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    • grey gym sock
    • By grey gym sock 14th Mar 17, 9:51 PM
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    grey gym sock
    FATCA / CRS compliance
    • #1
    • 14th Mar 17, 9:51 PM
    FATCA / CRS compliance 14th Mar 17 at 9:51 PM
    this is mainly out of interest, following previous discussions about how effective international reporting on ownership of assets is or isn't ...

    i got a letter recently from computershare, the registrar for a guernsey-registered, london-listed company which i hold shares in (with a paper share certificate), asking me to fill in a form on their website, after entering a username supplied in the letter, and a password supplied in a separate letter (which arrived in the same post - is that good security? ).

    they already had my name, (UK) address, and (UK) bank account details (so they can pay dividends into it). they wanted to know: date and country of birth, country or countries of citizenship, and of tax residence, with tax identification numbers (apparently, NI number will do for the UK).

    this is to do with FATCA (a unilateral US act, requiring financial organizations to report info on US citizens and residents to the US), and/or CRS (common reporting standard, a mutual reporting arrangement, which many countries have signed up to, though i'm not sure how far they've implemented it yet). many people seem to think FATCA is stricter, so i wonder if it's more about that ...?

    computershare say: "Depending on the information you provide, your account details may be reported to the Guernsey tax authority, The States of Guernsey Income Tax, who may then share this information with other international tax authorities".

    which is curious. why wouldn't they report to guernsey in all cases, and guernsey share the info unless your only tax connection is with guernsey itself? perhaps this is all about US persons and FATCA. i'd have thought they should be sharing my info with HMRC anyway, given my UK address and bank account - even if i'd filled in the form claiming to be a panamanian citizen resident in the caymans.

    "What happens if I don't self-certify? There are no financial penalties for failing to complete a self-certification. Your account details will be included in our annual reporting to the State of Guernsey Income Tax Office. We will send you two further reminders to self-certify."

    and presumably guernsey would then report me to the US as somebody who hasn't denied being a US person? or to every tax authority in the world as somebody who hasn't denied being resident in any/every country?

    surely at some stage, non-compliance should lead, not necessarily to financial penalties, but to a shareholding being frozen, i.e. it not being possible to transfer it to another person, and any cash payouts (dividends or capital) being withheld, until such time as the shareholder explains who they are?

    so i'm not too convinced that this isn't still full of holes.

    also, should i be expecting similar requests for UK-registered companies which i hold via paper certificates?
Page 1
    • EdSwippet
    • By EdSwippet 14th Mar 17, 10:32 PM
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    EdSwippet
    • #2
    • 14th Mar 17, 10:32 PM
    • #2
    • 14th Mar 17, 10:32 PM
    Surely at some stage, non-compliance should lead, not necessarily to financial penalties, but to a shareholding being frozen, i.e. it not being possible to transfer it to another person, and any cash payouts (dividends or capital) being withheld, until such time as the shareholder explains who they are?
    Originally posted by grey gym sock
    Not really. FATCA is a unilateral US law to which the UK caved in under conditions of gunboat diplomacy. The form that this caving in took was the FATCA Intergovernmental Agreement.

    Under Article 4 Paragraph 2 of this agreement, UK banks and financial institutions are not required to close 'recalcitrant' accounts, nor withhold tax or take any other punitive measure. What they are required to do is pass your details on to the IRS who would then, presumably, if you are a US person, take some action. If you're not a US person, nothing happens except that some 'false positive' data gums up the IRS's machinery (arguably a good outcome for taxpayers there, then!).

    Be happy you already have the account, and so can probably ignore this nonsense if you choose. Consider the impact of the following from the IRS's FAQ on FATCA:
    If a Reporting Model 1 FFI or a Reporting Model 2 FFI that is applying the due diligence procedures in section III, paragraph B, of Annex I of the IGA cannot obtain a self-certification upon the opening of a New Individual Account, can the FFI open the account and treat it as a U.S. Reportable Account?
    No. Pursuant to section III, paragraph B, of Annex I of the IGA, the FFI must obtain a self-certification at account opening. If the FFI cannot obtain a self-certification at account opening, it cannot open the account.
    Translation: if a UK citizen and resident opening a new account at a UK bank or financial institution does not certify that they are not a US person, the bank cannot open the account. The US has positioned itself as the final arbiter of access to UK banks for UK citizens. You would think the UK government might have some objection to this state of affairs, but apparently not.
    • grey gym sock
    • By grey gym sock 14th Mar 17, 11:16 PM
    • 4,040 Posts
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    grey gym sock
    • #3
    • 14th Mar 17, 11:16 PM
    • #3
    • 14th Mar 17, 11:16 PM
    thanks for the details about FATCA.

    i come to this from the point of view that i'd like there to be an effective crackdown on international tax evasion. i was thinking that freezing accounts would make sense in some circumstances. but there may indeed be no provision for it at the moment.

    i don't like the unilateral nature of FATCA; but i don't see much problem with the requirements it imposes, at least in terms of privacy versus intrusiveness. (there are also questions about the costs to financial organizations of making sure they are compliant.)

    e.g. what is bad about having to tick a box to say whether you're a US person when filling in an application form for a new account? it is already going to be the case that the account won't be opened unless you complete the form, so what is the difference? unless you are really trying to evade tax you owe in the US.

    if a UK citizen or resident is also a US citizen or resident, then it is also the USA's business. if they aren't, then they have to tick the box, but their info is not then reported to the US.

    while i prefer the mutual approach of CRS, there is certainly nothing to prevent the EU or UK from enacting equivalent legislation to FATCA, to make it work the same in both directions.
    • EdSwippet
    • By EdSwippet 14th Mar 17, 11:56 PM
    • 435 Posts
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    EdSwippet
    • #4
    • 14th Mar 17, 11:56 PM
    • #4
    • 14th Mar 17, 11:56 PM
    i don't like the unilateral nature of FATCA; but i don't see much problem with the requirements it imposes, at least in terms of privacy versus intrusiveness. (there are also questions about the costs to financial organizations of making sure they are compliant.)
    Originally posted by grey gym sock
    The cost issue isn't really an afterthought, though. It is a primary objection.

    This is unilateral tax law passed by the US, where any benefits flow to the US, but all of the costs of implementation fall on other countries. In effect, very little different to the US directly taxing non-US banks.

    e.g. what is bad about having to tick a box to say whether you're a US person when filling in an application form for a new account? it is already going to be the case that the account won't be opened unless you complete the form, so what is the difference? unless you are really trying to evade tax you owe in the US.
    Originally posted by grey gym sock
    It's not always bad, but there are cases where bad things happen to innocent people.

