FBAR lawyers minnesota

FBAR Disclosure of Offshore Assets: the Importance of Issue Spotting

It is terrifying that so many accountants who take on the legal issue of FBAR disclosure are not trained in issue spotting. It may be the number one of the top reasons why so many voluntary disclosures handled by accountants and even attorneys have gone so wrong.

A lot of tax professionals who are familiar with voluntary disclosures concerning foreign accounts simply concentrate on the bigger issue of FBAR penalties. However, due to this over-simplification of the voluntary disclosure, they ignore the fact that most disclosures of offshore assets involve a lot of related issues that, besides their own importance, may directly influence the FBAR disclosure strategy.

For example, I have seen cases where accountants would begin a voluntary disclosure process with respect to foreign investment accounts that contains foreign mutual funds – the issue that immediately should be spotted by the accountants as potentially involving PFICs. Unfortunately, most accountants are not even aware of the existence of PFICs and their unique place in the Internal Revenue Code. Then, without recognizing this problematic issue, these accountants would herd their clients into the IRS Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program (OVDP) claiming that there was full compliance with the accounts and claiming that these accounts should be excluded from the OVDP Offshore Penalty. The end-result in such cases would often be the rejection of the exclusion based on PFIC increase in tax (i.e. the PFIC distributions were reported but incorrectly calculated – i.e. income tax non-compliance).

Obviously, how the case would turn out would ultimately depend on its particular facts, but this is an example indicate of the trend and why it is so important to engage in issue-spotting.

Contact Sherayzen Law Office for Help with Your Voluntary Disclosure of Offshore Assets

If you have undisclosed foreign assets that should have been disclosed to the IRS on the FBAR, Form 8398 or other information returns, contact Sherayzen Law Office for help.

Our experienced international tax law firm will thoroughly review your case, identify the issues involved in your case, estimate your FBAR penalties, propose a definite action plan on how to deal with your situation and implement this plan.

Call or email our experienced voluntary disclosure team NOW!

Official Treasury Currency Conversion Rates of December 31, 2012

Every year, the U.S. Department of Treasure publishes its official currency conversion rates (they are called “Treasury’s Financial Management Service rates” or the “FMS rates”). Recently, the Treasury Department published the FMS rates for December 31, 2012. While there are other good reasons for the existence of these rates, the FMS rates for December 31 are especially important for persons who are required to file the FBARs.

The latest (January 2012) FBAR instructions require the use of Treasury’s Financial Management Service rates, if available, to determine the maximum value of a foreign bank account. In particular, the FBAR instructions state:

In the case of non-United States currency, convert the maximum account value for each account into United States dollars. Convert foreign currency by using the Treasury’s Financial Management Service rate (this rate may be found at www.fms.treas.gov) from the last day of the calendar year. If no Treasury Financial Management Service rate is available, use another verifiable exchange rate and provide the source of that rate. In valuing currency of a country that uses multiple exchange rates, use the rate that would apply if the currency in the account were converted into United States dollars on the last day of the calendar year.

For this reason, the international tax attorneys take their time to compile these rates with all updates. For your convenience, Sherayzen Law Office provides a table of the official Treasury currency conversion rates below (keep in mind, you still need to refer to the official website for any updates).

