The Treasury Department's Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) announced an automatic six-month extension for taxpayers required to file FinCEN Form 114, Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts (FBAR). Taxpayers now have until October 16 to submit their FBARs for 2016 without being subject to penalties.
FBAR Overview. Subject to certain exceptions, any United States person with an interest in, or signature or other authority over, one or more foreign financial accounts whose aggregate value exceeds $10,000 at any time during a calendar year is required to file an FBAR in the following year.
Automatic Extension of Filing Deadline to October 15. Until last year, FBARs were generally due on June 30, with no automatic extensions available. In 2015, Congress moved the deadline to April 15 beginning with FBARs for 2016 (due in 2017). Congress also provided for extensions of up to six months. To reduce the administrative burden and facilitate compliance, FinCEN is granting all filers an automatic extension to October 15 every year, without the need for specific requests, until further notice. Thus, FBARs for 2016 may be submitted as late as Monday, October 16.
Automatic Extension Only for FBARs. This automatic extension is limited to FBARs. The deadline for most IRS returns for foreign assets will not be extended unless the taxpayer files an extension request with respect to the underlying tax return. This includes IRS Form 8938 (Statement of Specified Foreign Financial Assets), IRS Form 5471 (Information Return of U.S. Persons With Respect to Certain Foreign Corporations), IRS Form 8865 (Return of U.S. Persons With Respect to Certain Foreign Partnerships) and IRS Form 8621 (Information Return by a Shareholder of a Passive Foreign Investment Company or Qualified Electing Fund), among others. IRS Form 3520 (Annual Return To Report Transactions With Foreign Trusts and Receipt of Certain Foreign Gifts), although filed separately from the filer's tax return, is due at the same time as the filer's tax return, including extensions.
Aaron Kriss was a featured panelist in a webinar, "Form 3520 Foreign Trust Reporting for Tax Counsel: Navigating Filing Requirements and Penalty Abatements for Delinquencies," for Strafford Publications.
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Dina Kapur Sanna and Carl Merino co-authored an article, "New Filing Requirements for Foreign-Owned Disregarded Entities," for Trusts & Estates Magazine.
Von Sanborn was featured in an article, "Five Questions: Von Sanborn on Art Law, Insurance and the IRS," published in the Connecticut Law Tribune.
Stephen Ziobrowski was quoted in an article, "How Bermudians can be exposed to US taxes," in The Royal Gazette. The article is a recap of an International Tax and Planning Seminar at an AFL Investment sponsored event held in May 2016, in which Ziobrowski participated.
Stephen Ziobrowski was quoted in an article, "10 states millionaires might be fleeing," in LifeHealthPro. In the article, Ziobrowski discusses how several states—including Massachusetts—are considering raising their taxes on their wealthiest residents. He says that the concern with taxing the wealthy is that it causes them to leave.
Stephen Ziobrowski was quoted in an article, "7 Tips For Simplifying Tax Writing," in Law360. The article outlines best practices for tax lawyers to draft contracts and court documents. "Tax law is a foreign language, so you have to do some translation if you’re putting it into written documents," said Ziobrowski in the article. "If you’re aiming for a particular tax result in a transaction, it won’t do any good to have all the right magic words on the document and then people don’t understand what they’re supposed to do."
Chris Stracco was quoted in an article,"Will Veto Spark Litigation Over Nonprofit Hospitals' Tax Status?" in New Jersey Law Journal. In the article, Stracco discusses Governor Chris Christie's veto of S3299 in connection to the controversial New Jersey Tax Court decision of AHS Hospital v. Morristown. Stracco says the decision in the case, in which Morristown Memorial Hospital lost its tax-exempt status because it had for-profit business attributes, is unique. Given that case's uniqueness, he expects that the ruling and Christie's veto of S3299 will not likely result in a flood of nonprofit hospitals being hit with tax bills and suits to challenge them.
David Silvian contributed two chapters, "Will Provisions Pertaining to the Noncitizen Spouse" and "Will Provisions Pertaining to the Multinational Estate," to the 2017 Edition of Drafting Wills and Trusts in Massachusetts, a publication of MCLE.