Leaving the Country? Pay the Price!

 Posted by on 11 November 2008 at 12:06 am  Politics
Nov 112008

In the wake of Barack Obama’s election as 44th President of the United States, some people have talked about leaving the country. However, an Instapundit reader noted that the US government may impose a stiff exit tax for the more productive people seeking to leave:

…”Going John Galt” is not that easy — Congress quietly passed an “exit tax” earlier this year to penalize any (somewhat) high net worth US resident that decides to vote with their feet.

As quoted in the links below, the U.S. government, through the Heroes Earnings Assistance and Relief Act of 2008 (the HEART bill, for short, and I am not making this up), effective June 17, 2008, imposes an “exit tax” on certain citizens and long-term residents who expatriate or terminate their long-term residency. Such individuals, called covered expatriates, will be deemed to have sold all of their worldwide property for its fair market value on the day before expatriating or terminating U.S. residency, and will be liable for U.S. tax on the amount deemed realized in excess of $600,000 (subject to cost of living adjustments).

Covered expatriates are: citizens and long-term residents who (a) have an average annual U.S. tax liability for the previous five years of $139,000 (adjusted for inflation), (b) have a net worth of at least $2,000,000 on the expatriation date, or (c) fail to certify compliance with all U.S. federal tax obligations for the previous five years.

Link 1
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And regular NoodleFood commenter Jim May gets a mention from Instapundit with this quote:

…I left Canada for the greater opportunity and freedom in America. I never expected Canada to follow me here.

I still agree with Dr. Leonard Peikoff’s assessment in his November 3, 2008 podcast — I’d still rather stay in the US and fight for good ideas than leave, at least at this point in time

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