Evolution of process of relinquishing US citizenship in Canada – Form 4079 no longer used

In the last year I have written the following three posts about the evolution of the process of “formal expatriation” (NOT the do it yourself version AKA – simply “delete US citizenship“).

This is the fourth post. This post confirms that the the process in Canada no longer includes Form 4079. Instead a questionnaire has been included as a possible substitute for Form 4079. It appears that those who are applying for “back dated relinquishments” should use the questionnaire to document the basis for the claim.

The first three posts have been:

1. July 10, 2015 -Thoughts on: Major updates to Foreign Affairs Manual on U.S. citizenship renunciation proceduresRelinquishment fee moving from no charge to $2350, phasing out Form 4079, no lawyers allowed at appointments

2. November 4, 2015 State Department Phasing Out Form 4079 for relinquishments of U.S. citizenship – A review the role played by Form 4079 in different U.S. consulates around the world.

3. February 17, 2016 – New instructions to book Canada appointments to relinquish or renounce US citizenshipdescribing the new centralized process for relinquishment U.S. citizenship in Canada

Today’s (May 26, 2016) post confirms that Form 4079 appears to have been eliminated in Canada. What is expected now?. You being the relinquishment process (which includes renunciation) in Canada (different countries have different rules) by emailing: CanadaCLNinquires@state.gov. You will then receive a reply email which provides instructions.

That is the contents of the automated reply which provides direction and guidance – Here is the questionnaire that is attached to the email:

Questionnaire from CanadaCLNInquiries

As of May 26, 2016 the reply email includes:

__________________________________________________________________________

From: “Canada, CLNInquiries” <CanadaCLNInquiries@state.gov>
Subject: Thank you for your inquiry
Date: May 26, 2016 at 8:14:03 AM EDT
To: John R – < john@anyemail.com>

 

Thank you for contacting us regarding your interest in relinquishing/renouncing your U.S. citizenship.  Please do not reply to this email.  This inbox is not monitored.

The following information outlines very specific steps you need to follow in order to formally renounce or relinquish your U.S. citizenship.  Please read the email carefully.

Note:  If you are a United States Legal Permanent Resident (LPR) and would like to abandon your LPR status, please review the information at https://ca.usembassy.gov/visas/abandonment-of-lawful-permanent-resident-lpr-status/

Renunciation of U.S. citizenship must 1) be taken in the presence of a diplomatic or consular officer; 2) be taken outside the United States; and 3) be in the precise form prescribed by the Secretary of State.  It is an irrevocable action that cannot be reversed.  Final action is taken by the Department of State.  Once the application is approved, a Certificate of Loss of Nationality (CLN) will be issued.  This document verifies that you are no longer a citizen of the United States.  Please be advised that the process may take up to several months to complete.

You must follow these steps:


·         Review the information on:

·         Legal Considerations  http://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/legal-considerations/us-citizenship-laws-policies/renunciation-of-citizenship.html

·         Right of Residence in the U.S.  http://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/legal-considerations/us-citizenship-laws-policies/renunciation-of-citizenship-right-of-residence.html

·         Possible Loss of U.S. Nationality and Dual Nationality  http://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/legal-considerations/us-citizenship-laws-policies/citizenship-and-dual-nationality.html


·         Complete the following forms according to the instructions.  You will need to gather specific information in support of your application.  Please fill out forms completely online as a fillable FAR document. Please note that the FAR file format is a unique type of format that you may not be able to re-open or edit once they are saved on your computer, however it is necessary for us to receive it in this format.



·         If you are renouncing U.S. citizenship:


·         Questionnaire (attached to this email as a Word document)


·         Form DS-4080:  https://eforms.state.gov/editdocument.aspx?documentid=261&from=2&categoryid=1&form_format=3&Width=1270


·         Form DS-4081:  https://eforms.state.gov/editdocument.aspx?documentid=55&from=2&categoryid=1&form_format=3&Width=1270



·         Scanned copies (preferably in PDF format) of the following items:



–          Your most recent U.S. passport and, if you have ever been issued one, your Consular Report of Birth Abroad, Certificate of U.S. Citizenship, or Certificate of U.S. Naturalization.



–          Your U.S. birth certificate as evidence of U.S. citizenship, if you do not have one of the citizenship documents listed above.


–          Valid Canadian passport.  If you do not have a valid Canadian passport please bring original evidence of your other (non-U.S.) citizenship.



–          Evidence of name changes, if applicable (usually marriage certificates or official name change document).




·         If you are relinquishing U.S. citizenship by documenting the performance of a previously performed expatriating act:



·         Questionnaire (attached to this email as a Word document).



·         Original evidence of your prior expatriating act if you are documenting a prior relinquishment of U.S. citizenship (usually a Canadian certificate of citizenship with the date you became a Canadian citizen).  This is not required if you are currently a U.S. citizen renouncing your U.S. citizenship. To learn about the difference between relinquishment and renunciation, please go to http://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/legal-considerations/us-citizenship-laws-policies/citizenship-and-dual-nationality.html.


