IRS "Amnesty" Barrie McKenna Globe and Mail Urges Canadians to "Come Clean"

The IRS today announced an “amnesty” for special streamlined filing procedures that it says will give “thousands of people a new avenue to come into compliance.”

Barrie McKenna of the Globe and Mail (IRS eases rules for U.S. expats living abroad to come clean) says:

The United States is making it easier for U.S. expatriates – including many Canadians – to come clean on their back taxes just days before a planned crackdown on foreign financial institutions takes effect.

Umm Barrie. We have nothing to come clean about. We are Canadians.We are NOT “U.S. expatriates.”
Why is that simple concept so difficult for Canadian and American governments and media to understand?
Barbara Shecter of The Financial Post (U.S. Tax Officials Remove Risk Assessment and Unpaid Tax Limits To Encourage Canadians Compliance) says the IRS “is relaxing the rules to “induce” Canadians to comply.
She also lets us know the IRS Commissioner wants us to “sleep at night.“

Michael Danilack, a deputy commissioner at the IRS, said the changes should mean those affected  “can sleep at night,” knowing that they comply with U.S. rules and no longer face the prospect of financial penalties even if they owe no taxes.
“I’m assuming many of them are worried,” he said during a conference call Wednesday to discuss the revisions. “These are exactly the types of folks we would elect to be coming in [through the new] streamlined procedures.”

Mr. Danilak, the only thing that will help us sleep at night is for you and your International Robbery Service to get completely out of our honest, law-abiding lives as Canadians.
Of course, these Canadian newspapers neglected to advise that Canada Revenue Agency does not and will not collect for IRS on any Canadian citizen.  That could detract from their more important role of being the mouthpiece of the IRS in Canada.

19 thoughts on “IRS "Amnesty" Barrie McKenna Globe and Mail Urges Canadians to "Come Clean"

  1. Right you are. Compliance means taking a vow of perpetual poverty for you and your family. Who in their right mind would do that unless there a religious reasons?
    There is absolutely nothing that is foreign about our accounts. We have a right to live under any government we chose and to not be harried by the U.S. tax authorities.

  2. I think it’s the US that’s gone rogue pursuing its ex-pats through generations and across international boundaries much like Eritrea, a nation which was condemned by the UN for its actions. The US Treasury needs to comply with international norms and follow residence based taxation and leave its ex-pats alone. I’ll keep doing what I’m doing– filing and paying taxes here in Canada where I live, work, and raise my family.

  3. It sounds like a desperate attempt to haul in funds from unsuspecting ex’s before July 1/14 before it goes before the courts by Bopp in Washington and our man in BC. Yes, we could sure sleep at night knowing the IRS could clean out our accounts whereby we couldn’t pay our bills. No thanks!
    Our Federal election is Oct 19/15 thereof and I’m on the bandwagon to pick up and drive anyone who doesn’t have transport to the polls as long as they don’t vote for Conservative. I notice the polls now show Liberals ahead but the polls proved no good at all in the Ontario election. Just sayin’.

  4. I am having trouble over at “IBS” finding our posts. Not sure if it is my computer or the site. I am worried that our quest for funds for our Charter Challenge may fall short if others are having trouble as well. This has been going on for a few days now. Please advise. Thanks, Ann.

  5. I am having trouble over at “IBS” finding our posts. Not sure if it is my computer or the site. ……..
    Yes this is happening to me now since Tuesday as well

  6. As has been mentioned at Brock, the new announcement from the IRS does nothing about PFIC’s. The IRS is responsible for the byzantine and totally unfair reporting requirements and taxation of such bizarre investments such as Canadian Mutual funds and ETF’s. If they wanted more supposed U.S. persons to come into compliance, then that is one area that could have been addressed.
    Another area, for which the IRS bears responsibility along with IGA signatories, is the taxation and income tax reporting requirements of registered funds. Although we’d seen much being made of the exemption from FATCA reporting of registered funds, nothing was done about the U. S. income tax implications.
    If countries, including Canada, weren’t such wimps when it came to FATCA, they should have insisted on tax treaty changes that would have matched U.S. taxation of registered accounts with domestic taxation. This should have been a condition of signing an IGA so, for example, RESP’s would not be considered a foreign trust and income earned would be exempt from U.S. taxation until withdrawn.
    Countries design tax policies to further social and economic ends. They should not let CBT defeat those policies

  7. I’m sorry to say that IBS has become a totally different animal lately. I’m sorry if the person who designed the forum is offended but they immediately need to get back to the old format or take some of that donation money for the Challenge and consider the site part of it and get a real professional to manage it. To me it’s a joke. There should be page numbers in each topic rather than “older posts” and “newer posts” and the posts should be numbered. There are thousands of professional discussion threads out there and the software is not expensive. Whoever is managing this current thread needs to swallow their pride and give it up to someone who knows what they are doing. Silicon Investor has a fantastic model for a new site in my opinion. When there is a new post it can send out a notification in real time so everyone gets it by email if they wish. All posts are numbered as well and there are different views as well.

