BVI Financial Account Reporting System Launched

The British Virgin Islands International Tax Authority (ITA) has launched its BVI Financial Account Reporting System (BVIFARS). The system is now ready to accept enrolment applications from BVI Reporting Financial Institutions pursuant to the Intergovernmental Agreement between the BVI and the United States of America.

BVI Reporting Financial Institutions are required to enroll with BVIFARS by June 1, 2015. After enrolment, such Financial Institutions may then submit their annual filings. The deadline for 2014 filings is June 30, 2015. The deadline for subsequent years (2016 onwards) is May 31.

Each Reporting Financial Institution must have a Primary User who will have the ability to create up to three additional Secondary Users. Financial Institutions are required to submit their registered name, institution type and GIIN (obtained from via the IRS website) as part of the enrolment process.

The ITA has advised that Financial Institutions are not obligated to file a “NIL Report”. Accordingly, a Financial Institution does not have to enroll with BVIFARS if that Financial Institution has nothing to report. However, BVIFARS has the ability to accept a NIL Report if a Financial Institution wishes to submit one. Equally, a Financial Institution with nothing to report may enroll and not submit a NIL Report.

The Government has produced a User Guide to BVIFARS. It contains detailed step by step guidance in relation to BVIFARS.  The User Guide is accessible via the Government’s website at www.bvi.gov.vg/fatca. O’Neal Webster is able to assist clients with issues relating BVIFARS and FATCA generally.

O'Neal Webster is a leading offshore law firm in the British Virgin Islands providing superior legal services to clients globally. The firm is a member of Lex Mundi, the world's largest association of independent law firms.

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