Monthly Archives: March 2012

The Isaac Brock Society

Just Me offers advice to newbies to the subject of FBAR compliance and OVDI considerations.  To join or not to join.  That is the question.  This is a must read post.

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The Isaac Brock Society

On January 25th, I posted a story of the “Opt Out” success of a Minnow with the alias of Moby.

It was under the title of  An OVDP Minnow “Opt Out” Success by Moby  

If you are not familiar with his story, I would suggest that you read that post first to bring you up to date with his story.

Moby, now complete in his dealings with the IRS and no longer residing in America, has generously made his “Opt Out” correspondence public for all OVDI participants to see and learn from.  What follows is his message for all of us.

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No U.S. Tax Compliance, No U.S. Passport = Increased demand for a second passport

Citizenship renunciations are  soaring under the Obama administration. In a move that is sure to accelerate this trend, as part of Tax Amendments to Senate-Passed Highway Trust Fund Bill (S. 1813), the ability to get a U.S. passport is now tied to U.S. tax compliance. The provisions are detailed. But, the bottom line is that the issuance and renewal of U.S. passports is now tied to U.S. tax compliance. I suspect that (at least initially) this will affect few people. You should read the complete article (courtesy of ACA). Note the following comments from lawyer Charles Bruce. Continue reading

Life is full of firsts including your first FBAR

There are many firsts in life. These include graduations, weddings, and more.

Anecdotal evidence suggests that few U.S. citizens living outside the U.S. had ever heard of Mr. FBAR (until the mainstream media began educating people). One can’t file, what one has never heard of. That was until recently. Since the fall of 2011, the mainstream media has been educating U.S. citizens about U.S. tax compliance.

Tax and FBAR compliance is a priority for most U.S. citizens living outside the United States. The IRS has still NOT released the “compliance guidelines” that were promised when OVDI was reactivated in January of 2012. This is a major problem. By not coming forward with the promised guidelines, the IRS has become an obstacle to tax compliance. We are well into  tax season. In any case, …

One of your most important firsts will be your first FBAR. You spent lots of time preparing for your other “firsts”. This “first” should be no different. Part of your preparation should be how to file those FBARs. Continue reading

IRS lacks authority to impose tax on tax by regulating tax preparers – Lawsuit alleges

The Two Seasons: Tax and Non-Tax

It used to be that at least in theory there were four seasons. But, now in practice, there are only two seasons: “Tax Season” and “Non-Tax Season”. “Non-Tax Season” is getting shorter and shorter.

Warmer air usually means that it’s tax season. HR Block is one of the largest tax preparation service companies in both the U.S. and Canada. I see the ads on the subways “$59 for a basic return”, “$tudent tax returns $29”. The also give tax advice to U.S. citizens in Canada suggesting that they must enter “VDI” (voluntary disclosure initiative), and more … This particular bit of horrible, misleading and dangerous advice from HR Block, was the subject of numerous comments on the Isaac Brock Society blog.

 

 

 

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The Isaac Brock Society

Help! I would like a second opinion on what this page on the HR Block Canada site is really saying. It appears to me that they are either directly saying (or at least implying) that U.S. citizens in Canada MUST enter the Voluntary Disclosure Initiative.  To me this sounds as though they are saying that people must enter the OVDI program that was reactivated in January 2012. VDI is certainly different from a general requirement to file U.S. tax returns. The page URL is here (it states a 2012 publication date):

http://www.hrblock.ca/canada-irs.asp

What follows is an excerpt from the page. (You may want to read it all.) Am I misreading this? Am I misinterpreting this? How would a U.S. citizen in Canada interpret this? Help! At the very least I think this is highly misleading.  I have highlighted certain parts. Your thoughts?

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Collective psychotherapy – U.S. citizens outside U.S. – Not what they take from you, it’s what they leave you with

The Wisdom of Moe Levine Moe Levine (not that I ever met him) was considered to be one of America’s greatest trial lawyers. Although he died in 1974, his wisdom lives on his book (appropriate called) “Moe Levine on Trial Advocacy“. He (legend has it) was a master at delivering the closing statement in his jury trials. When arguing for a severely injured plaintiff he (according to the commentators of his time) would tell the jury (referring to a badly injured client):

“It’s not what you take from them it’s what you leave them with.” Continue reading