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#464596 - 05/18/13 06:53 AM NEW US TAX LAW – FATCA – “VERY AMBITIOUS”
Marty Offline


Joseph Boski, Political and Economic Section Chief at the U.S. Embassy in Belmopan, Belize, told Amandala today that the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA), which will see its full implementation in 2014, was put into place to ensure better tax compliance.

“The principle is pretty clear,” said Boski. “The FATCA law addresses tax compliance.”

The FATCA applies also to Belizeans with dual US nationality, as well as “green card” holders and US nationals living in Belize or any person in those categories who have financial interest in Belize, including offshore bank accounts.

Boski said the FATCA is “very ambitious” and he hopes it will be very effective, as well.

He notes that anyone who is paying US taxes or should be paying those taxes and who has financial assets overseas should double-check whether they need to report financial assets overseas. This, he said, especially applies to US citizens or financial institutions overseas doing business with US citizens located either overseas or in the US.

The US Embassy officer said that if there is an American with assets in Belize who is liable to pay taxes but is not, and the financial institutions, such as banks, are aware, then they are asked to assist the United States Internal Revenue Service (IRS) in identifying this tax evasion.

Non-compliance could result in a 30% withholding tax being levied on the person of interest.

Boski said he hopes the FATCA would serve as a model for all countries seeking tax compliance from citizens living overseas or who have assets overseas.

“I think you know, in order to get it to work, private banks have to actively engage with the process,” said Boski.

He said that some of the provisions of FATCA are already in effect, and the IRS has agreements already with some countries and banking institutions.

A Belize banker has told us that they would be signing up with the IRS online portal when it opens up on July 15. (See story, “Belize Banks brace for implementation of far-reaching US tax law”, appearing on page 2 of the Wednesday, May 15, 2013 edition of Amandala.)

Boski shares the following links for those who want further information:





#465069 - 05/23/13 12:52 PM Re: NEW US TAX LAW – FATCA – “VERY AMBITIOUS” [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline
FACTA and You - Know the Facts:

Next year 2014, Washington will enact the most ambitious tax-recovery plan in history, the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act. Under FATCA, foreign financial firms will have to proactively identify every American (Belizean American) account holder with assets of more than $50,000 and report details about their financial activity or face a significant penalty.

The move is very unpopular among foreign banks, governments and Americans living abroad, but the more complex rules could actually mean more business for offshore centers. By the time FACTA is in full force, in 2017, truly wealthy individuals and corporations will almost certainly have used their resources to find more intricate loopholes.

Good read.

Click HERE for pdf from Corozal Daily

#465071 - 05/23/13 01:23 PM Re: NEW US TAX LAW – FATCA – “VERY AMBITIOUS” [Re: Marty]
elbert Offline
Does it seem quiet in here ?? Hello, Hello... No one commented on this when you posted it last week either :-)
The Dive Shops Daily Blog

#465077 - 05/23/13 03:51 PM Re: NEW US TAX LAW – FATCA – “VERY AMBITIOUS” [Re: Marty]
Katie Valk Offline
I'm not sure there is a $50,000 threshold and this applies to every US cit, no matter what they have in the bank
Belize based travel specialist

#465080 - 05/23/13 04:25 PM Re: NEW US TAX LAW – FATCA – “VERY AMBITIOUS” [Re: Katie Valk]
SnoopysMom Offline
I am curious if US citizens need to report assets such as real estate holdings, etc.... ? over $50,000 value

#465082 - 05/23/13 05:21 PM Re: NEW US TAX LAW – FATCA – “VERY AMBITIOUS” [Re: Marty]
ckocian Offline
No, not real property.......yet.

#465087 - 05/23/13 06:58 PM Re: NEW US TAX LAW – FATCA – “VERY AMBITIOUS” [Re: SnoopysMom]
Lan Sluder/Belize First Offline
Normally foreign real estate does not have to be reported. HOWEVER, if you hold the real estate through a foreign corporation, partnership or other foreign entity, depending on its value you may have to report it. For example, if you are a stockholder in a Belize corporation that has real estate among its assets, you may have to report it on IRS Form 8938. (Source: IRS)

#467059 - 06/22/13 06:10 AM Re: NEW US TAX LAW – FATCA – “VERY AMBITIOUS” [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

FATCA, Do We Have To?

