Uncle Sam Wants … Who? A Global Perspective on Citizenship Taxation

32 Pages Posted: 18 Jan 2016  

Allison Christians

McGill University - Faculty of Law

Date Written: January 18, 2016


Across the globe, banks are flagging accounts with indicia indicating their owners may be "US Persons", making it possible for the United States to enforce its taxation of nonresident citizens extraterritorially for the first time in history. The indicia method constitutes a mining expedition for US citizens carried out by foreign banks and governments. Establishing a tax jurisdiction in this manner is unprecedented and has significant practical and normative consequences. In the case of so-called "accidental Americans", it violates one of the most fundamental and universally-acknowledged tenets of taxpayer rights, namely, the right to be informed about what the law requires. Third party indicia-searching should be universally rejected as a means of identifying a taxpayer population. Instead, the United States itself is responsible for cataloging, informing, and educating its global population of taxpayers. Those who don't belong in the system should be allowed to opt out without cost.

Keywords: FATCA, citizenship, taxpayer rights, taxation, tax policy, administration, global governance, international relations

JEL Classification: H11, H21, H87, F02, F50, F53, F59, Z13, E63, H2, K33, K34, N40, P45

Suggested Citation

Christians, Allison, Uncle Sam Wants … Who? A Global Perspective on Citizenship Taxation (January 18, 2016). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2717367 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2717367

Allison Christians (Contact Author)

McGill University - Faculty of Law ( email )

1001 Sherbrooke St. W
Montreal, Quebec H3A 1G5

Paper statistics

Abstract Views