide them quickly, even thought I am no longer actively employed.
    I don’t recall if summer students signed Oaths of Allegiance or not.

    1. @Blaze……
      Thank you for the link. Even though I have the most current version of Adobe Reader, I don’t seem to be able to call up the relevant PDF document from that link.
      I am going to email my daughter the link. Maybe she can call up the PDF document that I need.
      In any event, I have taken a brief pause. I have cancelled my appointment in Calgary, and will reschedule one there, or perhaps somewhere else. Maybe I will go to Halifax. Another poster here commented on how friendly and accommodating they were.
      I want to think this through some more. This forum has been most helpful, and I hope my thoughts on answering precisely Form DS-4079 will help others.
      What is not clear to me is whether somebody who simply relinquishes is a “covered expatriate”.

  176. @ blaze…..
    The wallet-sized plastically embossed certificate of birth abroad that I have for Canada very clearly states, on the the back, that I would have lost my Canadian Citizenship on my 24th birthday. I wasn’t aware of that problem at the time, because I didn’t have the plastically embossed copy. My dad got that for me while I was overseas..
    The certificate I used to get my Canadian passport at that time was the original one that my parents got for me shortly after I was born. On that certificate it said nothing about the possible loss of nationality, so I was not aware of it. My dad was not aware of it either. He got the wallet sized plastic embossed copy for me thinking it would be more convenient to have. It was only then that he became aware of the predicament I was in, at which point he sent me that urgent telegram.

  177. @ArcticGrayling: A pause may be a good idea. If and when you proceed, Calgary Consulate has a good reputation for being professional, helpful and respectful.

  178. I am new here. My wife and I came to Canada in 1972 from California. I became a Canadian in the late 70’s. My wife just became a Canadian today.
    We have filed US tax returns every year since 1972, but only had to pay taxes beginning two years ago!! Big Shock….both the back taxes and the accounting fees going back five years on our Canadian Mutual Funds. We are both retired.
    In early May we made an appointment for Calgary in Mid August hoping that my wife’s CA Citizenship would come through in time!. The Calgary Consulate office sent instructions to both of us for this appointment, knowing that my wife was becoming a Canadian Citizen in order to Relinquish her US Citizenship.
    It is interesting that Calgary sent a Relinquishment form to my wife along with a 4079 form and the letter made no mention of paying $450.
    The e mail to me sent a Renunciation Questionnaire and no other forms
    to be filled out, but with the note that there would be a $450 fee.
    I am wondering if I should have the 4080, 4081 and 4079 forms filled out for both of us, just in case they ask for them, and to avoid having to make the trip to Calgary a second time.
    I would welcome any advice the group has to offer.
    Many thanks
    Edmonton Bee Man

  179. @Edmonton Bee Man: First, many congratulations to your wife on her Canadian citizenship today. I hope you celebrate with both red and white Canadian wine.
    She is very wise to immediately inform US Consulate of her relinquishment.
    It appears your wife will be able to relinquish if she became a Canadian citizen with the intent of relinquishing her US citizenship (which it certainly seems was her intent). Her visit to the Consulate will be to inform them of her relinquishment through the expatriating act of becoming a Canadian citizen. There is no fee to relinquish. You are merely informing them of an act that has taken place which will qualify her for a CLN.
    I’m a bit confused about your situation. Most people who became Canadian citizens in the late 1970s did so with the understanding of US law at the time that they were “permanently and irrevocably” relinquishing US citizenship. If you did that and you have not done anything to reclaim US citizenship since then (i.e. US passport, filing US tax returns or voting in US elections), then you should also be able to inform the Consulate of your relinquishment and get a back-dated CLN. There would be no fee for that.
    However, you said “we” have been filing with IRS every year. Does the “we” include you, or was it just for your wife?
    If it was just for your wife and you have not filed for yourself, have not had a passport and have not voted in a US election, you should be able to inform the Consulate you intended to relinquish US citizenship over 30 years ago and receive a back-dated CLN.
    However, if the “we” filed US tax returns includes you, you will not be able to relinquish because you clearly did not intend to relinquish US citizenship in the 1970s and have maintained US citizenship by filing income tax returns (and passport and voting if you did either of those). In that case, you will have to renounce and pay the $450 fee. In that case, you would complete DS4080.
    The questionnaire may be to determine if you relinquished or renounced. The answers to those questions may also determine if you should use DS4079 or DS4080.
    Relinquishment requires one visit. Renunciation did require two, but I think some Consulates may now be doing it in one. Perhaps Pacifica, Calgary411 or others who know more about that than I do could advise you on that.

  180. @Edmonton Bee Man: You probably have seen this from DOS on possible loss of US citizenship, but I will post it here in case you haven’t.
    In addition, here is an article from a US law firm on losing or renouncing US citizenship.,d.dmg

    1. Blaze,
      Many thanks for your replies. It is pretty clear to me that I have to go the route of Renunciation since I did file US income tax
      returns since 1972 and have continued to get US Passports.
      We have also both continued to vote in Federal Elections in the States.
      I did consider myself a dual citizen and did not see any reason to burn my bridges, although with the benefit of hindsight, I can see the error of my ways! My wife is not very political and did not feel a need to become a Canadian until these recent developments.
      One question I have relates to the Interviews with the Consulate in Calgary: Is it important not to mention the
      taxation and huge accounting fees as a reason for giving up US Citizenship? This seems to be the advice of many?
      If we don’t mention that, our reason is that our kids and grand kids are in Canada, we have been here for 51 years,
      we are getting too old at 77 years of age to do all the paper work and we have no plans to ever go back to live in the US, so it really doesn’t make a lot of sense to maintain dual citizenship.
      Many thanks for any response of these ideas.
      Edmonton Bee Man

  181. Hi Edmonton Bee Man,
    Calgary does both renunciation and relinquishment in one visit.
    Calgary411 will probably reply about the Calgary consulate. Also you can read nine or ten people’s experiences at Calgary in the Consulate Report Directory. Calgary has an excellent reputation.
    Re: “One question I have relates to the Interviews with the Consulate in Calgary: Is it important not to mention the taxation and huge accounting fees as a reason for giving up US Citizenship?”
    As a rule, they don’t ask why you’ve decided to renounce, and you are not required to provide a reason. But if the subject does come up, just say like you did in your last paragraph, that your kids, grandkids are here, your life is totally here.
    Re tax – best to steer clear of it. They won’t bring it up either — Dept of State isn’t interested in IRS matters. There is, of course, the question on the 4079 about “do you file taxes?” but that’s there as an aid to determining one’s connection to each country (the 4079 is really designed for people claiming to have (or to have lost) US citizenship, rather than people renouncing, although it’s used for the latter too).
    You mentioned that Calgary sent your wife, but not you a 4079. It’s required for relinquishments (particularly useful for people applying based on a long-ago relinquishing act), but not required for renunciations. Most consulates seem use it for renunciations anyway, but it sounds like Calgary doesn’t.
    At most consulates, the consul reads your 4079 while you’re in the waiting area. If something isn’t clear, they’ll ask. But generally the 4079 speaks for itself. If Calgary is sending renunciants a renunciation questionnaire instead of the 4079, probably all the background info they need is on it. So, it’s not really an “interview.” The consulate meeting tends to be quite brief, mainly the consul wants to be sure you’re aware of the consequences.

  182. Regarding my experience with booking an appointment, forms, etc. at the US Consulate in Calgary:
    After emailing (rather than booking online through “US Citizen Services, Notarial and Other Services appointments”) requesting an appointment for renunciation, I was sent the following to read and “Renunciation Questionnaire” to fill out and fax or email (pdf scan) back.
    Dear Ms. calgary411:
    The next available appointment is on Wednesday, November XXX at 2:30. If you wish to schedule this date, please provide the following information:
    – Full legal name
    – Date of birth
    – Place of birth
    – Contact number
    Thank you,
    Dear Ms. calgary411,
    Renunciation of United States citizenship is a formal legal procedure. We ask that you reflect on the gravity and consequences of renouncing your citizenship, before scheduling an appointment. The act of renunciation is irrevocable, the only way you could reacquire citizenship would be through the naturalization process.
    If after reviewing the enclosed information, you wish to formally renounce your citizenship, please e-mail to request an appointment. Appointments are booked on Thursdays only between 2:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m. and you must appear in person.
    If you choose to renounce your United States citizenship, please complete the enclosed information sheet, and provide the requested documentation to proceed with the renunciation. You should bring evidence of your citizenship, such as a birth certificate, Consular Report of Birth Abroad or Certificate of U.S. Naturalization/Citizenship. Also bring any U.S. passports that you have (valid or expired) and evidence of your foreign nationality. You may also wish to prepare a written statement regarding your reasons for renouncing U.S. citizenship.
    In order to complete the renunciation process there will be a fee of $450 U.S. Dollars. The fee is payable upon receipt of the approved Certificate of Loss of Nationality from the Department of State, not at the time of signing the Oath of Renunciation.
    – Advice on Possible Renunciation of U.S. Citizenship
    – Renunciation of U.S. Citizenship by Persons Claiming a Right of Residence in the U.S.
    – Advice about Possible Loss of U.S. Citizenship and Dual Nationality
    – Renunciation Questionnaire:
    1. YOUR FULL LEGAL NAME (including former names):
    5. CURRENT TELEPHONE # HOME ____ – ____ – ______ OTHER ____ – ____ – ______
    9. ACQUIRED U.S. CITIZENSHIP BY BIRTH IN U.S. OR, ABROAD TO ONE/TWO U.S. PARENTS. (please circle appropriate answer)
    DATE __________________________ PLACE _____________________________________
    11. OTHER NATIONALITY: ___________________­ DATE ACQUIRED: _______________
    (if yes, please attach your written statement)
    ____ SWEAR, OR ____ AFFIRM, TO THE OATH?
    Forms 4079 and 4081 were not provided to me from the Calgary Consulate. I printed off Forms 4079 and 4081 from the Consulate Report Directory found at Isaac Brock Society, a good exercise just to know what they MIGHT ask. They did not want these forms. In fact, all of the paperwork was prepared and ready to sign, with just a short interview with the official at the US Consulate in Calgary. Not every consulate / embassy has the same procedure. In fact, Calgary’s differs from most. Too bad all others didn’t following the same common-sense standards of procedure.
    *Note that Social Security Number was asked for, but it has been shown at Isaac Brock that if you do not have a social security number, one is NOT required.

    1. @ Calgary411
      As far as I can see, neither form 4079 nor form 4081 ask for a Social Security Number.
      If the question is not asked, don’t answer it.

  183. @ anybody who may know.
    Just how demanding and thorough are the US authorities on documentation?
    For example, in my case, I filed the Certificate of Retention of Canadian Citizenship in the early 70’s, in Stuttgart Germany, just short of my 24th birthday. On my 24th birthday I would have lost my Canadian citizenship had I not made that declaration. That I can show them.
    This pertains to question 8(c). It does not ask if I signed an oath, so I say nothing about it. To the best of my recollection, I signed an oath, but I honestly don’t remember for sure. I do have the certificate of retention. I have the original issued to me in Stuttgart. I am prepared to give them a notarized copy to keep. Will that be enough? Or will I need to use access to information to get the document? I think my certificate of retention should be enough. If I am asked why I didn’t bring a copy of an oath, I will simply say “the question was not asked”.
    As far my employment with the Government is concerned I answered “to the best of my recollection I signed an oath, but it was 42 years ago”. I was only a summer student. As far as I know, Canadian citizenship was required to accept the job. In any case, I am not going to say that I was a summer student. It is irrelevant. I worked there. That is the truth. That’s all I am going to say.
    When I got the certificate of retention in Stuttgart, the only thing I remember from that day was how relieved I was when I walked out of the Consul, knowing full well I could legally carry a Canadian passport. I sure as hell didn’t care about having a copy of any oath.
    I would also like to repeat another question.
    Is an expat a “covered expatriate” if he/she relinquishes and does not file a tax return?

