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IRS launches FATCA registration system for foreign financial institutions

IRSThe IRS launched on Monday its new online registration system for financial institutions required to register under the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act.

In addition to creating an account and providing the required information, financial institutions can also provide required information on their branches and other members of their affiliate groups, customize home pages to manage accounts, designate points of contact for registration and receive automatic status change notifications.

Beginning in January, financial institutions will be required to finalize their registration information by making any necessary changes. As registrations are approved and finalized, financial institutions will receive a notice of registration acceptance and will be issued a global intermediary identification number.

The IRS plans to post the foreign financial institution list next June and to update the list monthly. Financial institutions will, in order to ensure inclusion in the FFI list, need to finalize their registrations by April 25.

FFIs include depository institutions, custodial institutions, certain insurance companies that offer cash-value products or annuities and investment firms. The regulation excludes some FFIs, including most government entities, nonprofit organizations, retirement firms and certain community-based institutions, Journal of Accountancy reports.

Unless granted an exemption, FFIs that do not register and agree to report face a 30 percent withholding tax on certain U.S.-based payments.

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