Go Back   English Forum Switzerland > Help & tips > Permits/visas/government
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #41  
Old 19.03.2015, 13:13
NotAllThere's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Baselland
Posts: 8,967
Groaned at 140 Times in 122 Posts
Thanked 12,243 Times in 5,007 Posts
NotAllThere has a reputation beyond reputeNotAllThere has a reputation beyond reputeNotAllThere has a reputation beyond reputeNotAllThere has a reputation beyond reputeNotAllThere has a reputation beyond reputeNotAllThere has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Sharp increase in Americans on Swiss social welfare

In percentage terms, it looks quite high. In absolute terms it's rather meh. Looks to me like the sample population is too small for any meaningful conclusion to be drawn.
Reply With Quote
The following 4 users would like to thank NotAllThere for this useful post:
  #42  
Old 19.03.2015, 14:52
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: CH
Posts: 5,102
Groaned at 188 Times in 147 Posts
Thanked 6,059 Times in 3,274 Posts
greenmount has a reputation beyond reputegreenmount has a reputation beyond reputegreenmount has a reputation beyond reputegreenmount has a reputation beyond reputegreenmount has a reputation beyond reputegreenmount has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Sharp increase in Americans on Swiss social welfare

Quote:
View Post
In percentage terms, it looks quite high. In absolute terms it's rather meh. Looks to me like the sample population is too small for any meaningful conclusion to be drawn.
That was what I thought from the very beginning and immediately dismissed the issue as irrelevant (though I must say I enjoyed MN's post).

What was all the fuss about again? Obama bad guy or what?
Reply With Quote
  #43  
Old 15.04.2015, 13:00
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Solothurn
Posts: 155
Groaned at 7 Times in 2 Posts
Thanked 160 Times in 73 Posts
DuePonte has no particular reputation at present
Re: Sharp increase in Americans on Swiss social welfare

The US offers the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) to working Americans with low incomes. This either reduces the US income taxes owed or is paid out as a refund to those who do not owe US income taxes. In 2013 nearly 28 million Americans in the US claimed the EITC which averaged $2,417. Americans abroad, however, are not allowed to claim the EITC.

The US requires that American citizens, no matter where they are domiciled, file a US tax return. It, however, denies Americans abroad use of the EITC income support vehicle based on where they are domiciled.

Perhaps it's time to file a lawsuit against the US government for this discrimination.
Reply With Quote
The following 2 users would like to thank DuePonte for this useful post:
  #44  
Old 16.04.2015, 09:38
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Aargau
Posts: 1,559
Groaned at 12 Times in 11 Posts
Thanked 1,809 Times in 880 Posts
Mullhollander has a reputation beyond reputeMullhollander has a reputation beyond reputeMullhollander has a reputation beyond reputeMullhollander has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Sharp increase in Americans on Swiss social welfare

Quote:
View Post
The US offers the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) to working Americans with low incomes. This either reduces the US income taxes owed or is paid out as a refund to those who do not owe US income taxes. In 2013 nearly 28 million Americans in the US claimed the EITC which averaged $2,417. Americans abroad, however, are not allowed to claim the EITC.

The US requires that American citizens, no matter where they are domiciled, file a US tax return. It, however, denies Americans abroad use of the EITC income support vehicle based on where they are domiciled.

Perhaps it's time to file a lawsuit against the US government for this discrimination.
The EITC has been around since 1975 and has allowed only US taxpayers resident in the USA (50 states and DC) to claim it. After 20 years, in 1995, it began to allow US military stationed abroad to claim it but other mortal US taxpayers living abroad, including US territories, cannot claim it.

The EITC, at $56 billion, is the third-largest social welfare program after Medicaid and Food Stamps, according to Wikipedia.

