My sincere thanks go to Trish Moon for her interview on Canada AM this morning. Trish, you did a fantastic job of representing those of us affected by FATCA.
UPDATE January 24, 2015: THIRD OF FIVE LEGAL BILLS PAID
On August 11, 2014, Constitutional Litigator Joseph Arvay filed a FATCA IGA lawsuit in Canada Federal Court on behalf of Plaintiffs Ginny and Gwen, the Alliance for the Defence of Canadian Sovereignty (en français), and all peoples worldwide. Read Alliance’s Claims and comment on our Alliance blog.
Chers amis et donateurs,
Ensemble, nous avons atteint notre but : ramasser les fonds nécessaires pour payer la troisième des cinq factures légales de notre poursuite judiciaire.
Ramasser 300 000 $ provenant de petits dons est un exploit tout à fait extraordinaire et nous invitons notre gouvernement canadien, ainsi que tous les autres gouvernements qui ont piétiné les droits de leurs citoyens, à en prendre bonne note.
Chaque jour, nous nous rapprochons de notre but. Déjà, nous avons ramassé plus de la moitié des fonds nécessaires pour payer les frais légaux de notre poursuite contre le gouvernement canadien et l’entente FATCA.
Si nous avons parcouru un si grand bout de chemin, c’est grâce à nos deux courageuses plaignantes, Ginny et Gwen, à nos donateurs provenant du Canada et de partout dans le monde, ainsi qu’aux administrateurs des sites Internet Isaac Brock Society et Maple Sandbox. Ils permettent tous à nos voix d’être entendues.
L’équipe de l’ADSC
Dear Friends and Supporters,
Together we have reached our goal of paying off the third of five retainer fees for our Canadian FATCA IGA lawsuit.
Raising $300,000 from small donations is a pretty amazing achievement and we ask the Government of Canada, and those other governments who have also tossed away rights of their citizens, to take notice.
It’s still a marathon, but we are more than half way to pay off the Federal Court legal costs.
We have come so far because of our brave Plaintiffs, Ginny and Gwen, our Canadian and International donor-supporters, and the administrators of the Isaac Brock and Maple Sandbox websites who make it possible for our voices to be heard.
Thank you all,
—The ADCS-ADSC team
Continue reading Canadian FATCA IGA lawsuit: February 1, 2015 legal bill will be paid on time! / Poursuite canadienne contre la FATCA et le gouvernement canadien : nos frais légaux du 1er février 2015 seront payés à temps !
Blog of an accidental just discovering the fact.
It’s a sunny day in Soho, London. I call my father.
‘Hello Dad. I got this funny letter from Santander. It’s about tax, or something. Uh, am I still an American?
I was born in New Brunswick, New Jersey in 1982. 13 months later, we moved to the UK, where I have lived ever since.
As a baby, I had an American passport. As a child and throughout adulthood, I’ve only held a British passport. I’ve been back to the US once, for a short holiday in 1997.
‘You’re American-born. I suppose that means you’re still an American?.
As it turns out, it does indeed. I am an American. I am an American who cannot remember living in America. I am an American who cannot name more than a dozen American states. I am an American who has never voted in an American election.
I am an ‘accidental American’. And for that I will pay. Literally.
This is one more example of the United States imposing citizenship on people because they were born in the U.S. Is citizenship something that one chooses or is citizenship something that is forced upon you? Does any country have the right to impose citizenship on residents and citizens of other countries? Is citizenship a “property interest” that a government has in people? Does the U.S. government believe that it has ownership over anybody born in the United States?
The Obama administration has made U.S. citizenship such a burden and devalued it to the point where people are happily paying money to be rid of it.
But, the U.S. government is making it very difficult to relinquish U.S. citizenship through the available statutory channels. This is clear from the:
– outright refusals to recognize past relinquishments
– outrageous wait times and inability to get appointments
– the outrageous and unjustifiable fee increase to renounce U.S. citizenship
– the imposition of Nazi and Soviet style exit taxes
It’s certainly “change we can never believe in”.