    Suppose a US citizen comes to work in the UK for a year. While here, they pay UK tax and whatnot, and simultaneously have to comply with US tax laws. They're only in the UK for a year or so, perhaps less, so it's no great hardship.

    Now, suppose someone born in the US while their parents were studying there, and who moved back to the UK at age six months and has lived here ever since. The US confers citizenship on anyone born there, and with citizenship comes the responsibility to file and pay US taxes forever more. This 'accidental' US citizen is as British as the rest of us, they just happened to be born outside the UK. But because of the way the US applies its tax laws, they have to comply with copious 'offshore' account disclosures, carrying a penalty of 50% of the account's highest balance for each year missed. They cannot use ISAs because the US does not recognise these as tax shelters. They may have problems running a SIPP or other pension. Some investment platforms will flat-out refuse them service due to the expense and hassle of complying with FATCA. They may face US capital gains tax on sale of their home, and US estate taxes even where all their assets pass to a UK citizen spouse. Difficulties getting a mortgage. And on and on.

    The US is an outlier with its citizenship-based taxation policy. Prior to FATCA, this was mostly 'aspirational' and the US didn't really bother at all about enforcing any of it, not least because it lacked the means to do so. The bona-fide short-term visiting US citizen would comply, but the 'accidental' American was pretty much safe from interference from the IRS, and most, if not all, would have no idea that the US sought to tax them for their entire lives.

    After FATCA, people with no intent at all to 'evade' tax -- that is, fully tax-paying UK citizens and residents with only highly tenuous connections to the US -- found themselves unable to function financially in anything like the same ways as their neighbours, family, and friends. The result, predictably, has been a huge uptick in the number of people renouncing US citizenship. And renouncing an unwanted US citizenship is neither easy nor quick. Nor is it cheap, at $2,350/person.
    Last edited by EdSwippet; 15-03-2017 at 12:02 AM.
    • bowlhead99
    • By bowlhead99 15th Mar 17, 7:40 AM
    • 6,294 Posts
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    bowlhead99
    • #5
    • 15th Mar 17, 7:40 AM
    • #5
    • 15th Mar 17, 7:40 AM
    this is mainly out of interest,
    Originally posted by grey gym sock
    These comments may or may not help satisfy your curiosity...

    they already had my name, (UK) address, and (UK) bank account details (so they can pay dividends into it). they wanted to know: date and country of birth, country or countries of citizenship, and of tax residence, with tax identification numbers (apparently, NI number will do for the UK).
    Yes, NI number will do, or UTR if you have one.
    this is to do with FATCA (a unilateral US act, requiring financial organizations to report info on US citizens and residents to the US), and/or CRS (common reporting standard, a mutual reporting arrangement, which many countries have signed up to, though i'm not sure how far they've implemented it yet). many people seem to think FATCA is stricter, so i wonder if it's more about that ...?
    It's about both. US FATCA (and the UK's equivalent between UK and Crown Dependencies / Overseas Territories like Cayman, Channel Islands etc, lets call it UKCDOT) came in earlier than CRS so people have been talking about it for longer but the requirements on reporting are broadly the same.

    However, with the earlier regimes, if you didn't have any indicia of US status they wouldn't have to report you, so someone with a UK address and phone number and UK bank account would not be flagged for US reporting under FATCA and probably wouldn't be communicated with (depending on how the particular financial institution implemented its compliance program).

    Under UKCDOT you would have had indicia of UK reportable status, for the channel islands-based financial institution, but as both UKCDOT and USFATCA allow pre-existing customers with account balances <$50k equivalent at time of implementation (mid 2014) to be disregarded (as long as the balance doesn't later rise to a very big number), they may not have looked at your account when doing an initial screen.

    Under CRS which came in during 2016 and covering reportable people in a lot more jurisdictions (including the UK where it supersedes UKCDOT), there is no lower threshold for an individual's account balance, so all their pre-existing accounts held by individuals are in scope and the financial institutions have to decide by the end of this year whether you are going to get reported, and to whom.

    So on your question 'wonder if it's more about that' - no, it's more about CRS, but the self-cert will be dual purpose and give them your FATCA status as well if they hadn't formally given you one before.

    computershare say: "Depending on the information you provide, your account details may be reported to the Guernsey tax authority, The States of Guernsey Income Tax, who may then share this information with other international tax authorities".
    Yes, they collect information, give it to their local tax authority in either a FATCA report or a CRS report, and the tax authority packages up that data and pings it on to the relevant authority around the world.

    which is curious. why wouldn't they report to guernsey in all cases, and guernsey share the info unless your only tax connection is with guernsey itself? perhaps this is all about US persons and FATCA.
    They are not going to give the Guernsey tax authority the details of all their customer records and tell Guernsey to sort it. Firstly, they are not going to share all their customers' financial information with anyone if they don't have to. Secondly, Guernsey tax authority is relatively small and the the job of deciding who is reportable to where, lies with the financial institution so they can't just palm it off on the tax authority to work it out.

    The tax authority would prefer to receive a report saying John Smith is reportable to UK and US if that is the case but does not also want to know that Jim Smith is eventually reportable to Canada and Jane Smith is eventually reportable to Hong Kong because HK and Canada are not exchanging data with Guernsey for the current financial year.

    i'd have thought they should be sharing my info with HMRC anyway, given my UK address and bank account - even if i'd filled in the form claiming to be a panamanian citizen resident in the caymans.
    There are a couple of things here.

    Yes based on your UK indicia of residence they could just say screw it, let's report him. However, under the local implementing rules in Guernsey they need to notify you they are doing that (or that they might do that) which would mean writing to you anyway.

    As they want to include things like tax ID and d.o.b. on the report (which is more useful to HMRC than just knowing it's a John Smith who used to live at 1 High Street), and they are writing to you anyway, it is far more useful to get you to complete a formal self certification process where they get your proper current data and are able to say you have signed off that you are tax resident in UK and France rather than they are guessing you are tax resident in UK because that's where you choose to receive correspondence but actually do all your correspondence online.

    If you had said you were a panama person resident in Cayman and were not at all UK resident, that would conflict with the other indicia of status like your mailing address and the fact they have standing instructions to pay monthly income to a UK bank account, so they would want to get some suitably official supporting documentation to go with it, and if they get that they won't need to report you to HMRC.

