Chair Taxation Task Force, DAUK DPCA Rep

  • published TTF To Visit Washington DC Next Week in Tax Blog 2022-06-02 05:59:14 -0400

    TTF To Visit Washington DC Next Week

    The Democrats Abroad Taxation Task Force will be meeting with Congressional Leaders in Washington DC next week to discuss tax advocacy priorities including but not limited to residency based taxation, simplified filing, FATCA reform, and GILTI.

    The team is currently very busy confirming meetings and preparing for the visit.

    Many offices are not doing in-person meetings due to COVID, and so virtual meetings are being scheduled for the week of June 13.

    A summary of progress made during this concentrated effort of tax advocacy will be shared later in June.

     

     


  • Statement from the Democrats Abroad Taxation Task Force on the DA Global meeting on May 21-22

    Democrats Abroad hosted its annual global meeting on May 21-22. On the agenda, Saturday was allocated for presentations focused on mobilizing the overseas vote in this critical midterm election year, while Sunday's agenda focused on internal business.

    3 hours of the Sunday internal business agenda included voting on resolutions and charter amendments.

    The DA charter amendments are updates and changes made to the document that outlines the rules that DA follows as an organization. There were 8 on the agenda to be voted on.

    DA resolutions are broadly, statements made regarding policy and positions where DA stands as an organization. There were 11 on the agenda to be voted on.

    On Sunday, 5 non-controversial resolutions were voted on as a package as the first agenda item in the 3 hour period, in an attempt to save time. All 5 of these resolutions passed.

    The remaining amount of time on Sunday was spent discussing one particular resolution to create a Special Committee on FEC compliance for Democrats Abroad. This resolution was deemed controversial, hence why so much time was taken to discuss and vote on this particular resolution. The FATCA repeal resolution was on the agenda to be discussed and voted on after the FEC resolution.

    With 1 hour remaining, a motion was made to extend the meeting by 2 hours, but the motion failed. The DPCA accomplished voting on and passing the FEC resolution. Given that time was not extended, the remaining resolutions and none of the Charter Amendments were voted on during the meeting this year.

    It is a grave disappointment that the DPCA voting body did not have an opportunity to debate or vote on updating it's position on FATCA. Given the information that has come to light over recent months, it is clear that at the very least a discussion on FATCA is needed to review DA's current position of FATCA reform.

    The TTF plans to submit the resolution at the next global meeting, which currently does not have a date set.

    For those DA members that are disappointed that DA did not vote on the FATCA resolution last weekend you can email [email protected] and request that your email is forwarded to:

    • Your Country Chair
    • Your Country DPCA Representatives
    • Your Regional Vice Chair
    • The DA Global Executive Committee

  • Statement from the Democrats Abroad Taxation Task Force on the Congressional American Abroad Caucus Roundtable Discussion on May 23

    Democrats Abroad is pleased to have spoken as experts at the first ever Congressional American Abroad Caucus Roundtable Discussion on May 23. Over 30 House Members and Congressional staff were in attendance.

    The meeting was focused on discussing American abroad tax and financial access issues. Members present at the discussion include Americans Abroad Caucus Chairwoman  Carolyn Maloney (NY-12), Co-Chair Dina Titus (NV-8), and Congressman Don Beyer (VA-8), who co-lead legislation to better serve Americans living abroad alongside of Caucus Co-Chair María Elvira Salazar (FL-27).

    The meeting was closed to the public to ensure that Congressional leaders could speak openly about how best to resolve the tax and financial access problems and issues that Americans abroad.

    Actions coming out of the meeting included:

    The meeting was a great success in that the Congressional American Abroad Caucus had never hosted a Roundtable Discussion, and it is the Taxation Task Force's hope that there will be more Congressional Roundtable discussions in the American Abroad Caucus in the future to provide a useful and productive forum for Congressional leaders to voice their concerns and generate productive actions to improve the lives for Americans abroad.


  • *Tiny Action* Ask your House Rep to attend upcoming American Abroad Meeting!