Country Currency Foreign Currency to $1.00
Afghanistan Afghani 51.8000
Albania Lek 105.6500
Algeria Dinar 77.8130
Angola Kwanza 95.0000
Antigua-Barbuda East Caribbean Dollar 2.7000
Argentina Peso 4.9100
Armenia Dram 406.0000
Australia Dollar 0.9640
Austria Euro 0.7590
Azerbaijan Manat 0.8000
Bahamas Dollar 1.0000
Bahrain Dinar 0.3770
Bangladesh Taka 81.0000
Barbados Dollar 2.0200
Belarus Ruble 8550.0000
Belgium Euro 0.7590
Belize Dollar 2.0000
Benin CFA Franc 496.0000
Bermuda Dollar 1.0000
Bolivia Boliviano 6.9600
Bosnia-Hercegovina Marka 1.4840
Botwana Pula 7.7700
Brazil Real 2.0470
Brunei Dollar 1.2220
Bulgaria Lev 1.4840
Burkina Faso CFA Franc 496.0000
Burma Kyat 852.0000
Burundi Franc 1535.0000
Cambodia (Khmer) Riel 4103.0000
Cameroon CFA Franc 496.0000
Canada Dollar 0.9950
Cape Verde Escudo 82.6850
Cayman Islands Dollar 0.8200
Central African Republic CFA Franc 496.0000
Chad CFA Franc 496.0000
Chile Peso 478.3500
China Renminbi 6.2300
Colombia Peso 1766.4000
Comoros Franc 361.3500
Congo CFA Franc 496.0000
Congo, Dem. Rep Congolese Franc 920.0000
Costa Rica Colon 509.7000
Cote D’Ivoire CFA Franc 496.0000
Croatia Kuna 5.6300
Cuba Peso 1.0000
Cyprus Euro 0.7590
Czech Republic Koruna 18.6300
Denmark Krone 5.6600
Djibouti Franc 177.0000
Dominican Republic Peso 40.1000
Ecuador Dolares 1.0000
Egypt Pound 6.3560
El Salvador Dolares 1.0000
Equatorial Guinea CFA Franc 496.0000
Eritrea Nakfa 15.0000
Estonia Euro 0.7590
Ethiopia Birr 18.1800
Euro Zone Euro 0.7590
Fiji Dollar 1.7590
Finland Euro 0.7590
France Euro 0.7590
Gabon CFA Franc 496.0000
Gambia Dalasi 34.0000
Georgia Lari 1.6600
Germany FRG Euro 0.7590
Ghana Cedi 1.9050
Greece Euro 0.7590
Grenada East Carribean Dollar 2.7000
Guatemala Quentzel 7.9020
Guinea Franc 6970.0000
Guinea Bissau CFA Franc 496.0000
Guyana Dollar 202.0000
Haiti Gourde 42.1500
Honduras Lempira 19.9100
Hong Kong Dollar 7.7500
Hungary Forint 221.9600
Iceland Krona 128.0100
India Rupee 54.4500
Indonesia Rupiah 9700.0000
Iran Rial 8229.0000
Iraq Dinar 1166.0000
Ireland Euro 0.7590
Israel Shekel 3.7320
Italy Euro 0.7590
Jamaica Dollar 92.0000
Japan Yen 86.1600
Jerusalem Shekel 3.7320
Jordan Dinar 0.7080
Kazakhstan Tenge 150.7000
Kenya Shilling 86.1000
Korea Won 1063.2400
Kuwait Dinar 0.2810
Kyrgyzstan Som 47.1000
Laos Kip 7966.0000
Latvia Lats 0.5290
Lebanon Pound 1500.0000
Lesotho South African Rand 8.4850
Liberia Dollar 49.0000
Libya Dinar 1.2840
Lithuania Litas 2.6180
Luxembourg Euro 0.7590
Macao Mop 8.0000
Macedonia FYROM Denar 45.4000
Madagascar Aria 2267.8200
Malawi Kwacha 344.0000
Malaysia Ringgit 3.0570
Mali CFA Franc 496.0000
Malta Euro 0.7590
Marshall Islands Dollar 1.0000
Martinique Euro 0.7590
Mauritania Ouguiya 300.0000
Mauritius Rupee 30.4500
Mexico New Peso 13.0400
Micronesia Dollar 1.0000
Moldova Leu 12.0630
Mongolia Tugrik 1394.3100
Montenegro Euro 0.7590
Morocco Dirham 8.4340
Mozambique Metical 29.6000
Namibia Dollar 8.4850
Nepal Rupee 87.3000
Netherlands Euro 0.7590
Netherlands Antilles Guilder 1.7800
New Zealand Dollar 1.2160
Nicaragua Cordoba 24.1000
Niger CFA Franc 496.0000
Nigeria Naira 156.1000
Norway Krone 5.5840
Oman Rial 0.3850
Pakistan Rupee 97.1800
Palau Dollar 1.0000
Panama Balboa 1.0000
Papua New Guinea Kina 1.9440
Paraguay Guarani 4245.0000
Peru Nuevo Sol 2.5500
Philippines Peso 41.0400
Poland Zloty 3.1040
Portugal Euro 0.7590
Qatar Riyal 3.6400
Romania Leu 3.3660
Russia Ruble 30.5230
Rwanda Franc 630.0300
Sao Tome & Principe Dobras 18469.0610
Saudi Arabia Riyal 3.7500
Senegal CFA Franc 496.0000
Serbia Dinar 86.1800
Seychelles Rupee 12.9580
Sierra Leone Leone 4317.0000
Singapore Dollar 1.2220
Slovak Euro 0.7590
Slovenia Euro 0.7590
Solomon Islands Dollar 7.3210
South Africa Rand 8.4850
Spain Euro 0.7590
Sri Lanka Rupee 127.5000
St Lucia East Carribean Dollar 2.7000
Sudan Pound 5.9000
Suriname Guilder 3.3500
Swaziland Lilangeni 8.4850
Sweden Krona 6.5120
Switzerland Franc 0.9160
Syria Pound 63.0000
Taiwan Dollar 29.0440
Tajikistan Somoni 4.7600
Tanzania Shilling 1580.0000
Thailand Baht 30.5800
Timor-Leste Dili 1.0000
Togo CFA Franc 496.0000
Tonga Pa’anga 1.6570
Trinidad & Tobago Dollar 6.3500
Tunisia Dinar 1.5500
Turkey Lira 1.7860
Turkmenistan Manat 2.8430
Uganda Shilling 2686.0000
Ukraine Hryvnia 8.0400
United Arab Emirates Dirham 3.6730
United Kingdom Pound Sterling 0.6180
Uruguay New Peso 19.0500
Uzbekistan Som 2014.0000
Vanuatu Vatu 90.1000
Venezuela New Bolivar 4.3000
Vietnam Dong 21000.0000
Western Samoa Tala 2.2050
Yemen Rial 214.5000
Zambia Kwacha 5185.0000
Zimbabwe Dollar 1.0000

