Selecting a Trustee for Your US Trust – What About a  Foreign Family Member?

Many parents establish a trust for their children and intend that the trust be a domestic (US) trust. Often, this will be a testamentary trust. That is, one that comes into being upon death of the testator, created pursuant to a Last Will & Testament.  Many parents struggle with the decision as to who to … Continue reading Selecting a Trustee for Your US Trust – What About a  Foreign Family Member?

Estate Taxes Going Up – Is There Still a Golden Gifting Opportunity?

Janet Yellen, the former Federal Reserve chairperson is now the new US Secretary of  the Treasury.  She has staunchly defended President Biden's plan to reduce the estate-tax exemption amount from the current US$11.5 million to US$3.5 million, as well as to increase the top estate tax rate from 40% to 45%.  In responding to criticism … Continue reading Estate Taxes Going Up – Is There Still a Golden Gifting Opportunity?

US Person Inheriting Assets from a “Foreigner” or Through a Foreign Trust

Many individuals have questions about the US tax consequences of foreign (non-US) assets inherited from a non-US individual who has passed away. They want to know whether US tax reporting is required, or if they must pay US tax on the inheritance. Some ask about the US tax upon a later sale of the inherited … Continue reading US Person Inheriting Assets from a “Foreigner” or Through a Foreign Trust

Foreign Trust Forms 3520 and 3520-A Penalties: A Potential Gold Mine for the IRS

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is looking for money.  As part of the hunt, it has instituted various “campaigns” (full list here) aimed at areas in which there is greater taxpayer noncompliance that may involve significant tax dollars and penalties. One such campaign involves the failure by a US person to file complex information-reporting tax … Continue reading Foreign Trust Forms 3520 and 3520-A Penalties: A Potential Gold Mine for the IRS

Expatriation – IRS Told to Get Tough and Enforce the Law

The Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) recently issued its report “More Enforcement and a Centralized Compliance Efforts Are Required for Expatriation Provisions”, (Reference Number: 2020-30-071, September 28,2020) telling the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) that it needs to do more to make sure that the rising number of US citizens and long term residents … Continue reading Expatriation – IRS Told to Get Tough and Enforce the Law

Using a “Foreign Grantor Trust” – I Heard of it, but Hmmmm … I Want to Know More

Most tax practitioners and wealth planning professionals have heard of the “foreign grantor trust” (FGT) but many are unsure of what it is, how it works, or what it can accomplish in US tax planning.  My post today provides an overview. The use of a so-called “foreign grantor trust” is a traditional planning technique that … Continue reading Using a “Foreign Grantor Trust” – I Heard of it, but Hmmmm … I Want to Know More

Rich Americans…. Time to Wake Up!

Rich Americans (or foreigners with US assets), it's time to wake up and smell the coffee!  Why?  I am seeing more and more individuals with influence pushing for a change in the US tax laws so that wealth inequality becomes a thing of the past.  Whether you agree with this position is not the point … Continue reading Rich Americans…. Time to Wake Up!

WAKE UP CALL: Form BE-10

The Bureau of Economic Affairs (BEA) is a division of the US Department of Commerce. The BEA administers the so-called Form BE-10 survey, which is an intensive information gathering tool of the US government. The BE-10  is used to collect information on how US persons are investing abroad and on foreign investment in the US. … Continue reading WAKE UP CALL: Form BE-10

The Flexible “Foundation” – It’s Becoming a Thing!

Recently I was the guest speaker on Jimmy Sexton’s podcast discussing all things related to an entity called a “foundation”.  A foundation is a creature of a country’s statutory law, but foundations are not well understood in common law jurisdictions, such as the United States.  In the podcast, we looked at the difference between civil … Continue reading The Flexible “Foundation” – It’s Becoming a Thing!

Handle With Care: How Sharia Law and U.S. Tax Law Affect the Foundations Regime in the United Arab Emirates

Proud to announce publication of my article Handle With Care: How Sharia Law and U.S. Tax Law Affect the Foundations Regime in the United Arab Emirates in Tax Notes International (TNI) Vol. 98 No. 5 May 4, 2020. Available at no cost on SSRN. The article discusses the US tax treatment of the newest "foundations" … Continue reading Handle With Care: How Sharia Law and U.S. Tax Law Affect the Foundations Regime in the United Arab Emirates