Guide to advising US expat clients

  • Describe the tax liabilities due when one is a US citizen
  • List the problems US citizen have with conventional investment funds
  • Describe the issues when it comes to selling property
Guide to advising US expat clients


US expats living in the UK can face a number of challenges when it comes to their financial affairs.

This is because, unlike anywhere else, the Internal Revenue Service, or the IRS, still keeps a check on every US citizen and green card holder wherever they maybe, even if it means they may also be subject to the tax regime of the country where they are now living.

The US has a double taxation treaty with the UK, which means that in some instances the US regime holds, and in some cases it is the UK.

But the most important point is that there are some surprising tax issues that a US citizen needs to be aware of.

The best thing is to avoid them, as the article devoted to investment points out. But some clients might already be invested in assets that come with a penalty, without being aware of the issue.

If this is the case, some mitigation might be in order.

The following articles in this guide will consider why US expats might face a larger than expected tax bill and how best to help these clients achieve their wealth goals through investments.

Other articles in the guide will look at what US expats need to know about buying property and whether US citizens should think about giving up their US passport.

This guide is worth an indicative 60 minutes of CPD.

Contributors to the guide: Sigita Dromantaite, director at US and UK Eagle Taxation; Rajiv Vadgama, tax partner at RSM UK; Andrew Grimes, executive director, head of Americas at Coutts; Tim Scorer, partner and mortgage and protection consultant at Austin Friars; Daniel Freedman, managing director and co-founder of London & Capital; Andrea Solana, head of advanced planning at Maseco Private Wealth; Simon Gorbutt, director of wealth structuring solutions at Lombard International Assurance.

Melanie Tringham is deputy features editor at FTAdviser and Financial Adviser, and Victoria Ticha is a features writer at FTAdviser and Financial Adviser

In this guide


Please answer the six multiple choice questions below in order to bank your CPD. Multiple attempts are available until all questions are correctly answered.

  1. A US citizen is completely free of the clutches of the US tax authorities, once they live outside the United States. True or false?

  2. What happens if a US citizen is invested in a conventional UK investment fund?

  3. What happens to a pension fund if moved to a Qrops?

  4. The sale of one's principal private residence is completely free of capital gains tax for the US citizen, true or false?

  5. What impact does currency have on buying and selling of property?

  6. If one is going to give up one's US passport, then when is one likely to get a tax bill?

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You should now know…

  • Describe the tax liabilities due when one is a US citizen
  • List the problems US citizen have with conventional investment funds
  • Describe the issues when it comes to selling property

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