1. Lesotho’s loti is pegged to South African Rand 1:1 basis
2. Macao is also spelled Macau: currency is Macanese pataka
3. Macedonia: due to the conflict over name with Greece, the official name if FYROM – former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia.
4. Please, refer to the Treasury’s website for amendments regarding any reportable transactions in January, February, and March of 2013.

2012 FBAR is Due on June 30, 2013

One of the most important tax compliance forms for businesses and individuals is the Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts (the “FBAR”), FinCEN Form 114 Formerly TD F 90-22.1. Pursuant to the Bank Secrecy Act, 31 U.S.C. §5311 et seq., the Department of Treasury (the “DOT”) has established certain recordkeeping and filing requirements for United States persons with financial interests in or signature authority (and other comparable authority) over financial accounts maintained with financial institutions in foreign countries. If the aggregate balances of such foreign accounts exceed $10,000 at any time during the relevant year, the FBAR must be filed with the DOT.

The FBAR must be filed by June 30 of each relevant year, including this year (2013). Thus, the 2012 FBAR must be received by the DOT by June 30, 2013. This rule is contrary to your regular tax returns where the mailing date determines whether the filing is timely. There are no extensions available – the FBAR must be received by June 30 or it will be considered delinquent.

If the FBAR becomes delinquent, it may be subject to severe penalties.

Contact Sherayzen Law Office for FBAR Assistance

If you have any questions or concerns regarding whether you need to file the FBAR or how to prepare the form, please contact Sherayzen Law Office directly. If you have not previous filed the FBARs and you were required to do so, you may be subject to severe penalties and you may need to do some form of a voluntary disclosure. In such case, you need to contact our experienced international tax attorneys to schedule a consultation as soon as possible. Attorney Eugene Sherayzen will assess your situation, determine your potential FBAR liability, explain the available options, prepare all of the required tax forms and the necessary legal documentation, guide you through this complex process of voluntary disclosure, and vigorously represent your interests during your negotiations with the IRS.