    The American Abroad Caucus will be hosting a meeting on Americans abroad tax and financial access issues on May 23rd, we'd like your help to get as many House reps to attend this meeting as possible. Unfortunately, it's not a public meeting, but it's a great opportunity to educate Congress on Americans abroad tax issues, and will get us one step closer to passing legislation that will provide the urgent relief we all need.

    This action will only take *20 minutes* and will greatly help us advance our advocacy goals!

     

    Read more

  • *Tiny Action* Add your signature in support of the FATCA Repeal Resolution

    On Sunday, May 22nd, the Democrats Abroad voting body (known as the DPCA or Democratic Party Committee Abroad) will meet to vote on the FATCA Repeal resolution that the Taxation Task Force put forward to change Democrats Abroad policy. We are asking all DA members to please add your signature in support of the resolution. It takes only 1 minute.

    Click here to add your signature to support the FATCA repeal resolution.

     

    Read more

  • Which Tax Strategy is Best for You? Webinar Recording

    Here is the recording of the webinar we hosted called Which tax strategy is best for you? This webinar talked about the Foreign Tax Credit versus the Foreign Earned Income Exclusion.

    This webinar was free to attend, but please consider donating to help us put on more events like this. The suggested donation for this event is $10. Click here to donate.

    Click here to download the slides from the presentation

     

    What else can you do?

    1. Register to vote in US elections at votefromabroad.org
    2. Join Democrats Abroad – it’s free! Go to democratsabroad.org to register today
    3. Donate to help us reach more Americans abroad! democratsabroad.org/donate_ttf
    4. Sign up for our tax mailing list at democratsabroad.org/taxation
    5. Volunteer for Democrats Abroad Taxation Task Force democratsabroad.org/ttf_volunteer

  • Taxation Task Force Submission for House Financial Services Committee Hearing on April 28

    Below is a copy of the submission the Democrats Abroad Global Taxation Task Force submitted to the House Financial Services Committee in advance of the hearing on Oversight of the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network taking place on April 28 at 10am EDT. The TTF strongly encourages Americans abroad to submit their own statement for the record.

    Click here to download a pdf of DA's submission to the House Financial Services Committee in full.

     

    Read more

  • Taxation Task Force Resolution to Update FATCA Policy from "Reform" to "Repeal"

    The Democrats Abroad Taxation Task Force Steering Committee today voted in support of submitting a resolution to update the Democrats Abroad FATCA policy from "reform" to "repeal".

    What does this mean?
    Since FATCA was implemented, Democrats Abroad has advocated on behalf of Americans abroad given the breath of damage it has caused to our lives. It was through Democrats Abroad advocacy work that Rep. Carolyn Maloney (NY-12) introduced H.R.5799 - Overseas Americans Financial Access Act (aka the FATCA Same Country Exception Bill).

    The main reasons we have decided to submit this resolution at this time are:
    • The information that has come to light is the following from the recently released TIGTA government report from the US Department of Treasury which said: “When the law was passed in March 2010, the Congressional Joint Committee on Taxation estimated that revenue from FATCA would be $8.7 billion from FYs 2010 to 2020. To date, the IRS has been unable to quantify revenue generated from FATCA compliance activity beyond the $14 million in revenue from penalties unrelated to the campaigns, despite spending over $574 million on implementation and establishing two campaigns that have sent out 847 letters to taxpayers.” This data unequivocally and with no doubt demonstrates that FATCA has failed to perform the purpose it was intended for which was to reduce tax evasion and money laundering.
    • DA has over a decade of testimonials, surveys, and data from DA members and Americans abroad that confirms the material harm that FATCA has caused - in the most extreme circumstances reports of divorce from a non-US spouse and suicide. We have always and will continue to demonstrate leadership on issues that impact Americans abroad, submitting a resolution demonstrates this leadership.
    • The deadline to submit a resolution in order to change DA policy is this coming Thursday, April 21 and so steps we are taking are to meet this deadline.

    When will it officially become Democrats Abroad policy?

