Monday, September 21, 2009

IRS Extends FBAR / Foreign Entity Relief Deadline to 10/15/09

The IRS has extended to 10/15/09 the deadline for joining its special initiative voluntary disclosure practice with respect to foreign bank accounts and entities. The announcement is here. The IRS updated its FAQs here with this extension (see opening unnumbered paragraphs).

I think this will be win-win for the IRS. There will still be plenty of taxpayers who choose not to try to enter the program or, if they try, will be disqualified. The initiative and this extension will thus flush out a lot of tax dollars with relatively little IRS audit / criminal investigatiove costs, and much of the dollars might have otherwise escaped the IRS's radar screen or willingness to pursue.

I think it will also be win-win for the taxpayers involved. The taxpayers entering the practice and not disqualified will receive a pass on criminal prosecution and will pay taxes, penalties and interest that are far less than might otherwise be the case.


  1. Do you think that extending the deadline and UBS recently notifying their 3,000 clients of their filing obligations will create any due process issues for the government since the first set of names turned over in February did not have the same early warning to become compliant ahead of a deadline? And what about the fact that the selection of the first group of names was made by UBS not exactly a neutral party....potential due process issue or not?

  2. Do you think there are any due process issues associated with the fact that the second group of UBS names has gotten 1) advance warning from UBS, 2) simplified disclosure process, 2) more time the first group of UBS names and 4) even an extension of time? It would seem that one group of people is being treated differently than the second group. Actually, that raises another question...because the selection of who is in what group was made by a confessed criminal party - UBS. Do you think there are due process issues and issues with the UBS' role in determining who made which list?

  3. Anonymous,

    Thanks for your comment. I think it would be a stretch. But, I do believe there is some basic unfairness to closing voluntary disclosure to those in the first wave but opennng voluntary disclosure to those in the second (and perhaps later) waves.

    Jack Townsend


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