Reporting Foreign Bank Accounts
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There is nothing wrong with asking for a little IRS back tax help. If you have to report foreign bank accounts or happen to be a US citizen living overseas, you are required to file US tax returns. Unfortunately, doing so is highly technical and complex for most IRS tax attorneys and CPAs. Fortunately, JG Associates is here to help with back taxes.
The good news is that JG Associates has provided this service to hundreds of taxpayers who possess overseas accounts and tax returns. In other words, we know exactly what to do and can complete the task in just days.
Our vast IRS inside knowledge has allowed us to take the lead in resolutions when it comes to overseas accounts. We never back-down to the IRS’s intimidating tactics. In fact, none of our 40,000+ clients have ever been criminally charged.
If you are a US citizen and have ever had more than $10,000 total at any one time in one or more foreign banks or financial institutions, you have a requirement to report it to the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FINCEN). Failure to do so on your US tax return can result in severe penalties and/or criminal prosecution.
The IRS created an amnesty program for voluntary compliance called the Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program (OVDP). The OVDP allows taxpayers to voluntarily file past due FBARs and file or amend their tax returns to report the income from these accounts. They have modified the program and extended the deadlines several times.
In 2010, Congress passed the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (as part of the HIRE Act of 2010). It requires foreign financial institutions to reveal the assets of US taxpayers to the IRS or face stiff penalties. As a result of FATCA, banks worldwide are now cooperating and going through their accounts to see if depositors have US connections. Should the IRS discover that you have or had foreign financial accounts subject to the reporting requirements and decide to audit you, it will be too late to find cover under the voluntary program. You will be subject to maximum penalties and criminal prosecution.
I am a US citizen living in Germany. I make good money as a mechanical engineer for a German company. I was filing self-prepared German income tax returns and paying the German income tax, but had no idea that I was supposed to file US tax returns as well. I also had a savings account in a German bank with more than $200,000. I inherited $150,000 of that money from my mother. A year ago, I discovered that I should have been filing and paying US taxes on money I earned in excess of the income exclusion. I did’t know what to do, so I went to a local accounting firm. They informed me that I needed to file US tax returns. At the same time, I should have been filing an annual report in the US, disclosing the money that I had in a foreign bank account. I learned later that this is called FBAR. They told me that they could not prepare my US tax returns and could not help me with the FBAR reporting. That’s when I went online and read about JG Associates. I emailed them for advice. They explained that they would prepare my back US tax returns, but I needed to send them copies of my German tax returns (in German). JG Associates also told me that their staff could interpret foreign language returns, as well as handle back-dated currency conversions. I realized that filing US returns was more complicated than I originally thought. They assured me that they would handle everything and not to worry. What a relief. JG Associates certainly exceeded my expectations. They prepared several years returns and handled by back FBAR filing requirement under the voluntary disclosure program. They saved me thousands of dollars in penalties. I was very impressed and would not hesitate to recommend JG for anyone needing help with the IRS.
I am a 55-year-old who has always lived and worked in the US. About 10 years ago, my wealthy aunt died and left me a large sum of money in a French bank account. I liked the interest rate it was paying, so I decided to keep the account there. I also added money to the account over the years. I have always filed and paid my taxes on time, but never reported the interest on the French account. Then I read an article in the newspaper that the IRS was cracking down on taxpayers who didn’t disclose foreign bank accounts. I realized that I may be affected by this crackdown and didn’t know what to do. I had questions, like ‘How far back do I have to report?’ ‘How many years tax returns do I have to amend?’ ‘Who is going to be able to read my bank statements that were in French?’ I spoke to a couple local accounting firms and it became obvious that they did not have a clue. Its a good thing that I found JG Associates online. When I explained my situation to the tax specialist, he assured me that they knew how to handle everything to limit my exposure. They amended 8 years tax returns and handled all of the back FBAR filings. I could not have been more pleased with the results and how they handled everything very professionally. I highly recommend JG Associates.