  184. @ the forum in general
    It looks to me like form DS-4079 should be enough to relinquish.
    Am I right?
    On form 4081, you acknowledge that you must contact the IRS. If Form DS-4079 is enough, you are off the hook. Form DS-4079 requires no such undertaking.

    1. My take on line 10 of the 4081 is, as well as ensuring that the person is aware of the consequences of what they’re doing, the 4081 also creates a record that the consul did his/her job, made the person aware of the consequences. I interpret line 10 of the 4081 as “We here at the consulate told the person that expatriation may not relieve them from tax obligations, etc. We don’t give out tax advice but we told them who to contact to find out.”
      If a person is supposed to file taxes, they’re supposed to file taxes, the obligation being created by law. The 4081 does not create an obligation to file taxes.
      So, I interpret it as to find out what my tax obligations are, I have to find that out from IRS (not Dept of State), which I can find out on the IRS website – not in the sense of an undertaking to have to write or phone IRS to inform them.
      However, the Dept of State sends IRS a copy of each approved CLN.
      Regarding tax, if you relinquished pre-1995, that’s before the current exit tax requirements existed, so be sure to read these posts.

  185. @ArcticGrayling: Are you referring to covered expatriate” for the exit tax?
    If your net worth is $2 million or more (lucky you!) or your tax liability has exceeded a certain threshold (unlucky you!), you could be subject to the exit tax.
    However, it is very possible this would not apply to you because you were a dual from birth.
    If you otherwise fall within the financial thresholds set out above and certify that you have fulfilled your tax obligations for the past 5 years you can escape the Sec. 877A tax regime if you became a dual citizen at birth, you retain that other citizenship, and you are currently a tax resident of that country or you expatriate by age 181/2 and in the last 15 years you were not US resident (under substantial presence test) more than 10 years.
    Phil Hodgen says you may still have “some paperwork ahead of you”
    In another post, Phil asks a “hypothetical” Canadian similar to you if he or she wants to a sheep or a goat or and if they should inspect the teeth of the IRS lion. Some good points made with humour
    Phil has some suggestions for being a happy goat.

  186. If I understand the Pre-1995 rules correctly, anybody who committed and expatriating act before 1995 does not even have to inform the IRS and/or the State Department?
    If one never travels to the States, and if one has nothing on file with any Canadian Financial Institution (CFI) to suggest US citizenship, why even bother with all this tax filing nonsense? Why even bother with all this FBAR nonsense? Why even bother with a Form DS-4079 appointment with a consulate?
    In my case, in the unlikely event any CFI flags me, I can truthfully tell any bank I did the things that I did before 1995. I can produce my Certificate of Retention of Canadian Citizenship. I can also show them that I am not required to inform the IRS and/or DOS.
    The only ID any CFI has of me is a notarized copy of my driver’s licence and my fire arm’s permit. Neither one make any mention of birth place.
    I am not suggesting lying to the bank. Just don’t tell them anything more than what they need to know. What else does any bank need to know?
    However, having said all of this, changing banks or brokerage houses could be a problem. For a person to take this stance, they would have to be prepared to stick with their existing CFI(s) for life.

  187. Arctic. Now you get it. Why bother with any of the BS indeed? You don’t have to.
    You can safely change FIs if you wish. They can ask citizenship. You answer Canadian and provide a driver’s licence. That’s not so difficult is it?

    1. @ the Duke…..
      Yes Duke…I get it. I think have spent in excess of $7 K for nothing. Actually, it was not all for nought. I learned a lot. It was the school of life.
      I think I can safely travel to the States too. All I have to bring along with me is an excerpt of US law in which in states that I did not, and do not, have to inform IRS or DOS about any expatriating act done before 1995.
      Any US passport I had was procured on the basis of misinformation. In any case, I don’t have a US passport. I never used one. I never travelled with one. I never even used one to enter the United States (which I rarely do anyway). Any US passport that I had has been lost. I never gave a rat’s ass about the damn thing anyway.
      It all gets back to my point. Don’t tell anybody anything more than they need to know. Just answer the question. Ask me if I smoke now. I will say simply say “no”. I will not tell you that I smoked 30 years ago because you didn’t ask me.
      Now……….can somebody direct me to a link with that pre-1995 rule? I am going to print and plastically emboss the damn thing.

  188. My Canadian investment account did not ask what my citizenship was. Instead they asked if there was any reason that the U.S. would consider me a citizen. Seems as though relying on banks not asking your citizenship is not enough.

    1. @ Outraged Canadian.
      I would never refer to Canadian banks as “weasels”, not even “tongue in cheek” as you appear to have done.
      They have always been good to me, and as an individual who owns a meaningful number of shares in all 5 major Canadian banks, I hasten to point out that they have raised the dividends regularly over the years, and that the dividend payments have always been on time.
      To be truthful, you would be better off as a shareholder in Canadian banks than you would be as their customer.
      I can think of a few American banks that don’t measure up quite as well.

  189. @Outraged, Arctic, Johnng, Others: I think the banks are asking the questions “US person” for investment accounts which may have US source income through mutual funds or other investments. Johng, is that what you were asked it for?
    I don’t think they are asking it for banking accounts, GICs, Canadian source funds, etc. If anyone has had that happen, please correct me.

    1. @ Blaze….
      The banks are not asking for anything now.
      The question is whether banks will ask starting in 2014 to document FATCA requirements, assuming Canada buckles under and signs. The question is also whether that question will be asked of all accounts, or just new ones.
      The position I am contemplating now is, if asked by the bank, I would inform them as follows:
      (1) I expatriating act before 1995 and therefore no longer a US citizen.
      (2) Inasmuch as it was performed before 1995, I neither obliged to inform DOS or the IRS, and that the bank would be filling out a false form by categorizing me as a US person.
      I don’t see a need to say anything more.

  190. @ Arctic Grayling,
    “Re: If I understand the Pre-1995 rules correctly, anybody who committed and expatriating act before 1995 does not even have to inform the IRS and/or the State Department?”
    Well, a CLN is the most incontrovertible proof that a US-born person is not a US citizen. Prior to 1986, the US’ administrative presumption was that a person performing an expatriating act intended to relinquish US citizenship. After 1986, the US’ administrative presumption has been that a person doing so intends to retain US citizenship. In both eras, the presumption was and is rebuttable. I only became aware that it was actually an administrative presumption decades after the fact. At the time, we were told the citizenship loss was automatic.
    As I do not trust the Americans (due to their misinformation, convoluted laws and and scapegoat mentality on citizenship-related matters), I feel more secure having a CLN as it proves they agree that I terminated my citizenship when I did. Some people, who also don’t trust the US, feel more secure just steering clear of the whole thing. It’s a really individual decision.

    1. @ Pacifica:
      I think your points are well taken, but I would like to offer my thoughts.
      Hypothesize that one is questioned by US authorities while travelling into or through the United States. Granted, the hypothesis is far-fetched. Information that I am getting from this blog suggests that these things are not being done to travellers, but just imagine if they were.
      (1) If ever asked about citizenship when travelling through the United States, I would point out this law that pertains to actions before 1995.
      (2) If asked how I know about it, I can say that I sought legal advice from a US-based lawyer who specializes in citizenship matters. I can say that because it’s perfectly true. I don’t have to tell them whether the lawyer, whom I paid, in fact told me about this pre-1995 loophole. I only need to say that I sought legal advice. It could be the opinion of a lawyer from this blog, but I don’t have to say that.
      (3) If asked the name of the lawyer, I can legally refuse to divulge that information on the basis of client-solicitor privilege.
      (4) If asked about tax returns, I will say that I have had them professionally prepared. That is not a lie. If asked whether I have submitted them, I would say “no”, because submitting them is a de-facto claim of US citizenship, and that I wish to make no such claim. I would also say that the calculations show that I would owe nothing if I chose to file them. That is true.
      (5) If asked about the FBAR, I would say that I have reviewed my financial records, the tax treaty between Canada and the United States and have concluded, based on Canadian Law, based on US tax law, and the tax treaty between the two countries, that the FBAR does not apply to me. If asked why, I will simply repeat that it does not apply, and say nothing more. I have concluded that it does not apply, and that therefore I have no requirement to file. I will refuse to go into details as to why it does not apply.
      I take the position that, as a matter of “substance over form”, the FBAR does not apply. It does not apply because no Canadian court would ever enforce it, and therefore it has no substance. I would NEVER say that to them, but that is my opinion.
      Does this help anybody in their own thought processes? Or am I just spinning wheels?

  191. @Blaze Yes. This was for an investment account and I have not heard of the same question being asked for regular bank accounts. I just mentioned it as an example of what banks could do to get around asking about a Canadian’s citizenship while staying within the letter of the law if Canada signs a FACTA IGA.
    @Pacifica777 My wife and I also wanted documentation. Too many changes to the applicable laws and too much uncertainty about retroactivity to let us sleep well. However, we appreciate that others may feel differently. We rest easier knowing our back-dated CLN’s are safely tucked away.

    1. @ArcticGrayling
      I think I would love to say all that to a US border guard. However, I suspect the immediate response would be to haul you aside and give you a ton of grief including a long interview and a really thorough search of your car.
      Border guards are not lawyers and have a) an incredible amount of discretion at the border and b) a very low tolerance for what they see as being a wise guy.

  192. @ johng.
    They can search my car. They would never find anything. I would never be so stupid as to carry contraband. I would be also be polite. I would tell them that I am acting on the basis of legal advice.
    As a practical matter, I don’t think it would ever come to the sort of exchange that I hypothesize.
    The point I am trying to drive home is…ANSWER NO MORE THAN THE QUESTION. Do not offer more information than the question asks.
    I will repeat the analogy. Do I smoke? The answer is no. I will not tell you that I smoked 30 years ago if you don’t ask me.
    Same with Form DS-4079, if it ever comes to the point that I have to use it and act upon it. My guess is that you can simply state that you will not answer any more questions than what questions are on the form. Answer them and no more.
    However, you may want to offer more information if you believe that it strengthens your position. The passport issue will probably be raised. I have truthfully answered a past-tense question in the past-tense. If the passport issue is raised, I would certainly state that any passport I had in the past was procured on the basis of misinformation. In my case, that is true. They don’t ask that, but it strengthens my position. If they don’t accept that, I will then go the renunciation route.
    If a question of the form is in the present tense, answer it only in the present tense. Same with questions in the past tense. If they take a present tense question on the form and rephrase it verbally in the present tense (or vice-versa), just politely reply that it not on the form, and that “legal counsel” has advised you to only answer the questions on the form.
    Conclusion: Only go as far as we have to go.
    (1) First step…the pre-1995 loophole. Don’t go further unless it’s necessary. Say nothing. In fact, don’t even go there unless it’s necessary!!! The best option is to simply travel on your Canadian passport without raising any hackles.
    (2) If step (1) is not enough, go to the relinquishment route of form DS-4079.
    (3) If step (2) is not enough, then you renounce. You file your tax returns, and if necessary, the FBAR.
    My tax returns are done. They are ready to file. But I will only file them if I find it necessary to go as far as step (3).
    Your thoughts??

