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How Does Renunciation Affect Entitlement To US Social Security Payments?

How Does Renunciation Affect Entitlement To US Social Security Payments?

October 27, 2021

October 27, 2021 - Participants Include:


Virginia La Torre Jeker - @VLJeker

John Richardson - @Expatriationlaw


Many US citizens are entitled to US Social Security Benefits. They have spent a life of paying into the system.

Those considering renunciation of US citizenship sometimes have concerns about how NOT being a US citizen might impact their entitlement to US Security Benefits (to which they would otherwise be entitled).

In this episode Dubai based international tax lawyer Virginia La Torre Jeker and John Richardson discuss how renunciation of US citizenship impacts these issues.

The short answer is that:

For the vast majority of people, renunciation of US citizenship will have no impact on their continued entitlement to US Social Security. It will however have an impact on the way those payments are taxed. (Note that renunciation of US citizenship affects BOTH how Social Security is taxed under  the US Internal Revenue Code AND under applicable tax treaties.)


Further Resources:

1. US Gov - Your Payments While Outside The United States

2. US Social Security Information Site

3. More advanced questions and how long term residence abroad can impact US Social Security.



Concerned about being barred from the United States after renouncing US citizenship?


Here is an earlier podcast with Virginia where we discuss the Reed Amendment and whether those renouncing US citizenship are really at risk of being barred from entering the United States. There is little evidence that renunciation of US citizenship (even if motivated by tax avoidance) will lead to being barred from entering the United States under the Reed Amendment.





For Good And For Evil: Podcast 1 - Introduction

For Good And For Evil: Podcast 1 - Introduction

October 26, 2021

October 25, 2021 - Participants Include:


John Richardson - @Expatriationlaw


Jimmy Sexton - @JimmySextonLLM



For Good And For Evil - Podcast 1 - Introducing The Series

I am really excited to annouce a new podcast series called "For Good And For Evil". The series is based on the book by Charles W. Adams titled:

For Good And Evil: The Impact Of Taxes On The Course Of Civilization

This is a truly incredible book. Although (perhaps) not popular when it was published, Mr. Adam's observations were remarkably prescient. To put it simply much of the current focus on taxation can be understood through the discussion of history in this remarkable book.

The book describes history in terms of taxation. (Was the US Civil War really about slavery or was it about taxation?) After 36 chapters of explaining history in terms of taxation, we reach Chapter 37. In Chapter 37 - "Learning From The Past" - Mr. Adams list 27 lessons to be learned about taxation from the past (the first 36 chapters). These 27 lessons will be the basis for our series of podcasts. (We will of course link this to previous chapters.)

I (John Richardson) am pleased to be joined in this "trip through history" (as explained by taxation) by Jimmy Sexton, LL.M. (CEO of the Esquire Group). Jimmy and I have spent many hours discussing these principles. This podcast series will bring you into the discussion. We will of course invite other guests.

At present we are planning to do a podcast every Monday morning EST - Toronto, Canada time.

I am excited about this project and am sure that many of you will find it interesting. So, go out and buy the book. Follow this series. Send us your thoughts and questions on Twitter.

In order to prime yourself, here  is a link to a great video of an interview with the man himself - Charles W. Adams.





Dr. Karen Alpert: Calling Australians To Tell Australia Gov  How The US Tax Treaty Is Hurting you!

Dr. Karen Alpert: Calling Australians To Tell Australia Gov How The US Tax Treaty Is Hurting you!

October 25, 2021

October 25, 2021 - Participants Include:


Dr. Karen Alpert - @FixTheTaxTreaty


John Richarsdon - @Expatriationlaw


As reported at American Expat Finance, the Government of Australia has solicited public comments about its tax treaties and tax treaty network. Dr. Karen Alpert, founder of the Fix The Tax Treaty site has prepared a submission to the Australian Government. You will find her submission here.

It is important that individuals impacted by this issue (US citizens living in Australia or Australian citizens living in the United States) take the time to comment on this issue!