As is often the case between the US government and its diaspora, it is a one-way street. It wants tax money from us but provides little of value in return. Any services it provides to its overseas citizens are normally fee-based, e.g., $50 per page for notary services. And then there's the annual FBAR filing for Americans abroad with the Financial Crimes agency, which shows what the US government really thinks of its diaspora.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Earned_income_tax_credit

A history of the EITC:
http://fas.org/sgp/crs/misc/RL31768.pdf
Reply With Quote
  #45  
Old 17.04.2015, 16:08
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Aargau
Posts: 1,559
Groaned at 12 Times in 11 Posts
Thanked 1,809 Times in 880 Posts
Mullhollander has a reputation beyond reputeMullhollander has a reputation beyond reputeMullhollander has a reputation beyond reputeMullhollander has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Sharp increase in Americans on Swiss social welfare

The Internal Revenue Code (§ 7701) is to treat United States persons abroad as residents of Washington D.C.:
"(39) Persons residing outside United States
If any citizen or resident of the United States does not reside in (and is not found in) any United States judicial district, such citizen or resident shall be treated as residing in the District of Columbia for purposes of any provision of this title [i.e. title 26 the Internal Revenue Code] relating to—
(A) jurisdiction of courts, or
(B) enforcement of summons."

It seems that Americans abroad are treated as living outside the US at times and at other times as living in Washington D.C. EITC legislation allows residents of Washington D.C. to claim the EITC but considers Americans who live abroad to really be living abroad.

Do they make up these rules as they go along?
Reply With Quote
  #46  
Old 17.04.2015, 17:10
kayakdad's Avatar
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Basel
Posts: 58
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 50 Times in 26 Posts
kayakdad has earned some respectkayakdad has earned some respect
Re: Sharp increase in Americans on Swiss social welfare

Just to go back to the statistics.

We have a very limited data set, describing a small sample, without any indication of possible causative factors?

Also, when referring to North Americans, let's not forget Mexico, the Caribbean as well as various other states. I think there are over 20 countries.
Reply With Quote
The following 2 users would like to thank kayakdad for this useful post:
  #47  
Old 19.04.2015, 10:37
MennoFloyd's Avatar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Deutschschweiz
Posts: 292
Groaned at 2 Times in 2 Posts
Thanked 420 Times in 193 Posts
MennoFloyd has become a little unpopularMennoFloyd has become a little unpopular
Re: Sharp increase in Americans on Swiss social welfare

Quote:
View Post
The US offers the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) to working Americans with low incomes. This either reduces the US income taxes owed or is paid out as a refund to those who do not owe US income taxes. In 2013 nearly 28 million Americans in the US claimed the EITC which averaged $2,417. Americans abroad, however, are not allowed to claim the EITC.

The US requires that American citizens, no matter where they are domiciled, file a US tax return. It, however, denies Americans abroad use of the EITC income support vehicle based on where they are domiciled.

Perhaps it's time to file a lawsuit against the US government for this discrimination.
Sales tax, paid to US states, can be deducted on the US Federal Schedule A*, but VAT cannot be deducted.

An example: If a US resident buys a $40,000 car and pays 8% sales tax, the $3,200 can be deducted. If a US taxpayer resident in Switzerland buys a CHF 40,000 car + 8% VAT, the CHF 3,200 VAT can never be deducted.

Time and time again, the US government discriminates against Americans abroad through the tax code.

* - The US resident taxpayer can claim a deduction either for states sales tax or for state income tax, but not both.
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank MennoFloyd for this useful post:
  #48  
Old 19.04.2015, 11:17
MennoFloyd's Avatar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Deutschschweiz
Posts: 292
Groaned at 2 Times in 2 Posts
Thanked 420 Times in 193 Posts
MennoFloyd has become a little unpopularMennoFloyd has become a little unpopular
Re: Sharp increase in Americans on Swiss social welfare

Quote:
View Post
Just to go back to the statistics.

We have a very limited data set, describing a small sample, without any indication of possible causative factors?

Also, when referring to North Americans, let's not forget Mexico, the Caribbean as well as various other states. I think there are over 20 countries.
There is an observed upward trend of American citizens on Swiss social welfare. Prior to Fatca, US citizens had a similar rate of social welfare usage to Canadians and Brits, but in the past several years Americans have sprinted ahead. My hypothesis is that the upward trend is related to Fatca and discrimination against Americans in Switzerland that has developed in the past several years.

Another possibility for causation is that going on welfare has become more acceptable for Americans since Obama came to power. After all, the number of Americans using the Food Stamp program increased by 70% under the Obama administration. There has also been a significant increase in the number of Americans on government-sponsored long-term disability under Obama.

