- As to foreign financial accounts, the draft Form 8938 would require more information than required by the FBAR (at least current and past iterations of the FBAR). Specifically, it asks if the account was opened or closed during the year. Part I, 1c(1) & (2). It also asks information about the conversion to U.S. dollars in stating the maximum amount. Part I, 1f.
- The draft Form 8938 goes farther than the FBAR in requiring information about "Other Foreign Assets" -- assets other than financial accounts -- and asks for similar information about these assets. Part II.
- The draft Form 8938 asks for a "Summary of Tax Items Attributable to Specified Foreign Financial Assets." Part III. I suppose this is a gentle reminder to taxpayers to report those items elsewhere on the return and a roadmap for where they are reported.
- The draft Form 8938 asks taxpayers to identify foreign financial assets excepted by other forms (such as Form 3521, 5471). Part IV.
Addendum on 6/21/11: The IRS today issued Notice 2011-55 which provides in pertinent part:
Individuals with reporting requirements under section 6038D may have to file an income tax return for a taxable year before the IRS releases Form 8938. This notice suspends the requirement for these individuals to attach Form 8938 to income tax returns that are filed before the release of Form 8938.Addendum on 7/11/11:
Similarly, PFIC shareholders that would not be required to file Form 8621 under the current Instructions to such form may, under section 1298(f), have to file an income tax return or information return (e.g., Form 1065) for a taxable year beginning on or after March 18, 2010, but before the IRS releases revised Form 8621. Pending the release of the revised Form 8621, modified to reflect the requirements of section 1298(f), this notice suspends the section 1298(f) reporting requirement for taxable years beginning on or after March 18, 2010, for PFIC shareholders that are not otherwise required to file Form 8621 as provided in the current Instructions to Form 8621. PFIC shareholders with Form 8621 reporting obligations as provided in the current Instructions to Form 8621 (e.g., upon disposition of stock of a PFIC or with respect to a qualified electing fund under section 1293) must continue to file the current Form 8621 with an income tax or information return filed prior to the release of the revised Form 8621.
Following the release of Form 8938 or revised Form 8621, individuals and PFIC shareholders for which the filing of Form 8938 or 8621 has been suspended under this notice for a taxable year (suspended taxable year) will be required to attach Form 8938, Form 8621, or both, as appropriate, for the suspended taxable year to their next income tax or information return required to be filed with the IRS.
Under section 6501(c)(8), the period of limitation for assessment of tax with respect to periods for which reporting is required under sections 6038D or 1298(f) will not expire before three years after the date on which the IRS receives Forms 8938 or 8621, as appropriate, for the taxable year. A Form 8938 or 8621 filed for a suspended taxable year with a timely filed income tax or information return (taking into account extensions) as required by this notice will be treated as having been filed on the date that the income tax or information return for the suspended taxable year was filed. The failure to furnish Forms 8938 and 8621 for the suspended taxable year as described in this notice may result in the extension of the period of limitation for the suspended taxable year under section 6501(c)(8), and penalties may apply.
Compliance with sections 6038D and 1298(f) does not relieve a person of the responsibility to file Form TD F 90-22.1, "Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts," (FBAR) if the FBAR is otherwise required to be filed.
The link to the draft Form 8938 is to the draft as of 6/21/11.