updated 1:02 PM CEST, Jun 4, 2020

Now IRS grants extension of info deadline for FATCA Model 1 jurisdictions

The U.S. Internal Revenue Service has announced that it is now pushing back the deadline for those in so-called Model 1 IGA FATCA jurisdictions to provide their FATCA data for the 2019 tax year to U.S. officials, in response to the global COVID-19 virus disruption. 

The announcement comes less than a month after the tax collecting agency said it was giving "Model 2 Financial Institutions and Participating Foreign Financial Institutions" until July 15 to file their Form 8966 FATCA reports.

That announcement came on March 25, just six days before these Form 8966 forms had been due. Meanwhile, earlier this month, the IRS announced it was moving the filing and payment deadlines for Americans who live overseas to July 15 – in recognition of the huge issues many individuals, businesses and the IRS itself have been facing as a result of the current coronavirus pandemic.

In a statement on its website, the IRS said Model 1 IGA jurisdictions would now have "until December 31, 2020 to provide their data, although a jurisdiction may send tax year 2019 data prior to that date". Ordinarily, Model 1 IGA jurisdictions are required to provide the U.S. authorities with their FATCA data "on or before Sept. 30 after the end of the calendar year to which the information relates (i.e., Sept. 30, 2020 for tax year 2019)."

Further information, the IRS added, may be found on its FATCA – FAQs General page, in the form of Q5 in the "Reporting" section.

As noted here last month, the vast majority of institutions affected by FATCA are in countries covered by the Model 1 IGAs (intergovernmental agreements), including the United Kingdom, most of Europe, Canada and Mexico. 

Among the Model 2 IGA countries are Austria, Chile, Japan, Macao and Hong Kong. 

Ross McGill, founder and chairman of UK-based TConsult and a FATCA expert, points out that the extension to the end of December is "between [the] governments" in question, and will not apply to foreign financial institutions unless the domestic authorities in the jurisdicions decide to pass the extension down to their respective financial institutions.

The Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act was signed into law by President Obama in 2010,  and came into force around the world in 2014. It was conceived as a means of discouraging American taxpayers from hiding money and investments overseas, by obliging non-U.S. banks and financial institutions to report to the U.S. tax authorities on the holdings of all of their American account-holders.

Intergovernmental agreements were set up as a means of ensuring that the information being sent to the U.S. authorities was initially handled by the countries in which the institutions in question are located, rather than being sent directly to the U.S.