Will plan to analyze 2014 social welfare statistics when they become available later this year.
Reply With Quote
  #49  
Old 19.04.2015, 17:30
olygirl's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: d' Innerschwiiz
Posts: 5,061
Groaned at 225 Times in 148 Posts
Thanked 10,864 Times in 3,319 Posts
olygirl has a reputation beyond reputeolygirl has a reputation beyond reputeolygirl has a reputation beyond reputeolygirl has a reputation beyond reputeolygirl has a reputation beyond reputeolygirl has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Sharp increase in Americans on Swiss social welfare

I want to know why those people lost their jobs, how long they've been unemployed and why they haven't found a new job yet. By analyzing this kind of data, perhaps we could find a true common thread that would be more relevant than just numbers.
Reply With Quote
The following 3 users would like to thank olygirl for this useful post:
  #50  
Old 19.04.2015, 17:39
fatmanfilms's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Verbier
Posts: 13,716
Groaned at 209 Times in 181 Posts
Thanked 11,029 Times in 6,254 Posts
fatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Sharp increase in Americans on Swiss social welfare

Quote:
View Post
Sales tax, paid to US states, can be deducted on the US Federal Schedule A*, but VAT cannot be deducted.

An example: If a US resident buys a $40,000 car and pays 8% sales tax, the $3,200 can be deducted. If a US taxpayer resident in Switzerland buys a CHF 40,000 car + 8% VAT, the CHF 3,200 VAT can never be deducted.

Time and time again, the US government discriminates against Americans abroad through the tax code.

* - The US resident taxpayer can claim a deduction either for states sales tax or for state income tax, but not both.
How would the US revenue get any benefit from VAT paid in CH? So it's fairly obvious why they don't allow it as a deduction. Of course your forgetting about the large earnings exemption that US residents get when abroad.....
Reply With Quote
  #51  
Old 19.04.2015, 22:39
MennoFloyd's Avatar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Deutschschweiz
Posts: 292
Groaned at 2 Times in 2 Posts
Thanked 420 Times in 193 Posts
MennoFloyd has become a little unpopularMennoFloyd has become a little unpopular
Re: Sharp increase in Americans on Swiss social welfare

Quote:
View Post
How would the US revenue get any benefit from VAT paid in CH? So it's fairly obvious why they don't allow it as a deduction. Of course your forgetting about the large earnings exemption that US residents get when abroad.....

If the US needs to benefit from a deduction, how would it benefit by allowing deductions for charitable contributions to Canadian, Israeli and Mexican charitable organizations, but not to Swiss charitable organizations:

"Not Deductible as Charitable Contributions
Money or property you give to:
Foreign organizations (except certain Canadian, Israeli, and Mexican charities)"

http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p526.pdf

Also, the 2555 foreign income exclusion is only valid for earned income. Investment income, unemployment compensation, etc. are considered unearned income and cannot be excluded.
Reply With Quote
  #52  
Old 30.04.2015, 15:43
MennoFloyd's Avatar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Deutschschweiz
Posts: 292
Groaned at 2 Times in 2 Posts
Thanked 420 Times in 193 Posts
MennoFloyd has become a little unpopularMennoFloyd has become a little unpopular
Re: Sharp increase in Americans on Swiss social welfare

The US Senate and House are proposing to eliminate the Child Tax Credit for Americans who live abroad and claim the Foreign Earned Income Tax exclusion (Form 2555). The credit can be worth up to $1,000 per child. One of the criteria has been that the child is a citizen or resident alien of the United States but now it will require that the US citizen reside in the US.

"Both of the tax-writing committees aim to pay for the extension by eliminating the refundable portion of the child tax credit for American taxpayers living abroad who claim the foreign earned income exclusion under Section 911 of the tax code."

http://www.jdsupra.com/legalnews/tax...-update-15357/

If it passes, it will be just another example of how the US government treats Americans abroad as second-class citizens.
Reply With Quote
  #53  
Old 01.05.2015, 21:50
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: San Francisco
Posts: 198
Groaned at 4 Times in 2 Posts
Thanked 114 Times in 70 Posts
Caryl has earned the respect of manyCaryl has earned the respect of manyCaryl has earned the respect of many
The discrimination against expatriate and "accidental" American citizens is well known, and American Citizens Abroad, the Geneva expat lobby, has made the point consistently. Not that anybody is listening: the statistics alone suggest that most Americans abroad (ACA must have convinced State to raise its estimate of their numbers from 3.5 to 6.5 million) may not be filing tax returns (fewer than a million are filed from abroad).

