Analysis

Treasury and IRS issued guidance on FATCA

Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act

Below are selected publications from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and Treasury department providing guidance regarding Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA). Guidance issues are posted as soon as they are made public.

2016 guidance

  • August 10, 2016: The IRS updated the FATCA IDES Technical FAQs webpage, adding four new FAQs and updating four others. Several of these FAQs address the updated FATCA XML Schema v2.0, a draft of which was released in June. The FAQs clarify that schema v2.0 will not be deployed into production until January 2017, with open testing taking place in Fall 2016.
  • August 5, 2016: The Cayman Islands Tax Information Authority (TIA) announced an extension of the soft enforcement reporting deadlines for FATCA and UK CDOT reporting on the AEOI News & Updates webpage.
  • August 4, 2016: The IRS published Announcement 2016-27 informing financial institutions that on January 1, 2017 Treasury will update the Intergovernmental Agreement (IGA) List to remove certain jurisdictions that have failed to bring an IGA into force.
  • July 6, 2016: The IRS issued an early release draft of Form W-8IMY, “Certificate of Foreign Intermediary, Foreign Flow-Through Entity, or Certain U.S. Branches for United States Tax Withholding and Reporting." As a draft version, this form should not be used or relied upon, as the form may undergo additional changes prior to its official release. The draft form updates the current version of the form (released on April 30, 2014) based on recent changes to Form W-8BEN-E as well as the release of the Proposed QI Agreement in Notice 2016-42 (previously discussed here).
  • July 1, 2016: The IRS issued a publication reminding IDES users of the upcoming encryption mode conversion, effective July 11, 2016. The Cipher Block Chaining (CBC) mode is the new cipher mode that must be used for data packaging prior to IDES transmission. The last day to submit FATCA files using the current Electronic Code Book (ECB) mode is July 7 at 11:59 pm EDT, after which time IDES will be under maintenance until reopening on July 11 at 12:00 am EDT.
  • July 1, 2016: The IRS added a new FAQ to the FATCA General FAQs webpage addressing the question of what to do if the IRS has not responded to a FATCA filer’s request for an additional 90-day extension to file Form 8966.
  • July 1, 2016: The IRS released Notice 2016-42, providing the Proposed Qualified Intermediary (QI) Agreement that certain foreign persons may enter into with the IRS to simplify their withholding agent and payor obligations under chapters 3, 4, 61, and section 3406.
  • May 27, 2016: IRS updates the International Data Exchange Service (IDES) technical FAQs and announces upcoming IDES testing dates.
  • May 27, 2016: Cayman Islands Department of International Tax Cooperation (DITC) reopens the Automatic Exchange of Information (AEOI) Portal and publishes AEOI Portal User Guide Version 2.0.
  • May 3, 2016: The IRS added a new FAQ to the FATCA General FAQs webpage addressing the registration and GIIN requirements for bulk acquisition and merger events. In addition to pointing to the general guidance provided in the Registration User Guide, the FAQ provides specific guidance in several scenarios, which represent common bulk acquisition and merger events.
  • April 27, 2016: Panama and the United States signed a Model 1 Intergovernmental Agreement (IGA) for the implementation of FATCA. With the signature of this agreement the tax authorities of both countries will exchange the information covered by FATCA on a reciprocal basis.
  • April 25, 2016: The UK HMRC issued a finalized International Exchange of Information Manual, including several updates and additions since the draft guidance released on September 14, 2015. The manual includes guidance for UK Financial Institutions with regard to FATCA, the Crown Dependencies and Overseas Territories (CDOT), the OECD Common Reporting Standard (CRS), and the EU Directive on Administration Cooperation (DAC).
  • April 25, 2016: Three months after releasing the draft version, the IRS released a new Form W-8BEN-E, “Certificate of Status of Beneficial Owner for United States Tax Withholding and Reporting (Entities)” and new Instructions for Form W-8BEN-E. As provided in the Treasury Regulations, a withholding agent may continue to accept the prior version of the Form W-8BEN-E for six months after the revision date shown on the form and may rely on it until the period of validity expires.
  • April 8 2016: The Cayman Islands Department of International Tax Compliance (DITC) indicates leniency for FATCA and UK CDOT notification and reporting due dates
  • April 4, 2016: The Cayman Islands Tax Information Authority (TIA) releases an updated Automatic Exchange of Information (AEOI) Portal User Guide for filers to complete notification and reopens AEOI Portal.
  • March 25, 2016: In accordance with Treas. Reg. 1.1471-4T(a)(3) and the 2015 Instructions for Form 8966, all FFIs that are Participating FFIs must, among other things, report annually using Form 8966. This reporting obligation is imposed on all Participating FFIs within both Model 2 Intergovernmental Agreement (IGA) jurisdictions and jurisdictions in which no IGA has been signed (non-IGA jurisdictions). The deadline for Form 8966 FATCA reporting is March 31, 2016.
  • March 25, 2016: Reporting deadlines and other key compliance milestones in the Cayman Islands are approaching. Given the specific notification to the Cayman Tax Authority requirement and the complexity of the key milestones for the three sets of information reporting rules that are applicable in this jurisdiction (i.e. FATCA, UK-CDOT, and CRS), a summary of the key dates should be considered by all the financial institutions that have presence in the Cayman Islands.
  • March 10, 2016: The Luxembourg Tax Authorities recently issued a number of notices to Financial Institutions related to their obligations for 2014 FATCA reporting. Many of the letters issued have a 16th March deadline by which to respond. Given that there is a lead time in registering with the Luxembourg filing gateway, we would recommend that financial institutions address this as soon as possible.
  • February 11, 2016: Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (IRAS) published a reminder for Reporting Financial Institutions (RFI) that applied the Alternative Procedures for new accounts opened prior to the IGA’s entry into force and modifies FATCA reporting registration process.
  • January 19, 2016: The Swiss State Secretary on International Finances (SFI) released a communication extending the deadline for reporting on non-consenting US accounts in Switzerland for the year 2015.
  • January 19, 2016: The IRS released Notice 2016-08 providing relief with respect to some upcoming deadlines as well as guidance on the ability to accept electronically collected documentation from intermediaries.
  • January 15, 2016: The IRS released a draft Form W-8BEN-E, “Certificate of Status of Beneficial Owner for United States Tax Withholding and Reporting (Entities),” and accompanying Instructions. Although the updates are by no means an overhaul, there are several material updates to highlight compared to the June 2014 version of the form.
  • January 15, 2016: The Treasury Department updated the online FATCA document library, relocating the Intergovernmental Agreements (“IGAs”) from the Additional FATCA Documents page, referred to as the FATCA Archive, to the main FATCA Resource Center page. The IGAs are now reorganized into an alphabetized table with hyperlinks to the agreements.