    1. @ArcticGrayling
      I did not mean for an instant to suggest they would find anything if they searched your car. I meant it as an example of the perfectly legal harassment which the border guard could indulge in if he or she felt they were having their chain yanked.
      As any good and true Canadian I appreciate the dictum to volunteer nothing at the border (either coming or going) just answer the questions which are asked.
      When it comes to 4079 my point is that it’s the US that gets to make the decision. The form says right on it that it is a “Request For Determination Of Possible Loss Of United States Citizenship.” As such, if they suspect that someone is relying on strict wording such as present or past tense or that a person is hiding behind legalese (not that that applies to you but just in general) or in any other way trying to slip one over on them they are more likely to reject the application or flag it for scrutiny.
      Our experience was that we were open and friendly and they responded in kind. We were ready for confrontation if it had gone that way but we didn’t start with an attitude of confrontation and were met with professionalism.
      We had had our passports handed back to us three times at the land border between New Brunswick and Maine with the comment that we were U.S. citizens. We were not pressured to get U.S. passports nor were we denied entry but a person we know was told that in Puerto Rico at an airport entry. These experiences did set off warning bells in our heads and we went the relinquishment route (1973 relinquishment but 2012 visit to Consulate.)

  193. @ johng
    You are quite right that the US gets to make the decision on DS-4079. They also suggest that you obtain legal advice before submitting it. If they ask more probing questions, simply say that you have accepted their suggestion that you obtain legal advice, and that you are simply following the advice you have been given
    I recognize the risk that they may wish to probe further. If they probe further on something like voting, you have not lied about the question, as long as your current practice is not to vote. If a number of elections have passed since you last voted, you can truthfully say that you don’t vote. The question DOES NOT ask whether you have voted before.
    If you answer NO…and you have NOT voted in an election in a long time, YOU ARE NOT LYING. If they probe and find that you have voted in elections long past, they still cannot accuse you of lying, because you DON’T vote now. That’s how the question is posed.
    My points are:
    (1) Don’t go the renunciation stage if you can avoid it.
    (2) Don’t lie.
    If I have to go all the way to the renunciation stage, I am ready to do it. I have all my ducks in a row. I just hope like hell I don’t have to go past stage (1) of the three that I listed in my previously posted comment.
    Being able to live with the first step would mean I wouldn’t have to stick my head up in the shooting gallery at all. I don’t want to be a target if I can avoid it.
    If they accuse me of using legalese, I would smile I say “The United States States appears to be a highly legalistic society in which civil actions (and even some criminal actions…such as on George Zimmerman) occur for apparently frivolous reasons. My lawyer has advised me to answer the questions precisely”.
    Say nothing more.

    1. @ johng………..
      and….@ the forum in general.
      Further thoughts as your comments.
      Form 4079 reminds me of Bill Clinton’s affair with Monica Lewinsky.
      Bill Clinton swore up and down that he did not have sexual relations with Monica Lewinsky. Apparently he was right. He did not have sexual relations with her. Under the legal definition of the term, the answers that he gave were legally correct. She performed oral sex with him, which under the legal definition does not constitute having sexual relations.
      Bill’s answers were legally correct. They could not nail him for perjury.
      So..back to form DS-4079. That highly legalistic government suggests that you obtain legal counsel. Get that counsel. Make sure your answers are legally correct.
      If asked anything more, simply tell the consul that you have been advised by legal counsel to have nothing more in the official record that what is asked on Form DS-4079.
      One example that actually applies to me relates to ownership of property in Canada. It asks “did you own property?”. Past-tense question. So I answered yes, because earlier in my life I did own property in Canada. That is the truth. I don’t any now, but I am now asked what I have now, so I don’ tell them.
      Bill Clinton’s impeachment hearing did not ask him if Monica gave him a blow job, so he said nothing about that. He was asked if he had sexual intercourse with her. Apparently he didn’t.
      If legally correct answers are good enough for the President of the United States, they should be good enough for us.

  194. @ArticGrayling: “It depends on what the meaning of the word is is” (Bill Clinton).
    I think everyone who has completed a 4079 and gone through the relinquishment process understands the importance of answering just the questions that are asked.
    As one of the administrators and founders of Maple Sandbox, I’m going to ask you to be a bit more cautious and respectful with some wordings. I personally do not have trouble with the term blow job, but I think there are some who may have difficulty with that or similar terms here.
    We are walking a delicate line. When Outraged and I began Maple Sandbox about a year ago we set out to have a gathering place that valued freedom of speech and expression, but also was respectful and inclusive of all who wanted to participate here. That’s why we established Maple Sandbox rules.
    As I said, it’s a delicate line in the sand. I struggle with suggesting this to you when I myself did an analogy to OVDI and the “other VD”
    Maple Sandbox rules encourages all players to work with referees for fair play.
    So, what do others think of my call? Am I off base by suggesting we be sensitive on this or is the use of terms like blow job out of bounds?

  195. Interesting. Actually, Blaze, when you said he used ‘that’ term, I had to go back and re-read, because it slipped right past me. Perhaps because I live in a transient, tourist-filled place where the median age is less than 30, it’s a pretty common term. I don’t think I’ve heard ‘oral sex’ in years, but the term blow job or bj is pretty common. So, I didn’t think anything of it.
    However, it is a slippery slope, and everyone has a different comfort level regarding language, ideas, etc. Personally, I don’t think I would have used that, but OTH I actually could see myself using ‘bj’, not even thinking it might be offensive to some.
    As you know, I’m much more uncomfortable around terms and words that might suggest incipient racism, so this sexual one just slid right under my radar.
    I don’t feel strongly either way on this particular issue, but I’ll be very interested to hear what others have to say.

  196. To go above and beyond the normal, Arctic Grayling emphasized and illustrated the principle — don’t volunteer more information than asked. Johnnb highlighted that we must make sure whatever answers we give are legally correct. How sad we must weigh every word to protect ourselves and our families from the assaults against US Persons Abroad.
    It’s all a BJ. Although I don’t use that particular phrase in my everyday language, I’m afraid I the F word rolls off my tongue more than necessary in my frustration and anger. And, it helps to often use my middle finger to type.
    As we’ve seen in the history of Isaac Brock, we often hit bumps in the road and things can get off track, not contributing to the discussion. I always say I’d hate for one person to turn away and not get the information we’re trying to get across. Sometimes that happens.
    (I’ve sure toughened up in trying to portray the consequences of US citizenship-based taxation in commenting at many news sites. It’s a bit of a war and all is fair; we do win over some narrow minds, peeling away the ‘USA is sacred’ entitlement mentality.)

    1. @ Blaze….outraged……& @ calgary411
      I read the forum rules before I posted what I posted, but I decided to write what I wrote to drive the point home, especially to newcomers to the forum.
      I willingly accept any Moderator’s right to chastise me.
      Calary411 is right. We are being f***#ed over. This is a war, and all is fair. We are being invaded. This is every bit as much an assault upon our sovereignty as an armed attack, so I will play whatever games I can to strengthen my position against them.
      Blaze…I like the analogy of the OVDI. Other VD. Having a US passport is akin to having some sort of incurable social disease. Anybody accepting a US passport (voluntarily) might just as well get into bed with an AIDS infested whore. The resulting malady would be about equally difficult to shake off. Having been involuntarily born with a US passport is like being born to a syphilitic parent. Beethoven had no say over that one. Apparently, vis-à-vis the United States of Arrogance, we don’t either.
      But back to being “legally correct”. If I decide that I must go the DS-4079 route, there are only two pieces of additional information I will furnish. One will be that since leaving the United States (as an infant… which point I can rightfully argue that I was “up to date” on my tax filings) I have not followed developments in US law. Why the hell should I? The second will be that any US passport I have had was procured on the basis of misinformation. Neither of these points is asked for on the form, but they are, in my judgement, relevant. Does anybody disagree?

  197. The internet allows people to state things in a manner they would not normally use with a group of people they don’t know very well. I personally would prefer that posters to this site remember that some people may take offence to certain words or expressions.
    It’s inevitable that the issue of language and derogatory comments will arise. I trust the judgment of the administrators of this site to moderate comments as they see fit.
    Getting back to the subject of this thread, it seems to me that very few who have tried to relinquish have been rejected. There may be questions asked at the Consulate, especially in uncommon situations, but it appears that once CLN requests have been sent to Washington, they are basically rubber stamped.
    My question is – How much background checking is actually done either at the Consulate or in D.C.? I can see checking passport records is something any Consulate can easily do as this is one of their most common Citizen Services functions. But other information such as voting behavior?

    1. hazy….I recognize that some people may take offence to what I said, but I really wanted to drive the point home.
      Anyhow, I take greater offence to a foreign power’s unprovoked attack against my country. I am angry. When I am angry, I use expressions and epithets that I would not normally use.
      If someone has voted before, I don’t think it matters for 2 reasons. First, they can’t even keep track of voting behaviour in their own country. In the last election, Obama won some counties where as many as 40% more votes were cast than there were registered voters in the county. Secondly, the question on DS-4079 doesn’t ask what you have done before. It asks what your voting practices are now. If at least one election has passed since you last voted, you can truthfully answer “no”.
      As for any prior passport, I would answer the question honestly whether they could check on any prior passport or not. The question is asked in the past tense. There is no advantage to lying. I have also told the truth about the misinformation upon which the procurement of any prior passport is based.

  198. @Arcitcgrayling: OK. Everything is out in the open now and others seem to be comfortable with the BJ comment. I felt like I needed to address it and I did. I still hope no one else takes offense at it.
    In terms of only answering what is asked, I think you are correct in planning to give the information about the misinformation about US passport being a good case of where you should give more information than what is requested.
    As I understand it, getting a US passport can be an indication you did not intend to relinquish. Doing so based on misinformation or direction from a US border guard or other US official can be proof you did intend to relinquish and you only got the passport because you were misinformed by a government official.

  199. Alexander Marino, at posted an interesting article yesterday, “Thinking of renouncing your US citizenship? Then do it now!”
    He says, “If you are one of the many U.S. citizens contemplating renouncing your U.S. citizenship, Congress recently sent a fairly clear message that now, as opposed to later, may be the right time to get out of the club.”
    “The magnitude of what could be at stake when an individual looks to renounce their U.S. citizenship in the future has the potential to be exponentially greater if Congress continues on its path to curb the record number of renunciations in 2013 and beyond.”
    The IRS says that 679 people renounced in the first quarter of 2013. I popped over to the federal register site and see that the U.S. is still publishing their ‘name-and-shame’ list, which I prefer to call the ‘got-smart-and-got-out’ list.

  200. The article seems to be directed at “covered expatriates” who might possibly represent a measurable revenue loss to the United States of Arrogance. They, above all, have the most legitimate reasons to want out.
    That said, our reasons are legitimate enough too.
    Thanks to our higher taxes and the foreign tax credit, the great majority of dual nationals in Canada who have had US tax returns prepared show no taxes owing to Uncle Sam. I have no official figures, but I have been told that in excess of 90% of returns filed show no taxes owing. That is certainly the case for me. I owe nothing for 5 years.
    If I file, I will be filing the FBAR’s late too. They will ask for a reason. I will give them a perfectly valid and honest reason, that reason being that upon learning of Uncle Sam’s blackmail, the boy (me) who was born on the plantation (aka the United States of Arrogance) thought it prudent to speak with DOS (aka the plantation overseer) and go over DS-4079 to see if I am still the property of the plantation owner (aka the IRS, and thereby their commander in the White House).
    I just think it’s prudent to ensure that I am legally bound to do something before I actually do it. The problem I have with that is that I am Canadian, I live in Canada, and I am not aware of any Canadian Law that says I must fill out that report.
    I wonder how Canada would have reacted if Hitler demanded that all Canadian Jews walk around Canada with the Star of David of their lapel. Now Uncle Sam is demanding that any time we walk into a Canadian bank, we are supposed to have the Stars and Stripes tattooed on our forehead.
    I don’t really see the difference. But remember. At least if any Jews managed to find sanctuary from the Nazis, the Nazis did not demand their return.
    Contrary to the optimism shown by Blaze, I have not seen any satisfactory indication that Canada will protect its law-abiding citizens.
    Senator Reed is your stereotypical caricature of the arrogant American loud mouth. American citizenship is a privilege he says? Then why does he have a problem with people giving it up? Wouldn’t he rather reserve more of a good thing for himself? His reaction is more that of a cult leader who punishes and ostracizes those who leave the cult. It’s about control. It’s not about the bestowment of any benefit.
    To me, American citizenship is like being born to syphilitic parents, and now I am trying to scramble for a cure to the malady that has been handed down to me.

