We are all waiting for Justice Martineau's decision on our Canadian FATCA IGA summary trial


Canada Revenue Agency confirms to us and Justice Martineau (via Government counsel) that it intends to begin transferring private banking data of some Canadian citizens to U.S. IRS on September 23, 2015.
Justice Martineau is expected to provide a decision on our summary trial before that date — I predict on September 21, a Monday.
We will do our best to provide you quickly with the decision when it is rendered. It is possible that there might be only the “bare bones” of a decision, with reasons to follow later (because of the short time Justice Martineau had in reaching a decision before September 23).
Please be patient before and after the decision — and keep the faith.

One year ago, on August 11, 2014, 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.
Because of a Government delay we initiated a “summary trial”, using a portion of the arguments, which offered the possibility of preventing private banking information from being turned over to the IRS before September 30, 2015.
The summary trial took place on August 4-5 2015 and we expect to have a decision before September 23 2015.
See Alliance’s Claims, our Alliance blog, and AUGUST 4-5 SUMMARY TRIAL FILINGS in LITIGATION UPDATES.

103 thoughts on “We are all waiting for Justice Martineau's decision on our Canadian FATCA IGA summary trial

  1. If you want an indication of how hard the government will fight us with our own tax dollars, read this article.
    Federal government spends almost $700,000 fighting disabled Afghan veterans in court.
    If they lose at this level, the Libs expect the Cons to appeal all the way to the Supreme Court with costs over $1 million.
    Remember, this is a group the Cons profess to love. We are simply “American citizens abidingv here in Canada.” And the Cons will not hesitate to use our tax dollars to fight us as loyal and patriotic Canadians.
    This is why it is so important to donate.

  2. @GeorgeIII Here are answers to your questions posted at Brock:
    From Stephen Kish:

    There is nothing in the world that is secure from Government eyes.
    If people are worried they can donate “anonymously” by sending cash (as we say on the ADCS website) or they can ask a donation buddy to donate on their behalf.

    From USCitizenAbroad:

    The very fact that the question was posed:
    “Are paypal payment secure from US IRS investigation?
    is the very reason why the donations to the Charter Challenge Fund must accelerate!
    Obviously there is NOTHING in the world that is completely secure from investigation.
    As the great American Thomas Jefferson is believed to have said:
    “When governments fear the people, there is liberty. When the people fear the government, there is tyranny.”
    FATCA is a symbol of U.S. Tyranny. Some say that FATCA is an acronym for:
    Fear And Terror Caused By America!
    Therefore a contribution to the Charter Challenge is not only a struggle against FATCA but it is a contribution to the struggle for Liberty in general and:
    Liberty and Justice for U.S. Persons Worldwide.
    Furthermore, contributing to the Charter Challenge by cheque, paypal, cash, money order or any other way is completely legal REGARDLESS OF WHO YOU ARE, WHERE YOU ARE, OR WHAT YOUR CIRCUMSTANCES ARE. Yes completely legal.
    You shouldn’t worry about the risk of contributing to this noble and worthy cause. You should worry about the risks of NOT contributing.
    As Edmund Burke so famously noted:
    The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.
    Contribute! Contribute more! Contribute often! Contribute with pride and without fear!

    Today is Data Privacy Day proclaims the Office of Canada’s Privacy Commissioner. Yet, the Privacy Commissioner has been been silent on FATCA since taking office several months ago.
    It is ironic the CBC broke a story on Data Privacy Day that Canadian spies track millions of downloads daily.

    I think we can safely assume some Canadian and American officials are following Sandbox, Brock and other sites.
    We are doing everything we can to ensure identities are protected. But Stephen tells me:

    My IT security expert, who works for a multinational company overseas, tells me that identities can always be found if you have money.

    So that raises the question of whether that should prevent us from commenting here or elsewhere. I know there are many who won`t. Fortunately, there are those who will.
    Tell me what you think.

  3. Must read – long awaited so-called ‘answers’ from the Harper government to additional questions posed by MP Ted Hsu:
    As posted on Allison Christians’ blog;
    Thursday, January 29, 2015
    ‘Responses to Questions on Canada’s Adoption of FATCA IGA ‘
    “Back in November I noted that MP Ted Hsu presented an order paper question (OPQ 816) on the topic of the unusual process surrounding Canada’s adoption of an intergovernmental agreement on FATCA. He asked a series of detailed questions about the treaty tabling and ratification process, and today he got his answers, the substance of which I have reproduced below; you can find the full document here.
    I note that there is a common answer to many of the questions: “Information pertaining to Memorandums to Cabinet which are less than 20 years old is considered a cabinet confidence and details of these are excluded from disclosure under the principles of the Access to Information Act.” Therefore, most of the answers are: you will find out in 20 years.”…….
    Must read!
    Shows just how much contempt the Harper government and Conservatives have for the Parliamentary process, Canadian citizens, voters, taxpayers and residents. Shows how their promises of accountability and transparency are an empty sham – as they do the bidding of Washington – because as one Conservative MP stated:
    “Congress has spoken”.
    And Harper and his merry henchmen obeyed – and they don’t even have the guts to tell Canadians the truth.

  4. @Badger: At least one Con MP–Mike Allen–was honest and brave enough to publicly state why we are living this nightmare:

    “Congress has spoken.”

  5. The very fact that the question was posed:
    “Are paypal payment secure from US IRS investigation?
    is the very reason why the donations to the Charter Challenge Fund must accelerate!
    Paypal is a US corporation. The USA does not need FATCA regulation to investigate.

  6. A few days ago, as an example of what the government will be prepared to spend of our tax dollars to fight us in the courts, I posted an article on the $700,000 they have spent fighting disabled veterans.
    Now the Globe and Mail is reporting Ottawa spends $1.3 million fighting disabled moms’ EI disability benefits lawsuit.
    These are examples of how hard we should expect them to fight us with their unlimited resources.
    This is also an example of why we must continue to donate to ensure we are able to fight back.

  7. I suddenly realized it was one year ago today our Con government announced its betrayal of us with the IGA.
    I just marked this anniversary with a donation to fight back. I hope others will join me.

