Robert G. Nath
Over 30 Years'
IRS and State Tax
Robert G. Nath, PLLC
1775 Wiehle Avenue
Reston, VA 20190
Foreign Bank Account Reports
How We Can Help
- What is an "FBAR"?
It's a Foreign Bank Account Report, filed on Treasury Form TD 90-22.1. It is required of any US person who owns or has signature authority over a non-US foreign financial account in excess of $10,000 at any time during the calendar year. Each of the terms in the preceding sentence has a special, defined meaning.
- When is it Due? Where is it Filed?
The FBAR is filed by June 30 of the year following the reporting year. For example, the FBAR for 2010 is due June 30, 2011. It is filed with the US Treasury Department in a special office in Detroit, Michigan. It is not filed with the IRS, even though the IRS has authority to administer the FBAR and its penalty provisions.
- What is the IRS' Voluntary Disclosure Program relating to FBARs?
In 2009, after the IRS won a disclosure case against the Swiss financial giant UBS, the IRS set up a voluntary disclosure program that ended on October 15, 2009, to encourage non-filers of FBARs to catch up. The costs of the program were a series of penalties. However, participants were promised no criminal prosecution and no imposition of even harsher penalties.
Over 15,000 people "volunteered" for this program. The IRS collected millions of dollars. On February 8, 2011, the IRS launched its SECOND voluntary disclosure program, open until August 31, 2011. In most cases, the penalties will be higher for those who enter this program.
- Can I still Participate in the 2009 Voluntary Disclosure Program?
Technically, no, as to the 2009 program but the IRS is in fact still accepting people into the 2011 program until August 31, 2011. The catch is that the penalty offers will likely be different (higher) than those under the program that ended October 15, 2009. The IRS officially discourages "quiet" voluntary disclosures; that is, disclosures which are made without going through the official program. Normally, any voluntary disclosure, "quiet" or "noisy," should involve a multitude of considerations including filing amended returns. payment options, and the filing of "FBARs."
We can review your exposure to the onerous FBAR penalty structure, counsel on the risks in disclosing, and in failing to disclose, your offshore accounts, and help you make an informed decision on what to do. Remeber that no action is a decision in itself. The IRS is out there, trying to find all these secret accounts. Chances are, the agency will not stop until it learns of them all.