  201. @ Blaze……….
    We need to have some very clear guidance and information on just exactly what Canadian Financial Institutions will be asking of new account applicants and existing account holders.

  202. @ ArcticGrayling
    You’re absolutely right about needing guidance. However, no one wants to say anything until an IGA is signed.
    For some idea of what’s in an IGA and further clarifications, you may want to look at the German IGA.
    The German IGA has made some progress in the Bundestag.

    1. @hazy………….
      I don’t really want to expend the energy to digest convoluted legalese between two foreign countries that do not include Canada.
      Our requirements in Canada are simple. What is the Canadian government doing to protect us? What will Canadian Financial Institutions require us to tell them for existing accounts? What will they require us to tell them for new ones?
      That’s all I want to know.
      When I posted my original question, I didn’t expect anybody in here to know. Nobody can know yet. No agreement is signed. The question was rhetorical. I wanted to mention it because we need to be vigilant.
      I don’t trust the Americans. I f we surface and relinquish or renounce, who would bet their life savings that they will not go back on their word? What would stop them from demanding ongoing reporting to them for the rest of our lives for having the gall to say that we want nothing to do with them.
      This could be worse than trying to escape from a cult.

  203. @ …….the forum……………
    Was away fishing for a few days.
    Back to the status of being a covered expatriate. I am beginning to think that it may not be a bad idea to have that status.
    Let’s first of all review the criteria.
    a) a net worth of over $2,000,000, or
    b) has paid an annual average income tax of more than $139,000 in the 5 years immediately preceding relinquishment, or
    c) has failed to file a U.S. income tax return in the 5 years immediately preceding relinquishment.
    With the use of the conjunction “or”, we only have to be “guilty” of one of them to be so classified.
    Now let’s review how it would apply to me, and most certainly to the majority. I think my circumstances are fairly typical.
    a) After factoring out my spouse’s share of our family’s net worth, my net worth is certainly less than $2 million.
    b) I have never even owed so much tax to the more expensive Canada Revenue Agency. The American tax returns I have had prepared not only show ZERO tax owing, I have large unused tax credits to apply against future taxes. Anyway, they don’t know that because I haven’t filed them…………………….YET.
    c) Has failed to file taxes for the last 5 years.
    I have had the FBAR’s and tax returns prepared, but so far I have not filed them, pending a review of form DS-4079. If the review of DS-4079 comes out as I expect, I would have no (American) legal requirement to file anyway. But even if the review of DS-4079 yields an unexpected result, I am not aware of any law in Canada that requires me to report to a foreign government.
    Now, at my August appointment, let’s just suppose, for the sake of argument, that they determine that I am still a citizen, whether I like it or not. Then I would, immediately, sign the the form to renounce. Then I would have to make a decision whether or not to file.
    Am I covered by the following exception?
    “Exceptions to this rule encompass an individual who became at birth a citizen of both the United States and another country, and who as of the expatriation date continues to be a citizen of, and is taxed as a resident of such other country, and who has been a resident of the United States for not more than 10 taxable years during the 15 taxable year period ending with the taxable year of expatriation.”
    I most definitely fit the criteria. I have been a Canadian Citizen from birth and have not resided in the United States for 64 years.
    It is not exactly clear to me whether the refusal to file would subject me to the “exit tax”. Let’s just suppose that it does. Am I not protected by the tax treaty? My understanding of the tax treaty is that Canada will not assist the IRS in collecting taxes if such tax liability was incurred by a Canadian citizen while resident in Canada.
    So what would be my restrictions? Maybe I would never be able to travel to the United States again? Well, in my case, I rarely do anyway, so it would not be a hardship. The other question is would I really want to? Do I really want to travel to or through a country that denies its citizens basic human rights? That right being the right to live an unmolested and unfettered life beyond the borders of the United States!!! Do I really want to spend my money in a country that has put so many of its non-resident citizens through so much angst? Could I ever even forgive them if they finally saw the errors of their ways? For me, more and more each day, my answer to each of those questions is an emphatic “no”.
    Maybe being restricted in my travels as I have described is a price worth paying to preserve my privacy from a foreign government. I don’t think they deserve one thin dime of my tourist money anyway.
    Not only does the United States have a long history of denying basic human rights (slavery at one time and now these absurd reporting requirements on their non-resident citizens), they have a long history of being stupidly stubborn in refusing to recognize the errors of their ways. How long was slavery around? A Civil War had to be fought to eradicate it. And now we are dealing with this. The United States is denying a basic human right to its non-resident citizens. They make it pretty much impossible for any of its citizens to live a normal life beyond its borders. Why would any sensible and freedom-loving person want them?????????????
    This makes me think of a half hour phone consultation I had with an American tax lawyer not so long ago. He most emphatically recommends to all his US-resident green card holder clients to NEVER, under ANY circumstances, take out US citizenship. NEVER!!! It’s relatively easy to get rid of a green card. With citizenship, it’s like trying to find a cure for AIDS (his words).

  204. @Arcticgrayling: I wondered where you had been. Fishing sounds much more interesting than dealing with all of this nonsense.
    Outraged Canadian told me Arctic graylings are a fish in the north. Catch any?
    IRS can’t catch you in Canada. My interpretation is the same as yours–you are covered by the exemption.
    CRA does not and will not collect any tax liability for IRS for a Canadian citizen or resident and will not collect any penalties for IRS for any Canadian resident. IRS has never been able to get jurisdiction in a Canadian court for a Canadian citizen–despite attempts.
    So, I believe you are home free.
    The next stumbling block, of course, is FATCA. We are all still waiting to know how we will be affected by that. That may be a motivator for you for a CLN.

  205. @ Blaze……………
    I will get that CLN……………………one way or the other. I will do that in August. I will carry through with that appointment, unless I get another chance to go fishing, in which case I will postpone………………….again. In any case, it will be done this year.
    In the meantime, I certainly will NOT file any returns. I doubt that I ever will. If I can relinquish, I am home free, and will have no requirement to file anyway. I can even travel to the States if I want to. I plan on writing a closing statement that challenges them to behave in a civilized manner. The civilized thing for them to do would be to simply let me relinquish. Nobody (and they least of all) has anything to gain by making the process any more difficult or protracted than it already has been. I already know from the forms I have had prepared that I would never owe them anything. They would at least have the faint hope of a few of my tourist dollars by letting me relinquish.
    We shall see how pragmatic they are. I am not holding my breath!!
    If I am a covered expatriate and cannot travel there in the future, then so be it. My privacy from those unethical predators is that important to me, and I don’t even have anything to hide!! Just because I was born on the plantation, doesn’t mean that the plantation owner should be able to take me back. In any case, it would probably not be a good idea, so to speak, to return to the plantation.

  206. Here’s text from the tax treaty and the 8854 instructions regarding this. Re the 8854 excerpt, Arctic Grayling, sounds like you’re certain you won’t be filing under any circumstances, but I’m posting it as general information on the topic for others reading the thread. It, like so much else in dealing with this US mess, is definitely a very individual decision for each person.
    Canada-US Tax Treaty
    Article XXVI A
    Assistance in Collection

    8. No assistance shall be provided under this Article for a revenue claim in respect of a taxpayer to the extent that the taxpayer can demonstrate that
    (a) where the taxpayer is an individual, the revenue claim relates to a taxable period in which the taxpayer was a citizen of the requested State
    Form 8854 Instructions
    Exception for dual-citizens and certain minors. Dual-citizens and certain minors (defined next) will not be treated as covered expatriates therefore will not be subject to the expatriation tax) solely because one or both of the statements in paragraph (1) or (2) above (under Who Must File) applies. However, these individuals will still be treated as covered expatriates unless they file Form 8854 and certify that they have complied with all federal tax obligations for the 5 tax years preceding the date of expatriation as required in paragraph (3) above (under Who Must File).
    Certain dual-citizens. You may qualify for the exception described above if you meet both of the following requirements. You became at birth a U.S. citizen and a citizen of another country and you continue to be a citizen of, and are taxed as a resident of, that other country. You were a resident of the United States for not more than 10 years during the 15-tax-year period ending with the tax year during which the expatriation occurred. For the purpose of determining U.S. residency, use the substantial presence test described in chapter 1 of Pub. 519.

  207. @ Pacifica777
    As I understand the part of “certain dual citizens”, I think I am free and clear.
    The only thing that will stand in my way of a CLN between now and the end of August will be another chance to go fishing.
    I will have 5 years of unfiled 1040 tax returns and 6 years of unfiled FBARS as “souvenirs”.
    As I see it, I don’t even have to give them a Form 8854. I will not be a “covered expatriate”, although I am not 100% sure that I understand their laws. That is nothing new. For the last 64 years i have not paid much attention to US law or to American life in general.
    I don’t even think I would be precluded from travelling to or through the United States, although I am not at all sure that they deserve my patronage anyway.

  208. @ Arctic Grayling,
    From reading the 8854 instructions, it looks to me (I’m no expert, though!) that if a dual-at-birth renounces and wants to avoid being “covered,” they are supposed to fill out the 8854 and certify they are tax compliant for the previous 5 years (a bloody lot of work to do!). [Bloody absurd – why not have a 3-line form for duals-at-birth to ascertain they meet the two criteria, rather than a boxcar of paperwork]
    I also have no interest in travelling to the US, although we used to really enjoy vacations there. This whole thing has just been a complete turn-off. It just seemed like another country, quite pleasant, when I left it 40 years ago, now it seems deranged, and meanspirited too.

  209. @ Pacifica………..
    To the adjectives “deranged” and “mean-spirited”, I would attach the noun “paranoia”.
    To preserve my right to privacy in my own country, I am certainly willing to restrict and/or relinquish my right to travel to or through the country that wishes to invade my privacy.

  210. @ The forum….
    In August I have an appointment with the US Consul, at which point I plan to sign whatever papers are necessary to relinquish and/or renounce.
    They ask us if we want to submit a closing written statement. I am working on a letter that has already become quite long, and I have put a long list of people and news agencies to whom I shall send a copy, including the President, the Secretary of State, our Prime Minister, our Finance Minister, and the Queen herself.
    I don’t know if other people are planning in doing anything similar, but I thought I would copy and paste some excerpts from my letter, which is still a work in progress. Maybe what I propose to say will give others some ideas. Of course, I welcome suggestions from others.
    Here we go!!!!
    Quote….”Canada grants rights to her citizens that your country denies to yours. Most importantly, Canada makes no demands upon us if we are gone. Canada does not demand to know the intimate details of our lives or our businesses while we are gone. Canada will not threaten us with draconian legal action while we are gone. Canada will not threaten us with draconian legal action if we return. The United States of Arrogance is doing that to their non-resident citizens.
    Those are not measures that are suitably applicable to a free people. Those are measures more applicable to run-away and/or recaptured slaves. It is painfully apparent that your country has not entirely shed its historical legacy of slavery. May I respectfully suggest that you do? Just because I was born in your plantation, am I, after being gone for 64 years, still your slave?
    Believe me, I know the difference. As a young man I did leave Canada to take up residence in Europe. I worked there. I lived there. I paid rent there. I paid taxes there. And when I returned to Canada, Canada did welcome me back, with open arms, and with no questions asked. And I wasn’t even born in Canada.
    The United States does not grant to those rights to its non-resident citizens. Canada does, and therefore Canada is a better country. Many other countries I can name also grant the same rights to its citizens as Canada does. Vis-à-vis the United States of America, they are better countries too.
    Bully for them!!
    Shame on you!! “……….end Quote
    Here is another:
    Quote……………….”Apparently I have committed an unpardonable sin, that sin being that since leaving the United States 64 years ago, I have not stayed current on US Law.
    Maybe that is the reason that George Washington’s Constitution did not apply to his slaves? Maybe that’s why the basic tenets of your Constitution do not apply to your non-resident citizens too? Please enlighten me!!.”………………….end Quote

  211. @ArcticGrayling
    I see no harm in sending your letter to all those people, but I wouldn’t show it to the consul when meeting to relinquish/renounce. I can’t imagine it would garner any sympathy from them, and it might possibly offend them to the point of hindering cooperation with you. Unlike the other recipients on your list, the grunts in the consulate likely can’t do anything about the situation.