  8. @ The Animal
    I agree…no apologies needed here. Your situation of having a disabled son who is not allowed to renounce, according to the US government, is a nightmare and unspeakable injustice.
    We all need to continue to support the lawsuit. And let’s not forget the Human Rights Complaint either.
    There is another news story in Forbes today about FATCA and the new record number of US citizenship renunciations:

  9. That stalled thermometer is making me very nervous. Unfortunately, a leprechaun did not bring us a pot of gold yesterday, so it’s up to all of us to keep helping Gwen and Ginny who are risking so much.
    Please donate. I especially implore those who have not yet donated to do so now.

  10. I will send in a donation by mail on the weekend. I prefer to write a check from my Local Client Based credit union rather than use US based PayPal. Although this takes longer, it seems safer.

    1. @Outraged and @Pat,
      Thanks for helping to keep this lawsuit going. March has turned out to be a very difficult month for donations and Blaze has yet to find that kindly leprechaun with the gold.

    2. I’m hoping that part of the problem this March is that it’s income tax time. Either people are waiting for their refund (mine is earmarked for ADCS but I’m not sending it until I actually have it) or are figuring out where to find the money they owe the tax authorities. December isn’t a great time due to Christmas priorities, and I suspect March isn’t a great time (in either Canada or the US) because of tax returns due in April. Which maybe is a bit scary re April as well …

  11. Thanks everyone for agreeing to be a leprechaun and adding to the pot.
    It is horrible that the Little People are funding this while the Deep Pockets ignore or reject us.

  12. Never underestimate the importance of our Canadian FATCA/IGA lawsuit. Just published in Forbes today:
    The lawsuit is mentioned as well as the growing perception of US as a bully:
    “And the dollar cost of FATCA is astounding. Americans lose money by FATCA. The revenue it generates is small and its costs are large. Many of those costs are borne by foreign financial institutions, but even there, it is questionable whether America has hurt itself with the law. Global transparency is admirable, but in many cases America is perceived as a bully, one treading on the sovereignty of other nations. Canadians recently filed suit to block FATCA and prohibit handover of U.S. names to IRS. The legal claim challenges the Inter-Governmental Agreement under which Canada can turn over private bank account information.”

  13. Late last week CRA deposited in my checking account my 2014 tax refund for several hundred dollars. I sent a cheque in the full amount (literally to the last penny; pennies still exist on cheques and credit cards if nowhere else in Canada) to the ADCS fund.
    The refund was “found money” and not essential to my other financial needs, so I think a donation to ADCS was an excellent use of it, even without a tax receipt (wouldn’t a tax receipt for ADCS be fun, but in this case I’m dreaming in Technicolor).
    If you’re getting a tax refund from CRA (or any other country’s tax agency) this month, a donation to ADCS would be an excellent use of the money. And one that is badly needed, given the current shortfall the sovereignty meter is showing.

    1. @ Schubert
      I applaud this generous gesture of yours. I’ve noted others pledging their tax refunds too. For those of us who don’t get tax refunds we can always donate a pretend tax refund. That’s what I did. April is tax month. What better way to express our discontent with U.S. tax tyranny and the big Canadian betrayal than donating to ADCS.

  14. I am getting very nervous at the stuck thermometer and no mail today. We need to get this lawsuit funded.
    I met with my lawyer and accountant today about my will and power of attorney. I included a donation to ADCS in my will, but I am not planning on dying anytime soon.
    However, today is the first anniversary of Jim Flaherty’s death so I just made a donation in his memory to ADCS. I hope others will donate whatever they can soon.
    When I met with my lawyer and accountant, they assured me they will not file anything with the IRS and said I need to trust them to protect my estate from the IRS. I laughed and said “Lawyers, accountants and taxes are dirty words to anyone born in the United States.” My accountant (who is my Executor and Power of Attorney) replied “You’re in Canada.” I responded “Yep. That’s what I thought until a year ago.”
    Now, I feel:

    “Toto, I don’t think we’re in Canada anymore.”

    Please everyone, help Ginny and Gwen bring us back to Canada.

  15. Take note everyone that Stephen, John, Marilyn Ginsburg and an anonymous Canadian citizen are in Washington meeting with staff of prominent Senators. I understand they are doing this at their own expense.
    If they can do that and Ginny and Gwen can take such huge risks for us, we need to be willing to support them. Please donate.
    Stephen, we look forward to an update about your meetings.

  16. I am sending in another donation today by check. The amount is in multiples of those pretty purple tens but not as large as I would like. This is in celebration of the April 15 US tax deadline, or rather my leaving this behind in the dust. No more US IRS fear for me. Recently filed form 8854 after filing back tax forms and owed no tax. I only hope that the Supreme Court of Canada rules in our favor. There have been some Supreme Court rulings lately against legislation imposed by the conservative Harper government. Apparently the SC thought Mr. Harper’s legislation was unconstitutional. This gives some hope here.

    1. Yes, there have been numerous losses for Harper, et. al at the Supreme Court.


      The most recent was this week’s Supreme Court quashes manadotory minimum sentences for gun crimes.


      You would think they would get it by now–a record of numerous losses including prostitution, physician assisted suicide, Senate reform, appointment of Supreme Court justices, bargaining rights for RCMP officers, aboriginal land claims, etc., etc, etc.

      There have also been losses in Federal Court including a disabled aboriginal mother fighting for her severely disabled son. The government is appealing and requesting the mother pay their court costs.

      Federal court has also ruled Canadian citizens living outside Canada have the right to vote in Canadian elections. The government is also appealing that. To date, they have spent $1.3 million.

      Another $1.3 million has been spent fighting sick new moms over Employment Insurance and $700,000 fighting disabled veterans in cases that have not even had their hearings yet.

      Yesterday, the National Post published a Score Card on the government’s record at the Supreme Court. It is dismal.
      These are among the many reasons why it is critical that we manage to fund our lawsuit.

  17. Love the top ten reasons NOT to donate. That may need a post of its own so it does not get lost.
    Top reason to donate: It’s the right thing to do.
    Do it now. We are down to the crunch. I again implore those who have been learning and benefitting from Sandbox and Zbrock but who have not yet donated to do so.
    Do NOT make Roy Berg wealthy. Do NOT let Congress speak for Canada. Do NOT let U.S. Law be the Supreme law of Canada.
    Support Ginny and Gwen instead. They are risking everything for us. The least we can do is donate for them–and for everyone affected by FATCA.