The attribution of District of Columbia jurisdiction for expats is only relevant, I think, to absconders and refuseniks -- and even there those without income, assets or heirs in the USA and no intention of obtaining or renewing a US passport are -- until and unless tax treaties and extradition treaties are revised as Treasury seems to seek -- unreachable. Anyone who wants to appeal to Tax Court can choose whatever jurisdiction s/he wants, not just DC.

The NY Times today has something more worrying: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/04/30/op...-up-audit.html ("Examiners for the I.R.S. are giving taxpayers and their accountants much less time to respond to certain audit letters.") Often IRS demands arrive already out of time, and too late for an accountant to help, Tax Court (pro se, or with a lawyer) being the only option.

Been there, done that. And when the IRS is being stupid, it works: in our case they settled on the courthouse steps for zero of the tens of thousands they'd asked for. Actually it wasn't even the courthouse steps: it was by letter. Pro se. (I knew Tax Court was the only solution when I rang the guy in charge of the office that had made the assessment and he told me she was his best worker. I sent him a copy of the T.C. judgment: no reply of course.)

Quote:
View Post
An example: If a US resident buys a $40,000 car and pays 8% sales tax, the $3,200 can be deducted. If a US taxpayer resident in Switzerland buys a CHF 40,000 car + 8% VAT, the CHF 3,200 VAT can never be deducted.
Not usually, but not never either. If the tax is a business expense (because the item taxed is such) it's deductible on Sched. C, for example. Ditto for charitable contributions.

More's the pity because it is USG policy to consider VAT a direct tax whereas the EU, and probably Switzerland as well, consider VAT an indirect tax -- so deductibility in that case wouldn't be logical. (There's an ongoing -- decades long -- diplomatic spat over that in Washington DC.)

Last edited by 3Wishes; 02.05.2015 at 13:05. Reason: merging successive posts
Reply With Quote
  #54  
Old 02.05.2015, 11:09
MennoFloyd's Avatar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Deutschschweiz
Posts: 292
Groaned at 2 Times in 2 Posts
Thanked 420 Times in 193 Posts
MennoFloyd has become a little unpopularMennoFloyd has become a little unpopular
Re: Sharp increase in Americans on Swiss social welfare

Quote:
View Post
Not usually, but not never either. If the tax is a business expense (because the item taxed is such) it's deductible on Sched. C, for example. Ditto for charitable contributions.

More's the pity because it is USG policy to consider VAT a direct tax whereas the EU, and probably Switzerland as well, consider VAT an indirect tax -- so deductibility in that case wouldn't be logical. (There's an ongoing -- decades long -- diplomatic spat over that in Washington DC.)
Thanks for the insight and add-on information regarding deducting non-US VAT and charitable contributions for US tax purposes for businesses.

This sub-topic within this thread regards US individual taxation and the ways that non-resident US citizen taxpayers are treated less favorably than resident US taxpayers. Possibly it is relevant to some US citizens here running their own businesses to know about the deductions for business purposes.

Concerning the number of Americans abroad, the most recent State Department data I could find is 7.6 million, according to this fact sheet published May 2014:

http://travel.state.gov/content/dam/...eet%202014.pdf
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank MennoFloyd for this useful post:
  #55  
Old 03.05.2015, 20:12
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: San Francisco
Posts: 198
Groaned at 4 Times in 2 Posts
Thanked 114 Times in 70 Posts
Caryl has earned the respect of manyCaryl has earned the respect of manyCaryl has earned the respect of many
Re: Sharp increase in Americans on Swiss social welfare

Quote:
View Post
Concerning the number of Americans abroad, the most recent State Department data I could find is 7.6 million, according to this fact sheet published May 2014:

http://travel.state.gov/content/dam/...eet%202014.pdf
The problem is that the USG does not know who its citizens are, any more than the UK does. Switzerland and the Netherlands, to name just two, know almost all their citizens because they are registered as such.

