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Why some Americans abroad renounce US citizenship

M Timothy O'Keefe | Getty Images

Expat Keith Redmond took issue with a recent op-ed from CNBC.com Managing Editor Allen Wastler titled, "Is giving up citizenship…un-American?" Here is Redmond's response.

There is this unusual American cultural phenomenon regarding its citizens who live outside the United States. They are looked upon with suspicion and are considered unpatriotic, tax cheats/evaders (even though they pay taxes to their respective countries of residence for the services in which they benefit), or committing some type of nefarious activity. It is evident in many of the comments from homeland Americans on articles/commentaries about the current situation Americans overseas find themselves.

Americans overseas have no formal voice at the legislative level. Their voice is diluted over the 50 states in which many of them vote. Some are not associated with a state so they only can vote in federal elections therefore they have no one to address any concerns.

The various American overseas organizations are fragmented hence no strong voice unlike other countries such as France (as an example). French expats have a delegate in each region of the world (e.g. Frédéric Lefebvre, the French expat delegate for North America) where he/she sits in the French National Assembly—therefore a formal legislative voice representing the interests of French expats. In other words, France values its expats unlike the United States which looks upon its expats with suspicion.

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Please note that it is not only Americans overseas who are in an untenable situation at present. The reach of the newly established Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) extends to green card holders living overseas, "accidental Americans" (i.e. those individuals who were born in the U.S. to non-American parents and left as infants, but are nevertheless considered U.S. Persons for the rest of their lives vis-à-vis taxation issues), non-American spouses of Americans overseas, and other countries' expats living in the United States where they have bank accounts, investment accounts, mortgages, et al. in their respective home countries. These individuals are having their accounts closed and mortgages rescinded as a result of FATCA.

Please also note that the US State Department raised the renunciation fee 400 percent from $450 to $2,350 this past September. It is apparent that they did this as a deterrent for Americans overseas not to renounce. In fact, the opposite has occurred as there is a significant backlog at U.S. embassies/consulates worldwide for renunciations (e.g. US Embassy—Toronto has such a backlog that one cannot get an appointment until at least June 2015). This spike is because many fear that the U.S. State Department will raise the fees again.

Read MoreIs giving up citizenship...un-American?

This is just the tip of the iceberg in which Americans overseas find themselves. And the situation is becoming worse as they are having difficulty retaining local bank accounts in their respective countries of residence and CANNOT open a bank account in the U.S. because they do not live in the U.S. Therefore, many Americans overseas are looking at what the "future value" is in keeping their US citizenship. These Americans overseas do not want to give up their citizenship but find the US government's policies have given them no choice if they want to have accounts in order to bank, invest, and save for retirement in the countries where they are fiscal residents.

Commentary by Keith Redmond, an American currently living in Paris, France. He is an international consultant & advocate for the bio-pharmaceutical and non-profit industries as well as government organizations. He is also a founding member of Cercle K2, an international think tank. Mr. Redmond is the administrator for the American Expatriates Facebook group.