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2015 guidance

  • December 24, 2015: The IRS released 2015 versions of Form 8966 and Instructions for Form 8966. The new version of the form contains several new lines and checkboxes, as highlighted by the 2015 Instructions.
  • November 16, 2015: The IRS made several updates and improvements to the FATCA Online Registration System, the web-based system on which financial institutions and other entities can register for FATCA purposes.
  • October 13, 2015: The OECD launched the AEOI Portal, a webpage intended to provide a comprehensive overview of the OECD’s progress in implementing the Common Reporting Standard (CRS). The portal content includes a historical timeline and background on information exchange, guidance and materials, details on the international framework for CRS exchange relationships, information on and assistance with implementation, and an explanation on the commitment and monitoring process.
  • October 2, 2015: The IRS released announcement IR-2015-111 affirming that it successfully met the September 30 deadline for reciprocal exchange of financial account information with certain foreign tax administrations. This exchange occurred between the US and foreign tax administrations that signed reciprocal Model 1 Intergovernmental Agreements (IGAs) and met the IRS’s standards for protection of taxpayer privacy. IRS Commissioner John Koskinen stated, “Meeting the Sept. 30 deadline is a major milestone in IRS efforts to combat offshore tax evasion through FATCA and the intergovernmental agreements.”
  • September 29, 2015: The Department for International Tax Cooperation (DITC) sends update on Cayman Automatic Exchange of Information (AEOI) Portal issues.
  • September 29, 2015: The IRS issued Rev. Proc. 2015-50, which supplements the list of the countries contained in Rev. Proc. 2014-64, under which the Treasury and IRS have determined that it is appropriate to have an automatic exchange relationship with respect to the information collected under Treas. Reg. §§ 1.6049-4(b)(5) and 1.6049-8 of the Regulations.
  • September 29, 2015: The IRS released the Draft Form 8809-I and the Draft Instructions for Form 8809-I to facilitate the application for extension of time to file Form 8966 FATCA Report.
  • September 24, 2015: IRS announces US Competent Authority Arrangements with Australia and the United Kingdom.
  • September 18, 2015: The IRS, in conjunction with the United States Department of the Treasury, published Notice 2015-66 announcing its intent to amend the chapter 4 regulations to extend the timeline for application of certain FATCA transitional rules and to provide guidance to jurisdictions for the exchange of information for tax year 2014.
  • September 18, 2015: IRS publishes Notice 2015-66 announcing extension of certain transitional rules under chapter 4.
  • September 14, 2015: Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC) releases draft Automatic Exchange of Financial Account Information Guidance Notes (draft Guidance).
  • August 27, 2015: IRS announced upcoming FATCA Online Registration System updates and releases new International Compliance Management Model (ICMM).
  • August 19, 2015: IRS posts new and updated FAQs to IDES Technical FAQs and FATCA General FAQs.
  • August 13, 2015: IRS releases updated FATCA International Data Exchange Service (IDES) and FATCA Metadata XML Schema v1.1 User Guides.
  • August 12, 2015: IRS posts information on sponsored entity Global Intermediary Identification Number (GIIN) registrations and adds new FAQ to FATCA General FAQs addressing electronic receipt of Forms W-8.
  • August 10, 2015: IRS updates FATCA IDES web pages, including IDES Technical FAQs and XML Schema Best Practices.
  • August 7, 2015: The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) publishes three new reports to assist with global CRS implementation.
  • August 3, 2015: The IRS announced that it added two new FAQs to the FATCA General FAQs webpage under the “Registration Update” section. These FAQs both address the Office of Foreign Assets Control’s Specially Designated Nationals (SDN) list.
  • August 3, 2015: The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes (Global Forum) publishes 12 new peer review reports and releases compliance ratings.
  • July 28, 2015: IRS posts new FATCA IDES Technical FAQs and warns of FATCA XML Schema Best Practices error.
  • July 14, 2015: The IRS announced that it posted several new and numerous updated International Data Exchange Service (IDES) FAQs to the FATCA IDES Technical FAQs website.
  • July 10, 2015: Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (IRAS) announces commencement of FATCA filing for the 2014 Reporting Year.
