For Immediate Release March 10, 2014

Today a small group of Canadians began the long legal process to prevent the Conservative government from helping the United States impose a bad law on Canada.

With the announcement of an Intergovernmental Agreement (IGA) for the U.S. Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) on February 5, 2014, Finance Minster Jim Flaherty makes discrimination against one million innocent Canadians and their families – those the U.S deems “U.S. persons” – mandatory.

Finance Canada has requested public input on the FATCA agreement, which will override federal laws to meet demands of a foreign power to seize private financial records of Canadians.

Canadian citizens Dr. Stephen Kish of Toronto and Lynne Swanson of London Ontario responded today to that request by retaining prominent constitutional lawyer Joseph Arvay of Vancouver to provide a legal opinion on whether this legislation violates Canada’s Constitution including the Charter of Rights and Freedoms and if so how a constitutional challenge might be mounted.

“It’s time for Canadians to get angry. FATCA is a threat to all Canadians and cannot be captive to party politics. MPs must NOT be required to vote along party lines – They must vote their conscience in a free vote” says Dr. Kish.

In less than one week a funding initiative, organized by Dr. Kish and Ms. Swanson, raised the money required to pay for this legal opinion.

“It is despicable the Harper government thinks so little of Canadians that they are forced to raise money from those with limited means to retain counsel to ensure their fundamental rights are protected from foreign demands,” says Ms. Swanson.

“As a Canadian citizen for 41 years, I never thought I would see the day when demands of a foreign government would take precedence over Canadian laws. The implications of this for Canada and for all Canadians are chilling.”

CONTACT: Lynne Swanson

C3F Press Release


  1. Blaze

    Allison Christians is a tax lawyer and professor. She and Arthur Cockfield (also a lawyer and professor) do not agree that having information go to CRA to submit to IRS does not violate privacy rights.

    In their submission to Finance Canada, they said:

    We recommend that the government undertake a review and explain why the use of the CRA to furnish information to a foreign sovereign does not constitute a significant erosion of the protections afforded by Canadian law.


  2. OutragedCanadian

    Wow, ran across this article today., Financial Risk Management News And Analysis

    “Universal Fatca runs into political obstacles”

    Talk about spin!

    This actually says,

    “Canadian tax lawyers believe that the agreement should not conflict with existing Canadian laws such as the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act, as the data will be collected by the Canada Revenue Service and passed on to the IRS, rather than by the IRS directly…”

    He says that the political obstacle will come from from US local banks and US local politicians,

    “…but putting a general solution in place will depend on the G-20 governments, including the US, being prepared to introduce substantial and costly new disclosure requirements for their native banking industries. Dudley sees this as the main obstacle to the OECD solution: “This is where it becomes more difficult – local regulators are going to be subject to political pressure from local banks via local politicians.”

    Interesting – a U.S. law that is fought by U.S. banks – but Canadian banks fell right into line.


  3. OutragedCanadian

    @DM. exactly.

    We do not want to be heavy handed administrators, but we reserve the right to ensure the tone and content of this site stays with it’s original intentions.

    Please take your Obama theories elsewhere.


    If we have to, we will start removing or editing comments.


  4. DM

    Please people, keep the crazy to yourselves. No one cares even who the president of the US is – I think any US president would do exactly the same thing – and the more people talk this kind of tea bagger talk on this site and on IBS, the more damaging it is to the cause that is Canadians fighting imposition of US extraterritorial law. Stop already – Canadians are not Democrats, Republicans, or tea partiers – we are Canadians who object to anyone from the US trying to interfere with our liives in this way. We get nowhere by negative, misleading, and, increasingly, racist comments – these sorts of comments serve only to discredit us amongst our fellow Canadians

  5. Disgusted

    I recommend the documentary “Dreams From My Real Father” Directed by Joel Gilbert “In Dreams from My Real Father,” Barack Obama is portrayed by a voiceover actor who chronicles Barack Obama’s life journey in socialism, from birth through his election to the Presidency. The film begins by presenting the case that Barack Obama’s real father was Frank Marshall Davis, a Communist Party USA propagandist who likely shaped Obama’s world view during his formative years. Barack Obama sold himself to America as the multi-cultural ideal, a man who stood above politics. Was the goat herding Kenyan father only a fairy tale to obscure a Marxist agenda , irreconcilable with American values?”

  6. maz57

    I don’t care about Obama’s citizenship either. Supposedly there’s some unanswered questions but its not my problem. I’ll leave it to the folks down in the US to sort out.

    But he is the guy who signed FATCA into law and who won’t quit with the disingenuous message that US finances would be miraculously fixed if they could somehow find all the offshore tax cheats, i.e. us. What he really needs to do is level with the American people, cut spending and raise taxes.

    His government is pursuing policies that directly hurt Canada and it has been repeatedly informed of the damage being done to innocent people. He claims to be the champion of the little guy, but his government has done nothing to fix these destructive policies; it obviously doesn’t care. Neither Obama nor the US government are our friend. In fact they are clearly the enemy.

    That’s why we need to focus on this legal challenge; the US government and the Canadian government won’t help us. Our only hope is to help ourselves via the courts.

  7. OutragedCanadian

    I DON’T CARE ABOUT HIS CITIZENSHIP. Do care, of course, that he’s the presiding president over this mess. However, I also think it doesn’t matter who was the president, it would have gone through.  Potential for gathering big fines? From people who have no voice? Go for it!

  8. ArcticGrayling

    @ outraged Canadian

    Obama signed FATCA into law. He takes executive responsibility for it as president.

    In fact, if I remember correctly, the concept of FATCA was something he campaigned on.

    That makes him fair game to me.

  9. ArcticGrayling


    Obama may or may not have been born in Kenya. No definitive proof has been provided one way or the other.

    But there is a consensus that his father was Kenyan, which would mean, were we to apply his twisted logic on FATCA, that he would owe an FBAR to Kenya.

    Remember, FATCA is demanding disclosure on people born in Canada to US parents.

    He is a Kenyan by his own logic. It’s his logic, and not mine.

    I might be more sympathetic about the idea of not calling him a Kenyan if legislation he signed into law as president did not refer to unwilling people as Americans.

  10. OutragedCanadian

    ArcticGrayling, surely you’ve realized by now that we don’t like or appreciate your anti-Obama comments. I’m sure there are a number of sites out there where you can find plenty of people to Obama-bash with, but this isn’t one of them.

    We all have our particular soapboxes we like to stand on. However, that’s not what Maple Sandbox is about. We are dedicated to fighting the U.S. extra-territorial overreach ie CBT, FATCA & FBAR and the like.

    Please keep your comments free of Obama-bashing. Personally, I don’t give a crap about Obama but I don’t enjoy reading snide comments about anyone.

  11. IRSCompliantForever


    I would like to see FATCA destroyed from without (Canada and other countries take their governments to court) and from within (FATCA is killed by U.S. Congress)

    I know that it is an uphill battle, but some Republicans are trying to defeat FATCA. The Republicans Overseas website posted our Canadian effort to retain a lawyer for the legal challenge and just released a letter from a Senator on behalf of a committee of Senate Republicans, calling FATCA a “poorly thought out monstrosity”.

    More difficult, but perhaps some Democrats can be convinced to come onside as well.


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