Just like the recent rise of business inversions — moving business HQ abroad — the United States has seen an uptick (up 221%) in Americans renouncing their citizenship. The elephant in the room in both these cases is taxes: both high taxes and burdensome tax compliance in foreign jurisdictions.
Instead of facing the problems directly, the Obama Administration has resorted to punitive measures. The shame and blame tactic of calling out businesses who wish to relocate as “unpatriotic” was undignified. Perhaps realizing that using the same strategy with individuals would be even less well received, they went the more quiet, direct route: yesterday, the State Department announced their interim final rule that raises the fee for renouncing citizenship from $450 to $2,350.