  212. @Arcticgrayling: I think WhatAmI’s advice is good. You have often said answer only the questions which are asked as they are asked.

  213. @ Whataml….
    I will take that under advisement.
    I have already postponed one relinquishment appointment, partly because I judged that my anger was getting the better of me, and also because I had a chance to go fishing with some friends.
    I have another appointment scheduled in a couple of weeks.
    I think I will probably keep anything in writing for official purposes at the consul in a fairly moderate tone. I am thinking I will send out the more strongly worded letter after the fact.
    As for offending them, I really don’t care. I am even more offended. They are officials of a government that is violating the sovereignty of my country. They have no right to expect an attitude of deference from us. My God, that monster in the White House wants American Law enforcement to operate in Canada with immunity to Canadian Law.
    I see that the Royal Bank is already bending over before FATCA is even signed.
    As for Obama himself, I have,around my own circle of acquaintances at least, started to refer to him in the sort of derogatory terms that would not be suitable for this forum. I don’t feel guilty about it. He is the Head of State. He signed FATCA into law. Therefore he is responsible. A Head of State whose country violates the sovereignty of other countries does not deserve to be treated with respect.

  214. @Arctic Greyling
    I want to reinforce the advice others have given, than in any written or verbal statements you make at a relinquish or renounce interview at a US consulate or embassy, you keep the tone moderate and focused on why you are and wanted to become Canadian, and why you believed you lost your US citizenship on becoming Canadian (if that is the claim you are making).
    My wife submitted a lengthy affidavit at her relinquishment interview, which I drafted with her and which we had a good lawyer in Toronto review for us. The lawyer’s advice was the same — focus on the positive things about Canada and on why you are living here. Because my wife had worked for the Government of Canada (as did I) and because she swore an oath of loyalty to the Queen at the time of becoming a public servant (as did I) in addition to the loyalty oath at the time of citizenship, she inserted at my suggestion in her affidavit a statement which we both firmly believe — that dual citizenship is unfair and a meaningless concept, that it is unfair to citizens and taxpayers of both countries if you accept employment in the public service of one country, or for that matter if you naturalize as a citizen of the other country. To whom would you give your loyalty if there were a conflict between those loyalties (in war, or in peaceful matters)? How could either country, and its citizens and taxpayers, trust you? She (and I) decided that you play on one team only, you have one national loyalty only, and for us it was and is Canada, and here are the reasons (positive for Canada, don’t get into attacking the US in your statement tempting though that is). The lawyer thought that was good. The affidavit was attached. And my wife got her relinquishment CLN in near-record time, with no arguments, dated to the 1970s when she became Canadian. The CLN specifically states, in the words of the DOS officer who filled it out, that she “ceased to be a US citizen” on the date she became a Canadian citizen. The affidavit also explained why it has taken this long for her to apply for a CLN, namely she didn’t know she needed to apply for such a document or even that there was such a process, that it was common belief among US expats during the Vietnam era that by becoming a foreign citizen you automatically lost your USC and that was it. If she had thought or known then she had needed to make a formal statement to the State Department to get her loss of citizenship “certified,” she’d have done it then. She’s heard now that’s what’s needed, so she’s doing it now.
    It worked.
    Mind you, in my own case I got my own CLN in 1976 after writing a three-page letter to the Secretary of State detailing what I think is wrong with US foreign and military policy and why I became a Canadian and why I had “renounced” (my word, not the one I realize now I should have used) my USC, and I got my CLN (a relinquishment one, in modern terms) by mail. But that was then, this is now. Because bureaucrats everywhere can always make life very difficult for you by losing paperwork or quibbling over a smudge on your birth certificate (that happened to Tiger in Vancouver!), there is little point in alienating them and lots of good reasons not to. Keep it simple, to the point, as unemotional as possible, and get the job done. Then write whatever the heck you want to write once you have that precious piece of paper in your hands, within the constraints of the law of course … (no threats of violence and mayhem!).
    The objective should be to get the CLN, not to vent. What more profound statement can you make to them, other than saying you aren’t a US citizen any more or don’t want to be one any more? Be cool, calm, and rational. (It’s always more effective and has more impact to do that anyway, in my experience.)
    In any case, best wishes and good luck! Get rid of your ties to That Country, and get on with your life!

  215. @ schubert…..
    I remember how disappointed I was when the Canadian men’s hockey team lost the Canada Cup to the Americans in 1996 and how happy I was when our team beat them in 2002 and 2010.
    I remember the 1960 Winter Olympics when my Kitchener Waterloo Dutchmen were such a strong team, and I was so confident that they were going to win. My dad cautioned me. He said “Son, watch out!! The Americans have a good team!!”. He was right. I couldn’t believe that they were able to put together a team that beat the Dutchmen. I was crushed.
    So now you know where my heart has always been?

  216. @Schubert: ArcticGreyling’s situation is somewhat different than yours, your wife’s and mine. He was born in US to Canadian parents, but had lived his whole life as a Canadian only. He did get a US passport decades ago for some interesting reasons, which are found in his earlier posts.
    He is hoping to be able to relinquish, but he knows he may need to renounce instead. He has seen an accountant and completed IRS returns, but has not submitted them.
    So, his ties to US are even weaker than ours are. He has been quite stunned and angered by all of this–with justification.

    1. @ schubert….
      I don’t even know the capital city of the state in which I was born.
      Don’t care either.
      Decades ago I did have US passports, but I never used them, and I have lost them.
      I was informed by US officials that I needed a US passport to enter the States, but that turned out to be misinformation. I was always able to enter with my Canadian passport. I am not accusing them of any ill will. I think they thought they were doing me a favour.
      At one point in my life I contemplated moving to the States, but never did. At that time I was infatuated with an American girl, and thought about going there, but in that relationship I tried even harder to persuade her to come to Canada. I failed in that effort. I married somebody else. My wife of 35 years is Canadian.
      I will tell the Consul that the passports I had were obtained based on misinformation. That is the truth. My relationship with that girl is not relevant.
      I want to relinquish, but I am ready to renounce if I must.
      Any strongly worded letter to any high-ranking person will be saved until I have my CLN.

  217. @ArcticGreyling, Blaze
    Sorry I missed the background on A.G. as I’ve only been checking in on the websites sporadically for the past few months.
    Cases like A.G.’s are particularly outrageous and saddening, because people born in the US of Canadian parents who returned with them to Canada before the child reached the age of majority, and who grew up thinking of him/herself as Canadian only, had absolutely no choice in the matter, ever, and under any sane conception of “natural justice” or “natural law” the US has absolutely no legitimate claim to them. But their birth certificates and passports will always list their birthplace as US, wherein we all know lies the dilemma, as distinct from the infinitely simpler reverse case of Canadian-born children of US (at the time) parents who also have grown up in Canada never thinking of themselves as Americans. At least those folks don’t have the problem on the birth certificate or passport.
    I know of one lawyer in Toronto (the one my wife and I consulted) who has handled a lot of cases, both renunciations and relinquishments, who might be able to provide some solid advice on how A.G. might proceed, but I can’t guarantee that as I don’t personally know of similar cases which she might have handled. If you want, send me a private email (Blaze knows how to reach me privately) and I’ll pass on the information about the lawyer. There may also be other lawyers who might help and who won’t charge absurd fees for it, as this one didn’t. But I think that discussion is best continued off-line and not on a public forum.

  218. @ArtcticGreyling,
    I’m in a similar boat….born in US to Canadian parents, but left as an infant. I have never thought of myself as American, just a Canadian who happens to have a US birthplace. This whole thing is a nightmare, and feels very unjust.

  219. @ whitekat….
    It’s easy to let one’s anger get the better of oneself. I have already postponed one appointment at the Calgary Consul because I judged that anger was getting the better of me.
    A Canadian cousin of mine had 2 children under similar circumstances. She and her Canadian husband brought them both back as infants as well. One of them is on the 2013 first quarter list of expatriates. Both had to renounce. One studied and worked in the States for a while, and another earned income there for a while, so they were filing tax returns. They were not able to relinquish.
    What sickens me is how both the Canadian and American media genuflect in front of Obama as if he is some sort of deity, when in fact this has to be the most intrusive of Presidents in American history. No American president has so egregiously violated, or attempted to violate, the sovereignty of so many nations in such a short time. Yet most Americans are oblivious to it. So is our media.
    I meet many Americans who travel through Canada. When I tell them I was born in the States, they say, “Oh lucky you!! You have both!!”. Then I tell them I am going to dump American citizenship. They ask “why?”. My answer is always “so that I can live in freedom!!”…and “I don’t want to be a citizen of a third world country”.. They are incredulous!! They are brainwashed to believe that they are a free people. Just like Dr. Goebbels’ “BIG LIE”, if you you repeat a line of bullshit enough times, people will believe it.
    When questioned, I point out to them that they are not even free to leave, and when they dispute the notion that they are “third world”, I suggest that they can very quickly go from the first world to the third world by driving across the bridge from Windsor and then taking a drive through Detroit. I remind them that 50% of Detroit’s population is functionally illiterate, and that 90% plus of them voted for the guy who is violating my country’s sovereignty.
    Good grief, the Chair of the Detroit School Board is functionally illiterate:×522051
    50% of Detroit inhabitants cannot read.

  220. @ArcticGreyling,
    Our power is in our voice, and that we live in the age of the internet. Our anger will not go unheard, nor our words to waste.
    My stepfather was a member of the Canadian forces in WWII. I remember him showing me pictures of concentration camps. He used to tell me how lucky we all were that Hitler failed. At my 1/2 century point, i finally get what he meant, and am am well aware how fortunate I am to have lived 50 years of relative ignorance.
    It’s pay back time for me, and others, I guess.

  221. @ whitekat
    I have postponed my appointment at the Consul again. August is a nice month in these parts, and I don’t really feel like wasting my time on that ghetto punk in the White House who is doing a home invasion where I live. Besides, I have an opportunity to reunite with some childhood friends, and that is far more important.
    I haven’t rescheduled anything…….yet.
    I am having second thoughts about surfacing at all. Consider the following:
    (1) No US investments………ever
    (2) No US property………….ever
    (3) No US income….ever
    (4) No attendance at a US school or college…….ever.
    (5) No US bank accounts…..ever
    (6) No accounts with US security firms….ever.
    (7) No Mutual funds with US investments…..ever..
    (8) Never applied for American status for my children. I only lived in the States for a few months as an infant anyway, so I would not have been eligible for that.
    No Canadian Financial Institution has any information to suggest that I am US-born. The question is: “Will they be asking?”.
    My understanding of FATCA is that there will only be a nasty withholding tax on US-source income. My dividends in my shares in Trans Canada Pipelines and others are Canada-source income held with a Canadian Securities firm, which income has always been duly reported on my Canadian tax return. Is FATCA trying to get a withholding tax out of that sort of non-American income too?
    My understanding of FATCA is that Obama will not be able to touch my Canada source income that runs through a Canadian bank. Assuming I am right, why should I even surface? Why should I even compromise my privacy?
    So what would be my limitations?
    Maybe I would be better not to travel to the States again? The last time I transited the States was January 2011. The last time I spent any measurable time there was December 2010 when we went to Fort Lauderdale. No issue was made of my American birthplace in December 2010. In January 2011, I was questioned on it, but I was only transiting, so they sent me through.
    I cannot think of any reason to go to the States except to transit. Sometimes we transit the States on our way to and from Buenos Aires. That is all. More often we take a flight that does not touch down in the States.
    Sometimes I like to golf in Florida, but that’s about it.
    But like I said. The central issue is this:
    No Canadian Financial Institution has any information to suggest that I am US-born. The question is: “Will they be asking?”.
    And if they do ask, what will their response be if we refuse to answer?

