The traditional challenges of expatriate life—adapting to a new culture, separation from family and friends—are being complicated by the tougher US laws and more aggressive scrutiny of customer accounts.
Many registered firms are closing accounts for Americans abroad or declining to open new ones, in order to avoid increased compliance costs and the consequences for potential errors.
Another factor is heightened enforcement of rules against so-called illicit finance, such as money laundering or financial transactions that breach US sanctions. Enforcement is again intensifying after a pause during the financial crisis, making it more expensive or difficult to move money from one country to another.
These regulations clearly aren’t about stopping tax evasion or collecting revenue, as the numbers show. Find out the real reason for these uniquely burdensome regulations here.