The United States (U.S.) Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) is rapidly becoming the global model for combating offshore tax evasion and promoting transparency.
FATCA, enacted in the U.S. in 2010, seeks to obtain information on accounts held by U.S. taxpayers in other countries. It requires U.S. financial institutions to withhold a portion of payments made to foreign financial institutions (FFIs) that do not agree to identify and report information on U.S. account holders. FFIs have the option of entering into agreements directly with the U.S. Inland Revenue Service (IRS), or through one of two alternative Model Intergovernmental Agreements (IGAs) signed by their home country.
Republic Bank Limited has entered into a special agreement (“FFI Agreement”) with the IRS, effective July 1, 2014.
What will be required of Republic Bank Limited?
- Undertake certain identification and due diligence procedures involving our new customers, commencing July 1, 2014;
- Report annually to the IRS, information on customers who are U.S. persons or foreign entities with substantial U.S. ownership, commencing March 31, 2015;
- *Close accounts of certain customers who do not wish to cooperate with the new FATCA requirements e.g. (a) non-participating financial institutions or (b) customers who fail to provide sufficient information to determine whether or not they are a U.S. person, commencing July 1, 2014.
Republic Bank intends to meet all obligations imposed under FATCA in accordance with the FFI Agreement, local banking and tax regulations. Republic remains committed to keeping customers’ personal information accurate, confidential, secure and private and as such, our response to FATCA will be held to our highest standards of compliance with local privacy laws and our firm commitment to exceptional customer service.
Whilst we expect that FATCA will have no impact on a vast majority of our customers, we have identified specific customers who may be impacted by FATCA and will seek to ensure that these customers understand the impact to their accounts and that they comply with the new requirements.
*If there is a Model 1 IGA in effect, Republic Bank will report these customers annually to the local tax authority.
What customers are affected?
- Local and other non U.S. financial institutions (FFIs)
- US Persons