For most people, the month of June is linked to happy things like wedding season and the beginning of summer. But for Atlanta tax attorneys and folks with one or more foreign bank accounts, June 30 marks the annual Foreign Bank Account Report filing deadline.
The FBAR can be misunderstood by many folks who file one or should be filing one – but aren’t. If you have any questions, you should call an Atlanta tax lawyer for tax help.
What you need to know about Foreign Bank Account Reports:
- The FBAR is not an IRS form, but a Treasury Department form. It cannot be filed electronically and it is due on June 30. Postmarks of that date are not acceptable, it must be in their hands.
- If you pay taxes in the US as a citizen, resident or entity, and at any point during the year (no matter how briefly) you have $10,000 or more in one or more foreign accounts, you must file a FBAR. The $10,000 threshold is determined by using the highest account balance during the year and converting it to US dollars with the exchange rate of December 31 of the year in question. If you have any questions, call an Atlanta tax attorney.
- Includable assets might be brokerage and bank accounts, pooled investments, offshore mutual funds, trusts, annuities, life insurance, pension plans.
- A foreign bank account is defined by location. A US financial institution’s branch overseas is fair game. An offshore bank’s branch is not in the US.
This is not something to mess with. Failure to conform to these rules bears a heavy penalty. Violators are fined $100,000 or half of the value of the account, for every year that was not filed. This is true, even when no tax was actually owed or in arrears. Save yourself a lot of worry and money and consult with an Atlanta tax lawyer for tax help today.