Unless you’re a banker, you probably don’t know what the term FATCA means – but the United States Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act has far reaching implications for Banking in Belize and all over the world. It’s an instrument designed by the United States Internal Revenue Service to crack down on tax cheats; mainly US citizens and permanent residents who bank their money in other countries – and in so doing, evade US taxes. Now, the IRS wants overseas banks to sign in time for implementation on December 31, 2013. That includes Belizean banks which had a special meeting with the Prime Minister yesterday to discuss the far reaching implications of FATCA. The banks are being forced to sign possibly as early as August – but there are many issues to iron out first. And we say “forced” because if the local banks don’t sign, they lose their correspondent banking relationship with US banks, in which case, they’d basically have to close down.

But it’s what you might call a “ticklish” issue because the banks will have to report to the IRS all US citizens or green card holders with over fifty thousand dollars in Belizean Banks. And there are heavy penalties against the banks and the individuals for non-reporting.

And, it’s not only in Belize – it’s all over the Caribbean. Our colleague at CEEN News in Jamaica Kalilah Enriquez recently attended a Diaspora conference where the issue was front and center. She explains the broad strokes and the finer details of FATCA:…

We reached the Prime Minister who said the government’s position is still evolving as there is quote, “a significant shortage of information.” He says that after careful study, Government will offer its formal position as to the best way to proceed.

We spoke to one local banker who told us there are significant practical issues that arise – because the banks don’t know which of their depositors hold a US Passport or Green card. We’ll keep following the story….

Channel 7

#467064 - 06/22/13 06:36 AM Re: NEW US TAX LAW – FATCA – “VERY AMBITIOUS” [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline


Belize bankers meet with GOB to discuss new US requirement for bank disclosures

News coming out of the Ukraine today indicates that that country’s Cabinet has approved the draft of a Tax Information Exchange Agreement (TIEA) with Belize.

The Director-General of Belize’s International Financial Services Commission (IFSC) told Amandala that to date, Belize has in place 16 such agreements with other countries, the most recent one having been signed with Poland on May 16, 2013. He confirmed that Belize today received notification from Ukraine that they are ready to sign the new TIEA with that country.

Since 2009, Belize has signed TIEAs with Australia, United Kingdom, Belgium, Netherlands, Sweden, Finland, Greenland, Norway, Iceland, Denmark, Faroes, Portugal, France, Ireland, and Mexico.

The draft TIEAs with Italy and India, said Ghandi, are awaiting signature. Belize has sent a draft TIEA agreement to the United States government; however, talks on that proposal are still pending.

Belize also plans to sign TIEA’s with Canada and Georgia, another country near the Ukraine, shortly.

Ghandi said that the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), an organization of 34 states, including the US, Canada, Mexico, and the UK, is asking all countries to sign these agreements for exchange of information and transparency.

Ghandi confirmed that such agreements include provisions under which governments undertake to share banking information and information on the owners of companies, their agents, as well as their nominal owners and authorized delegates.

The OECD believes their nationals hide their wealth in small countries. Once the TIEA is signed, Government issues a statutory instrument, which is laid before Parliament for acceptance.

Information disclosed under TIEAs could include details of banking transactions, and since the agreements are sanctioned by Parliament, banks can’t be sued for breach of confidentiality.

However, Ghandi explained that the agreements have little relevance for Belize, since Belize’s tax laws are territorial, and the Government of Belize only taxes within its jurisdiction.

Meanwhile, Ministry of Finance officials met today with representatives of the banking sector to discuss the United States’ new tax law — the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA), which calls on foreign banks doing business with persons of interest to the US, who should be paying taxes to the US Internal Revenue Service (IRS), to register with the IRS.

Full implementation is to take effect in 2014; however, Belizean bankers are calling on the Government of Belize to look into an alternative procedure whereby banks would not directly sign agreements with the IRS, but whereby they could provide the requested information under an intergovernmental agreement.

We understand that the local banks are concerned about the sovereignty and confidentiality issues, since the FATCA is a US law.

However, the US has indicated that non-compliant banks could face sanctions, including the withholding of assets overseas in the US – a matter which is of major concern to banks which rely on foreign banks in the US with whom they have correspondent banking relations, for international exchange of funds.


#467087 - 06/22/13 12:12 PM Re: NEW US TAX LAW – FATCA – “VERY AMBITIOUS” [Re: Marty]
Diane Campbell Offline
I've heard it said that money goes where it is welcome.

If the US would make money welcome instead of holding it hostage maybe all this stuff would not be necessary.

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