How do I determine the aggregate maximum account value of my non-U.S. financial accounts?
First, determine the highest amount of each account for the relevant year. This is the high-water mark of the account, ie the max amount that you have held in the account at any point during the year, even if just for a second. It doesn’t matter how much money ran through the account during the year; we only need the number representing the highest amount of money in the account at any one time during the year. If you cannot determine the exact maximum account value, you can use a reasonable approximation based on the best available records. Also note that you can also choose to report that the maximum account value is unknown.
What exactly is a financial account? Just the bank accounts like savings and checking’s or are there any more accounts to be included?
Broadly speaking a financial account includes, but is not limited to, a securities, brokerage, savings, demand, checking, deposit, time deposit, or other account maintained with a financial institution A financial account also includes a commodity ...
Who is a “U.S. person” for FBAR purposes?
You are a U.S. person for FBAR purposes if you are (i) a U.S. citizen, (ii) a U.S. resident, (iii) an entity (such as a corporation, partnership, or limited liability company, or (iv) a trust or estate formed under the laws of the United States.
What does it mean to have “signature authority” over a financial account?
You have signature authority over an account when have the authority to control the disposition of assets held in the account by direct communication to the financial institution that maintains the account.
Can I just file my FBAR with my U.S. tax return?
Technically, the FBAR is filed electronically using a completely separate e-filing system than that used for U.S. tax returns. So it needs to be efiled separately also the deadline is June 30th.
Does filing the FBAR have any effect on my U.S. federal income tax situation?
No really—the FBAR is simply a disclosure form. But if there is any earned interest or dividend on the accounts then that needs to be reported on the Tax filing on the income side.