    The process is basically designed to stop them being lazy and reporting people unnecessarily but if a person is not going to cooperate then that person would end up getting reported with the information they have following the assumptions that they make.

    Giving you the chance to give them the correct information and sign off on it, stops them making assumptions about you which may be undesirable.

    E.g. you are now tax resident in Brazil and not tax resident in the UK and do not want HMRC being told that you are receiving income of 20k a year from Guernsey and appear to be a UK resident (based on the assumptions they made on an address in your system and the fact that you have a UK bank). Perhaps you just can't be bothered to update the address because you deal with everything on line these days, and keep that UK account to receive sterling investment fund proceeds because your bank in your new location of Rio doesn't have a cheap GBP bank account. As a Brazil resident and UK non-resident you would not want HMRC being told that you were a UK resident with Guernsey income. So, the self cert process allows you to see what they have and explicitly tell them where you are tax resident (and if the answer is Brazil and not UK, you may need to prove it).

    "What happens if I don't self-certify? There are no financial penalties for failing to complete a self-certification. Your account details will be included in our annual reporting to the State of Guernsey Income Tax Office. We will send you two further reminders to self-certify."
    As Guernsey is signed up to CRS (which is a reporting regime not a withholding regime) and to a version of the US FATCA agreement which is also a non-withholding one, they can't financially penalise you, they will just go ahead and report what they think. That's fine as long as they tell you they'll do that. And they will keep sending you reminders because they really do have to have a compliance program that follows things up properly rather than paying lipservice and making no effort. At the end of the day if the customer doesn't want to cooperate, he doesn't want to cooperate, so they will just tell the tax authority he's reportable to country X and/or Y and Z based on what they think.

    and presumably guernsey would then report me to the US as somebody who hasn't denied being a US person? or to every tax authority in the world as somebody who hasn't denied being resident in any/every country?
    If there are literally no indications of US status then they don't have to report you to US or those other countries for which there's no indications. With a phone number in France (assuming no phone number in Guernsey) and an address in UK and standing instructions to send cash to Germany and power of attorney over the account given to a daughter in US, it would just be those four countries' tax authorities that would be told that one of their residents has a 1m balance and 20k annual income.

    surely at some stage, non-compliance should lead, not necessarily to financial penalties, but to a shareholding being frozen, i.e. it not being possible to transfer it to another person, and any cash payouts (dividends or capital) being withheld, until such time as the shareholder explains who they are?
    It is already pretty burdensome for the financial institutions who do not get paid by any international organisation or tax authority for doing any of this compliance.

    Freezing bank accounts and financial assets is a major penalty and not done lightly. If you didn't reply and then some time later you wanted to sell out of the fund and they say, tough, you didn't send us the form, so if you do that you can catch the next available redemption date in a month's time... you would have hundreds of thousands or millions of people all around the world enraged that their assets had been confiscated because they either forgot to fill a form in or never even received it for one reason or another or whatever, and they have suffered market losses, or they couldn't get the money out of their bank for a week and suffered a massive consequential loss. It would be a sh1tshow.

    So, the regime is not going to do that. The regime is about reporting info to tax authorities so that (e.g.) HMRC knows there is a John Smith with 20k of Guernsey income which might not be on his tax return or that the French tax authorities know that Jean Smith has 500k sitting in Guernsey that he's not paying French wealth taxes on or declaring an income from. When the tax authorities audit a person they now have more data.

    so i'm not too convinced that this isn't still full of holes.
    The US regime imposes an extra layer of withholding taxes on US source income which is how they got the world's financial institutions to sign up and comply. However, to make it administratively work better they ended up with these inter-government agreements between countries where it was negotiated what the local financial institutions would need to do to be compliant.

    So now the US institutions only withhold on the income if their direct customer is recalcitrant in providing their residency info or if their customer is another international financial institution who is not compliant with FATCA. Largely those international financial institutions can be compliant by doing the tax reporting and providing information upstream to the US source for withholding to be done based on their downstream investors/customers not being compliant financial institutions.

    The financial institutions will all jump into line and be compliant (to avoid losing their customers lots of money in anti-avoidance taxes). But depending on the type of inter-government agreement for their country, might find that the requirement is just reporting customer data to local tax authorities to be internationally shared, rather than actually withholding money from customers.

    CRS which came in after FATCA, borrowing its concepts, could not really be designed as a withholding regime because it is multilateral across 101 countries (and counting) and you can't have some standard flat rate of witholding for non-compliance across all those places because it would take decades to agree some standard rate and work out how to implement and administer and share it. So it's reporting only, but basically the tax authorities can now get a lot more data than they used to be able to.

    also, should i be expecting similar requests for UK-registered companies which i hold via paper certificates?
    Companies (like Tesco plc or Sainsbury plc) held directly and not through a broker or intermediary - no, the are not financial institutions. And likewise if you own Lloyds bank plc shares directly, that ownership is an 'owner' relationship as distinct from a 'customer' relationship where you are considered an accountholder.

    Investment companies - yes perhaps, if they are shares in an entity which is a 'financial institution' within the meaning of the legislation and has to treat your shares in it as an 'accountholder' relationship: such as an investment trust. A broker who maintains a nominee account for you is also a financial institution that would treat you as a customer. But different financial institutions will implement the guidance in their own way.

    So a UK-based investment trust could say I am going to rely on an assumption here as allowed by the regulations and say the customer's residential address is UK and he is an individual (not a personal holding company or trust that could have multiple people behind it) and there is no indication of any non-UK statuses (such as phone number, bank, POA etc) in our database and he has a low balance so I don't need to manually search old scanned documentation in a customer master file, so I deem him UK resident. As this is a UK fund that's not a foreign residence or a US citizenship so I am not going to report this person for either FATCA or CRS, and I am not forced to write to him to tell him my assumptions because I'm not reporting him and he won't mind being not reported.

