I’m A US Citizen But Canadian Resident – Do I Need To File US Tax Returns?

The Question:

“I’m a US citizen, but left when I was three. I’ve lived in Canada for the last 25 years now, and have had zero ties to the US. A friend told me I still need to file US tax returns… That can’t be correct, can it?


The US is one of two countries (I’ll let the reader guess what the other country is) that taxes based on citizenship. So, every US citizen, everywhere in the world, needs to file a US tax return. Otherwise Uncle Sam gets grumpy.

If you need to get caught up on missed returns, you might be able to take advantage of the Streamlined Foreign Offshore Procedures program. (I’ve written about that previously here.) You’ll be looking at three years of tax filings, six years of FBARs, and the Form 14653.

More Reading:



Usual Disclaimer: This information is for general information purposes only, and deals with complicated and time-sensitive info that may not apply to your situation. Tax rules are always changing, and this information may not be current. Tax is complicated, this information is not tax advice, and don’t rely on this info to make tax decisions – Hire someone to help you.