The number of wealthy Americans with assets over $2 million who renounced their citizenship has surged amid socioeconomic despair, political firestorms, and an unrelenting virus pandemic sparking increasingly freedom-destroying mandates from the 'petty tyrants' - as Rand Paul described them - in Washington.
Earlier this year, we noted 6,705 Americans gave up their citizenship in 2020, a 260% increase from 2019 when 2,577 renounced their citizenship. People fleeing the country tend to have the economic mobility to do so and seek tax haven countries. They also seek areas that are safer (free of social unrest) and have more freedoms.
It's no secret that the Democrat's key campaign promise is higher taxes and that may have spooked wealthy people also.
For 2021, the number of Americans who renounced their citizenship this year is down, but that might be due to COVID restrictions at U.S. embassies and consulates that have delayed the process.
David Lesperance, an international tax lawyer based in Poland who helps people renounce U.S. citizenship, told Axios that there's a backlog of wealthy people trying to renounce their citizenship but "can't get the appointment" with the government because "the system's capacity has peaked."
He estimates "20,000 or 30,000 people" are attempting to renounce their citizenship.
Lesperance told Axios that the first process to renouncing citizenship requires obtaining citizenship in another country. He said, "it's a year-and-a-half to get an appointment at a Canadian embassy."
He added the virus pandemic has complicated the process and made it more time-consuming than ever before.
Ashkan Yekrangi, an immigration lawyer, based in Orange County, told Axios that "the bulk of the cases are individuals trying to avoid tax liability."
Even tech billionaires have begun to apply for citizenship elsewhere: the former CEO of Google, Eric Schmidt, is becoming a citizen of the island of Cyprus.
The Biden tax plan to raise the corporate tax rate, top individual income tax rate, and capital gains tax rate will likely push more wealthy people out of the U.S. on top of the already socioeconomic collapse that is being held up by a thread of fiscal and monetary stimuli.
Wealthy folks are beginning to understand: they don't want to be the last ones sticking around when the party ends.
The IRS published a quarterly list of the latest millionaires who have renounced their citizenship or given up their green cards. Read the complete list here.