  18. It’s great to see the amount needed finally below $40,000, but we still have a long way to go.
    Please everyone, let’s get this done soon (well, at least this stage).

  19. Wow. That statement with a donor’s letter is very disturbing. A woman missed the funerals of four close relatives–including both of her parents. She won’t speak in public because of her American accent. She hasn’t had a bank account in three years. She won’t put her name on assets she is entitled to/
    Is this woman in Canada? Why doesn’t she have a bank account? Did she decide to close it out of fear or did her bank close it? How does her bank know she is from the U.S.?
    Is she a Canadian citizen (or citizen of another country)? Is she able to get a CLN?
    Is there any way we can help her?

    1. Lynne, no, I don’t think that there is any way to help her or alleviate her anxiety other than by immediately dismantling the FATCA and CBT laws — and I don’t find her situation unique. She just wants to protect her family.

  20. Amazing surge in donations today. Thanks everyone.
    We are so close with just one more day to go.
    If you have not already donated, please do so now. PayPal is quick and easy.

  21. I see that we made the next $100K payment, down to the wire but made! Well done, everyone!! Keep on trucking. Don’t let the SOBs get you down!
    And vote ABC in the next federal election (vote strategically, anyone but Conservative … punish the b******s where it hurts them the most).

    1. And a final slogan to follow my call for ABC:
      Don’t just be a victim. Instead, make political victims of Stephen Harper and his minions. Revenge is a dish best served cold; we’ve all had a year now to stew over the IGA. Keep donating, yes, but VOTE as well if you’re a Canadian citizen.

    2. As a Canadian citizen and ex-US citizen, I will be voting ABC. Hope many others do as well. We need to be watching to see the policies of the other parties on FATCA.

    3. well, Schubert, maybe what just happened in Alberta is a sign of hope. And a sign of warning to the PCs. After 44 years, the conservatives have been booted out of Alberta – soundly, resoundingly, and definitively. And the leader of the Alberta PCs not only resigned as leader, but, as is typical IMHO, of the PCs, he’s taken his sulk to new heights and resigned his seat in the legislature – thereby causing MORE money to be spent on another election to replace him.
      I don’t know if people who haven’t lived in Alberta understand how momentous this election was. I was voting “ABC” because I knew that I was throwing my vote away, because every stupid time the PCs just won again.  I despaired of people waking up and seeing the truth about our govt leaders. This time was different and I was jumping up and down yahooing. (My mom thought I was kind of nuts.) I don’t know, can’t know. how the NDP is going to do running our province, but honestly I just don’t see how they can be any worse than what we’ve had.
      My hope is that this to-the-extreme case of self-entitlement on the part of our AB govt is at an end. Or at the least, curbed.
      So never say never, people!  I will absolutely be donating again and again. What I can give isn’t that much, but it makes me feel good to do it, knowing that I am playing a part (a tiny, wee part, for sure) in standing up for our rights and holding our federal govt accountable.

    4. My heartfelt congrats to Albertans for doing something I never thought I’d see in my lifetime — electing an NDP provincial government!
      Please note– according to CBC News final results, the NDP got 40.6% of the popular vote in that election. That is a full percentage point MORE than what Harper’s cons got across Canada in 2011. Yes, the Tories and Wild Rose got more votes, but the federal Liberals and NDP got more votes between them than did the Harperoids, too. What’s sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander, under first-past-the-post.
      If it happened in Alberta, it can happen anywhere. ABC. Preferably NDP IMO. Sounds like a stretch federally, but no more so than a majority NDP government in Alberta would have sounded to me a week ago. No guarantees that provincial votes will mirror federal ones, but bear in mind the same voters that chose Notley are going to be voting again in October, including in Harper’s own riding. Should be an interesting ride.
      Every vote counts. The PCs and NDP are in a judicial recount, with an exact tied vote (7205 votes each, last I heard, and the NDP candidate was a raw newcomer up against an incumbent), in the provincial riding that I believe largely overlaps Harper’s own federal riding. My but I’ll bet Harper is getting twitchy about now …

  22. Congratulations to everyone on this milestone with our lawsuit to topple FATCA. Wonderful to hear that Joseph Arvay had another victory with the Supreme Court upholding Canadian Charter Rights. Happy Birthday to Gwen.

  23. Dear Barack Obama:
    “Yes we can!”
    No, you can’t FATCA Canada!
    Canadians and Global Friends

  24. An article, Americans We Love You, But We Can’t Afford You, published in American University International Law Journal makes several excellent points about FATCA, the Charter, international law, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, the ADCS lawsuit and the Hyman Rights complaint to the U.N.
    Unfortunately, it also has as its foundation some very serious errors. The author, a law student, claims Canadians are having difficulty accessing basic banking services, paying bills or rent on line or with debit or credit cards.
    She says Canadians are having bank accounts closed. I am unaware of any Canadians who have had that happen. If I am wrong about that, please let me know.
    She does make some good points–especially that the Canadian government’s implementation of FATCA permits discrimination rather than guarding against it. She frames this as a problem accessing banking services and not as discrimination resulting in private financial information being gathered about one group of Canadians based on national origin to pass on to a foreign government.
    I’m delighted to see a law student writing about this. I just wish her facts were more accurate. I fear this article could do us more harm than good because so much of the information is wrong.
    It is because of those huge errors that I decided to post this as a comment here instead of giving it a thread of its own. If others think it should have its own thread, please let me know.
    In any case, her conclusions about the FATCA IGA being costly, discriminatory and a violation of international law are more reasons to donate to the lawsuit.
    Thanks to Badger for another great find. I have no idea how she finds all of these!

    1. @ Lynne
      I have only just skimmed this paper but I think Ms. Woldeab is saying that all Canada needs to do (which it didn’t) is adopt the U.S. “anti-discrimination clause” (i.e. banks cannot refuse to open and maintain accounts for U.S. persons). She seems to think that if this is fixed then all’s hunky-dory with FATCA. Not so! There are more harms associated with FATCA than mere banking access. I think the only fix is to send FATCA packing and then do the same with CBT. I’m afraid Ms. Woldeab’s focus is a bit too narrow, although she did have some good background information in her paper but most of it has been said many times, many ways, before. Anyway, it was good to see a mention of Ginny and Gwen’s court case.
      And yes, I too ALWAYS wonder how Badger manages to dig up so many interesting articles and papers for us.