This is going to get very very nasty.
On the one hand we have a U.S. Government that says:
“You are our property until we say you are not”.
On the other hand we have those who don’t believe they are property and will say:
“I am a free person. How can I then by a citizen of the United States?”
NB: Ms. Chapman has received several tweets inviting her to Brock, Sandbox and ADCS-ADSC sites.
cross-posted with permission
Stephen Kish has an interesting thread over at Brock:
What will and what should Canadians do when the IRS comes calling?
Stephen reports on a discussion he had with a Canadian. You can read the details in Stephen’s post. These three words are the most significant:
“JUST SAY NO!”
If only our government and our banks had shown the courage to “Just say no!”
This week I had a chat with a kind donor to our Canadian FATCA IGA lawsuit. She is a Canadian citizen who has lived in our country for more than four decades.
I asked her (as I now ask many) to predict what Canadians will do when the FATCA law identifies them and turns them over to a foreign country.
This Canadian told me how she will respond when her neighborhood bank turns her over to the United States Internal Revenue Service. She said:
“First time visitors to the “Isaac Brock” and “Maple Sandbox” websites are regularly advised to “Read, read, read before you take any action” when you discover that the IRS wants you.
Generally good advice, I would say, except that I would change the channel a bit and say “Read, read, read, and then take NO action“.
I would strongly urge people to read, read, read, and then take the time to live with the injustice, the absurdity, the absolute moral bankruptcy of FATCA before they commit themselves to any course of action.
Live with the feelings of unfairness and discrimination that surround FATCA; let the oppressiveness of the situation really take hold. Then take a deep breath, and another, let the fear subside, and then let the outrage and anger come forth and “Just say NO”.
We all know that the whole premise of FATCA (Citizenship-Based Taxation) is fundamentally wrong, so why do so many of us so readily agree to participate in a system that is “wrong”? Fear, anxiety, expediency, whatever?
When I am faced with a really complex situation that is impossible to figure out, and FATCA would be one of those, I try to pare things down to fundamental principles that let me see things more clearly. Really, in my mind, FATCA is no different from the scenario of the school yard bully.
The Harper Canadian Government should have stood up to the U.S. bully’s threat of sanctions and said “No”. It didn’t.
Canadian banks and financial institutions should have refused to become agents of the IRS. They didn’t.
Our Members of Parliament should have challenged the government to address issues of sovereignty, privacy, and equality of ALL Canadians. By and large, with a few notable exceptions, they didn’t.
So now it’s my turn; it’s my turn to stand up and say “No”. And I will.
I will refuse to fill out any “foreign” tax information forms, I will refuse to give my financial institutions any information on place of birth, and, if necessary, I will lie with an absolutely clear conscience.
I will refuse to let the bully play in my yard.
I realize that this is a course of action (or inaction) that might make some people feel uncomfortable. But, speaking personally, I feel much more uncomfortable being forced to do things that I know are wrong, and I know that FATCA is wrong.
It’s just wrong, plain and simple. So I’m not doing it.
I am now, and will remain, willfully non-compliant. End of story.”
The Canadian FATCA lawsuit has been amended and strengthened by lawyers Joseph Arvay and David Gruber.
From the Desk of John Richardson, ADCS-ADSC Amendments to Statement of Claim provides an explanation of the changes and a link to the amended Statement.
John has concisely explained the amendments in plain English.
UPDATE: Thanks to RecalcitrantExpat for providing this direct link from ADCS to the Amended Statement Of Claim.
As Calgary411 posted:
So announcements are not lost in the sites of IsaacBrockSociety and MapleSandbox where so many topics are discussed, http://adcsovereignty.wordpress.com/ (Alliance for the Defence of Canadian Sovereignty “From The Desk” of the ADCS-ADSC Board of Directors) is the dedicated site for all future announcements regarding the Canadian litigation.
