Expat Investors: Don’t Make This Mistake

Nobody likes to admit this but… one day you’ll die.

For the sake of dramatic appeal, let’s say it happens on your 95th birthday. You’re climbing Mount Everest. Needless to say, you’re one tough nonagenarian.

But then… BOOM!

An avalanche takes you out. You watch what happens next from a big fluffy cloud. Your children, grandchildren and great grandchildren mourn.

But something, you hope, might lessen the sting of loss.

You were a great investor and you’ve arranged to bequeath the proceeds from your brokerage account.

But then something crazy happens. After your heirs receive their share, the U.S. government takes about 40 percent of the kitty.

If you’re an expat with a nest egg of U.S. Blue Chip stocks or ETFs, the American government could slap your family with a tax bill when you die.

Yes, I can hear your protests. You aren’t an American. None of your descendants are American. Perhaps you’ve never set foot on U.S. soil before. Unfortunately, that might not matter.

Image by Pixabay

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Andrew Hallam

I’m a financial columnist for Canada’s national paper, The Globe and Mail, as well as for AssetBuilder, a financial service firm based in Texas. I’m also the author of Millionaire Teacher: The Nine Rules of Wealth You Should Have Learned in School (2nd Ed. Wiley 2017) and The Global Expatriate’s Guide To Investing: From Millionaire Teacher to Millionaire Expat (Wiley 2015). My mission is to educate, motivate and inspire people on basic retirement planning and best practices for investing, using evidence-based strategies. I'm happy to comment on your questions. However, please read the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and the Comments Policy.

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