FATCA: Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act

What is FATCA for Expats?

FATCA is the 2010 Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act, a law that affects expats in two ways. Firstly, it compels all foreign banks and investment firms to report their American account holders to the IRS or pay a tax when they trade in US markets.


FATCA also requires expats with over $200,000 in foreign financial assets to report them each year by filing form 8938 when they file their federal tax return. You can find information and news relating to FATCA updates in the articles below.

FATCA Finally Came Into Effect his month

fatca banks

FATCA, the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act, was a law passed in 2010 as part of a federal post-2008 financial crisis drive to crack down on tax cheats hiding their money abroad. An unintended consequence though has been the government both snooping on and increasing the tax burden on the estimated 9 million ordinary Americans […]

US Senator’s FATCA Challenge Thrown Out By Judge

fatca challenge

(The following article was first published over at iexpats.com). A judge has thrown out a case from a US senator leading a campaign against the controversial Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA). Senator Rand Paul and several other campaigners filed suits against government departments in a bid to derail the law that demands foreign banks […]

Record Numbers of Americans are Renouncing US Citizenship

americans renouncing citizenship

Every three months, the state department publishes how many people renounced their citizenship in that quarter. The most recent figure is 1426, which is a new record. To put that into context, in 2008, just 235 people renounced their US citizenship in the whole year. The number has been steadily rising since, with last year […]

A Lesson in the Law of Unintended Consequences

expat tax

The following is an excerpt from ‘An American Tax Nightmare’, published in the New York Times. No one likes tax cheats. They should be pursued and punished wherever they are hiding. But recent efforts by the United States Congress to capture tax revenues on unreported revenues and assets held in foreign accounts are having disastrous […]

US Expats Could Lose Their Passports for Overdue Taxes

expats lose passports

Hidden inside a highway funding bill that Congress is expected to pass later this month, is a measure that will give the State Department the ability to revoke the passports (or deny their renewal) of people who are behind on their taxes, the Wall Street Journal recently reported. The new law will affect people who […]

What Information is the IRS Collecting About Expats?

Following recent disclosure that the IRS will soon have the ability to revoke passports of US citizens who owe more than $50,000 of back taxes, fines and interest, we thought it was an opportune moment to take a look at what information the IRS is collecting on Americans living abroad. Historically, the IRS relied on […]

How to Respond when Foreign Banks Ask For Your U.S. Taxpayer ID?

expat bank taxpayer id

Currently, an estimated nine million Americans are living abroad. The majority have accounts at foreign banks, and many of them are now receiving letters from their banks asking for their US tax identification numbers. Some are also asking their American clients to certify that they are current with their US tax filings.   FATCA, the […]