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Number Of Americans Who Renounced Citizenship Increased 14% Last Year

A record number of Americans no longer want to be citizens of their own country.

According to CNN, the amount of Americans who gave up their passports in 2014 was 14 percent higher than the previous year, and 15 times higher than 2008.

The primary reason for the massive renunciation of citizenship?

Taxes.

Being a US citizen means getting taxed on income regardless of where you live.

And if you don’t live or work in the US, experts say, the paperwork is so vast the only accountants willing to take care of it can charge as much as $1,000 for their services.

Dodging such taxes isn’t so easy thanks to the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA), which forces American citizens living outside the country to report foreign assets and banks to report any foreign accounts held by such individuals.

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American citizens living outside the country are also required to report any foreign bank account amounting to $10,000 or more, CNN reports.

Foreign banks can be penalized if they don’t report accounts held by American citizens, which is why some of them are simply refusing to take on American clients.

These tax cheats won’t go unpunished, however, as it is against the law to renounce US citizenship solely to evade taxes, and renouncing citizenship doesn’t shield people from back taxes later on.

But perhaps the biggest takeaway from last year’s numbers: The amount of people trying to give up US passports is getting closer and closer to the amount trying to obtain them.

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Sean Levinson

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Sean Levinson is a Senior News Writer for Elite Daily, first joining as an editor in fall 2012. He was born in Long Island and received a Bachelor's in English at SUNY New Paltz. Sean writes about stuff that matters and sometimes politics.
Sean Levinson is a Senior News Writer for Elite Daily, first joining as an editor in fall 2012. He was born in Long Island and received a Bachelor's in English at SUNY New Paltz. Sean writes about stuff that matters and sometimes politics.

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