    However, another UK-based financial institution might say, although the regulations do allow me to assume a UK person with no indicia of foreign status in my database is non reportable, I would rather find out the facts and get it right, because with a balance over a certain amount I have to do more than search the database I have to pull out any paper-based or scanned files I have on the customer master file (anti money laundering documents I obtained etc) and go through them, and if I find something the cure is going to involve a self-cert... so why even bother streaming my investors by account size (and rechecking that account size each year) and going through paper files in the first instance to try to work out what each customer might be - I will start from the angle of getting the customer to confirm their own status. So, let's send self-certs to everyone.

    i don't like the unilateral nature of FATCA; but i don't see much problem with the requirements it imposes, at least in terms of privacy versus intrusiveness. (there are also questions about the costs to financial organizations of making sure they are compliant.)
    Yes the costs of AEOI (automatic exchange of information, generally including FATCA and CRS and the UK-CDOT thing that came in between FATCA and CRS's launch) are high, and ongoing.

    e.g. what is bad about having to tick a box to say whether you're a US person when filling in an application form for a new account? it is already going to be the case that the account won't be opened unless you complete the form, so what is the difference? unless you are really trying to evade tax you owe in the US.
    Exactly, it is not majorly burdensome on the customer at account opening (there is still some work to do for the financial institution to validate that what you put on the self-cert for your residences is not inconsistent with other bits of information they know about you). Both FATCA and CRS say the account shouldn't be opened if the info isn't provided at account opening (or reasonable time thereafter)

    It is more of a burden when the account is already open and a new regime such as FATCA or CRS comes in and requires banks and investment firms to backfill the data. There are examples on other threads where people who were longstanding existing customers where getting the forms from (e.g.) Lloyds / Halifax and the processes were handled by an outsourced compliance company (as there were millions of customers to get through) and it became a customer service issue as the branch staff didn't know about the project and customers thought the paper forms sent out were not glossy enough and so didn't look like standard bank communication and were concerned it was some fraudster.

    In those cases it gets messy because customers already hate banks making you fill in forms 'for things they should already know or have no right to know, what is all this big brother crap, etc etc'

    if a UK citizen or resident is also a US citizen or resident, then it is also the USA's business. if they aren't, then they have to tick the box, but their info is not then reported to the US.

    while i prefer the mutual approach of CRS, there is certainly nothing to prevent the EU or UK from enacting equivalent legislation to FATCA, to make it work the same in both directions.
    The regimes are largely the same (apart from one needing citizenship because of citizenship-based taxation).

    When FATCA first got announced (five years ago now) it was unilateral by the US and the threat of withholding money from US income or even entire capital proceeds was pretty strong and concerning to lots of global financial institutions, but the US has the financial reach to make it work for them.

    And as local rules (eg on data protection) would have made it difficult for (eg) a UK FI to comply, there needed to be inter government agreements to coordinate and allow the information sharing. In doing that, most of these 'IGAs' *were* set up as bilateral so the US financial institution would have to share info on UK customers just like UK FIs do on US customers. The customer due diligence rules and rules on what gets reported are basically the same both ways.

    However, as the US had already got the big threat of withholding tax out there, places like UK would see their financial institutions suffer if they could not quickly agree a route to sharing data so the withholding tax threat on US investment returns would go away. So in negotiating the IGAs and agreeing what we would all share, the UK committed to first sharing (e.g.) financial data for 2014 during 2015, while the US for their part said yes we agree all this stuff should be shared and we will share stuff back the other way under this same agreement... after we have got a workable solution our financial institutions to gather and share it, eventually.

    The logic being that UK financial institutions were already going to have to share data direct to US IRS under the globally imposed FATCA rules under threat of withholding, so there was no reason why UK needed extra time to implement it on their side just because it goes through an IGA process making it *less* burdensome; but the US financial institutions were not going to be reporting anything to UK because there were no UK equivalent extraterritorial rules at that time, so this would be a whole new thing for the US financial institutions to get to grips with and it would take time.

    So, UK and France, Germany etc are sharing data with US under bi-lateral FATCA agreements that require data sharing both ways, just the US doesn't have to start sharing it yet from its end. So, UK, France, Germany have no clout to get US to sign up to CRS because US is already getting all the data it wants, and has already said it will share back data under the reciprocal FATCA sharing agreements, so it is going nowhere near CRS.

    In practice the US has still made no serious efforts to actually implement the 'reciprocal' bit of FATCA because introducing new regulations on US banks to support the international agreements requires a lot of work and imposition on the US businesses. There is no way republicans would have let it go through when Obama was in office. And now they are in office, Trump has zero appetite to get financial data about US accountholders and give it to foreign governments, so it will probably never happen.

    So, if you are UK resident and want to hide money from the UK taxman, putting it in a US-based bank account would be a good start. The difficulty you face is that many US financial institutions are pretty insular and ignore the wide world outside the US as if it doesn't exist - so if you don't already have a US social security number and can't say you are a US resident or citizen, you will struggle to open up an account with a US bank or broker.
    Last edited by bowlhead99; 15-03-2017 at 8:13 AM.
    • grey gym sock
    • By grey gym sock 16th Mar 17, 1:00 AM
    • 4,040 Posts
    • 3,502 Thanks
    grey gym sock
    • #6
    • 16th Mar 17, 1:00 AM
    • #6
    • 16th Mar 17, 1:00 AM
    These comments may or may not help satisfy your curiosity...
    Originally posted by bowlhead99
    lots of good info, thanks. however, that usually just provokes further curiosity ...

    They are not going to give the Guernsey tax authority the details of all their customer records and tell Guernsey to sort it.
    ok, so reporting to guernsey is 100% for the purpose of having guernsey pass it on to other tax authorities. and similarly, reporting by a UK-based financial company to HMRC is 100% so that HMRC can pass it on to other tax authorities.

    part of what i'm wondering is: but wouldn't this kind of report also be useful to HMRC itself to tell it about financial accounts held in the UK by UK residents (and similarly in guernsey, for accounts held by guernsey residents - assuming they charge their residents any tax)? or does HMRC get all this info reported to them, in respect of UK accounts, already under some other process?

    Companies (like Tesco plc or Sainsbury plc) held directly and not through a broker or intermediary - no, the are not financial institutions. And likewise if you own Lloyds bank plc shares directly, that ownership is an 'owner' relationship as distinct from a 'customer' relationship where you are considered an accountholder.

    Investment companies - yes perhaps, if they are shares in an entity which is a 'financial institution' within the meaning of the legislation and has to treat your shares in it as an 'accountholder' relationship: such as an investment trust. A broker who maintains a nominee account for you is also a financial institution that would treat you as a customer.
    ah, i was aware that brokers will need to do some reporting. but wasn't aware of there being a distinction between direct shareholdings in investment companies and direct shareholdings in other companies. (and the guernsey company i got a request for is an investment company.)

    perhaps lack of reporting about direct shareholdings in non-investment companies is a loophole ...?