    There is no guarantee it will become Democrats Abroad policy at this time. A number of steps need to be taken in order for it to become official DA policy. This Thursday is the deadline to submit resolutions for consideration at the DA annual global meeting that will take place May 21-22 online. Once the resolution is submitted, it is subject to changes based on feedback from DPCA reps and the Resolutions Committee. If the resolution is selected for the agenda at the global meeting, a certain amount of time will be allotted for debate and a vote will take place. Only DPCA reps are able to vote at this meeting, but any DA member can attend and observe.

    What is a DPCA rep?

    DPCA stands for the Democratic Party Committee Abroad. It is the acronym for the official name of Democrats Abroad. Every DA Country Committee has a certain number of DPCA reps proportionate to the number of DA members in that country. DA holds a meeting once a year called the global meeting, where resolutions are submitted to update DA policy positions. The meeting this year takes place on May 21-22.

    How can I help?

    1. Sign your name in support of the resolution (deadline is this Wednesday) by clicking here. (you must be a Democrats Abroad member to add your name. You can easily join for free by signing up here).
    2. Share the link with friends and family to ask they add their name in support of the resolution, here's the link to share: https://forms.gle/38WihYb54WcjFNyf6
    3. Ask your DPCA voting representatives to co-sponsor the resolution in the country you live in. You can find a list of your DPCA voting reps by going to the DA country page on this website and clicking on the leadership list on the right-hand side of the page. The more co-sponsors we have, the higher the chance of it passing.

    REMINDER: If you've not taken the 2022 Democrats Abroad Tax Survey of Americans Abroad yet, there's still time! Go here to take the survey: https://demsabroad.typeform.com/taxsurvey Deadline is April 30. For more information about the survey click here.



  • 2022 Tax Survey of Americans Abroad Has Launched!

    We are proud to announce that today, the Democrats Abroad 2022 Tax Survey of Americans abroad has launched!

    Click here to take the survey now

    Please share the survey link with all your American friends and family living abroad, and ask them to share it with people they know too. We need as many people as possible participating in the survey. You do not have to be a Democrats Abroad member to participate. Survey closes April 30th.

    For more information go to the survey info page here or read the survey FAQs here.

    Listen to the latest episode of the Democrats Abroad Podcast about the survey here.

     

     

     


  • published Survey FAQs in survey 2022-04-03 11:20:22 -0400

    Survey FAQs

    Tax Survey 2022

    Frequently Asked Questions

     

    How do I take the survey?

    Go here to take the survey: https://demsabroad.typeform.com/taxsurvey


    Who can take the survey?

    Any U.S. citizen who considers their primary residence outside of the United States.


    How long does it take to complete the survey?

    The survey will take you approximately 25-30 minutes to complete. You may or may not be asked to complete all of the sections depending on your answers and your personal circumstances. The survey could be shorter or longer, depending on your answers as you make your way through the survey.

    Can I share the survey with a friend or family member?

    Yes! Please share the survey with any friend or family member who is an American living outside the U.S.


    What is in the survey?

    The survey is split up into the following sections:

    1. How you acquired U.S. citizenship
    2. Taxes and voting
    3. Why you live outside the U.S.
    4. Banking
    5. Filing & reporting U.S. taxes
    6. Taxes
    7. Relationships
    8. Children
    9. Employment
    10. Retirement
    11. Self-Employment


    Can I start the survey and return to it later?

    Yes, you have the option to take a break from the survey and return to it later, up to 15 days later as long as you use the same web browser. If you do take a break, keep in mind that the survey will start over, but it will remember your answers.


    Can I submit a partial survey?

    No, the survey must be completed in order for your responses to be submitted. Partially completed surveys will not be received.

    What will happen with the survey responses?

    The survey results will be analyzed and the results will be shared on the Democrats Abroad website, with the Congressional American Abroad Caucus, and Members of Congress to raise awareness of the problems Americans abroad face. The ultimate goal is to compel Congress to take urgent action to pass legislation to provide relief for the 9 million Americans living abroad.

    Is the survey anonymous?

    Yes, the survey is anonymous. In our last survey we had just under 10,000 responses and we expect a similar level of responses this time around. The only identifying information that will be used in the final report will be by identifying the state you last lived in with your country of residence (eg. American abroad from Texas living in Germany).


