Monthly Archives: February 2014

Thoughts on selecting a U.S. Tax Preparer – Suitability vs. cost

Tis the season (or almost) for those who plan to file U.S. Tax returns. Some of you have a tax preparer and some do not. U.S. Tax Prep is a site that is devoted to the problem of finding a competent and reasonable priced (is it possible to find both those things in one person) preparer. Those who either don’t have a preparer or aren’t happy with their preparer might start there.
Here are some thoughts:
If you have a Chevrolet situation you don’t want a Cadillac preparer. With few exceptions, lawyers should not be used as tax preparers. They are simply too expensive. Here are parts of two emails that I have received in the last two days.
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Fidelity joins MacKenzie to make ownership of #PFIC mutual funds more tolerable for Canadians

A Canadian received a message from his financial adviser that included:
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Good report from @NPRnews explaining #FATCA and #Americansabroad

Significant Quotes:
London Lawyer: “If you compare it to “romance” the U.S. is like fatal attraction, once they have got you, they will never let you go. You have to renounce your citizenship or you have to die.
Government Officials off the record: “Nobody in Congress represents overseas Americans.”
Government Officials off the record: “It might be worth it lose a few thousand American citizens to catch some tax cheats.

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Does the stripping of Canadian citizenship from dual citizens violate Canada's rights charter?

The article includes:

The proposed changes come along with higher maximum fines and jail terms for citizenship fraud, as well as new options to – through the courts – strip citizenship from dual citizens convicted of certain serious crimes, such as terrorism. Many of the provisions are retroactive, leaving lawyers to wonder whether they’ll affect past high-profile cases, such as those in the “Toronto 18” terrorist plot.
But “several aspects” of the citizenship-stripping provisions wouldn’t likely survive a constitutional challenge, said Audrey Macklin, chair of Human Rights Law at the University of Toronto, who once served on the Immigration and Refugee Board. Other lawyers agreed.

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Debate over whether US government should be able to drone American citizens

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