    1. @ArcticGrayling
      In my own opinion,I would not do anything until it is clear what other information will be required under an Canada-U.S. IGA.
      Based on a quick review of the UK IGA and other IGAs, existing AML/KYC procedures will continue to be used. Also, there may be some form of self certification. You obviously do not believe you are a U.S. person, so I feel you can honestly answer that you are not.

  222. @Arctic, Hazy: I agree AG could answer quite easily that he is not a US citizen. Depending on what is in the IGA, the problem could be the use of the term “US person.” As you know this includes anyone born in US.
    This is how Canadian Bankers Asscociation indentifies “US person” relating to place of birth: “A citizen of the U.S. (including an individual born in the U.S. but resident in Canada or another country, who has not renounced U.S. citizenship);”
    CBA has not updated their website since final FATCA regs were released as they said they would.
    The big question is, of course, how a Canadian bank will know if someone was born in US. They cannot ask that question under current Canadian banking, privacy and human rights laws.
    Canadian banks can only accept Canadian birth certificates as ID for opening a bank account. They cannot accept foreign birth certificates. So, there should be no reason they would be aware of a US place of birth.
    This is different from many countries around the world where a birth certificate has long been required to open a bank account.
    My own advice is to simply lie low, enjoy the fishing, wait and see what happens and don’t lose too much sleep over this (easier said than done).
    You’re not alone in this. We will all put up a good fight together if we have to.

  223. @ Blaze……..
    Thank you for the link.
    He is a quote from the link:
    “If you choose not to provide this additional documentation upon request, at a minimum, your financial institution may be required to withhold a tax of 30% on U.S. source payments that you receive and send this money to the IRS.”
    Well…I don’t have any US source income.
    (1) Some years ago, I owned a US dividend payer for a couple of years, but I declared that dividend income here. That total income over 2 years was about $250, but Uncle Sam took his tax right off the top, as they do for everybody. I don’t have that stock now.
    (2) Otherwise all dividend income is Canadian.
    (3) All pension income is Canadian.
    (4) Every penny of business income that I have made in my entire life has been Canadian.
    (5) Every penny of employment income I have made in my entire life has been Canadian.
    My understanding is that all my Canadian dividend, pension, business, and employment income is beyond the reach of FATCA.
    So…I think I will wait to see what Canada will agree to in the IGA. I am going to stand aside.
    The question is, will it be safe to transit the United States to and from Buenos Aires and Santiago, which we do from time to time. From what others in the forum are saying, it seems to be safe enough. In mid-October, we are reserved to transit Houston and a trip to and from those cities.
    I confess that there reasons, on rare occasions, why we like to go the States. I golf in Florida sometimes (last time was 6 years ago). Since then I have transited the country once, and another time in 2010 we went to a concert in Fort Lauderdale.
    The only argument I see for surfacing now is the amnesty, until the end of 2013, to file the FBAR. But that would be an acknowledgement that I am US person, when I wish to make no such claim.

  224. @Articgreyling: I think you’re making a wise decision to wait. In terms of golf, there are lots of other places besides Florida you can golf.
    I have friends (one born in Ireland, one in Germany) who have wintered the last several years in Arizona. No more. They don’t want to be considered under “substantial presence.”
    Likewise, other friends, (one born in Canada, one in Netherlands) are spending future winters in St Lucia, not in Florida due to substantial presence FATCA issue.
    US is so dumb they can’t see what they are doing to themselves.

  225. @ Blaze………..
    I don’t go there often. In 2007 I was there for 10 days. When I was there in 2007, it had been 17 years earlier since I had last even transited the country. In 2010 I was there for 2 days. In 2011, I was there for less than a full day while transiting. All of those hardly qualify as “substantial presence”.
    I have a set of golf clubs in Argentina too, and the fishing for brown trout in the south of Argentina is quite good as well
    So, I don’t really foresee a golf vacation in Florida any time in the near future, although I must acknowledge that Florida has an excellent selection of courses at very reasonable prices. Unlike most parts of the United States, Floridians appreciate the positive impact that foreigners have upon their economy. Their local banks don’t seem to appreciate FATCA either, so if anybody in the mainland USA does deserve token tourism from me, it would be Floridians (even though Obama won the State, albeit probably by voter fraud).
    Really, my only foreseeable use of the United States is to transit, and perhaps to go see Andre Rieu in midwinter if he has a concert at a warm place. However, now when I look at his schedule, I do not see a single concert scheduled for the USA in the coming months!!! Maybe Andre knows about FATCA too!!! Or maybe it’s because he doesn’t, as I do not, consider rap music to be an art form.
    So my only probable use of the USA would be as a transit point. No more.
    Yes, Blaze. You are right. Americans are retarded. They just don’t get it.
    Consider the following, which is a copy and paste of what I received from a US citizenship lawyer:
    “As already noted, the actions listed above can cause
    loss of U.S. citizenship only if performed voluntarily and
    with the intention of relinquishing u.s. citizenship.”
    Let’s just suppose the Americans get their head out of their ass on this issue, and actually make their country a desirable place to live and/or visit again in the future. Anybody who is expatriating now could, a later date, easily argue that they relinquished/renounced US citizenship under duress, that duress having been applied by the US government itself, and that they want their citizenship back!!
    I can’t see myself doing it, but a smart lawyer could easily make a plausible case for those who might wish to do so. I don’t think there is any question that many are expatriating under duress right now.

  226. @ the forum….
    Just a thought……..
    If I reschedule a renunciation appointment, I am thinking of bypassing the relinquishment process and simply renouncing.
    As the forum knows, I have my ducks in a row to proceed that way.
    I am also thinking of taking the following official stance:
    When asked if I am renouncing voluntarily, I will say “no”, and that I am renouncing under duress.
    I will then say that the said duress is being applied by the United States Government inasmuch as their policies prevent me from living a normal life in Canada on the same basis as any other citizen of Canada.

  227. @ Outraged Canadian….
    Then I would say that I am keeping my US citizenship under duress, that duress, of course, being applied by Uncle Sam.
    No matter what the result of the process is, it’s because Uncle Sam has been coercive.
    It’s just ying and yang, but they are probably too dumb to get it.

  228. Somebody (I forget who) in an earlier comment indicated that it was notarial services that are required to relinquish/renounce citizenship.
    A friend of mine got the brush off in Calgary yesterday thinking it was notarial services. He has to make another appointment.
    A more in depth look at websites of Consuls and Embassies around the world indicates that an appointment for relinquishment renunciation must be specifically requested.
    I am getting impatient with this. Now I really want to get this done.
    Consequently, I am emailing all the Consuls in Canada. I will email the Ottawa embassy. I will email 2 embassies in South America.

    1. It is unfortunate that there is not a same standard of procedure from US consulate to US consulate to US embassy. Calgary does have a different procedure than others.
      As detailed in the Consulate Report Directory at Isaac Brock (, one is to email Calgary (at, communicating what you want to do. They, in turn, send by email a questionnaire to fill out for return to them by email and ask any other necessary questions — or you can do the same. As far as I know, only one appointment is (still) required at the Calgary US Consulate. With information from the questionnaire, Calgary will have all documentation ready for your signature. It doesn’t hurt to go through all the documents linked in the Consulate Report Directory just to be ready for any question they may answer.
      My husband’s and my experience at the Calgary US Consulate was efficient, respectful, no hassle. I would be pleased for other consulates and embassies to follow the Calgary model. Everyone who is expatriating should have the same experience — and know what to expect. Two appointments for those of us who absolutely know what we want to do is overkill — obfuscation / roadblocks put in the way.

  229. Hi All, I have a question?? I will be receiving my Canadian Citizenship soon and was wondering in order to relinquish my US Citizenship do I need to have a Canadian Passport?? It seems to me as long as you are a citizen of another country a Passport should not be needed. I have read several different opinions. Thank you for your time!

    1. Great news, Saddened!
      A Canadian passport is not required. (Nor is a US one, for that matter – some of us have never had one. But if you have a US passport, you have to give it to them at the your meeting (I understand it gets returned, cancelled, in your CLN package).
      I spoke with a Vice Consul at Toronto last year prior to relinquishing there about what documents to bring – regarding passports, he said bring your passport or driver’s licence as current photo id.

  230. Hi Saddened123
    If you become a Canadian citizen and swear (or affirm) allegiance to the Queen you will have committed two expatriating acts. If you do so voluntarily and with the intent to relinquish your U.S. citizenship then you have relinquished as of that moment.
    However, the U.S. will not know that you have relinquished until you show up at a U.S. embassy or consulate and inform them of what you have done and present them with the documentation they require to convince themselves that you really have relinquished. To that end I would have a document ready at the citizenship ceremony (or have someone video you before hand) stating that you are doing this voluntarily and with intent and include that when you go to you appointment with the U.S. authorities.

  231. @Saddened: Yes! Finally! It’s been a long haul for you. When’s the big day?
    In terms of relinquishing, I haven’t been able to find anything that says you need a Canadian passport to relinquish.
    Here is information about renouncing. It does not mention that you have to have another passport. It does caution about being stateless, which won’t apply to you.
    As Johnnb said, you will be relinquishing, rather than renouncing.
    I think you can go to Consulate as soon as your have your Canadian citizenship certificate and merely inform them of your expatriating act and ask for a CLN. You could probably even make an appointment now, as there may be a backlog.
    Was anyone else required to show a Canadian (or any other country’s) passport to relinquish?
    Interesting that DOS uses the word “irrevocable” in their information. That’s exactly what they told me when I relinquished 40 years ago! Yet, here we are.

  232. @ Blaze & the forum….
    For some people, it could very well be difficult to sign form 4080.
    One swears that one is signing the renunciation free of undue duress or influence. Problem is that it is Uncle Sam who is applying the duress.
    (1) If a person signs 4080 because of the duress applied by Uncle Sam, one is arguably committing perjury.
    (2) If a person attaches a separate statement saying that one is signing subject to duress applied by Uncle Sam, maybe DOS will not accept the renunciation.
    A vicious circle for some, and maybe for many more. First of all, people with deeper ties to the United States are more likely to find the renunciation emotionally difficult. They can make an argument that they are under Uncle Sam’s duress. Furthermore, under ordinary circumstances, people look upon dual nationality as an advantageous thing. My wife has dual nationality (not US). Through her, our Canadian-born children have dual nationality (not the US either). For her and the children, dual nationality is an advantage.
    For me, I don’t really have any ties to the United States, and the United States is not ordinary, so it is not a vicious circle for me.

  233. @Saddened, congrats, at long last! That must feel just great. I, also, don’t think you need an actual Canadian passport, just the citizenship should be enough from everything I’ve read.

