Complex US/Canada Question/Advice PEI NH =


I have been listening to your show on, and visited your website.

Please read the situation below.   What would be the cost to talk with you on the phone for a half hour on these issues?

Here's my situation, and what I would like to do:

My wife is an American, I am a Canadian with a US green card.   I have been living in the US for 32 years.
My wife is currently a housewife.   I am an engineer with an annual salary of $120K.  We are 46 and 50 years old.

We are just about finalizing a joint Chapter 13 Bankruptcy for unsecured debt.   This was caused by mismanagement of
credit cards, and, while self-employed, not paying the IRS on time.   We have learned the very hard way.

My chapter 13 repayment plan will be somewhere in the $1300/month range for the next five years.

We own our current home, and it is on the market.  We expect to net aprox. $60K when it is sold.

Now, here come the Canadian questions:

We want to relocate to xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx We love the province.  We love Canada.   I have 25 years of software development experience,
and am setting up some nearshore consultancy arrangements.  My income will probably come from the US, and will be reduced
somewhat, probably into the $85-$90K range, and my wife expects to work (expecting $15-20K a year).

What we would like to do is buy land in xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx and rent a house for a year or more, then build.

The questions I have are:

1 How will the US Bankruptcy affect me in Canada?  Is the lack of credit in Canada a factor?  If I buy land, say for $70000, and put $30K
down, will I be able to get a mortgage?

2. Is it better to attempt to get a mortgage right away in Canada, and build a house, or rent and build up a credit rating in Canada?

3. I have paid significant money into the US social security System.   Will I be able to collect when I am 65?
(b)  Can we collect from both social security systems when we reach the correct age?

4. I have an 19-year-old who will be going to college in Canada in the fall s
o, I expect to be working for a while.   Can you think of any immediate issues with this?


david ingram replies:

1.    You will have made a proposal in bankruptcy under Canadian law and if asked will have to disclose it.  A very good argument can be made that you should volonteer the information.  However, I am going to suggest that you call Murray Morisson a BC Canadian bankruptcy lawyer at (604) 930-9013  [email protected] and ask him. You can find his site at With $30,000 down and proof of inocme you should be able to get a mortgage although you might pay a premium becasue of the proposal and becasue it is vacant land which usually carries an intrerest penalty.

2.   My suggestion is that you likley have a better chance of getting a mortgage for a house  than for the vacant land.  CMHC will/should  guarantee the mortgage with $30,000 down.

3.   You will be able to collect but will pay a penalty if you have not paid in for 30 years under WEP.  It sounds like you are close.  My suggestion is that you get your US citizenship first before coming to Canada if you intend to keep on working in the US. Although you can fill out form I-131 and get permission to reenter the US with your green card, it has to be renewed every year and the most I have ever seen it renewed was 8 years. If yuo intend to keep on working or providing services to US companies I GUARANTEE that you will be better off with US citizenship under these circumstances. And, yes, after paying into the CPP, you will be able to collect from both but will get significantly more from the US if you have put in for 30 years (120 quarters).

4.   As the parent of many, I could write a book.  Good luck with the 19 year old. 

You will need tax help when you make your move and will NOT find anyone that I know of on PEI who can look after the US NH and arriving in Canada returns at the same time. We deal with these regularly by fax, courier snail mail and email (pdf files only please).
David Ingram's US / Canada Services
US / Canada / Mexico tax, Immigration and working Visa Specialists
US / Canada Real Estate Specialists
My Home office is at:
4466 Prospect Road
North Vancouver,  BC, CANADA, V7N 3L7
Cell (604) 657-8451 -
(604) 980-0321 Fax (604) 980-0325

Calls welcomed from 10 AM to 9 PM 7 days a week  Vancouver (LA) time -  (please do not fax or phone outside of those hours as this is a home office)
Disclaimer:  This question has been answered without detailed information or consultation and is to be regarded only as general comment.   Nothing in this message is or should be construed as advice in any particular circumstances. No contract exists between the reader and the author and any and all non-contractual duties are expressly denied. All readers should obtain formal advice from a competent and appropriately qualified legal practitioner or tax specialist for expert help, assistance, preparation, or consultation  in connection with personal or business affairs such as at If you forward this message, this disclaimer must be included."
Be ALERT,  the world needs more "lerts"
David Ingram gives expert income tax & immigration help to non-resident Americans & Canadians from New York to California to Mexico  family, estate, income trust trusts Cross border, dual citizen - out of country investments are all handled with competence & authority.
Phone consultations are $400 for 15 minutes to 50 minutes (professional hour). Please note that GST is added if product remains in Canada or a phone consultation is in Canada.
This is not intended to be definitive but in general I am quoting $800 to $2,400 for a dual country tax return.
$800 would be one T4 slip one W2 slip one or two interest slips and you lived in one country only - no self employment or rentals or capital gains - you did not move into or out of the country in this year.
$1,000 would be the same with one rental
$1,200 would be the same with one business no rental
$1,200 would be the minimum with a move in or out of the country. These are complicated because of the back and forth foreign tax credits. - The IRS says a foreign tax credit takes 1 hour and 53 minutes.
$1,500 would be the minimum with a rental or two in the country you do not live in or a rental and a business and foreign tax credits  no move in or out
$2,400 would be all of the above and you moved in and out of the country.
This is just a guideline for US / Canadian returns
We will still prepare Canadian only (lives in Canada, no US connection period) with two or three slips and no capital gains, etc. for $150.00 up.
With a Rental for $350
A Business for $350 - Rental and business likely $450
And an American only (lives in the US with no Canadian income or filing period) with about the same things in the same range with a little bit more if there is a state return.
Moving in or out of the country or part year earnings in the US will ALWAYS be $800 and up.
TDF 90-22.1 forms are $50 for the first and $25.00 each after that when part of a tax return.
8891 forms are generally $50.00 to $100.00 each.
18 RRSPs would be $900.00 - (maybe amalgamate a couple)
Capital gains *sales)  are likely $50.00 for the first and $20.00 each after that.
Just a guideline not etched in stone. 
This from "ask an income trusts tax and immigration expert" from or or David Ingram deals on a daily basis with expatriate tax returns with multi jurisdictional cross and trans border expatriate problems  for the United States, Canada, Mexico, Great Britain, United Kingdom, Kuwait, Dubai, Saudi Arabia, Thailand, Indonesia, Japan, China, New Zealand, France, Germany, Spain, Italy, Russia, Georgia, Brazil, Peru, Ecuador, Bolivia, Scotland, Ireland, Hawaii, Florida, Montana, Morocco, Israel, Iraq, Iran, India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Mali, Bangkok, Greenland, Iceland, Cuba, Bahamas, Bermuda, Barbados, St Vincent, Grenada,, Virgin Islands, US, UK, GB, and any of the 43 states with state tax returns, etc. Rockwall, Dallas, San Antonio Houston, Denmark, Finland, Sweden Norway Bulgaria Croatia Income Tax and Immigration Tips, Income Tax  Immigration Wizard Antarctica Rwanda Guru  Consultant Specialist Section 216(4) 216(1) NR6 NR-6 NR 6 Non-Resident Real Estate tax specialist expert preparer expatriate anti money laundering money seasoning FINTRAC E677 E667 105 106 TDF-90 Reporting $10,000 cross border transactions Grand Cayman Aruba Zimbabwe South Africa Namibia help USA US Income Tax Convention

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