Expatriation Explained

The IRS has recently introduced a new program designed to streamline the process for US citizens who have relinquished their citizenship (or will soon) to get relief from tax-related obligations. This new program was first introduced on September 6th, 2019 and is known as “The Relief Procedures for Certain Former Citizens.” While certainly not for everyone, those who have (or would be willing to) relinquish their US citizenship may find that this new program offers some significant advantages. This blog post will provide a high-level overview of the program. Before making any decisions, it is appropriate to speak with an attorney who can go over the specific legal implications this program would have on you.

Who Is Eligible?

In order to participate in this program, one must meet all of the following requirements:

  • Your US citizenship must have been relinquished after March 10th, 2010.
  • You must have no filing history as a resident or US citizen.
  • Your annual income must not have exceeded the threshold established in IRC 877(a)(2)(A) in the last five years prior to relinquishing citizenship.
  • You must have a net worth below $2 Million.
  • Your total tax liability must be less than $25,000 for the past five years.
  • You must agree to submit federal tax returns for the prior six years.

Resolving Tax Liabilities Owed to the IRS

This program is designed specifically to help expatriated individuals to resolve potential IRS tax issues without having to pay their liabilities. Even if you find that you owe back taxes, this program might be a way to wipe them out without any payments necessary. If you did have money withheld and sent to the IRS during the period covered by this program, that money will not be considered (i.e., you won’t get it back).

Is a Social Security Number Required?

This program was made with those who don’t have an SSN in mind as this is a common situation for those who have lived outside the country for many years. You can still participate in this program and will simply leave the boxes for SSN blank. If you do have an ITIN, that should be included with the forms when submitting to this program.

Is the Program Right for Me?

This is a difficult question to answer and will depend on many personal factors. One should not, however, rush into using this program as it will have significant and permanent implications on your life and your legal rights. If you would like to learn more about this program and see if it is right for you, please contact us to schedule a consultation and discuss your unique situation.

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Weisberg Kainen Mark, PL

As experienced trial lawyers with a passion for justice, our firm provides clients with compelling advocacy, attorney availability, and creative solutions to your tax or criminal law matters.

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