    In practice the US has still made no serious efforts to actually implement the 'reciprocal' bit of FATCA because introducing new regulations on US banks to support the international agreements requires a lot of work and imposition on the US businesses. There is no way republicans would have let it go through when Obama was in office. And now they are in office, Trump has zero appetite to get financial data about US accountholders and give it to foreign governments, so it will probably never happen.
    ok. so to make the US take action, perhaps the EU (or the UK - in theory, but not really, since we're threatening to shoot ourselves in the foot by becoming a tax haven) should use FATCA-type tactics on the US: i.e. impose a withholding tax on countries who don't provide automatic exchange of info under CRS (or under FATCA-related IGAs - i.e. either way would do).
    • grey gym sock
    • By grey gym sock 16th Mar 17, 1:15 AM
    • 4,040 Posts
    • 3,502 Thanks
    grey gym sock
    • #7
    • 16th Mar 17, 1:15 AM
    • #7
    • 16th Mar 17, 1:15 AM
    The cost issue isn't really an afterthought, though. It is a primary objection.

    This is unilateral tax law passed by the US, where any benefits flow to the US, but all of the costs of implementation fall on other countries. In effect, very little different to the US directly taxing non-US banks.
    Originally posted by EdSwippet
    well, bowlhead thinks the reporting requirements under CRS and FATCA are very similar; it's just that FATCA has come into effect sooner.

    leaving aside the unilateral way the US started this, the bigger question is: is it worth imposing the costs of an effective international reporting regime, in order to crack down on international tax evasion. IMHO, it is.

    It's not always bad, but there are cases where bad things happen to innocent people.

    Suppose a US citizen comes to work in the UK for a year. While here, they pay UK tax and whatnot, and simultaneously have to comply with US tax laws. They're only in the UK for a year or so, perhaps less, so it's no great hardship.

    Now, suppose someone born in the US while their parents were studying there, and who moved back to the UK at age six months and has lived here ever since. The US confers citizenship on anyone born there, and with citizenship comes the responsibility to file and pay US taxes forever more. This 'accidental' US citizen is as British as the rest of us, they just happened to be born outside the UK. But because of the way the US applies its tax laws, they have to comply with copious 'offshore' account disclosures, carrying a penalty of 50% of the account's highest balance for each year missed. They cannot use ISAs because the US does not recognise these as tax shelters. They may have problems running a SIPP or other pension. Some investment platforms will flat-out refuse them service due to the expense and hassle of complying with FATCA. They may face US capital gains tax on sale of their home, and US estate taxes even where all their assets pass to a UK citizen spouse. Difficulties getting a mortgage. And on and on.

    The US is an outlier with its citizenship-based taxation policy. Prior to FATCA, this was mostly 'aspirational' and the US didn't really bother at all about enforcing any of it, not least because it lacked the means to do so. The bona-fide short-term visiting US citizen would comply, but the 'accidental' American was pretty much safe from interference from the IRS, and most, if not all, would have no idea that the US sought to tax them for their entire lives.

    After FATCA, people with no intent at all to 'evade' tax -- that is, fully tax-paying UK citizens and residents with only highly tenuous connections to the US -- found themselves unable to function financially in anything like the same ways as their neighbours, family, and friends. The result, predictably, has been a huge uptick in the number of people renouncing US citizenship. And renouncing an unwanted US citizenship is neither easy nor quick. Nor is it cheap, at $2,350/person.
    i do find it difficult not to like laws that upset boris johnson ... but i'll try not to let that prejudice me.

    you can put 'evade' in quotes, but a US citizen is evading tax when they don't pay what the US says they owe. breaking the law is breaking the law, even when you disagree with that law.

    you can certainly argue that US should make it easier or cheaper to renounce US citizenship; or that they shouldn't tax citizens who've been non-resident for the last N years; and so on.

    you can also argue that the point when enforcement of these tax laws was becoming more effective, due to FATCA, would have been a good time to review them.

    but these cases are not a good argument for giving up on tackling international tax evasion effectively altogether.
    • bowlhead99
    • By bowlhead99 16th Mar 17, 7:07 AM
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    bowlhead99
    • #8
    • 16th Mar 17, 7:07 AM
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    • 16th Mar 17, 7:07 AM
    ok, so reporting to guernsey is 100% for the purpose of having guernsey pass it on to other tax authorities. and similarly, reporting by a UK-based financial company to HMRC is 100% so that HMRC can pass it on to other tax authorities.

    part of what i'm wondering is: but wouldn't this kind of report also be useful to HMRC itself to tell it about financial accounts held in the UK by UK residents (and similarly in guernsey, for accounts held by guernsey residents - assuming they charge their residents any tax)? or does HMRC get all this info reported to them, in respect of UK accounts, already under some other process?
    Originally posted by grey gym sock
    Yes that's correct. And the CRS is called the Common Reporting Standard as it is obtaining information that meets international bare minimums and shares that in a standardised way. If the tax authorities want the information for domestic purposes and are not already getting it via other existing reporting, they can make their local 'reporting schema' (the electronic reports that must be filed in XML) more complicated or mandate that other types of investors must be reported on it. All the tax authorities can put whatever they like into their own implementing rules, as long as they at least collect the data they have promised to exchange with the other countries.

    For example when FATCA reports started being required, there were a few ways to implement it.
    - Cayman built a system from scratch that met the basic US reporting specifications following what the IRS had published that they wanted. And then modified the system to also be able to receive info on the UK-CDOT specifications too in a separate report using its different schema.
    - HMRC built a system so its financial institutions could file their FATCA and UK-CDOT reports all in one file using a custom schema.
    - South Africa built a system with a custom schema so it could collect certain other facts about domestic SA residents and strip them out for internal purposes while sharing the rest.
    - Singapore didn't want to build a system so they made their financial institutions file directly into a big repository that the IRS had already created to receive the reports, where Singapore would review the files in a staging area before approving and passing them on to the IRS to receive.

    So there are lots of ways of getting the data collected, making it extremely painful if you are a financial group running accounts or investments in different countries and having to interface with all these systems to deposit the data. But yes the systems they build and the laws they pass can of course collect more than the bare minimum, if they want to impose that on their local financial institutions.

