Monthly Archives: September 2012

The Lives of Others – The true significance of Bradley Birkenfeld

What is  the relationship between a bank and a customer?

Although Bradley Birkenfeld never became famous as a banker,  he was a banker.

In most cases banks do NOT owe a fiduciary relationship to their customers.   The duty owed by a banker  to a customer now  depends on the nature of the relationship. Some people are mere  customers or creditors of banks. Those  who have “private banking relationships” may be entitled to a higher standard of care. There are clear cases where a bank does owe a fiduciary duty to a client.  A recent article  in the Ottawa Law  Review suggests  that the nature of the relationship will  now be determined  by the specific facts.  When a bank is giving investment advice, the easier  it is to establish a fiduciary relationship.

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FATCA – The worldwide end of Bank Secrecy? The Swiss CFA Society 2012 debate June 27th, 2012 – Geneva

This is a very interesting video of a FATCA discussion in Switzerland in June of 2012.

Dick Harvey – AKA – “Mr. FATCA” participated in the this discussion/debate. His comments on the experience are interesting and are referenced in an earlier post – where I noted that Obama has closed dialogue with U.S. citizens abroad. The relevant part of this post was: Continue reading

Queen’s University law professor discusses IRS attack on U.S. citizens in Canada

Introducing Queen’s Law Professor Arthur Cockfield:

Announcement from Queen’s University – August 30, 2012:

Then: September 2011:

Now: September 2012:

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Biden opposes territorial taxation in convention speech – should make this an election issue!

The discussion of “territorial tax” begins at about the 27 minute mark.

Biden: It’s called a territorial tax, which the experts have looked at, and they acknowledge it will create 800,000 new jobs — all of them overseas, all of them.

I couldn’t believe my ears. There he was, doing the “warm up” speech to introduce Obama. In a stunning display of ignorance, Joe Biden:

1. Ridiculed the idea of “territorial taxation” and;

2. Suggested that “territorial taxation” will do nothing but create jobs offshore.

A number of people took note of Biden’s opposition to territorial tax.

This is great news! It increases the chances that “territorial taxation” will be an issue in the campaign. Furthermore, it opens the door to it becoming a topic in the one and only “vice presidential” debate. Paul Ryan supports “territorial taxation”.

In other words Biden is affirming that it is sound policy for the U.S. to tax the profits that U.S. companies earn overseas. It’s as though he believes that U.S. companies are the property of the U.S. government. But, why not? U.S. citizens (according to the U.S.) are the property of the U.S. government. Certainly, as go U.S. companies, so go U.S. citizens.

In an earlier post I argued that U.S. taxation of profits earned outside the U.S. (“worldwide taxation”), causes severe economic damage to the U.S.  The U.S. has by far the highest corporate taxes in the world. By far! “Worldwide taxation” creates disincentives to companies bringing their profits back to the U.S. (“repatriating” profits) Imagine if all of this money could be brought back to the U.S. and put to good economic use. Who knows, maybe the government would be encouraged to do so much spending. But, nobody explains this better than Dan Mitchell.

The Obama Biden ticket is seriously out of touch with economic reality!

Watch the Biden video in its entirety. If you are like me, you won’t believe what you are seeing!

Obama’s Democrats don’t want dialogue about Obama’s treatment of US citizens abroad – Reddit Anyone?

Is the U.S. a leader in international justice? There was a time …

“An American President always, always, always stands up for the freedom and justice of all people.” – Senator John McCain – August 29, 2012 – Republican National Convention – 13:00 minute mark of video

So, said John McCain in his speech at the GOP convention on August 29, 2012. Four years ago, John McCain was the Republican candidate for President of the United States. Would things have been different for Americans abroad if McCain had been elected? Would we have had FATCA? Would we have had an administration that would have deemed anybody with a non-U.S. bank account to be a tax cheat? Would US. citizens abroad, and US Green Card holders residing in the US, have been subjected to the FBAR Fundraiser? We don’t know for sure. Furthermore, we don’t know whether there would be a change in policy under a possible Romney administration. Continue reading

New Filing Compliance Procedures for Non-Resident U.S. Taxpayers – Effective September 1, 2012

Note: There is an updated version of this crossposted to the Isaac Brock Society.

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