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SEAT’s PUBLICATIONS

See also SEAT’s Working Paper Series at this link.

To view and/or download an article listed below, click either on the image or the title.

The Invisibility of the American Emigrant
By Laura Snyder
DePaul Journal for Social Justice, Spring, 2024

For decades the knowledge and experiences of Americans living outside the United States have been ignored by academics, industry leaders, and governmental representatives, among others. Until the contributions to knowledge of Americans living outside the United States are more widely recognized, their truths are tracked, and their claims are investigated without preconceived judgements and in good faith, there can be no justice, nor true freedom for any American.

 

Does the Federal Budget Trump Constitutional Rights?
By Laura Snyder
Hofstra Law Review, Winter, 2024

Congress has abdicated to two unelected bodies—the Congressional Budget Office and the Joint Committee on Taxation—considerable power to determine the outcome of policy initiatives. If these bodies do not assign a positive budget score, the initiative is likely to die. This has devastating consequences for reform of the U.S. nationality-based tax system. Reform is desperately needed. But, as long as a positive budget score is required, true reform—reform that will end the system’s violations of constitutional and other fundamental rights for all Americans—is impossible.

FATCA Is Not the Answer
By John Richardson, Karen Alpert, and Laura Snyder
Tax Notes Federal, March 18, 2024

This is a Letter to the Editor in response to the February 26, 2024 article “Taxing Fat Cats Abroad,” published in Tax Notes Federal. The article defended the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) as an “automatic exchange of information used to track down and tax accounts held by wealthy U.S. citizens living abroad.” The article contained many errors and misinterpretations, as explained in this response.

Don’t Blame the Victims: Individuals and the MRT
By Karen Alpert, John Richardson, and Laura Snyder
Tax Notes Federal, February 26, 2024

The Mandatory Repatriation Tax (MRT) had devastating effects for Americans living and operating small businesses outside the United States. This paper: (i) demonstrates that the MRT affected more individuals than multinational corporations, and (ii) explains why there was little that Americans living and operating small businesses outside the United States could have done to avoid the damages inflicted on them by the MRT.

 

What a Decision on Affirmative Action Teaches About Taxation
By Laura Snyder
Rutgers Law Record, Fall 2023

This short article explains how the June, 2023 U.S. Supreme Court decision on affirmative action, Students for Fair Admissions v. Harvard, is important in the context of taxation. The decision is further evidence that the U.S. nationality-based tax system violates Fourteenth Amendment Equal Protection rights.

 

The Myths and Truths of Extraterritorial Taxation
By Laura Snyder
Cornell Journal of Law and Public Policy, Winter 2022 (published Nov. 9, 2023)

Cook v. Tait may hold that the federal government has the power to tax overseas Americans based upon their worldwide income. But Cook does not allow the government to tax overseas Americans in manners that violate their Constitutional and human rights. Cook is ripe for revisiting.  Other countries offer examples of alternative systems that protect against abuse while also respecting fundamental rights.

 



Discriminatory Taxes and Congress: Do as I Say, Not as I Do
By Laura Snyder
Tax Notes Federal, August 21, 2023

This article explains why congressional complaints about allegedly discriminatory taxes imposed on Americans by foreign governments are hypocritical. The U.S. nationality based tax system discriminates against Americans in the same ways that members of Congress complain in relation to taxes imposed by other countries.

 

Can Extraterritorial Taxation Be Rationalized?
By Laura Snyder
The Tax Lawyer, June, 2023

There exist multiple rationales for the U.S. extraterritorial tax system. This paper challenges them. The rationales are theoretical. They do not contend with the full scope and complexity of the actual system, nor with the system’s multitude of intractable problems and injustices.

 

 

Overseas Americans Are Ordinary People, Not FATCAts
By Laura Snyder
Tax Notes Federal, May 22, 2023

A recent IRS working paper on the wealth of U.S. persons held outside the United States confirms that most overseas Americans are ordinary people with ordinary income and wealth who should not be subject to the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act. 

 

The Unacknowledged Realities of Extraterritorial Taxation
By Laura Snyder
Southern Illinois University Law Journal, Winter 2023

The U.S. extraterritorial tax system has evolved such that today it is more consequential than one century ago. Many have sought to educate policymakers and the public. To date, such efforts have failed to affect change. For change to occur, the academic press must look beyond theories to acknowledge the full import, complexities, and consequences of the system in place today.

 

Should Overseas Americans Be Required to Buy Their Freedom?
By Laura Snyder, Karen Alpert, and John Richardson
Tax Notes Federal, July 12, 2021

The United States must end its practice of taxing the foreign source income of U.S. citizens resident abroad. It is necessary to challenge the idea that any proposal to eliminate U.S. extraterritorial taxation must be revenue neutral.

 

Mission Impossible: Extraterritorial Taxation and the IRS
By Laura Snyder, Karen Alpert, and John Richardson
Tax Notes Federal, March 22, 2021

The IRS has failed to fulfill its mandate under the Taxpayer First Act for Americans living overseas, thus underscoring the imperative for Treasury to take action to eliminate extraterritorial taxation.

 

Taxing the American Emigrant
By Laura Snyder
The Tax Lawyer, March, 2021

American emigrants face many consequences from the extraterritorial application of U.S. taxation and banking policies. The stigmatization of American emigrants must, like other forms of stigmatization, be identified and held unacceptable. Otherwise, there is little hope for change.

 

A Simple Regulatory Fix for Citizenship Taxation
By John Richardson, Laura Snyder, and Karen Alpert
Tax Notes Federal, October 12, 2020

There are simple regulatory actions that Treasury can take that would, in the absence of legislative change, improve the lives of overseas Americans and permit the IRS to better focus its limited resources to more effectively administer the U.S. tax system.

 

The Criminalization of the American Emigrant
By Laura Snyder
Tax Notes Federal, June 29, 2020

There is a direct connection between U.S. taxation and banking policies that punish American emigrants and deep-seated prejudices against people associated with other places.

 

The Implications of Tax Residence for Human Rights
By Karen Alpert, Laura Snyder, and John Richardson
February 10, 2020

The U.S. extraterritorial tax system results in incompatible tax rules and excessive compliance costs. The system violates both the sovereignty of other countries and the human right to emigrate. International consensus is needed that individuals should generally be tax resident in only one jurisdiction at a time.

 

Investing with One Hand Tied Behind Your Back – An Australian Perspective on United States Tax Rules for Non-Resident Citizens
By Karen Alpert
January 8, 2018

Persons living overseas who are required to file U.S. tax returns will find it more difficult to effectively save for retirement, and will be more likely to rely on their country’s social safety net in their later years.

 

SEAT is an international not-for-profit association based in France. SEAT’s purpose is to end the taxation by the United States of the worldwide income of persons who are tax residents of another country. These policies affect many different kinds of residents of other countries: American expatriates, American emigrants, Accidental Americans, green card holders, and, for each kind, their families. The policies also affect the countries where they live. The policies have caused many to give up their US citizenship.

SEAT is an independent, non-partisan association. It has no regard for political preferences or party affiliations. It has no connection to any member of the tax compliance industry. Each of SEAT’s founding members is a volunteer.