·         Form DS-4081:  https://eforms.state.gov/editdocument.aspx?documentid=55&from=2&categoryid=1&form_format=3&Width=1270



·         Scanned copies (preferably in PDF format) of the following items:



–          Your most recent U.S. passport and, if you have ever been issued one, your Consular Report of Birth Abroad, Certificate of U.S. Citizenship, or Certificate of U.S. Naturalization.



–          Your U.S. birth certificate as evidence of U.S. citizenship, if you do not have one of the citizenship documents listed above.


–          Valid Canadian passport.  If you do not have a valid Canadian passport please bring original evidence of your other (non-U.S.) citizenship.



–          Evidence of name changes, if applicable (usually marriage certificates or official name change document).





·         Return the completed forms and scanned documents listed above with a request for an appointment at a U.S. Consulate to CanadaCLNAppointments@state.gov<mailto:CanadaCLNAppointments@state.gov> . In your request, please include this text: “I have read the information provided and have filled out all your required forms and gathered all required supporting documentation”.  Indicate where you would like to have your interview by cutting and pasting one of the following into the email Subject line:

Request For LON Appointment: OTTAWA
Request For LON Appointment: TORONTO
Request For LON Appointment: MONTREAL
Request For LON Appointment: QUEBEC CITY
Request For LON Appointment: HALIFAX
Request For LON Appointment: CALGARY
Request For LON Appointment: VANCOUVER
Request For LON Appointment: Next Available Appointment Anywhere In Canada

You will be contacted to confirm an appointment date and time.

At the time of your appointment, you must appear in person at the specified U.S. Consulate or the U.S. Embassy.  A Consular Officer will administer an “Oath of Renunciation of the Nationality of the United States” and a “Statement of Understanding”.  If you arrive fully prepared for your appointment, the application may be completed in one interview. If you do not have the forms filled out or if you do not have all required original evidence, you may need to return for a second appointment.

Please be prepared to provide the following at your appointment:


·         Printed copy of Form DS4080 if you are renouncing U.S. nationality.


·         Printed copy of Form DS4081.


·         Your most recent U.S. passport and, if you have ever been issued one, your Consular Report of Birth Abroad, Certificate of U.S. Citizenship, or Certificate of U.S. Naturalization.


·         Your U.S. birth certificate as evidence of U.S. citizenship, if you do not have one of the citizenship documents listed above.  Please see the following website for requirements for U.S. birth certificates:  http://travel.state.gov/content/passports/en/passports/first-time.html#step3


·         Valid Canadian passport.  If you do not have a valid Canadian passport please bring original evidence of your other (non-U.S.) citizenship.


·         Original evidence of name changes, if applicable (usually marriage certificates or official name change document).


·         Your NEXUS card, if you have been issued one.


·         Your U.S. Social Security Card, if you have one.


·         The address of your last residence in the United States.


·         Original evidence of your prior expatriating act if you are documenting a prior relinquishment of U.S. citizenship (usually a Canadian certificate of citizenship with the date you became a Canadian citizen).  This is not required if you are currently a U.S. citizen renouncing your U.S. citizenship. To learn about the difference between relinquishment and renunciation, please go to http://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/legal-considerations/us-citizenship-laws-policies/citizenship-and-dual-nationality.html.


·         USD$2,350 (or Canadian dollar equivalent).  We accept cash and credit cards but do not accept debit or personal checks.  If you pay by credit card, the charge will be in U.S. dollars.


·         A National Canada Post Xpresspost envelope (241mm x 318mm) for return of the original documents and the Certificate of Loss of Nationality after it is approved.  Documents will be mailed from the U.S. Consulate General in Vancouver so please purchase a NATIONAL (Canada-wide) mailing envelope.  British Columbia residents may purchase a Regional Xpresspost envelope.  For more information on Xpresspost services, see the Canada Post website (http://www.canadapost.ca<http://www.canadapost.ca/>).

You may refer to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) website for information on U.S. federal tax form 8854 “Initial and Annual Expatriation Information Statement.” https://www.irs.gov/Individuals/International-Taxpayers/Expatriation-Tax

While you may choose to seek legal advice in preparing your forms, attorneys are not permitted to accompany an applicant to the Consulate.  Please plan to spend up to two hours at your appointment.

Thank you again for contacting us.
_________________________________________________________________________
My comments/thoughts …

 

  1. If you wish to relinquish U.S. citizenship in Canada at the earliest possible time you should choose the first available appointment option.
  2. My impression is that this will make “back dated relinquishments” more difficult to prove. Remember that the expatriating act found in S. 349(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act must have been voluntarily performed with the intention of relinquishing U.S. citizenship (be careful). Perhaps Form 4079 could be used as a vehicle to understand how the DOS “thinks about” back-dated relinquishments. I presume that you would make your case for a “back dated relinquishment” by accepting their invitation to provide a separate statement.
  3. Nobody should consider formally relinquishing U.S. citizenship without considering whether you would be subject to the S. 877A Exit Tax issues! Seriously, you must be careful. Note that the questionnaire asks for your Social Security number!

For you interest, and opportunity for a sneak preview, the forms referenced in the mail are here:

In closing:

None of this is legal advice. If you need help, take appropriate steps to get it. It’s worth it for considering the Exit Tax issues alone.

John Richardson