  234. @pacifica777, Johnnb, Blaze, OutragedCanadian, and all, This is the info I found but of course it says for Renouncing, I sure don’t want to have to make a return visit if they insist on a Passport.
    STEP 1: Get a Second Passport
    In order to renounce your US passport you will need a second passport and you are required to bring this with you to your renunciation appointment. Even though expatriation is your right, the State Department will deny anyone the right to renounce their US citizenship if they don’t have a second passport. Ensure that the passport you acquire is directly issued by the government in question and never be tempted to purchase one off the Internet.

    1. Congratulations again!
      Do whatever makes you feel comfortable. As I came from out-of-town/overnight trip, I brought along several documents the Vice Consul didn’t mention I needed – just in case I did.
      I don’t think that quotation is from the Department of State. It doesn’t read like their publications. As a rule, DoS doesn’t speak/write of renouncing one’s passport, but of renouncing one’s citizenship, and they do allow people to renounce if they don’t have a second citizenship (they very strongly discourage that, though).
      I’m in agreement with the consensus here about the passport not being required. But I suggest you e-mail your consulate asking what documents they require — a good idea for anyone to do, so you can be as sure as possible you arrive with everything they want.

  235. Also Thanks for the Congratulations, I am very excited.. Can’t wait to be Canadian.. Hello Canada* Goodbye USA!!

  236. I am happy to report that my wife and I had a very positive experience at
    the Calgary Consulate this week. We were there for about one hour and they
    allowed us both to be present together when we affirmed our intention.
    My wife was in a wheel chair which may be why they allowed us both
    to be together for the interview.
    My wife was able to Relinquish and did not have to pay the $450. She
    informed the Calgary Consulate that she planned to become a Canadian
    Citizen in July and that the purpose was to Relinquish her US Citizenship.
    They sent her a 4079 form to fill out along with a one page Relinquishment of US Citizenship form, both to be faxed or e mailed to them before our
    scheduled appointment. She did not have to have a Canadian Passport,
    just her Canadian Certificate of Citizenship. I think it is important to
    notify the Consulate ahead of time, ie before becoming a Canadian Citizen that this is what one is going to do and why. You do not have to video it
    I on the other hand had to Renounce and to pay the $450, since I became
    a Canadian Citizen in 1979 and had dual citizenship since then, and had
    both passports. I did not have to fill out a 4079 form, only a one page
    Renunciation Questionnaire. Both forms btw asked for our Social Security numbers. We did not give any written reasons. In our brief discussion with the Vice Counsel we simply said that we had been here 41 years, our children and grandchildren were here, my wife cannot travel to the US because of her health, and we now are Canadians in spirit and in fact.
    All in all it was an easier experience that we had anticipated. The
    assurances and other experiences that we read about here were very helpful. I will be glad to answer any questions if anyone wants more information on our experience.

  237. PS to my post above. In terms of what forms to take to your meeting with the Consulate: in our case we both received by e mail a very specific list of what to bring and the lists were different for the two of us .

  238. @Edmonton Bee Man, Thank you very much for all the info, it is greatly appreciated and Congratulations to you and your wife.

  239. @EdmontonBeeMan Thank you for sharing. Most importatly, congratulations taking all the steps to getting your life back again.
    Did they give you any indication of how long it may be before you receive a CLN?
    How long did you have to wait for an appointment? ArcticGreyling found the only appointment now available is in December.
    I hope you will check in with us sometimes and let us know how you are doing and maybe answer questions others may have.
    Let Freedom Ring!

  240. They were not able to tell us how long it would take to receive our CLN. But they did say that Washington would send it to Calgary and then Calgary would send it to us. I will let folks know here when we do receive the CLNs.
    In terms of our time lines, my wife began the process of applying for Canadian Citizenship almost 2 years ago to get us in a position where
    we could exit the US. In April of this year we received word that she was
    approved and would be informed later when the next Citizenship swearing in would take place. This is when we began communicating with Calgary as to possible appointment times since we heard there was a time lag.
    We decided to take a chance and schedule an appointment for mid August, hoping that the Canadian Citizenship would come through in time and knowing that we could cancel if our gamble didn’t work. Luckily my wife was sworn in in Mid July so we were ok. It was on May 3 that we were given appointments for August 20 in Calgary.

  241. @ WhiteKat
    Thanks for that link.
    As you are well aware from numerous discussions at Brock, there remains some uncertainty for those who have a back dated CLN.
    For anyone who hasn’t seen this article co-written by Michael J Miller, this is worth reading. ( the article titled Expats live in fear of malevolent time machine)
    My personal view is that for all the noise made by the IRS several years ago about expat non-filers, there doesn’t appear to be any evidence that they are actually pursuing anyone who does not have U.S. source income and has not filed a U.S. tax return in many years or who never filed a U.S. return.
    That’s not to say that at some point things might change. However, the IRS is experiencing budget cuts like many other government departments.
    With the IRS, there’s often a long time delay after the deadline for filing has passed before a letter is sent out to a delinquent filer. If the IRS is going to go after relinquishers, maybe not enough time has passed. Anyway, the number of relinquishers with CLNs back dated many years is probably not as large as we would like to believe.

  242. @ Hazy….
    Are you sure the IRS is going through budget cuts? I have not seen anything official, but I seem to recall reading somewhere that Obama would like to install anywhere from 800 to 1000 new agents, some which I am told will be installed in Consuls/Embassies around the world.
    I can just imagine Obama and his minions going after “tax evaders” in such “tax havens” as Canada, UK, France, Germany, Sweden, etc., where, evidently in Obama’s tiny mind (remember, he signed FATCA into law), all US citizen residents of those countries are evading taxes and are thereby responsible, and by extension the solution, for the US Government deficit.

  243. @ ArcticGrayling
    Obviously, if you want to increase tax collection you don’t cut the budget of the tax man. But this is what happened in the U.S. and also in Canada. I’m sure Obama would like to add IRS agents, but Republicans are itching to cut the IRS even more.
    Below is one of the many articles about the effect of budget cuts on the IRS.
    “IRS’ budget has been cut by $1 billion since 2010, costing 8,000 positions, and it lost $618 million this year from the sequester, Werfel said. “This forces some very difficult performance tradeoffs,” he said. “Without a budget increase, we will face difficult choices.”
    From the IRS this year,-Four-Other-Days-Due-to-Budget-and-Sequester;-Filing-and-Payment-Deadlines-Unchanged
    Another article
    And from 2012

  244. @WhiteKat: Phil’s blog seems to suggest the only benefit to relinquish over renounce is to save $450. However, I wonder if he is referring to people who relinquished post-2004 (although he does not say this).
    This is one of the many reasons I am not prepared personally to go anywhere near a U.S. Consulate. Past experience has taught me clearly US cannot be trusted on citizenship advice. I remember the words clearly from 1973. “You will permanently and irrevocably” be relinquishing” (I actually think the word was renouncing, not relinquishing but I’m not 100% sure of that. The “permanently and irrevocably” I do remember) US citizenship by becoming a Canadian citizen. They advised me to think very carefully about it as I could not change my mind in the future.
    Forty years later, I haven’t changed my mind. They changed theirs (or Supreme Court changed it for them.)
    I am not prepared to give them my name, address or any other information.
    As you said at Phil’s blog, “the nightmare never ends.”
    @ArticGreyling: In 2009, Obama announced 800 new IRS agents would be hired for FATCA. But, as Hazy says, they are cutting staff, rather than hiring. So, how will they ever enforce FATCA?
    I remember Steven Mopsick (who has 30 years IRS legal experience and now practices tax law privately) saying it would “blow a fuse” at IRS when FATCA data began to arrive. Unfortunately, when US “blows a fuse,” as they often do, it’s the rest of the world that is usually left in the dark with no power.

  245. @EdmontonBeeMan – congrats to you and your wife. It always does my heart good to hear of someone else escaping the clutches of the Borg.
    Hmm. not much liking Phil’s latest blog, seems pretty alarmist. WhiteKat, I’m with you, and I’m glad that you said what you did.

  246. My husband (with me acting as his secretary:) has sent in papers to the Vancouver consulate to renounce. He received an email back in July, advising him to make an appointment on line. I am unable to find any empty spots in any month. Our downloading speed is slow, but I can’t imagine that is the reason, as I could see appointments were recorded in July – no dates available. Now there is a sea of gray which means that there is nothing available (the exact wording for the gray is: Date already passed or not yet open for appointments). What to do? I check every morning. Any advice will be appreciated.

    1. Kristina,
      Check out the Consulate Report Directory at for a plethora of information about the disfunctionality of the Vancouver US Consulate and the better alternative (for added travel and accommodation cost, which no one should have to bear) at the Calgary US Consulate. You will also find reports from many who have renounced or relinquished before you. The Calgary appointment process differs from all other consulates as well — very efficient, by email.
      Note: Be absolutely sure of your final irreversible decision for renunciation or claiming relinquishment by doing thorough research at Maple Sandbox and Isaac Brock. (There is discussion at Isaac Brock on that right now:

  247. Thank you for the advice. If I can’t deal with Vancouver, we can figure out how to get to Calgary. Believe me, this is no hasty decision. Although my husband became a Canadian in 1989 (lived here since 1975), he petitioned to be considered dual for professional reasons and also because he is a political person who enjoyed voting once in a while – that sort of thing. We registered both our kids as duals and both have US passports with one living in the States. Relinquishing sounds better but I don’t think is an option for him. Have filed taxes and FBARS for last 5 years so feel ready to go. Really sick to death of having to file etc.

  248. @Kristina: You are correct. Your husband will not be able to relinquish because he has chosen to continue to be a US citizen since becoming a Canadian citizen in 1989–i.e. petitioned to remain US citizen, voting, passport, etc.
    Appointments in Vancouver seem impossible now. They have long been known as the most difficult Consulate in Canada to deal with. Now, they seem unwilling to do anything relating to relinquishments or renunciations.
    I don’t understand how some Consulates can simply make up their own rules and practices. Then again, I don’t understand how US can think their laws apply to all countries around the world. Yet, here we are.
    I think there is a wait of a few months to book an appointment in Calgary. Two or three weeks ago, they were booking for December, but at least they were taking bookings.

  249. Thanks Blaze. Sounds as if he will have to go to Calgary. That should be ok. Will get cracking and report back when done – or thwarted:-)

  250. @All, I hope I am putting this in the right place but, wanted to comment while things are still fresh in my mind. I relinquished today. I arrived in Toronto for a 2 o’clock appt. with all my paperwork ready to go and filled out but, not signed. The woman at the desk was pleasant and friendly and even mentioned that she knew why I was likely relinquishing. She made some joke about it, and foreign spouses and didn’t seem at ALL irritated or anything like that. She was very cheerful and seemed as if she completely understood. She went over my documents and passed them along to an officer while I was made to wait. I had to wait a good long time. An HOUR. While I was waiting several people got to talking about why they were there. Three others said they were interested in relinquishing their U.S. citizenship so I wrote down the web address of Isaac Brock Society for them as all three seemed really lost about how to proceed.
    One lady came to Canada at 1 year of age and H and R Block had told her she HAD to do her five years of tax forms and six years of FBARS BEFORE renouncing/relinquishing. I told her this was not true. She was there to get social security number as she did not have one in order to file all those forms before renouncing! Another women said she and her husband both were seriously considering giving up their citizenship. There were seven people in the room. One relinquishing *me* and three others thinking about doing so, one in the process besides myself.
    I was finally called to speak with a very pleasant officer. She told me it had taken so long because in December I had crossed into the U.S. and had been told I had to use U.S. passport. She had put in a call to D.C. about it and D.C. told her it was still a “relinquishment” I was quite happy about this as that was my intent when taking Canadian citizenship. She asked me to raise my hand and say a oath and affirm that no one was coercing me to relinquish. They handed me back my documents except for my applications and U.S. passport.
    She said it will be three to six months to get my CLN. I inquired as to why it would be so long and she said “We are really backed up with these right now as you probably can guess.”
    Everyone was very pleasant. The officer seemed to want to be helpful to me in my desire to relinquish rather than renounce. All in all it was a pleasant experience with some surprises in that so many in the room seemed to be there in order to either inquire about renouncing or were in the process of doing so.

