Thursday, July 9, 2015

Senate Finance International Tax Bipartisan Tax Working Group Report on CBT, FATCA & FBAR (7/9/15)

The International Tax Bipartisan Tax Working Group Report has been released.  A link to the report is here.  That Working Group is comprised of members of the U.S.  Senate Committee on Finance, the Senate tax writing committee.

The report discusses current taxation and proposals and considerations for reform.  Perhaps most interestingly for many readers of this blog, the last item in the report (on pp. 80 & 81 of 81 pages total) is:
F. Overseas Americans 
According to working group submissions, there are currently 7.6 million American citizens living outside of the United States. Of the 347 submissions made to the international working group, nearly three-quarters dealt with the international taxation of individuals, mainly focusing on citizenship-based taxation, the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA), and the Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts (FBAR). While the co-chairs were not able to produce a comprehensive plan to overhaul the  taxation of individual Americans living overseas within the time-constraints placed on the working group, the co-chairs urge the Chairman and Ranking Member to carefully consider the concerns articulated in the submissions moving forward.
I would not even speculate what, if anything, this means in the real world.  It is apparent that Congress is aware of the issues of concern.  I would say, however, that I am a bit surprised that, of 7.6 millions American citizens abroad, only 347 made submissions.  Congress does listen, but usually only after the problem has risen to crisis level.  (Sort of a variation of the quote: "Americans Will Always Do the Right Thing — After Exhausting All the Alternatives."  See Quote Investigator, here)  I infer that the Working Committee is willing to state that these concerns need to be considered but is not yet willing to say there is a crisis.

Thanks to USTax, a regular commenter on the blog, for drawing my attention to this item.  His comment is here.

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