    But in the UK for example:
    - If you are a bank, as tax is no longer deducted at source from your accountholders bank interest you are already going to be reporting that to HMRC (and probably with increased frequency to support the whole 'making tax digital' initiatives and so on).
    - If you are a private investment partnership like a real estate fund or hedge fund or private equity fund being run from here, you are already filing partnership tax returns in the UK so your UK resident investors are going to appear in those - no point in putting extra information into the FATCA/ CRS reports to get it collected.

    Basically the UK doesn't need to piggyback other data off the FATCA/CRS reporting because that just makes that particular process more arduous and complex and they would rather just mandate a separate report with the specific data they want. Whereas in Cayman where they don't have a local income tax regime, they are not particularly bothered about receiving reports on Cayman residents alongside the stuff they receive for international sharing.

    FWIW yes Guernsey does make its locals pay tax and social security deductions etc - income tax is 20% of a resident's worldwide income (but with a low cap so if you are a fatcat earning 2m you don't pay any more tax than if you earned 1m, as what you've paid is considered already enough for any one person to contribute to running the country).

    ah, i was aware that brokers will need to do some reporting. but wasn't aware of there being a distinction between direct shareholdings in investment companies and direct shareholdings in other companies. (and the guernsey company i got a request for is an investment company.)
    Yes so a debt or equity interest in an investment company in Guernsey, BVI etc is considered a 'financial account' in a 'financial institution' and so the investment company would report you assuming you have a foreign tax residence to them.

    An investment in any type of company held via a broker/custodian holding your assets is also going to be considered a 'financial account' because the broker is a 'financial institution' so he reports the account value and the dividends and interest and gross redemption proceeds and so on you are receiving in the account, no matter what type of company it is. (again, assuming you have a foreign tax residence from the perspective of the financial institution i.e. the broker)

    However, your direct shareholding in a listed company that is NOT a financial institution and is NOT held via a financial institution such as a broker is not going to be subject to the regime which has financial institutions share data with foreign tax authorities because it is a personal investor relationship between you and the company and there are no finanical institutions involved.
    perhaps lack of reporting about direct shareholdings in non-investment companies is a loophole ...?
    It would be a monster pain in the backside for a non-financial company like Morrisons or Greggs or Next to have to review their investor base (which changes every few seconds) and receive and validate tax self certifications for every investor throughout the year, just in case that investor happened to be a shareholder on an ex-dividend date so that they could report to HMRC that during the course of the year they paid 3.24 of dividend distributions to investors based in the Lebanon and here are all the names and tax IDs so HMRC can package it up and exchange it with such foreign governments along with some assessment of what that share is 'worth' at year end (if the investor is still a holder at year end).

    ok. so to make the US take action, perhaps the EU (or the UK - in theory, but not really, since we're threatening to shoot ourselves in the foot by becoming a tax haven) should use FATCA-type tactics on the US: i.e. impose a withholding tax on countries who don't provide automatic exchange of info under CRS (or under FATCA-related IGAs - i.e. either way would do).
    Firstly it is pretty hard for a country like the UK which has far less economic influence than USA.

    It is not just that their economy is over 5x bigger - they are simply going to taken more seriously in their demands given that the world's "reserve currency" is theirs. The countries we can exert influence over because of our trade links or proud commonwealth heritage etc, are mostly going to be exchanging data under CRS anyway - places like Canada, India, Australia, Cayman, BVI, Kitts & Nevis, whatever.

    There's over 100 countries signed up to CRS and it includes places like Argentina and Mexico sharing data for 2016 and Singapore and Panama and Ghana and Switzerland for 2017. Sure, there are some not on the list. But unlike the US, the UK doesn't have an existing system of withholding tax at source on dividends paid to foreign investors so bringing in a new regime to create one, and then only implementing it on investors with residences in certain countries, is hugely expensive and full of hassle.

    So on the practical point:

    If you are Greggs and you have some profits on your pasties, you don't withhold currently withhold taxes when you fire out the dividend cheques. Do you think you would be happy that HMRC has mandated that you are implementing a withholding tax so we can punish Somalian investors for their government not having its banks automatically tell HMRC how much money John Smith living in Grimsby has earned in bank interest at Mogadishu branch of First Somali Bank? It gets complicated. Money to be made for advisors and software developers, but it increases the costs on businesses.

    A list of countries signed up to the first couple of phases of data exchange under CRS is at the below link (split by when the data should first be exchanged (e.g. during 2017 or 2018, for the previous financial year)

    http://www.oecd.org/tax/automatic-exchange/crs-implementation-and-assistance/crs-by-jurisdiction/

    I didn't write it or convince the various world governments to sign up to is so don't shoot the messenger if your favourite tax haven doesn't appear on the list.

    you can put 'evade' in quotes, but a US citizen is evading tax when they don't pay what the US says they owe. breaking the law is breaking the law, even when you disagree with that law.

    you can certainly argue that US should make it easier or cheaper to renounce US citizenship; or that they shouldn't tax citizens who've been non-resident for the last N years; and so on.
    Yes. My niece is US citizen as she happened to be born there so has a US passport. Parents no longer live there. She doesn't file tax returns as she's two. However, having a US passport and getting US consular support when she gets kidnapped by terrorists on a holiday trip to Colombia in sixteen years time, might be handy. Or if she's 18 and wants to go and travel USA with the ability to stay in the country more than 90 days at a time without a visa and being able to seek employment.

    At some point when an adult she can decide whether it is worth maintaining the US link, as she would need to file a US tax return. It would be simple for her to file a US tax return, and not really cost much/ anything in terms of taxes, given they exempt a large amount of foreign employment income (much more than young adults typically earn) and a decent amount of overseas interest and you can generally claim double tax relief if you're being made to pay tax twice on the same thing as places like UK and many other 'first world' nations have a comprehensive tax treaty with USA.

    It gets trickier if she sells a house for massively more than she paid for it because as Ed alludes to, the US only exempts a certain level of capital gains on your main residence, unlike the UK which has total exemption. So, before she makes several hundreds of thousands of pounds on a property trade somewhere other than the USA, she might want to consider whether she still wants to be a US citizen.