I acknowledge that a Swiss citizen born abroad could be registered at birth and never show up again until the economy of his/her other country crashes, and then seek repatriation: it happened in Argentina and Venezuela. But that's statistically rare. (Spain is full of grandchildren of Italian emigrants -- the beneficiaries of the ECJ's Micheletti judgment. You get the point.)

I worked on this subject a few years ago and was astonished when State moved from (as I recall) 3.5 million to (maybe) 6.5 million. Really the only statistics they have are offshore passport issuance and the addresses given, certifications of births abroad, tax return filings (but when I last looked, offshore territories (PR, VI, GU ...) and APO/FPO were merged with foreign.

What we do know is that hundreds of thousands of Amcit dual nationals have thrown their US passports away and never registered their offspring as Amcits whether or not they had that status at birth.

As I have posted elsewhere, it remains to be seen how Switzerland and other countries respond as the USG's (i.e. the Congress's) exorbitant assertion of jurisdiction (not just tax: remember the Blackmer case (Teapot Dome: Blackmer v. United States, 284 U.S. 421 (1932)). FATCA and the IGAs are concessions over the threat by the USG to effectively close its market to foreign financial services providers. Extortion, diplomatic or not, can be taken only so far. And when the European Convention on Human Rights intervenes, as it might at some point as it did over capital punishment, for example, we might see compromise.

After all, while it's for every state to determine who are its citizens, other states are not obliged to recognise such an assertion. And indeed British courts have gone so far as to attribute to persons (chiefly asylum seekers, no surprise there) nationalities that they could not in fact assert.

Sorry for the rant, which hasn't much to do with Swiss social welfare. (Something I was looking at today: there's a Reddit thread comparing US and Swiss health insurance...)

It occurs to me, after posting the above, that State has something to gain in terms of appropriations for consular protective services, not all of which are covered by user fees, by exaggerating the number of Americans abroad. All I can say is that the number is unknown. And includes many who may or may not be Amcits -- something that can only be determined when a passport is applied for or a decision made by an Immigration (or other federal) judge.

Last edited by Caryl; 03.05.2015 at 20:48.
Reply With Quote
  #56  
Old 05.11.2015, 14:01
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Aargau
Posts: 1,559
Groaned at 12 Times in 11 Posts
Thanked 1,809 Times in 880 Posts
Mullhollander has a reputation beyond reputeMullhollander has a reputation beyond reputeMullhollander has a reputation beyond reputeMullhollander has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Sharp increase in Americans on Swiss social welfare

Quote:
View Post
The US offers the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) to working Americans with low incomes. This either reduces the US income taxes owed or is paid out as a refund to those who do not owe US income taxes. In 2013 nearly 28 million Americans in the US claimed the EITC which averaged $2,417. Americans abroad, however, are not allowed to claim the EITC.

The US requires that American citizens, no matter where they are domiciled, file a US tax return. It, however, denies Americans abroad use of the EITC income support vehicle based on where they are domiciled.

Perhaps it's time to file a lawsuit against the US government for this discrimination.
The Tax Foundation published a US map showing where the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) is most popular by county - it is informative but contains few surprises. Since US taxpayers residing outside of the US are not eligible for the EITC, there was no need to present a map outside of the 50 US states. More of Uncle Sam's hypocrisy:

http://taxfoundation.org/blog/what-p...ome-tax-credit
Reply With Quote
Reply




Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Attestation of never having requested Social Welfare in canton Vaud proshut Permits/visas/government 11 23.04.2014 15:54
Rwandan genocide suspect on Swiss welfare The Local Swiss news via The Local 0 11.06.2012 10:57
Hiring people on social welfare - where/how? Grapefruit1 Other/general 4 15.02.2012 12:13
Swiss cantons deporting foreigners on welfare The Local Swiss news via The Local 3 03.11.2011 17:36
Social welfare/Marriage cckkt Family matters/health 0 02.02.2010 00:14


All times are GMT +2. The time now is 08:09.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2016, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
LinkBacks Enabled by vBSEO 3.1.0