    What have you done about data privacy?

    As a global organization, Democrats Abroad adheres to applicable data privacy laws. This is an anonymous survey, we will not ask you for your email address, name, or any other uniquely identifiable information. We are not tracking your IP address and we will do our best to make sure your answers can't be uniquely identified in the final report. The only identifying information that will be used in the final report will be by identifying the state you last lived in with your country of residence (eg. American abroad from Texas living in Germany). If you are not comfortable with anything you submit in the survey being used based on your zip code and country of residence, we advise that you at least share your zip code for where you last lived in the U.S. so we can include your data in our constituent level data set that will be shared with your Members of Congress. To be clear, the only reason we ask for the zip code of your last residence in the U.S. is so we can include your data in our constituent level data set that will be shared with your Members of Congress.

    Why another global survey?

    Our last survey we conducted in 2019. It's been a few years and things have changed or had an impact like the pandemic. We need updated research to share with the Congressional American Abroad Caucus and Members of Congress to raise awareness of the problems Americans abroad face. Democrats Abroad has a history of producing leading research in the area of tax discrimination faced by Americans abroad. We will use the data collected from the survey to help shape our advocacy priorities along with our Congressional and grassroots outreach strategy. Ultimately, we aim to use the data to compel Congress to take urgent action to pass legislation to provide tax and financial access relief for Americans abroad. By participating in this survey, you are helping Democrats Abroad better understand Americans abroad and develop tools to lobby U.S. Congress to enact tax reforms that support U.S. citizens living outside the U.S.


  • published The Taxation Task Force 5 Step Plan in Tax Blog 2022-04-01 07:50:08 -0400

    2022 Taxation Task Force Advocacy Plan

    The new Taxation Task Force has been hard at work behind the scenes for the last 3 months, and we're ready to share our plans for the rest of the year.

    We have developed a 5 step plan that is aimed at helping us get legislative results for Americans abroad sooner rather than later.

    Read more

  • Get Ready! 2022 Tax Survey Launches In 1 Week

    Get ready to tell us all about what you think about taxes and banking while living abroad. The Democrats Abroad tax survey launches on April 5th. We are encouraging all Americans abroad to complete the survey, to help us capture an up to date picture on what filing taxes from abroad looks like and how FATCA is impacting Americans abroad ability to bank.


    About The Survey

    The survey will take you approximately 25-30 minutes to complete. The survey is split up into the following sections:

    1. How you acquired U.S. citizenship
    2. Taxes and voting
    3. Why you live outside the U.S.
    4. Banking
    5. Filing & reporting U.S. taxes
    6. Taxes
    7. Relationships
    8. Children
    9. Employment
    10. Retirement
    11. Self-Employment

    You may or may not be asked to complete all of the sections depending on your answers and your personal circumstances. The survey could be shorter or longer, depending on your answers as you make your way through the survey. You will also have the option to take a break from the survey and return to it later, up to 15 days later if you're using the same web browser. We designed the survey in this way to allow you to consider your answers carefully, if you so choose. Please note that the survey must be completed in order for your responses to be included.

    Can I share the survey with a friend or family member?

    Yes, please share the survey with any friend or family member who is an American living outside the U.S.

    Why another global survey?

    Our last survey we conducted in 2019. It's been a few years and things have changed or had an impact like the pandemic. We need updated research to share with the Congressional American Abroad Caucus and Members of Congress to raise awareness of the problems Americans abroad face. Democrats Abroad has a history of producing leading research in the area of tax discrimination faced by Americans abroad. We will use the data collected from the survey to help shape our advocacy priorities along with our Congressional and grassroots outreach strategy. Ultimately, we aim to use the data to compel Congress to take urgent action to pass legislation to provide tax and financial access relief for Americans abroad. By participating in this survey, you are helping Democrats Abroad better understand Americans abroad and develop tools to lobby U.S. Congress to enact tax reforms that support U.S. citizens living outside the U.S..

    What will happen with the survey responses?

