Free Minds & Free Markets

America's Punishing Worldwide Tax Scheme: New at Reason

You know who's really thrilled about American actress Meghan Markle's engagement to Britain's Prince Harry? Uncle Sam. Although Markle will live in the U.K., Washington will get a cut of her income, because Americans owe taxes on money earned abroad.

Even if Markle becomes a British citizen, she will be required to file a tax return in the States unless she also renounces her U.S. citizenship. Depending on her levels of assets, she may have to share very private information about her holdings.

There are some advantages to matrimony with a prince. If she were marrying a regular Jack, she would also find it hard to open a bank account in the United Kingdom: The Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA), which was enacted under Obama, deputizes overseas financial institutions to snoop on and collect taxes from Americans, making banks reluctant to take on U.S. clients. But she will still suffer under a tax regime that is all but unique to the United States, writes Veronique de Rugy.


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