Any time an individual has a financial interest in a foreign financial institution or bank account, brokerage account or other type of account they may be required to report to the IRS on an annual basis.
In an ongoing effort to implement the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act, or FATCA, the Department of Justice and the IRS have been working hard to convince foreign governments and banking systems to expose the names of their U.S. account holders. This could mean major pain for American taxpayers who have money socked away in foreign accounts they haven't disclosed.
From digital currency to foreign bank accounts, the Internal Revenue Service continues to develop its methods of collecting taxes. As we've previously discussed, if a foreign bank holds more than $10,000 of your assets, then you are required to use the Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts (FBAR) to report those assets to the Treasury Department.
A banker formerly employed by Swiss banks, UBS AG and Credit Suisse Group AG, plead guilty on tax evasion charges in the U.S. District Court for Southern Florida. He was sentenced to time already served, which included prison time and his 19 months of house arrest.
It is my responsibility as an Atlanta tax attorney and CPA to let you know if you own foreign investments, you may have an additional federal tax filing requirement this year. Form 8938, Statement of Specified Foreign Financial Assets, is due April 17, 2012, and is filed as part of your individual tax return. You'll use Form 8938 to disclose interests in certain foreign financial accounts when your ownership exceeds the reporting requirements.