Beverly Chandler, Opalesque London:
In their FATCA update for funds, Laven Partners, detailed the delay in implementation. The firm writes: "As expected, many foreign financial institutions have objected to the broad reach of the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA), citing burdensome compliance costs and conflicts with domestic laws that protect account holder privacy."
FATCA mandates that a) foreign financial institutions (FFIs) provide information on U.S. account holders with foreign accounts and b) non-financial foreign institutions (NFFEs) disclose information on substantial U.S. owners to the IRS. FFIs include investment entities such as hedge funds and private equity funds. Such FFIs must "register with the IRS, obtain a Global Intermediary Identification Number (GIIN), and report certain information on U.S. accounts to the IRS."
"In relation to the issue of conflicts with domestic laws, the U.S. Treasury has been negotiating intergovernmental agreements (IGAs) to navigate legal obstacles and allow FFIs to disclose previously confidential data to the IRS. So far, the Treasury has completed agreements with a number of European countries including the UK, Germany, and Switzerland" Laven explains.
"However, as numerous IGAs remained in process throughout the first half of 2013 ó and some countries such as China seemed reluctant if not intractable to the idea of compliance ó there had been wid......................
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