    2. This lady now works for the U.S. justice department, civil tax department.
      Her paper , although interesting, completely misses the point. She thinks that FATCA is fine. She thinks the Canadian IGA is a problem because it allows discrimination against Americans in Canada who might suffer from having reduced access to bank services.
      Therefore she says it violates their rights contrary to the UN human rights code. She thinks Canada’s IGA is unique for this reason.
      She cares not one whit about the rights of Canadians or about the Canadian bill of rights. Someone with access to LinkedIn could locate her and point this out. I don’t do LinkedIn or Facebook.

  25. @ Lynne, Outraged, Schubert
    There was something in my local paper today which relates to Schubert’s May 10 comment on NDP win in Alberta. It looks like the NDP are gaining ground in BC as well:
    The Vancouver Sun states, “The NDP would win the popular vote in B.C. if a federal election were held tomorrow, according to a new poll, but the party will need to learn from Rachel Notley’s example in Alberta if it wants to turn the province orange.”
    Also, “NDP leader Thomas Mulcair fared particularly well in the poll, earning a 52-per-cent approval rating, edging out Liberal leader Justin Trudeau’s 46 per cent and trouncing Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s 35 per cent.”
    Read more: http://www.vancouversun.com/news/Federal+rises+Conservatives+drop+latest+poll/11050670/story.html#ixzz3a2HGXSNz
    This is an unexpected ray of hope on the horizon. I hope it encourages more people to support the lawsuit and vote ABC.

  26. @Calgary411
    If Trudeau is supporting bill c-51, he will likely not oppose FATCA and the IGA. So far, Justin hasn’t come out with any public policy on the FATCA issue that I have seen. Not a good sign for him but interesting for his ex-supporters and for the NDP.

  27. Victoria is writing about ADCS lawsuit on her blog. Another Front in the Fight Against FATCA: ADCS Lawsuit.
    Victoria calls FATCA one more attempt by the U.S. government to do a census on its citizens using banks to do their dirty work.
    As many of you know, I think it is not about a census or taxes but about control or punishment.
    FATCA = Foreign Attack To Control All.
    Victoria says:

    Funded entirely by small donors, ADCS has miraculously raised enough money so far to hire very competent legal counsel, and on August 14, 2014 they filed their suit in Canadian Federal Court. I back them 100% and have contributed even though I am not an “Accidental American” or even a dual.
    You can support ADCS by making a donation here. They are excellent transparent communicators and you can follow the progress of the lawsuit on their website, at the Isaac Brock Society, or at Maple Sandbox.

    Please donate–especially if you have not already done so.
    You can support ADCS by making a donation here. They are excellent transparent communicators and you can follow the progress of the lawsuit on their website, at the Isaac Brock Society, or at Maple Sandbox.

  28. I just donated $75 in honour of Finance Minister Joe Oliver’s 75th birthday (DOB May 20, 1940).
    Give Minister Oliver the gift of our lawsuit. Donate $75–or whatever amount you can.

  29. Thanks to Lynne and all other donors to ADCS.
    I am grateful to be able to send another check in the mail this week. Although we do not have deep pockets, we can keep this lawsuit going.
    The US Social Security Administration has inadvertently given me a financial boost. After receiving my CLN, I decided to look into Social Security benefits. Prior to living in Canada for eleven years, I had worked and paid into this system. Turns out that I am eligible for a nice monthly check from the US which cannot be taxed by them. Social Security payments will start upon my retirement which is coming up shortly.
    Sometimes the universe works in mysterious ways.

  30. Pan Canadian First social security may be taxable and even if it is not taxable you may need to file (this is from feb 2014
    2)If Social Security was your only source of income in 2013, your benefits may not be taxable. You also may not need to file a federal income tax return.
    7)A quick way to find out if any of your benefits may be taxable is to add one-half of your Social Security benefits to all your other income, including any tax-exempt interest. Next, compare this total to the base amounts below. If your total is more than the base amount for your filing status, then some of your benefits may be taxable. The three base amounts are:
    $25,000 – for single, head of household, qualifying widow or widower with a dependent child or married individuals filing separately who did not live with their spouse at any time during the year
    $32,000 – for married couples filing jointly
    $0 – for married persons filing separately who lived together at any time during the year
    If you have done your exit taxes or CLN is before 1995 I would apply for benefit.
    If you have not done exit taxes the USA still considers you a USA person even though the Canada FACTA does not consider you a USA person. Other countries may still consider you a US person,
    I do not know if you ever heard back from IRS if you CLN but not done exit taxes. It may put you on IRS radar.
    My best guess is that collecting social security benefit and not filing exit taxes will put you on the IRS radar.
    They may then garnish your social security benefit if you have IRS liability. I assume that not filing exit taxes will do that. You would then be getting nothing from social security but receiving nasty letter from IRS.
    The IRS if it had any brains would then do a credit check (I think both credit rating agencies are US companies ). They than will know some of financial institutions. If you own US equities with a Canadian brokerage firm this would get really messy. Even before FATCA there was regulation regarding US person (the IRS definition) owning US equity in foreign lands. Ask Schubert.
    From your credit limit on credit card they can have a rough idea of your net income and net worth, They will also know any loan and mortgages you have taken out. They can also make a claim against you that will go on your credit report. They can not collect in Canada. If we had the original European FATCA it would be a lot worse.

    1. If one is not a US citizen anymore, then social security is only taxable in Canada for Canadian residents and not in US. This is according to the Canada US tax treaty. I filed form 8854 and am not considered a covered expatriate (no exit tax and no tax owing to US IRS).
      However, I do agree that we have to be very careful with regard to any dealings with the US IRS. In my case, I paid into the system and so have a legitimate right to the benefits.