    Due to implementation costs of FATCA, some financial institutions initially said they would not open up accounts for US citizens because they couldn't be bothered with the hassle. However, as CRS has now come in and covers 100+ countries including the whole of the EU, banks are in a position where closing their door to US citizens / residents is not going to get them out of international reporting work, because they still have to report on French residents, German residents, Australian residents etc. Denying accounts to people who come over here to work/visit for a few months but might also have a foreign residence for part of the year is going to close the door to too much business. So, the position on not offering accounts to US citizens will moderate, and there are various places that do at the moment anyway.
    Last edited by bowlhead99; 16-03-2017 at 7:14 AM.
    • grey gym sock
    • By grey gym sock 17th Mar 17, 12:51 AM
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    grey gym sock
    • #9
    • 17th Mar 17, 12:51 AM
    • #9
    • 17th Mar 17, 12:51 AM
    And the CRS is called the Common Reporting Standard as it is obtaining information that meets international bare minimums and shares that in a standardised way. If the tax authorities want the information for domestic purposes and are not already getting it via other existing reporting, they can make their local 'reporting schema' (the electronic reports that must be filed in XML) more complicated or mandate that other types of investors must be reported on it. All the tax authorities can put whatever they like into their own implementing rules, as long as they at least collect the data they have promised to exchange with the other countries.
    Originally posted by bowlhead99
    i wasn't thinking about asking for more info than CRS requires, but about asking for automatic reporting of the exactly the same info that CRS requires, but for purely domestic accounts.

    e.g. when a UK financial institution is packaging up info about accounts which it thinks (based on self-certification, or other indicia) should be reported to the US, france, japan, etc, shouldn't it also be applying the same criteria to package up info about accounts that it thinks (by the same criteria) have UK-based holders, and reporting that info, in the same standard format, to HMRC (for HMRC to use, not to pass on to other tax authorities)?

    or are they doing that?

    because it should be very little extra effort, given the processes they are already going through for CRS.

    But in the UK for example:
    - If you are a bank, as tax is no longer deducted at source from your accountholders bank interest you are already going to be reporting that to HMRC (and probably with increased frequency to support the whole 'making tax digital' initiatives and so on).
    interest, yes. but are they automatically reporting other data to HMRC, such as account balance, NI number, date of birth?

    some of that data, which they might end up gathering as a result of going through CRS/FATCA processes, would also be useful for "making tax digital". e.g. it would give more chance of connecting interest paid with the correct taxpayer, so they can adjust the right person's tax code when some tax is due on interest.

    or is this data already being automatically reported to HMRC (when it's available), but via other processes?

    However, your direct shareholding in a listed company that is NOT a financial institution and is NOT held via a financial institution such as a broker is not going to be subject to the regime which has financial institutions share data with foreign tax authorities because it is a personal investor relationship between you and the company and there are no finanical institutions involved.
    It would be a monster pain in the backside for a non-financial company like Morrisons or Greggs or Next to have to review their investor base (which changes every few seconds) and receive and validate tax self certifications for every investor throughout the year, just in case that investor happened to be a shareholder on an ex-dividend date so that they could report to HMRC that during the course of the year they paid 3.24 of dividend distributions to investors based in the Lebanon and here are all the names and tax IDs so HMRC can package it up and exchange it with such foreign governments along with some assessment of what that share is 'worth' at year end (if the investor is still a holder at year end).
    well, greggs would probably ask their registrar to handle it. which is the same thing an investment trust, or other investment company, would probably do. it's what my guernsey investment company seems to be doing.

    do investment trusts, and other closed-end investment companies, have any more ability to handle a CRS process internally than greggs does? they know about the investment side, but they don't deal with handling retail customers' money, since it's bought and sold via a stock exchange. so it's brokers/platforms that have to deal with all the "know your customer" requirements.

    to look at it the other way round: perhaps this is burdensome for investment companies, as much as it is for other companies. they can delegate it to their registrar, but may then have to pay higher fees to the registrar.

    Firstly it is pretty hard for a country like the UK which has far less economic influence than USA.
    well, the EU (even after the UK's left) is certainly better placed than the UK to play hard-ball. it has nearly as big an economy as the US. and it's easily significant enough in world finance that i can't see major financial companies deciding to avoid complying with burdensome EU requirements and to make sure they do no business in the EU to avoid any come-back.

    But unlike the US, the UK doesn't have an existing system of withholding tax at source on dividends paid to foreign investors so bringing in a new regime to create one, and then only implementing it on investors with residences in certain countries, is hugely expensive and full of hassle.
    that's an interesting point. but does the US have a withholding system for interest on US treasuries, or US corporate bonds? (i thought it didn't.) and did the US then have to introduce a withholding system for bonds to implement FATCA?

    A list of countries signed up to the first couple of phases of data exchange under CRS is at the below link (split by when the data should first be exchanged (e.g. during 2017 or 2018, for the previous financial year)

    http://www.oecd.org/tax/automatic-exchange/crs-implementation-and-assistance/crs-by-jurisdiction/
    without looking too carefully, it does seem to cover most major financial centres, with one key exception: the USA.
    • bowlhead99
    • By bowlhead99 17th Mar 17, 6:53 AM
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    bowlhead99

    e.g. when a UK financial institution is packaging up info about accounts which it thinks (based on self-certification, or other indicia) should be reported to the US, france, japan, etc, shouldn't it also be applying the same criteria to package up info about accounts that it thinks (by the same criteria) have UK-based holders, and reporting that info, in the same standard format, to HMRC (for HMRC to use, not to pass on to other tax authorities)?

    or are they doing that?
    Originally posted by grey gym sock
    Like I said, they will already be giving HMRC what HMRC wants, via other types of reports. How else would things work if HMRC is going to change your tax code for the bank interest you received if they don't know what bank interest you received.

    because it should be very little extra effort, given the processes they are already going through for CRS.
    Extra effort is extra effort. Adding another ten million customers onto a report on ten thousand customers and making sure it is still just as accurate, is expensive.

    CRS is basic data to a common standard (common reporting standards based on a common denominator of what 100 countries could agree is wanted internationally without going OTT and asking for the moon on a stick from every financial institution in the world).

    So, better to just do the report on ten thousand customers that France and Germany want to receive in the format that France and Germany will be receiving from other countries in the world for the calendar year January to December.

    And the report to HMRC with the ten million customers can be a separate report and based on what HMRC actually wants to receive for domestic tax purposes for the period we happen to use for tax in the UK which is April to April.

    interest, yes. but are they automatically reporting other data to HMRC, such as account balance, NI number, date of birth?
    As mentioned they will report the stuff HMRC wants, on separate domestic reports, and those reports will evolve over time.

    For example, HMRC does not need to know I had 6,328 in my account with Lloyds on 31 December or that I earned 126.48 for the calendar year ending that date, as they would find out via the CRS report. The account balance is an irrelevance as we do not have a 'wealth tax' like they do in some countries, and the 126.48 does not tie to a figure that will feed into my tax return as it falls into multiple tax years. So, receiving that data that CRS would mandate for international sharing, for 10 million customers, is 20 million records received at HMRC and never used, but burdensome for a bank to produce.