  8. @Chears Big Ears – I think you’re being harsh here. It’s a big investment in time and energy to run these sites, and most of us do it because we are passionate about the issue. It’s not like we can spend all of our time administering; we have to fit it in along with our ‘real’ jobs, our families and other commitments, all while fending off malicious attacks, keeping things updated, monitoring, etc. Me, personally, I would prefer that all money donated to the charter challenge go to the charter challenge, and not be used to buy professional help in administering sites. I don’t know how much you know about administering sites, but it’s very time consuming, and each change must be thoroughly tested, each upgrade must be thoroughly tested, before ever going live with it. Not easy. And IBS is a big site which complicates things even further.
    I have faith they will work out any issues they might be having.

  9. I can deal with site problems (I eventually found some tedious but doable workarounds at Brock) so I don’t want a penny diverted in that direction. I keep my focus on the fund. I keep a paper copy of the fund’s address handy, just in case the internet fails. Site maintenance is beyond my ken but my gratitude for Brock and Maple Sandbox site maintenance volunteers is boundless. Thank you all.

  10. Am I the only one who saw the excellent editorial in today’s Globe & Mail?
    ( a reminder folks; hardly anyone reads comments to obscure on-line articles and blogs but thousands read the G&M editorial page)
    QUOTE “The U.S. IRS’s announcement that it is extending its tax amnesty program for American citizens living abroad is more a reminder of the unfairness of U.S. tax laws than it is a welcome relief. ….
    ….the IRS will soon have a pipeline into the personal banking information of tens of thousands of Canadians.
    The U.S. is being invasive and unreasonable, and damaging its relationship with some of its most devoted allies.” end quote
    Looks like the G&M editorial board gets it even if Barrie McKenna doesn’t. This one deserves letters to the editor and copies to M.P.s

  11. Thanks Duke. I did miss it. I actually had a few blissful FATCA-free hours today!
    I discovered there is life beyond FATCA and the IRS.
    Thanks for sharing it. Some of us wrote letters to the Editor of the Globe.  I don’t know if that had an effect or if they actually might be beginning to get it.
    At some point, I need to find a few hours to clean our several of the old articles in our resources and add some of the newer ones. So far, I haven’t had time to do that.  I’m hoping to have some more FATCA free time this week.
    Maybe Canada Day would be a good time to do it. I really don’t feel like celebrating this year.

  12. Now Barrie McKenna is on Twitter promoting a press release from American Citizens Abroad calling the amnesty program fair.

    1. Retweeted by Fat Cat

      Americans Abroad calls new IRS amnesty rules for ex-pat, non-filers “fair.” #FATCA …

      Allison Christians has engaged him in some tweet dialogue.
      1. @barriemckenna This is a generous reaction. There are reasons to be wary see e.g. @MopsickTaxLaw 

        9:16 PM – 23 Jun 2014 · Details
      2. @barriemckenna @MopsickTaxLaw But fact remains: citiz’p tax is unjust. Any solution that does not include fully free exit falls far short.

      3. @taxpolblog A ‘free’ exit means US must end citizenship-based taxation. Do you see that happening?

      4. Retweeted by Fat Cat

        @barriemckenna citizenship tax is both inefficient and uncompetitive in a global economy. Eventually they will figure it out.

        1. @taxpolblog How would the IRS stop genuine tax evaders from renouncing citizenship — without forms, penalties and back taxes?

        2. @barriemckenna for every regime there is always an anti-avoidance regime. In this case auditing actual residence would do the heavy lifting.
          I also sent him a few tweets. Here are a couple of them.

          1. @barriemckenna @FATCAed @taxpolblog It’s clear @ACAVoice doesn’t speak 4 1 million Canadians in #IRS #FATCA nightmare b/c of birthplace.


            1. @barriemckenna Y r u doing PR 4 #IRS? Y aren’t u reporting on horrendous impact on Canadian citizens?

  13. Gee, thanks ACA. It is apparent they don’t back renunciations and relinquishments. Their goal is different than for most of us in Canada PERIOD. Although, I guess those in Canada just here for a good time, not a long time will buy into the new and improved Streamline path to serfdom.
    And, you’re correct, Lynne, Barrie McKenna is a mouthpiece for the IRS and using ACA to do so.
    It’s another “Jesus, Joseph and Mary!” circumstance.

  14. @Calgay411 Barrie McKenna has been singing the IRS “come clean” hymn for three years. This is what I he tweeted and I replied about his attempt to launder us for the IRS a couple of weeks ago.
    barrie mckenna ?@barriemckenna Jun 18
    IRS scraps penalties and intrusive risk questionnaire to get more Americans living abroad to come clean #FATCA

    1. Retweeted by BC Doc and 3 others

      @FATCAed @FATCA_Fallout @barriemckenna Cme clean? We r not dirty. Nor is our Canadian earned, saved, invested & taxed $. We r Canadians!

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