  31. “Banks and other financial creditors can’t touch your Social Security benefits, but when the government is collecting on a debt, those funds are fair game.
    The federal government can garnish your benefits for repayment of several types of debts, including federal income taxes, federal student loans, child support and alimony, nontax debt owed to other federal agencies, defaulted federal home loans and certain civil penalties. Supplemental Security Income cannot be garnished under any circumstance.”
    They even attempted to garnish relative Social security benefits
    “The Social Security Administration, which announced in April that it would stop trying to collect debts from the children of people who were allegedly overpaid benefits decades ago, has continued to demand such payments and now defends that practice in court documents.”

    1. Yes George 3, I have looked all this up previously. You are correct. Fortunately, as part of my renunciation process, I filed all necessary tax forms and don’t owe the IRS anything. Before dealing with all this FATCA stuff, I would not have applied for Social Security as it gives the US IRS a red flag. It is ironic and people do need to be careful about this.

  32. Thanks for the information. I plan to attend this trial and historic event as I live in the Vancouver area. Looking forward to seeing other supporters there on August 4 and 5.

  33. Thanks for posting my contact information in regard to upcoming August 4-5 trial dates. I just want to add the following.
    List for Courthouse attendance August 4th and 5th:
    Please email patcanadian2015@gmail.com if you are attending the FATCA trial in Vancouver whether you are local or coming from a distance. This list is for counting purposes only. You only need to let us know if you are able to attend to give number of people coming to the court. If you do not wish to give your name, that is fine. A Brock or Maple Sandbox alias will do. The court has rooms of varying size (10 to 100 occupants) and the interest in the case will influence the size of the facility we are given.
    If you can’t attend, you don’t need to let me know. It is understandable that some can’t afford the trip, particularly if they live at a distance. We are not the wealthy tax evaders that the IRS would like to think we are.
    For those who would like to attend and are travelling from afar, I will be posting the following shortly:
    Budget and moderately priced lodging options, transit and dining in Vancouver

  34. Hi everyone, here are some hints at finding reasonably priced accommodations in Vancouver area for August 4-5 court dates. I’m not making any recommendations except to say that I know people who have stayed at UBC and the Beach Apartment Hotel. They were quite satisfied for the price.
    Donating to ADSC is the priority. But for those who can donate and attend, I look forward to seeing you there. So far, we have 16 people who have committed to attending, myself included.
    Guide to moderate range lodging near Federal Court House:
    Downtown Vancouver hotels with map:
    Accommodations in courthouse area with moderate price (click on # in courthouse grid):
    #1: Residence Inn by Marriott
    #8: Burrard Motor Inn
    #12: 910 Beach Apartment Hotel
    #14: Comfort Inn Downtown
    #16: Moda Hotel Vancouver
    Holiday Inn is also an option. There are a couple of Brockers planning to stay at Holiday Inn in Richmond near the airport. There is also Holiday Inn Downtown #7 on map.
    Bubblebustin may be able to arrange a block of rooms at the Westin Grand Hotel (#22 on map in Yaletown grid), walking distance to court house, if enough people are interested. This is a bit more expensive. There are some rooms that can be shared.
    Links to budget hotels:
    (Vancouver YWCA on the above link has a number of different housing options)
    UBC has a variety of types of lodging for visitors both moderate and budget:
    There are a couple of Brockers planning to stay at UBC Triumph House.
    Transit options in Vancouver:
    Best bet for those on a budget is public transit. Bus and train service are quite good. Translink has routes, schedules, trip planner on its website:
    Here are some taxi options just in case.
    Dining options to follow next week.
    Please contact me if you have lodging questions or wish to be added to attendance list at patcanadian2015@gmail.com.

  35. I’m so glad to see that mercury rising in our funding thermometer. Although our court dates are still two months away, there are 16 people who have committed to attend the proceedings in Federal Court. Donations need to be a priority. I hope more will let me know if they are able to come to Vancouver on August 4-5 so we can have a show of support as well. Please contact me if you can attend at patcanadian2015@gmail.com.
    Here are some food options in Vancouver area to go along with lodging and transit previously posted:
    Food options in downtown Vancouver are endless. This includes the area near the Federal Court at 701 Georgia Street. Please see map link below to get some idea as there are too many to list:
    Some examples of LESS EXPENSIVE spots include:
    The Pacific Centre Mall Food Court, located at 701 West Georgia Street, is next to the court. It is on the lower level and has many budget choices.
    There are many ethnic eateries (Greek, Indian, Lebanese, Chinese, Mexican etc.) along with traditional spots (Tim Horton, White Spot, etc.) all within easy walking distance near court area. Prices are usually posted and quite reasonable.
    For those staying at UBC, dining is a bit more limited. Here is a link to places to eat at UBC:
    I stayed at UBC for a conference and we all ate at Totem Park Dining Room. It was reasonably priced and there was quite a variety including vegetarian/organic options.
    Food options for those staying in Richmond:
    Richmond Centre Mall located at 6551 No. 3 Road in Richmond has a large food court, the Dining Terrace, on the upper level with lots of reasonably priced food:

  36. It looks like Liechtenstein courts move faster than Canadian courts.
    The Liechtenstein Constitutional Court of the Liechtenstein Tax Authority Gives FATCA Claimants More Time according to an article available through Google Translate.
    The article literally loses something in the translation, making it difficult to follow (at least to me).
    I think this is saying that the court prohibited transmission of information from financial institutions to the domestic tax authority and to IRS temporarily.
    I also think this was a case brought by two financial institutions and not by individuals. Again, that is my understanding based on the less than perfect translation.
    Is there anybody out there who speaks German who can explain better what it means by reviewing the original article in German? (I think it’s German).
    Is either Sally or Swiss Pinoy out there who can help clarify this with a better translation?
    Staatsgerichtshof verschafft FATCA-Klägern mehr Zeit
    Thanks to Daniel for posting this on Facebook and to Tim for e-mailing the Google Translate.

