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I am a Canadian and I moved to US at the end of last year. (I have a green card now.) I have less than CAD 50K in my RRSP from my previous work, and less than CAD 40k at banks. Not sure what the best way to move it, or what I should do with it at all.

I don't really plan to withdraw any money to US, preferably I can just get help for a best way to invest the money.

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    Are you asking what to do with the funds, or are you asking how to move that money to the US? – MrChrister Apr 22 '14 at 18:39
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There is a tax treaty between Canada and the US that recognizes RRSPs as retirement accounts. You won't be taxed on the gains in your RRSP like you would be if it was in a TFSA. So you don't really have to do anything (except fill out a form for the IRS every year).

The problem that usually arises is if you want to buy something else. I don't know of any Canadian brokerage that will sell products to a US resident. It's a question of where they're licensed. However the SEC has issued an exemption so you can try to argue with your broker to get a trade done. Link to SEC order

With such a small amount in the account you may be paying fees or have it invested in funds with higher fees. You will have to do the math on whether or not you should just withdraw the money and invest in cheaper funds and accounts in the US.

When you withdraw the money Canada will withhold a flat rate of 25% or in some circumstances 15%.

For more info go to Serbinski (a cross border tax specialist).

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Depending on what state you live in in the United States, your Canadian brokerage may be able to sell products within the existing RRSP. I have an RRSP in Canada through TD Waterhouse and they infact just sent me a recent letter explaining that they are permitted to service my Canadian RRSP under the laws of Tennessee (where I live). The note went on to specifically state that they are not subject to the broker-dealer regulations of the US or the securities/regulations laws on the TN securities act. Furthermore, they state that Canadian RRSPs are not regulated under the securities laws of the US and the securities offered and sold to Canadian plans are exempt from registration with the SEC. When I call TD to do trades, I just ask for a Canada/US broker and that's who enters the sale for me. I declare my RRSP annually both to IRS under RRSP treaty and through FBAR reporting.

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As far as the RRSP goes, see my answer in

self directed RRSP for a non resident

Don't forget to file your FBAR and form 8938, if applicable.

-Jon

  • Welcome to Money.SE. Please note, link-only answers aren't appropriate. If the questions are identical, one should be flagged/voted as 'duplicate.' Else, even though the link is to an SE answer, please summarize here. Note - the answer you linked was lengthy compared to what you offered. It appeared more a rant that an answer. Please edit. – JoeTaxpayer Mar 27 '15 at 13:24

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