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I am an Austrian citizen, who just finished his PhD in Canada (on a study permit) and will now move to the US on a J1 Visa as a researcher.

I have some investments in my Canadian TFSA and was wondering how I should handle the situation optimally for tax purposes. I am thinking of two options:

  1. Sell all my investments and rebuy everything in the US. This will lead to no complications but I will pay taxes on potential gains.

  2. If I can keep my TFSA while I am in the US, then I should not need to pay any taxes on capital gains, right? Capital gains are sheltered from Canadian taxation in the TFSA and, as a non-resident alien for tax purposes in the US, I should not need to pay taxes on non-US income (at least for two years or for how long I am considered a non-resident alien for tax purposes with my J1 visa). Is that correct?

Do you think my second option is a valid strategy? If so, will it be possible to keep my TFSA even though I will not have a valid SIN in Canada anymore (my SIN will expire with my study permit)?

Remark: I am aware that I will not be able to make any contributions to my TFSA, I am more interested in just holding my stocks and let them grow taxfree for an additional two years.

Edit: Changed TSFA to TFSA

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  • Do you mean TFSA?
    – DJohnM
    Aug 9 at 23:11
  • Yes, sorry my bad, let me see whether I can change that.
    – Komarex
    Aug 9 at 23:23
  • Upon further reading it seems to be the case that I will be taxed 30% on capital gains in the US as a non-resident alien, which is worse than for resident aliens. My best course of action seems to be, selling everything in Canada, rebuy in the US and hold until I am a resident alien to get the corresponding tax rate. Is my thinking correct?
    – Komarex
    Aug 10 at 0:03

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