For those of you who are not members of ACA, and not on their email list, I wanted to alert you to the April edition of the ACA News Update for some interesting new information. The top item on the list is this:
ACA Participates in Meeting with Departments of IRS, Treasury,Financial Crimes Enforcement Agency (FINCen) and the Office for Terrorist Financing and Financial Crimes (TFFC)
Let me quote from this report:
On April 17th, 2012 ACA Executive Director, Marylouise Serrato along with Charles Bruce, ACA Washington, DC Counsel and representatives from Association of Americans Resident Overseas (AARO), Federation of American Women’s Clubs Overseas, Inc. (FAWCO), Democrats Abroad and Republicans Abroad met for two hours with 14 representatives from the offices of the IRS, Treasury, FinCEN and TFFC. The meeting was a result of initiatives taken by Congresswoman Maloney, the Co-Chair of the Americans Abroad Caucus, and the ongoing work of overseas American organizations.
The meeting discussion centered on four general areas; 1) FATCA/FBAR problems in general -bank account closures, offshore voluntary disclosure initiative (OVDI), penalty applications; 2) FATCA/FBAR/Tax compliance as related to family and women/dual nationals; 3) Patriot Act problems (bank closures state-side); and 4) general tax compliance (burden, cost, penalty applications).
The IRS, Treasury, FinCEN and TFFC acknowledged that there are problems with regard to tax compliance and FATCA/FBAR filing requirements that are having severe negative consequences for Americans legitimately living and working overseas and that these problems need to be addressed.
ACA and its sister organizations have now opened a dialog and have created an environment where overseas organizations will provide IRS/Treasury with recommendations for correcting problems, facilitating filing, etc., and will meet again on an ongoing basis to work on these issues.
A major success for ACA in the meeting was the acknowledgment from Treasury that the recent increase of the threshold for FATCA reporting was directly related to ACA’s on-going communications to Treasury about its concerns over the FATCA legislation. This outcome shows that having ACA advocating for overseas Americans in Washington has made an important impact, which can directly affect policies.