  37. I do not want to waste a lot of time on this a computer expert should have know this.
    PayPal Canada freezes gardener’s account over Cuba connection
    U.S. companies ‘masquerade’ as Canadian with .ca domain, says foreign affairs expert
    (go to middle)
    “PayPal Canada subject to U.S. laws
    In a statement, PayPal Canada spokeswoman Malini Mitra said the company is bound by American law.
    “As a U.S. company, PayPal and all its foreign subsidiaries have to comply with the Office of Foreign Assets Control sanctions regulations. With respect to Cuba, payments involving non­-U.S. customers have to be declined as per OFAC regulations.”
    Despite recent signs of a thaw in U.S.-Cuba relations, Washington continues to enforce a near-total embargo on trade with the Caribbean nation using a range of laws – including the Trading with the Enemy Act.
    Ficht said he had used PayPal about 20 times previously and always assumed he was dealing with a Canadian company because he was using their Canadian website.
    “It almost seems to be slightly deceptive,” he said.
    PayPal is one of many major companies, including Amazon and Google, which use the .ca internet domain name to “masquerade” as Canadian companies, according to Tom Keenan, a research fellow at the Canadian Defence and Foreign Affairs Institute.
    Despite a recent thaw in relations, America still maintains a trade embargo with Cuba. (CBC)
    Despite being an American company, PayPal Canada is allowed to use .ca because it has registered its trademark in Canada and maintains an address in Toronto.”
    Keenan said such companies should be required to declare that transactions are being processed in the U.S. and will be subject to its laws.
    “They don’t have to go into all the details of the Patriot Act, [but] at least tell us that this transaction is going to be processed in another country. That seems only fair,” said Keenan, the author of the book Technocreep: The Surrender of Privacy and the Capitalization of Intimacy”
    Please note I also inquired about computershare canada at least it is a recognized Canadian FFI it has Canadian deposit insurance accreditation but it keeps it records in USA.

  38. Please note that it is very easy for Paypal to get a list of donors.
    What is wrong with Canada Post and a cheque?
    Obama justice department issued a subpena against reason magizine to get a list of commentator
    Justice Dept. subpoenas Reason Magazine to find anonymous commenters. Internet implodes
    The Libertarians are up in arms this week after the Justice Department served subpoenas to Nick Gillespie’s Reason Magazine over comments left on their web site by anonymous readers. The commentariat buzz in question erupted over an article dealing with the life sentence imposed on Silk Road founder Ross Ulbricht. This has prompted some outraged cries from observers such as Bloomberg contributor (and former Reason editor) Virginia Postrel, who described the move as stomping on free speech. Powerline’s Steven Hayward (coincidentally also a former contributor to Reason) wonders aloud whether the Justice Department attorneys are just stupid or possibly working in league with Rand Paul.”
    Do you not think they may fish for people who do not pay USA?

  39. Pan Canadian
    On social security in Canada
    If you were still a USA citizen or person (did not do exit taxes) would it be subject to usa taxes?
    This Canadian tax code
    Line 256 – Exempt foreign income
    If you reported foreign income on your return (such as support payments you received from a resident of another country and reported on line 128) that is tax-free in Canada because of a tax treaty, you can claim a deduction for it. If you do not know if any part of the foreign income is tax-free, contact us.
    Under the Canada-United States tax treaty, you can claim a deduction equal to 15% of the U.S. Social Security benefits, including U.S. Medicare premiums, you reported as income on line 115.
    If you have been a resident of Canada and have received U.S. Social Security benefits continuously during the period starting before January 1, 1996, and ending in 2014, you can claim a deduction equal to 50% of the U.S. Social Security benefits received in 2014.
    This 50% deduction also applies to you if you are receiving benefits related to a deceased person and you meet all the following conditions:
    The deceased person was your spouse or common-law partner immediately before their death.
    The deceased person had, continuously during a period starting before 1996 and ending immediately before their death, been a resident of Canada and received benefits to which paragraph 5 of Article XVIII of the Canada-United States tax treaty applied.
    You have, continuously during a period starting at the person’s time of death and ending in 2014, been a resident of Canada and received such benefits.”

    1. By the way, GeorgeIII, it’s PatCanadian…I am not worried or fearful about social security benefits, as you seem to be. Why do you waste your time on this? I am not a US citizen anymore and I am not concerned. Just will be collecting because when I was a US citizen I paid into the system. It’s that simple.
      Everyone’s situation is different and needs to be evaluated on an individual basis.

  40. @GeorgeIII
    They may be fishing but that does not mean we have to be caught.

    “I have learned over the years that when one’s mind is made up, this diminishes fear; knowing what must be done does away with fear.” (Rosa Parks)

    If you want to continue to have your life ruled by fear, don’t donate. If you want to break free of the chains of fear, donate in whatever way works for you–cash, cheque, money order, e-transfer, PayPal, give money to a friend to send, etc.
    Too many people have made too many excuses for not donating for too long–leaving too few to fund this lawsuit. It is time to stop the excuses and support Gwen and Ginny who are risking so much for all of us.
    I implore you and others to overcome your fear and do what must be done. Stand up to the bullies on both sides of the border.

  41. @GeorgeIII Twenty-five years ago, one man with an eagle feather said “No” and preserved our Charter and our rights.
    Gwen and Ginny are our Elijah Harper
    Elijah Harper died two years ago, but we need to support Gwen and Ginny in saying “No” to another Harper determined to stomp all over the Charter and our rights.

  42. …the federal government lawyers may seek an adjournment of the summary trial…”

    Why am I not surprised?
    Remember, this is the government that calls us “American citizens abiding in Canada.”
    This is the government that says “Congress has spoken.”
    This is the government that refused to consider an amendment to protect Canadian citizens and residents.
    This is the government that is fighting disabled veterans, sick new mothers, a disabled aboriginal mother with a severely disabled teen son, Canadian citizens living outside Canada, the Supreme Court Chief Justice and us.
    This is the government that passed a law giving it the right to deport any Canadian citizen who has the right to citizenship of another country–even if those citizens were born in Canada.
    This is the government that passed Bill C51 giving it unprecedented power to snoop into the private lives of Canadians.
    This is the government that loves to fight losing battles with our tax dollars in the courts.
    This is the government Stephen Harper promised in 2006 when he said “You won’t recognize Canada when I’m through with it.”
    This is the government that will make this as long, costly and brutal for us as they possibly can.
    Our only recourse is to keep fighting back. Please donate to help bring back the Canada you recognize.

