An upcoming report from the Treasury Department will show that 5,411 Americans renounced their citizenship in 2016.
The number of expatriated individuals in 2016 is 26% higher than in 2015, which saw 4,279 individuals renounce their citizenship. It’s also 58% higher this year than in 2014 (3,415 in total renounced).
The analytical study of the list of people who expatriated last year was conducted by international tax attorney Andrew Mitchel. For the last nine years, since 2008, Mitchel has been cataloging Americans and green-card holders with legal residency who have rejected their U.S. citizenship.
Mitchel pinpoints tax evasion and citizens avoiding taxes by traveling abroad as main factors for Americans renouncing their status.
In a statement to The Daily Caller, Mitchel explains the purpose of the 2010 Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act and how Americans are finding loopholes to avoid being confronted by the IRS:
“Once they come to terms with the fact that the IRS may now catch them if they don’t file, and realize how large the penalties can be for not filing, they get caught up with their necessary U.S. tax filings. They usually use one of the various voluntary disclosure programs that the IRS has. Once they are caught up, the renounce their citizenship and get out of the U.S. tax system.”
Mitchel also believes expatriation rates may expedite under President Trump, citing that U.S. taxes are based on birthright citizenship rather than simply residency. “I believe that President Trump is against U.S. ‘birthright’ citizenship,” Mitchel said.
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