    Creating those meaningless reports for every financial institution with a high cost of compliance for data you do not want is not the way to get the banks onside with cooperating with your requests for the things you do want. It is boy-who-cried-wolf territory.

    well, greggs would probably ask their registrar to handle it. which is the same thing an investment trust, or other investment company, would probably do. it's what my guernsey investment company seems to be doing.
    Oh great, a small subset of the world's companies get to enjoy this world of high compliance costs for shareholder relationships that are with good reason deemed to be 'financial accounts', so Greggs won't mind doing that too, and the registrar companies won't mind seeing their workloads go up a hundredfold.

    A Guernsey based investment trust might have a hundred direct customer relationships and then a bunch of relationships with (e.g.) Barclays Stockbrokers Nominees and HL ISA nominees and HL SIPP trustees and Halifax Nominees etc. The brokers can do the CRS work for their clients and the Guernsey registrar can do the work on the other hundred (and hopefully the hundred won't change too much during the year because people using paper certificates in this day and age are buy-and-hold investors - e.g. I use paper for my VCTs but nothing else). And the registrar will say OK that's 50 per reportable investor so we can make our five grand for doing the report on top of all the other stuff we do for you.

    Then extend that to a PLC like greggs or a bigger one like Shell or Microsoft or whatever with their many thousands of direct investors with addresses internationally, many of whom will be corporates or other vehicles that would have to be looked-behind for the controlling person etc.

    And Shell and Microsoft will say this is costing me huge amount of money and at the end of the day I am not an investment fund and people do not have a 'financial account' with me, I am not a conduit for investment income from an investment portfolio - you are talking about someone who wants to buy a share of an oil company or software company to pass on to their kids one day.

    No I am not going to start trying to report individual direct shareholders's proportionate shares of my balance sheet asset value to all the world's tax authorities in hundreds of countries, you know that a share of Shell or Microsoft is not 'worth' its proportionate net asset value anyway, it is something that has a traded price which might be 1.x times assets for Shell and 5.x times assets for Microsoft, so these numbers are meaningless.

    do investment trusts, and other closed-end investment companies, have any more ability to handle a CRS process internally than greggs does?
    They are subject to a raft of financial regulation because they are operating in the regulated financial services industry, so unfortunately they have been forced to develop, or buy in, the 'ability to handle' this other stuff. And just because they have been caught up in this regulation despite their protests, does not mean you should or could try to wrap up Greggs or Shell or Microsoft in it too.

    they know about the investment side, but they don't deal with handling retail customers' money, since it's bought and sold via a stock exchange. so it's brokers/platforms that have to deal with all the "know your customer" requirements.
    Unless the investor is an existing direct investor and is not on a broker / platform. But they would at least have people internally or advisors etc to help them, because at the end of the day they are in the regulated financial services industry and they can ask their other mates in the financial services industry how to develop an AML / know your customer / CRS compliance program because their mates are all implementing them too. That is harder for Greggs, where their listed and unlisted mates are NOT all doing that because pasty-making is not financial services.

    As you say, if the brokers and custodians or other intermediaries are handling it for the vast majority of retail customers, that is 99.9% of the customers sorted. They are handled and reported by the brokers and custodians. The world's tax authorities are receiving reports from those brokers across international borders.

    Then saying, ooh well one person might have a share in Greggs directly and why can't Greggs spend large amounts of time and money on a program to investigate that person and share information with the world's tax authorities just because that one person might be a tax evader is like saying OK I managed to pick all nearly all the fruit off these ten thousand trees on the plantation this summer but there is one orange on the very last tree that won't come down if I shake the tree so I am going to rent a helicopter, learn to fly the helicopter over a five year period, and go get it.

    to look at it the other way round: perhaps this is burdensome for investment companies, as much as it is for other companies. they can delegate it to their registrar, but may then have to pay higher fees to the registrar.
    What is attractive about having to pay higher fees to the registrar? And what is the registrar's price when their workload went up a hundredfold and they do not have the manpower to do it? Their price is going up to help them recruit people who know how to do this stuff. And if the authorities want all the information from all the companies equally not just financial services companies so there is no priority in whose data gets to HMRC first. It's just a bad thing to do and not workable when you scale it to all the countries in the world.

    well, the EU (even after the UK's left) is certainly better placed than the UK to play hard-ball. it has nearly as big an economy as the US. and it's easily significant enough in world finance that i can't see major financial companies deciding to avoid complying with burdensome EU requirements and to make sure they do no business in the EU to avoid any come-back.
    The UK is leaving the EU precisely because it doesn't like burdensome EU requirements. But the EU is not going to implement a standard worldwide rate of withholding taxes to force people into complying because every country in the EU it has their own independent tax regime.

    Still, UK is doing CRS whether it is in or out of EU. Lots of other countries are signing up to CRS too and all the financial institutions in all those countries will be sharing info with EU and other participants.

    that's an interesting point. but does the US have a withholding system for interest on US treasuries, or US corporate bonds? (i thought it didn't.)
    Via tax treaty with UK and some other countries the the withholding rate on US interest is zero, but that's not the same for all countries and the US issuers still have to do the paperwork to know if they can/should withhold or not.

    and did the US then have to introduce a withholding system for bonds to implement FATCA?
    They had an existing regime for FDAP income (fixed, determinable, annual, periodic) such as interest, dividends, royalties etc etc. (Chapter 3 of the US code). They then overlaid a new and different backup withholding system for FATCA (Chapter 4) to classify all the accountholders and withhold from certain types of accountholders under that regime who might be recalcitrant US persons or non-participating foreign financial institutions etc.

    without looking too carefully, it does seem to cover most major financial centres, with one key exception: the USA.
    As mentioned, it doesn't contain the USA and won't, because USA has a FATCA system which satisfies its own need for data and has made reciprocal agreements where other countries want the data in return (e.g. FATCA agreements are reciprocal with UK who want data but not with Cayman who don't want data). So as something of a 'pioneer' for FATCA on which the reporting requirements of CRS are based it has zero need to participate in CRS.

    In practice though the US is not moving quickly to collect and share any kind of data on foreign accountholders in its own financial institutions, because now they have what they want there is little incentive to actually do what they said they would try to do.
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