Since 2009, more than 55,800 US taxpayers have used the US’s offshore voluntary disclosure programme (OVDP) to resolve their tax obligations, paying more than $9.9bn in taxes, interest and penalties, according to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).
Despite the additional revenue stream, the Repubican National Convention wants to repeal Fatca, which will target US citizens who choose to continue hiding their offshore assets.
The Republican Platform 2016 states that Fatca and the Foreign Bank and Asset Reporting (Fbar) requirements “result in the government’s warrantless seizure of personal financial information without reasonable suspicion or probably cause”.
It states: “Americans overseas should enjoy the same rights as Americans residing in the United States, whose private financial information is not subject to disclosure to the government except as to interest earned.
“The requirement for all banks around the world to provide detailed information to the IRS about American account holders outside the United Sates has resulted in banks refusing service to them.
“Thus, Fatca not only allows ‘unreasonable search and seizures’ but also threatens the ability of overseas Americans to lead normal live.”
The platform, which is undated but still available online, states: “We call for its repeal and for a change to residency-based taxation for US citizens overseas.”
The 66-page document was paid for by the Committee on Arrangement for the 2016 Republican National Convention.
However, it explicitly states that the platform is not authorised by any candidate or candidate’s committee.
The document bears the signatures of Republican policy committee chair senator John Barrasso, and RNC co-chairs governor Mary Fallin and representative Virginia Foxx.
Trump quiet on Fatca
Neither Trump nor Hillary Clinton spent much energy discussing US expats and the impact of Fatca during the election. Therefore, it is not clear at this stage if Trump will heed the call from the party he now represents and repeal the legislation.
According to independent tax analysis organisation Tax Policy Center, Trump’s economic strategy would “reduce federal receipts by $9.5trn between 2016 and 2026”.
Taking into account accruing interest, the Tax Policy Center expects that $11.2trn would be added to the US national debt by 2026, rising to $34.1trn by 2036.