American Citizens Abroad (ACA) Members and Supporters Submit Record Number of Comments to Ways & Means Committee on Tax Reform

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American Citizens Abroad (ACA), a citizens' advocacy group of U.S. citizens living abroad, is proud that the overwhelming majority of comments, sent by Americans overseas to the Ways & Means Committee on the subject of international tax, supported the ACA Residence-Based Taxation proposal. This Residence-Based Taxation would replace the current system of citizenship-based taxation, and it would enable Americans overseas to work efficiently abroad and create jobs in the U.S.

"The overwhelming majority of comments on tax reform which were sent to the Ways & Means Committee by Americans overseas supported ACA's Residence-Based Taxation Proposal," said ACA Executive Director MaryLouise Serrato.

In March, the House Ways & Means Committee called for comments from citizens on the subject of tax reform, with a deadline for submissions of April 15th. American Citizens Abroad (ACA) issued a call to action, asking members and supporters to write to the committee’s Tax Reform Working Groups requesting a change to the tax treatment of Americans living and working overseas. ACA is a citizens’ advocacy group representing the four to seven million U.S. citizens living outside of the United States.

ACA is proud to announce that this call to action was highly successful. “Of all the comments on tax reform sent to the committee’s international tax working group by Americans overseas, the overwhelming majority mentioned and recommended ACA’s proposal for Residence-Based Taxation (RBT),” explained MaryLouise Serrato, Executive Director of ACA. See all comments here: http://waysandmeans.house.gov/taxreform/workinggroups.htm.

In its RBT proposal (http://americansabroad.org/issues/taxation/alternative-citizenship-based-taxation/), ACA has calculated that a residence-based system would be either tax-neutral or would possibly bring in more tax revenue than the current system of Citizenship-Based Taxation (CBT). The United States is the only major country in the world which taxes its citizens (and green card holders), no matter where they live. ACA believes that basing U.S. taxation on residence rather than on citizenship would help keep overseas Americans competitive, allowing them to create jobs for companies and factories state-side through increased exports. “After this outpouring of comments from overseas, the International Tax Reform Working Group of the Ways & Means Committee can no longer ignore the major tax issues raised by this important group of American citizens,” added Jackie Bugnion, member of the ACA Executive Committee.

ACA is pleased that Washington legislators and media are taking note of the RBT proposal. In a recent article published in the Congressional newspaper "The Hill" (http://thehill.com/business-a-lobbying/293187-americans-living-abroad-plead-for-relief-from-irs), Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) noted that although his group is primarily focused on international corporate tax, they "don't want to be in a situation where we're forcing companies to hire foreign nationals because it is not cost-effective for Americans to take those jobs."

In the submitted comments, and in addition to expressing strong support for RBT, many Americans overseas related their own personal hardship cases in which individuals overseas have been denied jobs and refused basic banking services like current accounts and mortgages, simply because of their U.S. nationality and the highly negative U.S. system of Citizenship-Based Taxation.

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MaryLouise Serrato

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