Myth 5: Do my whole family need to expatriate to legally shelter wealth?

Jul 27, 2021

“Do my whole family need to expatriate?”

Another fictitious hurdle that clients feel they have to vaunt over is the issue of their families’ expatriation. There is a concern that in order to preserve current and future wealth all members of a family will need to renunciate their citizenship. However,  the short and sweet answer to this question is no!

I have assisted Americans with expatriation strategies for over thirty years. Only twice in this period have more than one family member renounced their US citizenship. As is so often the case proper planning is the key. It is also vital to ensure real coordination with the family’s other advisors. With the right advice and prudent planning the family wealth can be properly protected from future US taxation, even upon succession.

Expatriation – Making the right decision for all the family

Whilst the whole family does not need to renunciate their citizenship, the life changes involved with expatriation will inevitably affect them.

The advice I always give to clients is that any decision made must be acceptable at the boardroom table and the breakfast table.

If your partner or family are unable to acclimate to a new environment the whole project will inevitably be flawed. The right choice of country will not just factor in the most prudent financial options, but will also consider a combination of different elements that are individual to each family. Will the culture be a good fit for your family? Are their suitable healthcare options? If your family is still young – what education choices will your family have? Does the new destination expand their future options or narrow them? Is there a language barrier? Will your partner be able to continue with his or her career?

You should also all be excited about the options your new home will bring.

Family in library

Will your new home offer suitable options for all the family?


Case studies – a closer look at options

A little while ago we did a series of blogs that looked into the pros and cons of different countries that offer potential destinations for ex-pats. Explore the below to get more of an idea of the different aspects to consider when plotting a move.