FBAR Attorney

If you are looking for an attorney to help you with your FBAR issues, contact Sherayzen Law Office.

Sherayzen Law Office is an international tax and business law firm that specializes in FBAR compliance among other international tax issues. Our office is located in Minneapolis, but we have clients throughout the United States and overseas.

Helping U.S. taxpayers who have FBAR issues is one of our most important specializations. FinCEN Form 114 formerly Form TD F 90-22.1, the Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts (commonly known as the “FBAR”), is not the most complex form in the Internal Revenue Code, but it is definitely one of the most severe forms when it comes to penalties. A lot of U.S. taxpayers either do not know about this form, do not realize how important it is, or they already realized that they should have filed the FBAR earlier and do not know how to get out of the vicious cycle of non-compliance.

Our international tax firm is highly experienced in these delinquent FBAR matters, including the voluntary disclosure process. We will analyze your case thoroughly, determine your FBAR liability and identify your voluntary disclosure options. Once you make your choice with respect to your voluntary disclosure option, we will create and implement a customized case strategy, including preparation of all of the necessary tax forms and legal briefs.

Clients of Sherayzen Law Office enjoy the personal attention of Mr. Eugene Sherayzen, the firm’s owner, who will be working with you throughout the process in order to make sure that your case proceeds efficiently. He is easily accessible by phone and email throughout the case.

We believe that each case is unique, especially in such complex matters as FBAR voluntary disclosure. Our international tax law firm will be looking for the unique features in your particular fact pattern to determine the most expeditious and favorable manner to proceed with your case.

One the biggest problems facing U.S. taxpayers in finding the right FBAR representation at this point is the tendency among some accounting firms and even law firms to disregard the special circumstances of a case and automatically channel their clients into the 2012 OVDP (Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program) at the highest penalty rates with the idea that they will figure out later what the strategy of the case will be and whether the taxpayer needs to opt-out of the program.

We believe that this is an incorrect approach which completely disregards the individual circumstances of each taxpayer and may subject them to an unnecessarily high penalties and additional legal and accounting fees. Each case should be thoroughly analyzed at the beginning of the process before the taxpayers enters the 2012 OVDP, not in the middle or even at the end of the voluntary disclosure.

Contact Sherayzen Law Office for Help with FBARs

If you have any undisclosed foreign financial accounts, contact Sherayzen Law Office as soon as possible for an individual, comprehensive, creative and ethical approach to your voluntary disclosure process.

FBAR Lawyers Minneapolis

Sherayzen Law Office is a premier international law firm that specializes in FBAR compliance among other international tax issues. The firm is headquartered in Minneapolis, but it serves clients throughout the United States and overseas.

FinCEN Form 114 formerly Form TD F 90-22.1, the Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts (commonly known as the “FBAR”), is not the most complex form in the Internal Revenue Code, but it is definitely one of the most severe forms when it comes to penalties. A lot of U.S. taxpayers either do not know about this form, do not realize how important it is, or they already realized that they should have filed the FBAR earlier and do not know how to get out of the vicious cycle of non-compliance.

Helping these taxpayers is our specialty. Our international tax firm is highly specialized and experienced in the FBAR matters, including FBAR voluntary disclosure. We will analyze your case thoroughly, determine what your FBAR liability is (because this is not a straightforward matter and there are a lot of factors that influence your potential FBAR penalties) and identify your voluntary disclosure options.

Once you have made your choice with respect to your voluntary disclosure, we will proceed with implementing your customized case strategy. Attorney Eugene Sherayzen will personally be working with you throughout the case; we will prepare all of the required documentation (including any tax forms and the necessary legal briefs), submit all documentation to the IRS and rigorously represent your interests before the IRS throughout the voluntary disclosure process.

Contact Sherayzen Law Office for Help with FBARs

If you have any undisclosed foreign financial accounts, contact Sherayzen Law Office as soon as possible. The earlier you contact us, the sooner we can schedule a consultation to review your case. It is highly important that you contact Sherayzen Law Office before the IRS begins its investigation of your undisclosed accounts, because such investigations may preclude the availability of some of the voluntary disclosure options.