Financial interest in foreign financial accounts

US citizens and residents of the United States that have a financial interest in or signature authority over foreign financial accounts (if the aggregate amount exceeds $10 000 at any time during the calendar year) need to file the 2015 FinCen form 114 on or before June 30. Starting with 2016 the reporting will be due April 15 the following year.

Financial accounts include but are not limited to securities, brokerages, savings accounts, checking accounts, deposits or other accounts maintained with a financial institution. It includes commodities futures or options accounts,  insurance policies with a cash value, annuity policies with a cash value and shares in mutual funds or similar pooled funds.

An account with a foreign bank located in the USA does not have to be reported. However, an account with a US bank located in a foreign country needs to be reported.

Participants in and beneficiaries of a tax qualified retirement plans (described in IRS code sect 401a, 402a or 403 b) are not required to report a foreign financial account held by or on behalf of the retirement plan.

In addition, IRS form 8938 must be filed if the aggregate balance of foreign financial accounts and other financial instruments exceed the following filing threshold for US resident not living abroad:

  • Single $50,000 (last day of year) or $75,000 (any time during year)
  • Married filing jointly $100,000 (last day of year) or $150,000 (any time during year)).
I created this blog to help understand certain basic aspects of U.S. tax law. Of course, each situation is unique and nothing that is on this site will ever replace the expert advice of a tax professional.

Please do not hesitate to contact me should you have any question.

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