Summary of the Proposed FATCA Regulations
The tax provisions commonly referred to as “FATCA” use a 30% withholding tax to enforce a worldwide reporting regime designed to prevent U.S. persons from using offshore accounts to evade U.S. federal income tax. On February 8, 2012, Treasury issued a massive set of proposed regulations addressing many but by no means all aspects of the FATCA reporting and withholding regime. Although the proposed regulations would mitigate certain compliance burdens, implementing the regime remains at best a daunting prospect for U.S. withholding agents and, even more so, for many “foreign financial institutions,” broadly defined. This memorandum provides a summary of the proposed FATCA regulations and their implications for market participants.