  • June 29, 2015: Recent Legislation Increases Information Reporting Penalties. The Trade Preferences Extension Act of 2015, Public Law No: 114-27 (Legislation), which was signed into law on June 29, 2015, amends penalties applicable under IRC section 6721, Failure to file correct information returns, and IRC section 6722, Failure to furnish correct payee statements. The amendments apply to returns and statements required to be filed after December 31, 2015. These increases may impact taxpayers across all industries, not just within financial services.
  • June 25, 2015: Reminder: Form 8966 deadline for Foreign Financial Institutions (FFIs) in jurisdictions without signed or agreed-in-substance Intergovernmental Agreements (IGAs).
  • June 9, 2015: IRS posts new FAQs regarding Form 8966 extension of time to file and electronic filing waiver.
  • June 9, 2015: IRS notifies reporters of error in FATCA XML Schema Best Practices webpage and updates IDES FAQs.
  • June 1, 2015: Update on release of Bahamas guidance notes and FATCA reporting deadline and deadline extension for British Virgin Islands (BVI) Alternative Reporting Regime (ARR) election for Resident Non-Domiciled (RND) Individuals.
  • May 20, 1015: The IRS announced the next IDES testing session, opening June 1, 2015, at 12:00 p.m. EDT and closing June 8, 2015, at 12:00 p.m. EDT. When participating in the session, the IRS noted that only test data should be submitted, and files containing production data or personally identifiable information will not be processed.
  • May 20, 2015: Cayman Islands Department for International Tax Cooperation further extends Automatic Exchange of Information (AEOI) portal notification and reporting enforcement deadlines.
  • May 11, 2015: Cayman Islands Department for International Tax Cooperation provides third update on Automatic Exchange of Information (AEOI) portal notification and reporting.
  • May 8, 2015: International Data Exchange Services (IDES) enrollment process for US Withholding Agents (USWAs), Territory Financial Institutions (TFIs), commercial software vendors, and third party preparers is now available.
  • April 30, 2015: Cayman Islands Department for International Tax Cooperation provides second update on Automatic Exchange of Information (AEOI) portal notification.
  • April 28, 2015: 04-28-15 Notice 2015-10: IRS intends to amend regulations for refund and credit claims for Chapters 3 and 4 overwithholding.
  • April 27, 2015: Cayman Islands Department for International Tax Cooperation provides update on Automatic Exchange of Information (AEOI) portal notification.
  • April 15, 2015: The British Virgin Islands’ International Tax Authority announces the opening of its Financial Account Reporting System to facilitate FATCA reporting.
  • March 24, 2015: The British Virgin Islands releases updated FATCA Guidance Notes.
  • March 24, 2015: IRS clarifies nil reporting requirements and reporting deadline for Form 8966 in two new FATCA FAQs.
  • March 20, 2015: Cayman Islands’ Tax Information Authority (TIA) announces the opening of the Automatic Exchange of Information (AEOI) portal to facilitate FATCA reporting.
  • March 5, 2015: IRS posts updated IDES User Guide and new IDES Sample Enveloping Signature File.
  • March 3, 2015: IRS issues ICMM Notifications User Guide and ICMM Notification XML Schema v1.4 User Guide.
  • March 2, 2015: IRS announces new FATCA IDES test session opening on March 10, at 2:00 a.m. EDT and closing on March 12, at 5:00 p.m. EDT.
  • February 20, 2015: IRS posts a new FAQ to the FATCA webpage clarifying the entities required to submit a Nil report and the procedures for submitting the report.
  • February 2, 2015: IRS posts new FAQ to the FATCA webpage clarifying due diligence procedures
  • January 20, 2015: IRS posted the following Form and Instructions: Instructions 8938; Form 1099-R; Instructions for 1099-R and 5948; and General Instructions for Certain Information Returns.
  • January 14, 2015: IRS issues International Data Exchange Services web application alerts.
  • January 12, 2015: IRS Announces the opening of IDES enrollment, updates IDES FAQs and User Guide, and issues Metadata XML Schema v1.0 User Guide.
  • January 5, 2015: IRS issues updated Forms 1042-S and 8938; revises Publication 515–Withholding of Tax on Nonresident Aliens and Foreign Entities.

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2014 guidance

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John Rieger

National Managing Partner | FSI Tax Practice

Denise Hintzke

Managing Director | Global FATCA Tax Leader

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