The United States Treasury Department is now actively working with more than 50 nations to share Americans’ personal financial data that will reveal who is tax compliant, including American expats living overseas. The effort is in support of new FATCA (Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act) laws that require foreign financial entities to report Americans’ account information to US authorities and to undertake mandatory withholding from them to assure compliance with American income tax laws.
The trade-off is that the United States will reciprocate with the data of partner countries’ own citizens with accounts in the States. The laws have been rolling out in varying levels since its enactment in 2010. The US has principal agreements with the 5 big sovereigns of Europe, including the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Spain and Italy, and has signed a “model agreement” with the United Kingdom.
The inception of, roll out and implementation of FATCA has been clever, if not masterful on the part of the US Treasury. The United States enacted FATCA and began by leaning, mostly, on foreign financial entities and mandating that they comply with certain new rules, including reporting of data on American clients and withholding of monies, to ensure Americans were compliant with US tax laws. Foreign financial interests, in turn, desperately sought relief from their own governments. The US mandates were burdensome and cost prohibitive for them to implement. The solution for financiers was for their own governments, many of whom already have the data the US wants to take on the sharing requirement that the US, using its global financial clout, is forcing on everyone.
50+ countries in all are clamoring to get on board. In part because of the controversial nature of FATCA itself. Foreign financial entities are pleading with their own governments to facilitate the newly required reporting that the US laws mandate. For many, it is impossible to continue doing business with American clients and are closing their accounts. Additionally, foreign banks and investment houses who do not comply face a 30% withholding on their own transactions that occur within the US, so there’s no way to opt-out.
The US Treasury expects to finalize signed data sharing agreements by the end of the year with countries that include Norway, the Netherlands, Mexico, Jersey, Ireland, Isle of Man, Guernsey, Finland, Denmark, Canada, Switzerland, Japan, Spain, Germany, Italy and France.
Treasury is actively negotiating with the following countries to finalize and enact data sharing agreements – Sweden, Singapore, Slovak Republic, New Zealand, Malta, Malaysia, Liechtenstein, Korea, Israel, Hungary, Estonia, Cyprus, Cayman Islands, Belgium, Australia and Argentina. Their goal is to conclude agreements with as many as possible by year’s end.
The list goes on – The US Treasury is reaching out to and actively attempting to engage the following countries to agree to data sharing as well – South Africa, Slovenia, Sint Maarten, Seychelles, Russia, Romania, Luxembourg, Lebanon, India, Gibraltar, Czech Republic, Chile, British Virgin islands, Brazil and Bermuda.
Assistant Secretary of the US Treasury, Mark Mazur, in a public statement said, “Global cooperation is critical to implementing FATCA in a way that is targeted and efficient. By working cooperatively with foreign governments and financial institutions, we are intensifying our ability to combat tax evasion while minimizing burdens on financial institutions.”
Staying out of debt is not easy. But still, if you closely follow the steps given below, you will find yourself in a much better position financially:
1. Save before you start spending
If your plan is to save whatever is left at the end of the month, you will almost always find yourself with nothing when the month ends. That is because it is far easier to save at the beginning of a month than to save when the month is about to end. So, prepare a budget as soon as a new month begins, and then leave aside your budget money. Also, keep a bit extra for emergency expenses that may come up. Once that is done, save the remaining income.
2. Make a list of items to shop for
Most of us feel a kind of euphoria when we shop, and that feeling encourages us to spend more than we are comfortable with. That is why whenever you go shopping for buying groceries, clothing items, or other essentials, be sure to make a list of things to buy before leaving the house. That way, you will be able to keep track of your spending habits. When you have a list, even when you buy something that is not in your list, you consciously know that you are overspending.
3. Live below your means
If Warren Buffet can drive a car that is more than a decade old, then does it really make sense for us to get new cars every two or three years? Maybe you do not change cars that often, but there must be many other habits that are not serving you very well financially. Like eating out a bit too much, buying unnecessary stuff impulsively etc. The truth is that you do not have to live in the most expensive house you can afford based on your salary. You do not have to have the most expensive cell phone or laptop you can afford, either. Learn to live below your means.
4. Educate yourself to become financially responsible
The internet has thousands of excellent articles on saving money. Read some of those articles. Save the pieces that you find particularly helpful and inspiring. In addition to that, you can buy books about saving money and staying away from debt. If you are really serious about saving money, you can even take a big step like attending a seminar about forming good money habits
There are ‘do’s and don’ts’ with creating wealth. With many of the basic principles of wealth creation time-tested, the laws of wealth will teach you how to create and attract wealth using specific strategies and systems that bring results.
Some people have made wealth and lost it, right? These 3 laws will exhort you to continue working hard, to give part of your money to help others and to share your knowledge about wealth creation.
How do you Keep and Share Your Wealth?
It is not difficult. Just read on and you will see why.
Law 1: Remember how you got here: Through hard work so continue that way.
Certain behaviours, mindsets and strategies enable you to be rich, successful and wealthy. It was not easy getting here so don’t ever undo all the years of hard work and growth by breaking these Laws of wealth.
When you become wealthy remember those people who helped you so much and the others who received great value from you. Shun selfishness and arrogance. Don’t become over protective, possessive or paranoid about your wealth; continue in the same way using the same principles that have got you where you are.
It is very easy to get carried away with it all and end up with nothing, or even worse than that. Do not flaunt your wealth; you will lose it faster than saying hey!
Be therefore wise, consistent, thoughtful, gracious and understated.
Law 2: Give back: pass the money on to others you feel would benefit from it.
You really can’t take your money with you so think of giving it back: to children and grandchildren to educate and benefit them for their future businesses and careers and to foundations that would use it wisely for the benefit of less fortunate people. You got here adding value to other people’s lives, so do the same when you go. That will add a huge amount to your life.
The many ways to give money to others that save tax and don’t make them feel guilty or indebted are gifts and education and funds to set up businesses and property and investments and all such things. If undecided, contact a qualified financial advisor for advice.
Law 3: Pass on your knowledge: help others become wealthy too and feel good.
If it feels good to be wealthy and successful, it feels even better to pass on your knowledge to help others become rich too and happy.
Passing on your knowledge is a must. Not only are there so many people out there who could use it, but also you would be assuring everyone this inalienable right.
In any case you have achieved this height through adding value to other people’s lives, so why not continue? Your life will become so much more abundant.
This strategy is not really about giving money as it is about education. You remember, teaching somebody to fish is far better than giving them fish?
You can’t imagine what fun it is to teach your kids, friends, family, and thousands others using the internet about the Laws of wealth and success. Doing so can even make you increase your wealth substantially.
It is Stephen Covey who said that once we have learned, we should all be teaching. So think how you can help other people be wealthy, successful and happy. This may be your way of giving. And in the present world, nothing pleases a lot of people more than wealth. So, put joy into somebody’s life.