Zurich Mayor Renounces U.S. Citizenship Over Intrusive Tax Rules

Taxes can make anything suck


The mayor of Zurich gave up U.S. citizenship, one of a growing number of Americans to do so after Switzerland agreed to implement tighter asset-disclosure rules.

Corine Mauch, 52, a member of the Socialist Party born in Iowa City, Iowa, returned her passport to the U.S. Embassy as she regards Switzerland as her home and doesn't want to deal with Internal Revenue Service paperwork, according to an e- mailed statement from her office today.

"My relationship with the U.S. is limited to my very early youth," said Mauch, who retains Swiss citizenship. "Neither the double taxation or any new directives on the taxation of U.S. citizens outside the U.S. have affected this decision. But I won't miss the U.S. tax bureaucracy either."

The U.S. is the only nation in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development that taxes citizens wherever they reside, including an estimated six million expatriates. Americans are shunned by Swiss and German banks and face tougher disclosure rules under the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act.