In recent years the Department of Treasury has been paying close attention and issuing regulations regarding foreign assets and the reporting of foreign assets. You may have heard of the need to report certain foreign bank and financial accounts (FBAR) and the Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program (OVDP), but are uncertain as to whether such regulations would apply to you, or how any disclosure may help you. A tax attorney can assist you with these matters and advise you regarding your reporting requirements and related matters.
When certain overseas accounts are held by United States persons and the aggregate maximum value of the account or accounts exceed a certain amount (currently $10,000) the FBAR filing is required. The FBAR is required because many foreign financial institutions do not report items such as interest and dividends as our banks and financial institutions in the United States. Thus, the filing of the report assists with ensuring taxpayers are properly reporting all sources of certain income. When the FBAR is required, and not filed, penalties can be assessed to the taxpayer, which relates to the OVDP.
The OVDP is a voluntary program whereby taxpayers who should have filed the FBAR for certain periods, but did not, can voluntarily disclose their accounts and request reduced penalties. The penalties for not filing the FBAR can be very high, and thus taxpayers could save significant money by disclosing their foreign accounts through the OVDP. Currently, the OVDP has not been established for a specific time and the program could be withdrawn and not available to taxpayers at any time.
If you have questions regarding your requirement to file the FBAR, assistance in filing the FBAR or in regards to the Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program, a tax attorney at The McGuire Law Firm can assist you with these matters. The McGuire Law Firms offers a free consultation with a tax attorney in Denver, Colorado or Golden, Colorado.