  43. My fingers are crossed that we’re going to be able to make the next payment. I’m trying but I don’t have much in the way of spare funds. I give what I can, and I hope others are as well.

  44. Lynn, “brilliant (in my biased opinion) arguments”
    It is not brilliant at all……
    It is beautiful, it is a work of art, it is the Mona Lisa.
    The defendants briefs are excellent, well written, top notch legal work…..but…..they are not works of art.

  45. Ginny and Gwen……..
    Ladies, when this is all said and done you have made a meaningful impact on the future history of Canada.
    Most people live history, you are making history.

    1. @George
      Your very kind words today and your support have deeply touched me. As Blanche DuBois would say,”I have always depended on the kindness of strangers.” In this case, however, I prefer to call you friend.

    2. @Ginny: Welcome to Sandbox.  It is good to have you here.

      Thank you to you and Gwen from all of us.Your courage and determination inspire us.

      You will never do anything in this world without courage. It is the greatest quality of the mind next to honour. ((Aristotle)

      We are grateful for both your courage and your honour in standing up to the bulllies at great risk to yourselves.



  46. Ginny and Gwen,
    You have my echo of all said here before me.
    So grateful for your stepping forward for all of us. That deserves multi-fold donations to this cause!

  47. Oh man, my heart started pounding when I read the latest. I am completely tapped out. I *hope* there is an angel investor out there somewhere willing to invest in upholding our constitution.
    Gwen and Ginny ARE making history and ARE putting themselves out there, at risk, for the rest of us. Although that’s a debt I can never repay, I will never forget it. I’m too chicken to come out in the open much less stand up in a legal court. They are brave, brave ladies.

  48. Upate on summary trial: Blaze has lost her internet connection, so she has me to post this:
    The summary trial has now begun. The judge has ruled on the motions 1) DENIED the Government’s request for an adjournment and 2) has reserved his decision with respect to the admissibility of the supplementary affidavit of Prof. Christians.

    Joe Arvay is now explaining the onerous tax penalty system that Canadian citizens and residents would fall under once their information becomes known to the US tax authorities under FATCA to the judge.

  50. The trial Judge has just extended the hearing until 5:30 pm ( BC time). Normal time is 4:30. Gwen reports the Judge is very savvy and engaged asking counsel many questions. And that our lawyer’s argument is very smooth despite all the material he is trying to cover.
    Blaze’s internet connection is still down.

  51. My Internet is back but I have not heard from Stephen.
    Ginny is getting updates from Gwen so she has agreed to post them here.

  52. From Stephen Kish email, 5:02 p.m. (Power outages here, but back.)
    Arvay is explaining how IGA contradicts tax convention. Very technical.
    Much attention given to a clause 8 in which Canada cannot provide assistance in tax collection for Canadian citizens.
    Apparently this clause was insisted upon by the US.
    Arvay points out that the whole point of Fatca is to enlist the IRS in identifying and Collecting taxes of US persons in Canada most of whom are Canadian citizens.
    Why then would the US want FATCA if US can’t go to a Canadian court to collect taxes of Canadian citizens? IRS is aggressive and will use other approaches e.g. Frightening letters.
    Judge was told why Canada agreed to FATCA IGA without receiving any benefit: economic sanction.

  53. In 2010, Justice Martineau Chided the Taxman in a “stinging judgement” against the Minister of National Revenue and Canada Revenue Agency.
    Here’s hoping Justice Martineau will issue a “stinging judgement” in our case.

  54. Further update from Stephen:

    Judge is asking questions:
    “Why don’t. Accidentals just renounce”
    “Are you actually challenging cbt?
    Our answer: to establish whether cbt contradicts articlesof the convention
    Justice now appreciates that we want decision by sept 15 not sept 30 as he originally understood and asks:
    “What am I to do?”
    He has already asked chief Justice foe extra time to make decision and now understans that situation is worse timewise
    He is considering options.
    Feds counsel confirms that it has received no undertaking on the actual date in sept when info goes to IRS
    Feds counsel mentions harm to banks Jusice says what about the 700k plus citizens?
    No idea how this will end today

  55. More from Stephen:

    Justice asks more questions;
    Is it a crme for a uS person in canada to not file a us tax return?
    Reciprocity in tax traty but not I iga?
    Feds say:
    Its not for us to qustion what the us nneds for its tax information. That is presumptuosu. The proposition that us law stops at the boder is a radical concept
    Jistice asks
    Doesn’t privacy act apy tp informatio?
    Feds respond;
    Iga superceds a$$ other acts
    No difference inprincie from your t4 slip
    Judge asks
    Can you substantiate that this is a routine reporting ststem. I would like the evidence

    Does anyone else have the sense this is not going the way the feds hoped it would?

    1. The behaviour of counsel for the Government is so bizarre one wonders if they actually want to lose this case. If the reports on this site are true, it speaks of amateur lawyers, or willful ignorance. To fall back on “it would harm the banks” is pathetic. The statement that the IGA overrules every other act (e.g. Privacy Acts) is presumptuous. It does not overrule every other act just because the Government says so. So far, the case looks very strong given the vacuum of supporting evidence presented by the Government.
      I love the line “The presumption that US law stops at the border is radical”. Huh? Isn’t that why we have borders?

  56. I think I’m in love with the judge. More from Stephen:

    Justice asking questions feds counsel not explixitly answering
    Icredible qustion from justice to feds counsel:
    “Do you prefer that I not ask you any questions? Would that be simpler for you? What I hate is that you just repeat what is written and never answer the question…

    1. LOL! I love it!

      And @ John Canuck – that’s because that’s the way Harper & his cronies think. Canada is just another state, or at least they’d like it to be that way. They want to tie us in so closely to US big business that there are no borders.

    2. @Stephen: You posted thst Judge Martineau will do his best to render a decision by September 13.  That is a Sunday,

      Will he issue a decision on a Sunday or would it be on on Friday Sepember 11? (what a significant date that would be!)

      Do we have any guarantee the gov will not transfer information to IRS before September 15? 

      And, of course, banks have already given information to CRA on some Canadians that they have identified as U.S. persons.

