Intergovernmental agreements, along with U.S. laws like the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA), ensure that banks around the world share information with the IRS. Banks that do not agree to share information risk incurring costly penalties, giving foreign financial institutions (FFIs) powerful reasons to comply. If you have a foreign checking or savings account, it is only a matter of time before your bank notifies the IRS – and the clock is ticking rapidly. Before you receive a FATCA letter from your bank (or worse, a tax audit notice from the IRS), take proactive steps to protect yourself by consulting the international tax law attorneys at the Tax Law Office of David W. Klasing. Our IRS tax lawyers have extensive experience in the area of FATCA compliance and foreign account reporting, making our firm a top-rated choice for international taxpayers and business entities.
See our 2011 OVDI Q and A Library
See our FBAR Compliance and Disclosure Q and A Library
See our Foreign Audit Q and A Library
Have you ever wondered whether the country you bank in is under any obligation to report information to the IRS? There’s a simple answer: FFIs can (and frequently do) share data with the U.S. government, often without much prompting necessary. After all, under laws like FATCA, FFIs that fail to provide information face a 30% withholding tax on all U.S. transfers, making FATCA compliance just as important to banks as it is to individual taxpayers. In addition to FFIs around the globe, various information sharing agreements (such as this example agreement with Mexico) ensure that taxing authorities in the following jurisdictions will also provide information to the IRS, making the federal government’s search for offshore tax evaders even easier:
The dates referenced above refer to the operative dates for each agreement. For the full list, which is subject to changes and updates, refer to the IRS’ Country-by-Country Reporting Jurisdiction Status Table. For more information about what to do if you received a FATCA bank letter or have been notified of a foreign account tax audit, refer to the following resources and be sure to consult a tax attorney for legal guidance:
You cannot afford to assume you are “safe” from the IRS simply because the country you bank in does not appear on the list above. Not only do FATCA requirements (and related FBAR requirements), such as the requirement to file Form 8938 (Statement of Specified Foreign Financial Assets), apply to reportable assets held anywhere in the world; moreover, there are additional enforcement initiatives and IRS campaigns targeting foreign banks that could also place taxpayers at risk.
Take action to come forward and report your foreign account to the IRS – before your bank beats you to it. Failure to disclose offshore accounts can lead to civil or even criminal penalties, making timely compliance essential. For a confidential, reduced-rate consultation with a foreign account tax compliance attorney, contact the Tax Law Office of David W. Klasing online, or call (800) 681-1295 for 24-hour assistance.
In addition to our staffed main offices in Irvine, the Tax Law Offices of David W. Klasing has unstaffed (conference room only) satellite offices in Los Angeles, San Bernardino, Santa Barbara, Panorama City, Oxnard, San Diego, Bakersfield, San Jose, San Francisco, Oakland, Carlsbad and Sacramento.
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Will it cost me more to hire the Tax Law Offices of David W. Klasing, who’s main office and the vast majority of the firm’s staff is located in Irvine California, but an appointment only Satellite office is close to my location, as opposed to a local company? Absolutely not! See our policies that address this issue here.