  251. Congratulations Atticus!
    Atticus Finch would be proud of his namesake–and even prouder of the Two Mom Protest and the upcoming one in Ottwa.
    Atticus Finch would also be outraged at what the US is doing to people. He fought injusice and I think this is a battle he would take on.
    Atticus to Scout: “If I didn’t I couldn’t hold up my head in town, I couldn’t represent this county in the legislature, I couldn’t even tell you or Jem not to do something again.”

  252. Swiss Pinoy was interviewed on BBC Radio today on his renunication. Here it is.I
    (Begins around 36.36)
    After 500 years of American ancestry, SwissPinoy says renouncing US citizenship was like being

    “Sliced in half…getting rid of one half…but starting fresh with the other half”

    He feels “lighter on the shoulders” and finds the “decision mostly beneficial.”

  253. As reported earlier, on August 20, I Renounced and my wife Relinquished our U S Citizenship at the Calgary Consulate. Today we received our CLN’s.
    This is much faster than I expected. The CLNs state that they were approved by the Washington Office on September 5, 2013.
    We sure appreciate the support and advice we received from this discussion group. Many thanks.

  254. Wow! That was fast, Bee Man. All the best to you and your Queen Bee.
    I hope you will buzz by and check in with us sometimes.

  255. This morning (Nov 13, 2013) CBC radio’s program The Current, had a segment on FACTA that concentrated on the implications for Canadian banks and expats.
    I believe the 5 major CA banks are meeting today on this. It was reported
    that the Bank of Nova Scotia has already spent over 100 million to get ready for FACTA.
    You can listen to this discussion by going to:

  256. ‘If You Go, You Can’t Come Back. The Reed/Schumer Follies-Past And Proposed Anti-Expat Legislation: Interview With Bill Yates, Former IRS Attorney (International)’
    December 30, 2013
    “Today’s blog post is yet another interview that provides valuable insight from Willard (Bill) Yates, who recently retired from the Office of Associate Chief Counsel (International) (ACCI), Internal Revenue Service after 31 years of service. …..including his work on implementation of some of the compliance requirements of the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA).”……
    ……”Our focus today will be on Bill’s comments on past and present efforts to punish those who renounce U.S. Citizenship by treating them as “inadmissible” under immigration law if they try to re-enter the United States following expatriation.”……..
    Our focus today will be on Bill’s comments on past and present efforts to punish those who renounce U.S. Citizenship by treating them as “inadmissible” under immigration law if they try to re-enter the United States following expatriation………”

  257. Forgive any duplication, but I was reminded in an email I got today of the following article that Michael Miller co-authored and got published, which spells out in very clear detail that, and why, no one with a pre-June 3, 2004 relinquishment has any reason to file a damn thing to the IRS under the relevant legislation.
    If your browser has trouble opening this PDF (mine sometimes does), just hover your mouse over the link, right-click, select Save Target As to your desktop, then double-click on the downloaded PDF once it’s there, and Adobe Acrobat Reader will open it and you can read and/or print the article. Your computer almost certainly already has Acrobat Reader, but if it doesn’t, just Google it, pick the Adobe website link, download and install the free software.
    Michael J. Miller is a US tax attorney practicing in Washington.

  258. As I’ve noted in replies I’ve posted on other threads yesterday, the official 2013 IRS instructions for their Form 8854, Initial and Annual Expatriation Statement, only refer to expatriations (aka relinquishments) occurring after June 3, 2004. There is NO reference to expatriating acts that took place prior to that date, on the form nor in the instructions.
    Also please note here,-Initial-and-Annual-Expatriation-Statement the following words:
    Form 8854, Initial and Annual Expatriation Statement
    Expatriation tax provisions apply to U.S. citizens who have relinquished their citizenship and long-term residents who have ended their residency (expatriated). This form is used by individuals who have expatriated on or after June 4, 2004.
    I.e., if you expatriated before June 4, 2004, this form doesn’t apply to you. There is no guidance of which I’m aware as to what, if anything, you should now do in that case, which I think is reasonable to interpret as meaning you do nothing. You don’t own them a single piece of paper, if that date restriction applies to you. Hence, if you can and did so before June 4, 2004, relinquish, DO NOT RENOUNCE.
    It would seem the IRS is implicitly, though typically not explicitly (that would be too clear and helpful of them), agreeing with Michael J. Miller’s points in the above-cited article published last year in the International Tax Journal.

  259. There’s been a problem with a couple of consulate officials erroneously believing that a person born dual (or who had acquired Canadian citizenship as a minor) could only terminate their US citizenship by renouncing under Immigration and Nationality Act, s. 349(a)(5). This is not true.
    We are aware of CLNs being issued to such persons under s. 349(a)(4), in one of which the person insisted the consul forward her application to Washington, despite his negative recommendation.
    It seems that this consul, and one other that I’m aware of, have/had conflated the fact that a person who is already a citizen can’t naturalise (s. 349(a)(1)) with other methods of relinquishment as well, such as accepting a position in a foreign government or its political subsidiary (s. 349(a)(4)):
    “(A) accepting, serving in, or performing the duties of any office, post, or employment under the government of a foreign state or a political subdivision thereof, after attaining the age of eighteen years if he has or acquires the nationality of such foreign state.”
    So, I’m very happy to report that a friend, who was born dual when his parents were temporarily in the US, phoned me in good spirits after his consulate meeting at Ottawa. His relinquishment is based on his taking government employment 30 years ago, which he believed at the time he had terminated his US citizenship. Then came 2014 and OMG day …
    Back to his consulate meeting, I hadn’t heard anything at all about Ottawa since last summer (at which time things sounded fine, as they had since Johnnb reported on his friend’s s. experience there in Jan 2013) but the silence felt a little ominous to me because they had such a bad reputation back in 2011-12.
    However, Ottawa appears to have stayed on the positive track it took in 2013. He found the staff both pleasant and aware that s. (4) applies to any US citizen, including those who were born dual. He said the meeting took about 10 minutes and there were no problems whatsoever.

  260. Good morning to all,
    Just wondering if anyone has any advice when it comes to filling out the DS -4079 form that must be filled and sent with my request for a appointment at the consulate to inform them of the act that I did so I can relinquish my right to be a US citizen. Question 6 & 7 asks me when I became aware and how did I find out that I was a US citizen. I am not quite sure how to truthfully answer that one. I never knew I was a citizen. I have lived in Canada for 47 out of 50 yrs. Moved here with my Canadian Mom when 3. I knew I was born in the US, my father was American. I have never had any connection or involvement with the US except birth and even then I had no say. To me citizenship and nationality are two distinct concepts. I believe I don’t even qualify to vote given the connection or lack of connection I have with the US. Because of 911 and all the changes that happened I had to get a passport if I wanted to travel. Before then I always used my old landed immigrant paper , even when traveling through US customs. No where on it does it say I am a US citizen, only where I was born. My US passport lists my nationality U.S.A, no mention of being a citizen. I am a few days from taking my oath of citizenship, very exciting and long overdue. It was always on my bucket list, good thing for Obama cause it moved it to the top. Canada has always been my home and native land. My family has been here since the early 1800’s, before and during the war of 1812 I might add. May be I should remind them of that act. Long story short I believe the only connection to the US is my nationality and there is no citizen connection on my part. Any advice from out there from those who have travelled down this road?
    Thank you, Briggs

  261. @ Briggs….
    Every situation is different. I learned some things from my own experience that may be relevant in your case. I also have some questions.
    (1) You have had a US passport, which would make retroactive relinquishment improbable.
    (2) Your mother was Canadian? Does that not make you Canadian by birth? Do you really have to naturalize? Both my parents were Canadian, but only one is necessary to be a citizen at birth.
    (3) Have you filed US tax returns? Your posting suggests you have not, but it is not entirely clear.
    Based on what I can understand from what you have written, and based on my own experience, you will have to renounce, and it would be best to file the returns and FBAR forms. Since you would be doing it in this calendar year, you would have to file a final expatriating return next year for 2014.
    I renounced last year, did all the returns, and will file my final 1040 and necessary terminal forms within the next month.
    Maybe you will be able it relinquish when you do the Canadian oath, but it strikes me that you are Canadian already because of your mother. Is a naturalization oath necessary?
    My advice to you would be to expedite things. I would also advise you to use somebody who is well qualified to do US returns (assuming you must renounce rather than being able to relinquish), especially for the proper completion of the expatriation process. It will cost you, but I am happy I spent what I did. Dumping the US passport was a good move. A US passport is no prize.

    1. Thank you for your suggestions and questions.
      One week from now I will be taking my oath in Calgary. Yesterday I went about collecting info on all that I need to apply for a Canadian passport. This is when I discovered I will need a Citizenship certificate. I went into the c.i.c site to see what this is. I should have done more research on my part,looks like I could have gone down this road based on my history which takes 6 months to get instead of the route I took which has taken almost 3 years.
      Next week I will take my oath, apply for my passport in person and should have in ten days. I will then inform the consulate in Calgary of the act that I did with the intention to relinquish my right to a U.S citizenship. If they require me to come in person to sign a document I will.
      I plan on attending the information session that is being offered at the Kensington Legion in Calgary before I fill in the documents that the consulate requires.
      Relinquishing seems to me to be a more gentler way of giving up my right to participating in the American way of life then renouncing. What can I say , it’s my Canadian upbringing .
      If the U.S is bent on flexing their gluteus muscle when it comes to filing with the IRS I will in my own time do this.
      I am one of those minnows and it will cost them and not me. My life is very straight forward. I do not require the help of professionals here to do my taxes. I am aware that being a foreigner it must be a more complicated process but they must have people in that office who can direct me along the way when filling in the forms. I don’t think they can demand I use an accountant or lawyer to file, can they? It might end up being a time consuming process for both sides but isn’t that what they are getting paid to do. It will be more costly on their end, not mine.
      Yes I have never filed before. Didn’t know I was required to. Never have had anything to do with them. No schooling, work, bank accounts or U.S funds, investments, property etc. Though I have purchased here in Canada made in U.S.A products. Hope that doesn’t come back to bite me.
      It will be nice to be free from this claim they believe to have on me. It will be a huge relief knowing that when I die my adult children will not be having to deal with the U.S government in settling my estate.
      Nothing personal America, North America Is the greatest continent to live in. I just happen to live up in the northern part, Canada. Always have, always will. Has always been and always will be my home and native land.

  262. Briggs to me the 1995 Tax treaty is worse as it forces CRA to enforce IRS rules on Canadian resident and newer citizen. The Liberal passed it, so do not expect the Liberal to throw out FATCA, I do not think that Clinton used the nuclear weapon of 30% withholding to get the Liberal to agree to this deal. I would think any party in power in Canada would have to sign FATCA. I think the Liberal would not have gotten the concession the Conservative received. The Democrats are supporting the Liberals
    Remember that the liberal opposed GST when it was first proposed, they did not cancel it when they were in power.
    “In March 1996, when the Chrétien government presented its third budget, the backbencher Liberal M.P. John Nunziata voted against the budget under the grounds it failed to repeal the GST as the Liberals had promised in 1993 and singled out for criticism his former Rat Pack colleague Sheila Copps who had promised during the 1993 election to resign within a year if the GST was not repealed.[156] Chrétien’s response was to expel Nunziata from the Liberal caucus.[156] However