31 thoughts on “FATCA Final Regulations Are Out

  1. Blaze Post author

    @Tim, Badger, Others: I spoke with the Vice-President of my credit union (Libro) this morning. He said FATCA negotiations between Canada and US are close to being finalized. He fully expects an IGA to be signed for financial institutions to submit information to CRA instead of directly to IRS. (I don’t know if he has inside information or if that is his information from Flaherty’s general statements.)

    I think he was very surprised that does not alleviate our concerns in any way.

    He said “We are with you 100% in spirit.” Yet, he does expect Libro to comply. He said if they do not , they would have to “close our doors” because of the high cost.

    I advised him if my credit union or bank demands to know where I was born or threatens to close my account, I will pursue legal action along with others.

    I told him of the legal advice I have received from one of Canada’s most prominent constitutional lawyers. I also advised him of the position of CCLA. I think he was somewhat taken aback that some of us are that far along in planning resistance to FATCA and the strength of our determination.

    I also pointed out to him how bitterly disappointed I am that Libro is not doing more to protect its customers (which they call owners). He stressed they have a responsibility to all of their owners and complying with FATCA allows them to protect the holdings of all of their owners.

    He also told me of the “burden” FATCA is placing on financial institutions to comply. I replied I really was not interested. Instead, I told him of the “burden” FATCA places on honest, law-abiding Canadian citizens and residents whose savings and assets were entirely earned, saved, invested and taxed in Canada.

    He did not have any answer to how Libro would determine who was born in US without violating Canadian law. He did say anything they do to comply with FATCA will be in accordance with Canadian laws.

    I told him the most frustrating thing about this is Libro was originally established as St. Willibrod Credit Union because Dutch immigrants had difficulty getting banking services over 60 years ago. Yet, now immigrants from another country who have been here for decades are in jeopardy of having their rights to confidential financial services violated by that very same credit union. He didn’t have an answer for that.

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  2. Blaze Post author

    All along we’ve been told that the original purpose of FATCA was to target Americans living in US, but hiding assets and income “offshore.”

    We have been led to believe those of us who are citizens and residents of other countries were simply collateral damage.

    Now someone is saying we were the targets all along.

    http://www.morpheus-group.com/blog/industry-insight/fatca-time-for-change/?goback=.gde_3731046_member_208976450

    This says: FATCA was designed, say its proponents, to target the undeclared assets of American taxpayers who live abroad.

    I suspect this is incorrect, but the author (Lisa Smith) usually has her facts right. The rest of the article is pretty accurate, especially the section on FATCA debate.

    I don’t really care what the reason is. IRS and US: Get out of our lives!

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  3. Blaze Post author

    @Tim: According to this article, Obama seems to be closing the books on US expansionism.
    http://www.thestar.com/news/world/article/1320124–burman-obama-seems-to-be-closing-book-on-u-s-expansionist-policies

    This says in his inaugural address, Obama appeared to be closing the book on the expansionist policies of the U.S. government in recent years. He spoke of a “decade of war. . . now ending,” stressing the limits of western power and intervention:

    “We will show the courage to try and resolve our differences with other nations peacefully.”

    Somehow, FATCA doesn’t seem so peaceful to me. Admittedly, US is not dropping any nuclear bombs on allies. Instead, they are using financial terrorism to force banks and governments around the world to stalk people who simply had the misfortune to be born in US.

    I think that’s how US defines working “peacefully” with friends.

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  4. Tim

    The government that was REALLY itching and eager to roll to the US on this was the UK. Everyone else even countries such as France and Germany that everyone THOUGHT were itching and eager to roll over have not yet.

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  5. Tim

    To Shubert’s earlier point. I recently saw an interview with Flaherty while completely unrelated to FATCA where he did seem to be very critically of the Obama Adminstrations. My ears perked becasue while I have heard other Conservatives especially backbenchers be critically of Obama I have never heard it from a Conservative as high level as Flaherty.

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/01/25/davos-canada-pipeline-idUSL6N0AUC1620130125

    DAVOS, Switzerland, Jan 25 (Reuters) – U.S. President Barack Obama’s emphasis in his inaugural address on fighting climate change may not bode well for the contentious project to build the Keystone XL oil pipeline, Canada’s finance minister said on Friday.

    The Canadian government has been an enthusiastic supporter of TransCanada Corp’s plan to build the $5.3 billion pipeline, which would open up a huge new market on the U.S. Gulf Coast for crude derived from oil sands in Alberta.

    Washington faces a decision in the next few months on whether to approve the project, a possible cure for deeply discounted Canadian crude prices.

    “I had reason for optimism before the election that the president would approve it, were he re-elected, but his speech the other day was not encouraging,” Finance Minister Jim Flaherty told Reuters at the World Economic Forum in Davos.

    Now you can disagree or agree on the merits of the Keystone pipeline but what is noticable is this very public criticism from Flaherty.

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  6. Blaze Post author

    This article asks if FATCA will turn banks into tax advisors.
    http://rfpconnect.com/news/2013/1/28/will-fatca-turn-banks-into-tax-advisors

    I don’t think it will. I think it will turn them into IRS spies on honest, law-abiding people living, working and paying taxes outside US.

    Of course, the only banks which will become spies will be those that have not already been judge and jury and sentenced citizens of other countries to a life without banking or other financial services just because they had the misfortune to be born in United States of Arrogance.

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  7. Blaze Post author

    Thanks Badger. I will be on the phone to the CEO of my credit union next week. In my last conversation with him, he said “We’re hoping common sense will prevail.” He has more confidence in US than I do.

    I just checked my credit union’s annual report and discovered they have just passed the $2 billion in assets mark, which takes them well out of the standard of $175 million to be considered small.

    However, I think all of their offices are in their “home jurisdiction.” I also suspect 98% of their customers (which they consider owners) are citizens or residents of Canada. Those two points would put them in the “deemed compliant partial exemption category” if I’m reading this correctly,

    I will let you know what I learn.

    Others may want to check with their own or other credit unions.

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  8. schubert

    Perhaps this is wishful thinking on my part, and I don’t know what Tim’s connections or contacts are on this one, but my instinct tells me the same as what Tim says about a Canada-US IGA. I don’t think our government is exactly itching to conclude an agreement, any agreement, at any cost or on US terms only. First, it wouldn’t be consistent with the firm stance Flaherty and the government have taken on some other financial matters in the past year or so unrelated to FATCA. Second, under no stretch of the imagination could one describe the current Conservative government as soul-mates of any wing of the Democratic Party, even a pretty-centrist (to put it rather mildly, in spite of Fox News and other media rants) one like the Obama Administration. Third, if they were just itching to roll over and let the US walk all over us on this one, they’d likely have done it before now. I don’t see it, and I’m no fan at all of the Harperites on hardly any issues other than this one so far.

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  9. Tim

    Here is my feeling on the current status of the IGA. If I could travel forward in time to lets say July 1st 2013 and did so I would NOT be shocked to find out on that date that we were STILL speculating on whether on IGA would be signed. I am not necessarily saying one won’t be signed at some point but I would not necessarily wait by the telephone all day long expecting that phone call.

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  10. Pingback: Will FATCA Cause Some of the Headlines We Read in 2015? | outragedcanadian.ca

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