As of: 1/19/21 12:21 PM
Received: January 15, 2021
Status: Non_Public
Tracking No. 1k5-9l8k-ojc6
Comments Due: January 15, 2021
Submission Type: Web

Docket: FINCEN-2020-0013
Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposed Renewal; Comment Request; Renewal Without Change of Reports of Foreign Financial Accounts Regulations and FinCEN Report 114, Report of Foreign Bank And Financial Accounts

Comment On: FINCEN-2020-0013-0001
Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Renewal Without Change of Reports of Foreign Financial Accounts Regulations and FinCEN Report 114, Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts

Document: FINCEN-2020-0013-DRAFT-0073
Comment on FR Doc # 2020-25216

Submitter Information

Name: Anonymous Anonymous

General Comment

The FBAR shouldn't be renewed unchanged. The requirement for US Persons who live abroad to report the local accounts they use to conduct their everyday financial lives should be removed entirely.

Some reasons the FBAR is punitive, prohibitive and not fit for purpose for Americans who live abroad:

- The minimum amount of $10,000 is out-of-touch with modern times. If it were to be adjusted accounting for inflation since its inception, it would be almost $70,000.

- The requirement that all bank accounts highest amounts must be reported gives the false picture of having more money than there actually is - for example, when I moved house, my account temporarily showed the full purchase value of my sold property, before this was then moved to the seller's account. It was only in my account for a matter of hours and did not reflect my genuine account balance.

- The penalties are extremely high. They are not related to any taxed owed and unfairly punish those who may have unknowingly made errors.

- The costs to get expert help in filing FBARs are extremely high, even before the additional cost for filing tax returns. I earn far below the Foreign Earned Income Exclusion / FTC thresholds and have not owed any US tax in the thirty years I've lived abroad as a dual citizen.

- Currency fluctuations lead to misleading and false values.

-The reporting value has not been adjusted to inflation. In 1970, $10,000 would be considerably more than it would be worth in 2021.

- The FBAR has to be submitted online, with no guarantee of encryption. The FBAR is very vulnerable to identity theft, containing a wealth of sensitive personal data including a person's legal name, date of birth, social security number, address, bank account numbers, etc.

I have been a UK resident for over three decades. I have no intentions of returning to the United States. It is not reasonable that the accounts I hold to pay my bills and mortgage, in which I receive my salary and live my quite ordinary life, are considered 'foreign accounts' - they are what I use to live day to day. Of course I appreciate the need to prevent money laundering but the fact is that most expats are not criminals or money launderers; they are law-abiding citizens who happen to live abroad and live in constant fear of the IRS despite living by the rules.

Please refer to the below link - a paper on the subject of Citizenship-Based Taxation.