  57. Wow! We did it! A lot of people have really stretched their budgets — as Stephen mentioned, “small-pockets donors, with their pension cheques and limited funds, somehow managed to contribute a total of $500,000 for our lawsuit.”
    It’s so impressive! My thanks to all of us!
    Thanks as always to our brave plaintiffs, Ginny and Gwen, and the hardworking ADCS board!
    And special thanks today to Stephen for administering the fund collecting and updating us daily on it and to Tricia for her work with it as ADCS treasurer!

  58. I ditto Pacifica and Stephen in thanking Little People across Canada and around the globe for their donations of $500,000.
    A HUGE thank you to Stephen and Tricia for “never, never, never giving up!”

    “Alone, we can do so little. Together, we can do so much.” (Helen Keller)

    Well done everyone. Now we anxiously await Justice Martineau’s decision.

  59. @Stephen: Thanks for posting that exchange in Australia. Sounds like “Congress has spoken” with their nuclear weapon in Australia.
    Very interesting that it was an Australian Mr. Allen supporting the IGA. It was Canada’s Mike Allen who uttered the words “Congress has spoken.”
    @All Financial Post asks Which will come first: a decision in the FATCA legal challenge or the first exchange of information.
    Julius Melnitzer, one of the authors of that Financial Post article, is a convicted criminal and a disbarred lawyer who defrauded five Canadian banks of $67 million.
    Melnitzer has written several articles about FATCA for the Financial Post. He was a prominent lawyer in London Ontario. His name is well remembered by almost anyone over the age of 50 here, more for his crimes than for his previous legal work.
    It always boggles my mind when I see Melnitzer writing about FATCA. Financial Post has only accepted one article that I submitted to them.
    It seems Financial Post prefers convicted criminals to write for them.

  60. I just had a call from Federal Court. Justice Martineau approved my request for a CD of the trial. Unfortunately, he only approved it for my personal use, but he did not approve it for posting on line.

    1. Hi Lynne,
      How’s the audio on that CD? I imagine you’re not allowed to reproduce parts in writing verbatim but I’d love to read about some of your impressions after you’ve finished listening. Some people who attended were apparently nodding off during the government’s arguments so maybe you can listen to those parts at bedtime (if you have any trouble getting to sleep). Pity the transcript of the trial is so expensive. Obviously Justice Martineau has a copy though and along with all the briefs submitted he has an enormous amount of reading to do in order to give his decision. Poor man! BTW, have you heard anything from Victoria lately? She seems to be taking almost a month long blog break.

    2. @Embee:  I don’t have the CD yet. They were going to mail it yesterday or today.  Considering our terrible Canada Post service, I hope to have it by the end of next week.

      When I receive it, I will need to decide which parts to fast forward and which parts to replay.

      After I listen to it, I will ask Federal Court what the requirements or restrictions are around posting some of the content in text on line.

      Victoria has been on vacation in the U.S. I miss her posts and our communications.



  61. As most know, the implementing legislation for the FATCA-IGA was buried in the 2014 budget, Bill C-31.
    A little tibbit about that budget that some may find interesting from a long article by Lawrence Martin in the G&M ROB magazine:
    “Mark Cameron, who worked as a policy adviser at the PMO, came to see Harper and Flaherty as respecting one another. But Flaherty freelanced too much for the boss’s liking. “He didn’t necessarily check before he went out and made statements. That aggravated us.”
    It aggravated them to the point where Flaherty’s office was not even allowed to write his own budget. In 2014, for Flaherty’s final budget, over from the PMO came Scott Anderson, one of Harper’s top speechwriters.”

  62. Thanks Hazy. Intriguing. Especially that the former Assistant Deputy Minister of Communications for Finance is still shaking his head at some of the goings on–including don’t use the word budget in discussing the budget.
    That is sort of like calling us “Americans abiding in Canada” when most of us are Canadian citizens.
    “Spin to win” says it all.

  63. Trudeau at Islamic Convention:
    A small ray of hope on CTV news this morning. Justin Trudeau says that LIBERALS STAND AGAINST TWO TIERED CITIZENSHIP. No it doesn’t specifically mention FATCA, but I think it’s a step in the right direction.

    1. Perhaps, although being against two-tiered citizenship is like being against abuse of puppies. If he says something that directly ties to FATCA or the IGA, that might mean something. He isn’t, because he a) doesn’t know much about it, or b) knows about it and is not about to do anything about it should he ever be in a position to.

  64. RE my previous comment: Justin Trudeau says that LIBERALS STAND AGAINST TWO TIERED CITIZENSHIP.
    It would be nice if Justin made the leap to FATCA/IGA hidden in Bill C-31 in addition to C-24.
    Trudeau said, “Liberals will guarantee that all Canadians’ fundamental rights are respected as guided by the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.”
    “Canadian citizenship should not be conditional. A Canadian is a Canadian is a Canadian,” said Trudeau to applause.

    1. I would not count on Justin Trudeau to jump in to the fray and negate the IGA or FATCA. I doubt he knows much about it, hence he doesn’t mention it.

  65. I received the CD of the trial today. Unfortunately, it begins with Day 2. I don’t know where Day 1 is.
    I just called Federal Court. They will send me another CD.
    This is only approved for personal use. I cannot post it on line. If I want to post information from the CD or write an article about it, I must send a letter and receive consent. I cannot e-mail the letter.
    I’m not sure what happened to the concept of making our justice system more open and accessible.

  66. I am now having technical issues listening to the CD. It keeps pausing just a few minutes into the hearing and I can’t get it to unpause.
    I have tried listening to it several times and the same thing happens each time at the same place on the CD, making me wonder if the CD is defective or if there is a problem with my computer.
    This is very frustrating.

  67. An article in today’s Huffington Post says our Court Fight to Stop FATCA Impacts All Canadians.
    The writer says:

    I wish both of the plaintiffs luck with the outcome. I doubt that it will change anything but they are right to object to the breach of their privacy.


    In my experience, the IRS wants people to jump through their hoops without any consideration that we are not part of the United States. And they are not concerned with privacy or our constitution. They want us to follow their rules even if they don’t always make sense.

    While she seems empathetic, she ends the article with the Become Compliant, Nowhere to Hide hymn. That is probably because Cleo Hamel (the writer of the article) is a “tax expert” specializing in cross-border taxes.

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