FATCA Registration Process
Draft registration form; IRS to open electronic registration process in July 2013
The IRS released a draft FATCA registration-process form - Form 8957, Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) Registration Process - proposed for use by financial institutions to register electronically under the FATCA regime beginning in July 2013.
Draft Form 8957 (PDF, 146 KB) is being released solely for review and comment purposes. The IRS cautions that this draft form is not to be submitted by financial institutions in an attempt to register for FATCA.
Electronic registration expected to open in July 2013
According to an April 2013 posting by the IRS:
- FATCA registration will be made by means of an electronic online process, so there will be no need to print, complete, and mail paper form.
- The FATCA online registration portal will be available in July 2013.
- The questions that will be presented in the online process will look similar to the questions shown on the draft form, but will be presented differently to make electronic completion of the registration process as simple as possible.
- Financial institutions registering through the online process will receive notice of registration acceptance and obtain the Global Intermediary Identification Number (GIIN) which will be needed to demonstrate FATCA compliance on an expedited basis.
The IRS also reported that it will accept registrations made on paper forms.
As cautioned above, financial institutions are not to use the draft form to submit a paper registration. Rather, a final paper registration form that can be used for registration will be made available by the IRS in July 2013.
The IRS has “strongly encouraged” financial institutions to use the online registration process after it becomes available in July 2013.
Paper registration forms will not be processed until October 2013, and the IRS noted that financial institutions may experience a delay in receiving notice of registration acceptance and obtaining the GIIN needed to demonstrate FATCA compliance.
Model 1 Reciprocal IGA with Norway
The Norwegian Ministry of Finance announced the signing of an intergovernmental agreement (IGA) with the United States for an automatic exchange of financial information between the countries’ tax authorities, pursuant to the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA). In addition, a memorandum of understanding (MOU) was signed, stating, among other provisions, that:
In reference to paragraph 1 of Article 10 (Term of Agreement), the Government of the United States understands that the Government of Norway plans to present the Agreement to its parliament for its approval in 2013 and, to propose implementing legislation with the goal of having the Agreement enter into force by 30 September 2015. Based on this understanding, as of the date of signature of the Agreement, the United States Department of the Treasury intends to treat each Norwegian Financial Institution, as that term is defined in the Agreement, as complying with, and not subject to withholding under section 1471 of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code during such time as Norway is pursuing the necessary internal procedures for entry into force of the Agreement.
The United States further understands that Norway’s Ministry of Finance intends to contact the United States Department of the Treasury as soon as it is aware that there might be a delay in the Norwegian internal approval process for entry into force of the Agreement such that Norway would not be able to provide its notification under paragraph 1 of Article 10 of the Agreement prior to 30 September 2015.
If upon consultation with Norway, the United States receives credible assurances that such a delay is likely to be resolved in a reasonable period of time, the United States Department of the Treasury may decide to continue to apply FATCA to Norwegian Financial Institutions in the manner described above as long as the United States Department of the Treasury assesses that Norway is likely to be able to send its notification under paragraph 1 of Article 10 by 30 September 2016.
It is understood that should the Agreement enter into force after 30 September 2015, any information that would have been reportable under the Agreement thereafter (and prior to its entry into force) had the Agreement been in force by 30 September 2015, is owed on the 30 September next following the date of entry into force.
The IGA involves an extension of the exchange of tax information agreement that is already in place between the two countries. Accordingly, Norwegian financial institutions will be required to report their U.S. accounts to the Norwegian tax authorities who, in turn, will provide the information to U.S. authorities. In exchange, Norwegian tax authorities will automatically receive information about certain Norwegian residents that maintain accounts in the U.S.
The Norwegian Annex II is similar to other Model I IGAs in its categories of exempt beneficial owners, including:
- Governmental Entities: The Norwegian Government, any political subdivision of the Norwegian Government or any wholly owned agency or instrumentality of any one or more of the foregoing including the Government Pension Fund Global (GPFG)
- Central Bank: The Central Bank of Norway (Norges Bank) and any of its wholly owned subsidiaries
- International Organizations: The office in Norway of any organization to which the Immunity and Privileges for International Organization Act of 19 June 1947 nr. 5 apply.
- Retirement Funds: Pension Funds regulated in the Norwegian Insurance Activity Act and private Pension Foundations established prior to 1968 and covered by the Norwegian Defined Benefit Occupations Pension Act and Defined Contribution Pension Entities regulated in the Norwegian Insurance Activity Act
In addition, the Norwegian Annex II defines deemed compliant FIs as:
- Small Financial Institutions with Local Client Base
- Certain Collective Investment Vehicles
- Nonprofit Organizations: Any charitable foundations, associations, funds, institutions or other entities exempt from taxation under the Norwegian Tax Act.
Finally, the Norwegian Annex II defines exempt products as:
- Certain Retirement Accounts or Products: Tax Favorable Pension Schemes (and paid-up policies or pension assets certificates) and Group Annuities covered by the Norwegian Tax Act.
- Certain Other Tax-Favorable Accounts or Products: Property Savings Accounts for young people
Term of Agreement (Article 10)
As set forth in the except from the MOU, above, the Government of Norway plans to present the IGA to its Parliament for approval in 2013 and, to propose implementing legislation with the goal of having the IGA enter into force by 30 September 2015. As a result of this MOU, all FIs will be considered in compliance even though the local legislation may not yet be implemented.
Although not drafted clearly, it is anticipated that the MOU relates to a delay in the reporting requirement only. That is, it is anticipated that Norwegian FIs will still be required to complete the account identification and due diligence requirements set forth in the IGA within the stated time frames. Without the enactment of local laws, however, it is not clear what the due diligence requirements these impacted FIs should apply. Similar to other Model I IGAs, the Norway IGA provides that the Government of Norway can allows its FIs to apply the account identification and due diligence procedures under the regulations as an alternative to the IGA procedures. To the extent Norway is unable to enact legislation timely, this may be a viable alternative.
For your reference
At the time of the release of this Alert, the IGA with Norway was not released to the US government website. Once released, it will be accessible by clicking here
For further information, please do not hesitate to contact us.
Any tax advice in this communication is not intended or written by KPMG to be used, and cannot be used, by a client or any other person or entity for the purpose of (i) avoiding penalties that may be imposed on any taxpayer or (ii) promoting, marketing, or recommending to another party any matters addressed herein.
The information contained herein is of a general nature and is not intended to address the circumstances of any particular individual or entity. Although we endeavour to provide accurate and timely information, there can be no guarantee that such information is accurate as of the date it is received or that it will continue to be accurate in the future. No one should act on such information without appropriate professional advice after a thorough examination of the particular situation.