FBARs are due this week (again). Below are the top 4 exceptions we often see…
New FBAR FIling Deadline Law Signed
The president signed into law today legislation that modifies the due dates for several common tax returns. These new due dates are generally ones that tax professionals have been advocating for several years to create a more logical flow of information and help taxpayers and tax professionals in filing timely and accurate tax returns.
The new law harmonizes the FBAR and income tax return deadlines. Up until now the due date for the FBAR, which must be filed electronically on FinCEN Form 114 (formerly TD F 90-22.1) was June 30th. The new FBAR filing deadline is April 15th. The new law also provides for an extension of time of up to 6 months to file the FBAR, making the extended due date October 15th. This reconciles the due date and extended due date for the FBAR with the individual tax return filing date.
Before now many taxpayers were often confused by the differences in the filing dates. There were many instances of individuals that realize they had a filing responsibility on the June 30th deadline. Those taxpayers were usually stunned to find out that the extension of the filing date for their tax return did not extend the time to file their FBARs.
The new law also authorizes a first time penalty abate procedure. The new law states: “[f]or any taxpayer required to file such [FBAR] Form for the first time any penalty for failure to timely request for, or file, an extension may be waived by the Secretary.” This appears to provide authority to abate an FBAR penalty if the FBAR is filed after April 15th, but before October 15th, if this is the first time the FBAR was due.
High penalties apply for failure to file FBARs. However, the IRS already has discretion to waive FBAR filing penalties. Many of our clients have experienced significant penalty relief from delinquent FBARs.
The new law also sets new due dates for partnership and C corporation returns, as well as FinCEN Form 114, Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts (FBAR), and several other IRS information returns.
The new due dates will apply to returns for tax years beginning after Dec. 31, 2015. Therefore the new 2015 FBAR filing deadline will be April 15, 2016.