David A. Altro is a frequent contributor to Paul Delean’s business column in the Montreal Gazette. Click here to view the article online or scroll down to read David’s answer to the third question. Read the rest of this entry »
Being an American citizen is, for many around the world, a highly sought after position. Some might call it a gift, though I doubt the United States IRS would classify it that way. In fact, for the IRS, American citizenship is only one half of the bargain. At least, this appears to be the mindset behind how the United States has structured its income tax laws. Unfortunately, American citizens are required to file a U.S. income tax return on all worldwide income and a Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts Reporting (FBAR), regardless of where in the world they reside.
Up until recently, most U.S. citizens residing outside of the United States were unaware of this responsibility. Though this responsibility has always existed, the IRS did not take an aggressive stance on it until 2011. Since then it has issued warnings that citizens found to be out of compliance with their income tax returns and FBAR may be subject to both civil and criminal penalties, plus interest on any taxes due. Read the rest of this entry »