    The survey results will be analyzed and the results will be shared on the Democrats Abroad website, with the Congressional American Abroad Caucus, and Members of Congress to raise awareness of the problems Americans abroad face. The ultimate goal is to compel Congress to take urgent action to pass legislation to provide relief for the 9 million Americans living abroad.

    Is the survey anonymous?

    Yes, the survey is anonymous. In our last survey we had just under 10,000 responses and we expect a similar level of responses this time around. The only identifying information that will be used in the final report will be by identifying the state you last lived in with your country of residence (eg. American abroad from Texas living in Germany).


    What have you done about data privacy?

    As a global organization, Democrats Abroad adheres to applicable data privacy laws. This is an anonymous survey, we will not ask you for your email address, name, or any other uniquely identifiable information. We are not tracking your IP address and we will do our best to make sure your answers can't be uniquely identified in the final report. The only identifying information that will be used in the final report will be by identifying the state you last lived in with your country of residence (eg. American abroad from Texas living in Germany). If you are not comfortable with anything you submit in the survey being used based on your zip code and country of residence, we advise that you at least share your zip code for where you last lived in the U.S. so we can include your data in our constituent level data set that will be shared with your Members of Congress. To be clear, the only reason we ask for the zip code of your last residence in the U.S. is so we can include your data in our constituent level data set that will be shared with your Members of Congress.


  • Volunteer for the Democrats Abroad Taxation Task Force

    The Taxation Task Force will be hosting a new volunteer info session on April 19th. Anyone that's interested in rolling up their sleeves to help resolve the tax and banking problems Americans abroad face is welcome to join. RSVP here to join.

     

    You don't have to attend the info session to volunteer. You can apply by clicking here to fill in the volunteer interest form so we can get a better sense of your strengths, interests, and time availability. After you've filled in the form, you'll be invited to a call to discuss next steps.

    You can also learn more about what roles are available by clicking here for an outline of volunteering opportunities with the tax team.

    If you have any questions, don't hesitate to email the team on [email protected].

     


  • Helping American Families Abroad Receive the Child Tax Credit Webinar Recording

    Here is the recording of the webinar we hosted on helping American families abroad receive the child tax credit.

     

    Click here to download the slides from the presentation

     

    What else can you do?

    1. Register to vote in US elections at votefromabroad.org
    2. Join Democrats Abroad – it’s free! Go to democratsabroad.org to register today
    3. Donate to help us reach more Americans abroad! democratsabroad.org/donate
    4. Sign up for our tax mailing list at democratsabroad.org/taxation
    5. Volunteer for Democrats Abroad Taxation Task Force democratsabroad.org/ttf_volunteer


  • ANNOUNCEMENT: Child Tax Credit Webinar Friday at 9am CET

    THIS EVENT HAS NOW PASSED. YOU CAN WATCH THE RECORDING OF THE WEBINAR HERE https://youtu.be/GNnEtbvYjEE

     

    The Taxation Task Force will be hosting a webinar on Friday, March 18th called Helping American Families Abroad receive the Child Tax Credit.

    Click here to RSVP and to find out more on this event.

    IMPORTANT:  Democrats Abroad does not provide personal tax advice or recommendations.  We recommend that you engage a qualified, professional tax adviser to address questions related to your personal financial situation.


  • published Volunteer in Taxation 2022-03-05 11:56:42 -0500

    Volunteer

         Join us for the next volunteer info session! Click here to sign up.

     

    The Taxation Task Force is seeking volunteers to help in our mission of advocating for change in the impact of U.S. tax laws on overseas Americans. You can apply for any of the roles listed below or express general interest by filling in this form. Please see below for specific roles we are urgently seeking to fill.

    You don’t have to be a tax expert to help; we need people with a wide range of skills and interests. The time commitment varies from ad hoc grassroots advocacy to roles which may require several hours per week. The only requirement is that you must be a U.S. citizen, and be signed up as a member of Democrats Abroad (membership is free).

    Once you've decided you'd like to volunteer for the Taxation Task Force, please click here to fill in this form so we can get a better sense of your strengths, interests, and time availability. After you've filled in the form, you'll be invited to a call to discuss next steps. If you have any questions, don't hesitate to email the team on [email protected].

