The International Tax Authority (ITA) of the Ministry of Finance had to extend the FATCA deadline to grant additional reporting time to BVI Financial Institutions who were hindered by an issue with the BVI Financial Account Reporting System (BVIFARS) last week.
The Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (or FATCA) is an agreement between the Government of the United States of America and the Government of the British Virgin Islands to improve tax compliance; and last week’s issue with the BVIFARS interfered with the implementation.
Government announced that the issue was rectified and in addition to apologising for the situation—-the Ministry of Finance also shifted the deadline from 17 June to 30 June.
The early announcements of the FATCA implementation were met with skepticism here in the Territory, especially since a number of citizens have dual citizenship and were required therefore to adhere to FATCA. After discussions Government signed on to FATCA in 2014 and had a public educational campaign on the tax agreement.
In July 2014 prior to the public education campaign, Premier and Minister for Finance Dr. the Hon. D. Orlando Smith explained that FATCA does not put any new obligations on BV Islanders who in having dual nationality will have to report to the United States Tax Authorities.
In fact, Hon. Smith stated that these obligations have always existed as part of the obligations of being a US person. However, he announced that the BVI Government will, assist persons who need support in meeting their reporting requirements to the US by providing useful advice and identifying professionals versed in US Tax matters to assist.