The problems are summarized in Dr. Alpert's submission.  As you know, the problems include but are not limited to: the Australian Superannuation, sale of the principal residence, PFICs, the "saving clause", etc. Please take the time to make a submission which details how the current system has harmed you!



Note from Karen:

I would encourage all affected Australian citizens and residents to make their own submission. You can download our submission from our post at and attach it as an appendix to your own submission describing how the inadequate treaty affects you. Send a copy to your Member of Parliament. Submissions are due 31 October 2021 (AEDT). Unless the Australian Treasury hears from those who are affected, they will continue to ignore the inadequacies of the tax treaty.

The Significance Of The Pandora Papers: Is the wealth of the public the business of the public?

The Significance Of The Pandora Papers: Is the wealth of the public the business of the public?

October 23, 2021

October 18, 2021 - Participants Include:


Jimmy Sexton of the Esquire Group - @JimmySextonLLM

John Richardson - @Expatriationlaw

Significantly the Pandora Papers revealed little tax evasion. The leak did reveal that many individuals (including the wealthy) have a desire to keep their personal affairs private. In many cases, the desire for privacy is NOT to hide assets from governments but rather to hide assets from the general public. (Some have argued that the focus is not on tax evasion but is preserving the integrity of the democratic process.)

In this podcast I am joined by Jimmy Sexton to discuss the the world of asset privacy. We make the distinction between hiding assets from governments and hiding assets from the your neighbours. Interestingly the United States (South Dakota and other states) have become world leaders in providing "privacy havens" for wealthy individuals.

We also discuss the possible implementation of wealth taxes and what they may mean and other aspects of living in a world where "the wealthy" (whatever that means) are increasingly under scrutiny.

There are two groups of people who will find this discussion interesting:

1. Those individuals who value privacy

2. Those individuals who do NOT value privacy.

Previous podcasts with Jimmy Sexton include:














Professor Steven Dean Part 1: The Sociology Of International Tax - A History Of Privilege

Professor Steven Dean Part 1: The Sociology Of International Tax - A History Of Privilege

October 22, 2021

October 21, 2021 - Participants Include:


Professor Steven Dean - @BrooklynTaxProf

John Richardson - @Expatriationlaw


On October 21, 2021 I participated in a discussion with Professor Steven Dean of Brooklyn Law School. The discussion has been divided into two podcasts. This is Podcast 1.

As a professor Steven Dean understands the technical aspects of tax. That said, he is one of the very few tax academics who is a thought leader in understanding the sociological forces that have and continue to shape  our current system of international taxation. Shockingly the international tax system is based on treaties that were entered into 100 years ago. As such those treaties reflect the values, assumptions and priorities of a world that no longer exists.

Steven Dean's writings draw attention to ways that the international tax system (reflecting the views and priorities of the privileged) impose and perpetuate hardship on the disadvantaged. Who could have imagined that poverty in some of the poorest countries of the world are exacerbated by the rules of international tax?

Our discussion on how taxation impacts countries and individuals includes the newsworthy Pillar 1, Pillar 2 and Professor Dorothy Brown's "The Whiteness Of Wealth".

His insights into the events that led to FATCA will be of particular interest to those Americans abroad who are fighting the injustices of FATCA and US citizenship-based taxation.


What follows are links to some of his best and most interesting work. Each of these articles is referenced in the podcasts. I particularly recommend the "Ten Truths About Tax Havens" article below ...


Mainstream media for a mainstream audience


A Plea to President Biden to Stop Perpetuating Racist Tax Policy


Can The Powerful Global Tax Organization Shed Its Racist Ways?



Academic Papers


Steven Dean: A Constitutional Moment In Cross Border Taxation

Steven Dean and Attiya Waris: The Ten Truths About Tax Havens





How Racial Diversity Shaped US International Tax Policy*

*This is an interview with Robert Goulder of Tax Notes. The discussion sheds some light on the events leading to FATCA.

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