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September 01, 2014

State Department Hikes Fee To Renounce Citizenship Amid Record Number Of Renunciations

The State Department's new fee schedule will become effective on September 12. It includes a five-fold increase in the cost to renounce citizenship.

The fee for individuals to renounce U.S. citizenship is jumping to $2,350 as of Sept. 12—more than five times the current charge of $450.

The U.S. State Department, in its explanation for the increase, said that documenting a renunciation is “extremely costly” and requires a minimum of two intensive interviews with the applicant as well as other procedures.

The fees charged for a number of other services, such as “fiance(e) visas” and employment-based visa applications, increased far less than those for renunciation and in some cases declined.

There was a record number of renunciations last year, and this year the number is expected to be even higher. For example, there are so many people already scheduled at the consulate in Toronto the wait time for new applicants (renunciates?) to start the interview process has been pushed into 2015.

I understand that State Department has little control over the policies driving renunciation, but let's not kid ourselves about what this is about. Individuals and businesses of means are fleeing the United States' punitive economic policies. Hiking the exit fee isn't going to stop that; this is just a way to wring one last penny from them while they're on their way out.


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posted by Gabriel Malor at 04:34 PM

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