We at Maple Sandbox join John in wishing all our Canadian and international friends a Happy Thanksgiving. We are thankful for your support, determination and especially your donations to http://adcs-adsc.ca/
Please keep them coming. Together we can do this.
The IRS own Taxpayer Advocate says FATCA is tormenting taxpayers.
From Tax Analysts:
By the time lawmakers and taxpayers have figured out whether the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act was worth the trouble, it might be too late to undo any damage, National Taxpayer Advocate Nina Olson said October 7.
“However much I’ve tried to figure out what on earth [FATCA] means, and the consequences of it, I have no idea,” Olson told a luncheon audience at the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association FATCA Policy Symposium in Washington.
“This is a piece of legislation that is so big and so far-reaching, and [has] so many different moving pieces, and is rolling out in an incremental fashion . . . that you really won’t be able to know what its consequences are, intended or otherwise,” Olson said. “I don’t think we’ll know that for years. And by that point we’ll actually be a little too late to go, ‘Oops, my bad, we shouldn’t have done this,’ and then try to unwind it.”
Nina Olson also says:
“So you’re really looking at this and thinking, why are we doing this to folks? Why are we tormenting them in this way?”
Actually, in that one question, Ms. Olson shows she does understand what FATCA is about. It is about tormenting honest people for having the audacity to llive outside the United States and become citizens of other countries.
Unfortunately, I don’t think this will provide any help short term. But it should be useful to both the Canadian and American lawsuits.
Victoria reports that yesterday:
Bright and early Monday morning, Senator Mike Lee and superlawyer James Bopp, Jr. addressed a full house of frustrated and forlorn US citizens over at Reid Hall in Paris. Some came in suits, some in jeans. There was a very young woman with blue streaks in her hair and men whose touches of gray were a testimonial to a lot of living. There were lawyers, stay at home mothers, IT workers and artists. A diverse group that was far more representative of the true face of Americans abroad than the usual caricatures of champagne-sipping yacht-owners living it up in Gay Paree. It was coffee and croissants and a frank discussion that at times was fraught with emotion.
You can read Victoria’s excellent summary at her Flophouse post Lee and Bopp: A Chance to Change the Tide on FATCA.
And here’s more US Delegation Calls for Repeal of FATCA from Luxemburgh.
I ran across a column today in the Philippine’s Business Mirror, by John Mangun, “Fatca: A breach of Philippine sovereignty?”.
He’s essentially saying the same thing we have been saying in Canada. It’s good to see that some people in other countries are paying attention.
“The US government is, in effect, telling nations like the Philippines that their laws are not important and that other countries must serve American interests before their own. The fact that it costs more money for Philippine banks to comply with Fatca does not bother the US. The fact that foreign companies may be hesitant to invest in countries like the Philippines because of these additional and arbitrary financial-reporting requirements also does not worry Washington.”
He ends his column, with this,
“In any case, Fatca’s underlying agenda has been accomplished. Don’t even think of messing with Uncle Sam.”
I thought it was a good overview of FATCA and it’s impact. Good work, John Mangun.
From The Desk of John Richardson – Co-Chair ADCS-ADSC.ca
September 29, 2014
As we reach the end of September it occurs to me that we are reaching the end of the first four months of active fundraising. I thought it would be good for the Directors of ADCS-ADSC.ca to create a blog to communicate with you easily and directly.
We live in exciting times. Our “Stop FATCA” project is certainly exciting. It is also exhausting and full of emotional “ups and downs”.
Our lawsuit started several years ago with an idea. It was an idea based on what “concerned Canadians” could/would do if the Government of Canada:
– Under threat of economic sanction “agreed” to implement FATCA in Canada (the Canada-U.S. FATCA IGA was signed on February 5, 2014); and
– Changed Canadian law (as per the IGA) to implement the U.S. FATCA legislation in Canada (the Government of Canada did this prior to the July 1, 2014 deadline).
Read more here.