    If you're not sure if you'd like to volunteer and feel like you need more information before submitting interest in joining, you can join one of our monthly volunteer info sessions. Click here to view when the next volunteer info session is taking place.

     

    Grassroots Lead - Critical leadership role to organize and structure a program for Americans abroad to make their voices heard in Congress.  Grouping volunteers by voting constituency so that they can begin to develop relationships with their congressional representatives and the tax policy leads in their offices.  This will facilitate our congressional outreach program around specific policy recommendations.  We also want to organize our members to amplify our messaging on social media. 

    Internal Communications Liaison - Supporting communication efforts with the broader DA organization, by representing the Taxation Task Force with formal communications such as newsletter articles, as well as informal networking with regional and country leadership.  Attending EMEA, Asia Pacific, and Americas regional monthly meetings to ensure tax updates are shared at the regional level.

    Events Coordinator - Organizing global tax webinars and providing support to country chapters in planning tax-related events.  Representing the Taxation Task Force by attending annual country general meetings (AGMs).

    Volunteer Coordinator - We have many people who want to volunteer for the Taxation Task Force, and we need someone to help with welcoming and onboarding new volunteers.  Touching base with them to understand their interests and skills, and getting them started.  Similarly, doing periodic outreach to those who are signed up as volunteers but have not recently been active, so that we can keep them engaged in grassroots or other activities. 

    Congressional Watchdog - Keeping an eye on upcoming tax legislation and identifying any opportunities for advocacy or issues that might impact Americans abroad.  This would be done both by staying current on news, as well as by establishing and monitoring alerts on Congress.gov and the websites of key congressional committees. 

    Admin Support - Help with organizing documents, meeting notes, meeting recordings, etc..  DA maintains an online central “Wiki” for maintaining official documents that are relevant to the wider DA organization, so the Taxation Task Force needs someone to help organize and upload its submissions in a sensible way.

    Graphic Designer - We already have a few people helping to design graphics for social media and events, but we need a few more people to round out the team. Congressional hearings and letters for comment can happen quickly with a maximum of a week’s notice, we need a pool or people who can create images for use on social media to help spread the word and raise awareness given the often short deadlines. Ideally we would also like you to keep in touch with the DA Global Graphic Design team to stay up to date on logo and organization brand guidelines.

    Press & Media Coordinator - Someone to liaise with journalists, raise awareness of tax problems Americans abroad face, pitch stories, draft letter to the editors or op-eds. The focus would be on press in America, but often there are stories from press around the world that take interest in the American tax system which we want to use to raise awareness of the issues to Americans abroad too. Ideally, you’ve had experience in working with the press before or have had success in getting letter to the editors published.

    Campaigns Coordinator - Short-term commitment to start November 2023 and ends September 2024.  Contacting congressional candidates, typically via e-mail.  We already have a number of people interested in helping with this, and are seeking someone to take the lead.  The coordinator would be expected to monitor state primary dates and coordinate the outreach by our volunteers. 



  • published Child Tax Credit Day of Action in Tax Blog 2022-02-08 18:02:39 -0500

    NOTICE: Child Tax Credit Day of Action

    Today is Child Tax Credit Day of Action. This day is intended to raise awareness to American families that qualify for $3,000 or $3,600 per child ages 0-17 depending on the child’s age. We want to remind Congress that they excluded American families abroad from the extended Child Tax Credit last year which has resulted in unprecedented levels of American families abroad who mistakenly received the extended Child Tax Credit and are being asked to pay it back this year.

    Democrats Abroad believes this is wrong and unfair.

    On Child Tax Credit Day of Action, Democrats Abroad asks American families abroad to share their stories by messaging their Members of Congress to raise awareness of this important issue.

    If you have been asked by the IRS to pay back some or all of the Child Tax Credit you received last year, please contact us on [email protected] and tell us what you're experiencing.

    By speaking out and raising our voices to Congress will the myriad of tax problems faced by Americans living abroad start to be addressed.