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Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program Ends September 28th

September 21, 2018

Attention taxpayers with unreported foreign financial assets—You have until the end of the month to apply for the Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program before it ends. Act now!

Do you have foreign financial assets? Are you reporting them correctly? The IRS’ Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program, better known as OVDP, affects taxpayers who willfully fail to report foreign financial assets and is designed to provide these taxpayers with protection from criminal liability and terms for resolving their civil tax and penalty obligations. The OVDP will no longer be available as of September 28th so be sure to comply ASAP!

More about the OVDP

The IRS launched the program nine years ago and since then more than 56,000 taxpayers have used the program to comply voluntarily with tax laws. Those holding undisclosed offshore accounts have paid a total of $11.1 billion in back taxes, interest and penalties.

Why is the IRS closing the program?

The OVDP, while successful in the past, has had a significant participation decline in recent years. Also, more people are now aware of their offshore tax and reporting obligations, hence they don’t have a need for the OVDP.

Can taxpayers still participate?

Yes. The deadline for making a submission to OVDP is September 28th, meaning your required documents must either be received or postmarked by that date and must not be partial, incomplete or placeholder submissions.

Some other things to note:

  • Taxpayers who made non-purposeful mistakes or omissions on their tax returns should file amended returns or delinquent returns.
  • The closing of OVDP does not signal a change in IRS priorities towards offshore tax non-compliance. It remains a top priority!
  • Taxpayers will have other avenues to disclose offshore noncompliance after September 28th—We’ll keep you updated on what the IRS decides.
  • The Streamlined Filing Compliance Procedures will remain available after the OVDP closes.

The IRS has made clear that it will continue to use tools besides voluntary disclosure to combat offshore tax avoidance, including taxpayer education, civil examination, and more. Additional information on the Voluntary Disclosure Process will be available after September 28th, 2018. Contact us for questions in the meantime!

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