The Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act

01 May 2017
New oblications : The Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) is a U.S. law aimed at preventing tax avoidance by U.S. taxpayers through the use of offshore accounts. It entered into force in July 2014. Since then well over 100 countries have now signed up to Intergovernmental Agreements (IGAs) with the US to implement FATCA.​

​​Premium payment from US For non-life and risk life insurance (other than life savings) FATCA was not a huge burden at the beginning. It applied to risk premiums paid from the US to a foreign entity.

Based on this US insurers, brokers and direct clients have requested the so called W-8BEN-E form that discloses the foreign insurer’s status. In the event that no such form is furnished, the US withholding agent (i.e. local insurer, broker or client) has an obligation to withhold 30% from the insurance premium paid to off shore insurer.

If P&C is compliant with FATCA

If P&C has naturally delivered the requested forms and is therefore compliant with FATCA. New obligations, US-source risks As from January 1st 2017, the transitional period for the FATCA regulation lapsed and it now also applies for foreign to foreign insurance premium payments in regards to US source risks. A US source risk has a wide definition.

A quick answer is when the insured property or person is, or can be, based in the US. Currently the London market brokers and some US origin brokers have reacted to this new rule and have communicated it to their clients and advised their clients to consider with their tax and compliance advisors how they may be impacted by FATCA. Also a few of the big four accounting entities have published letters around this issue, especially in the UK.

If’s FATCA compliance If P&C is compliant and If’s clients / brokers can be compliant as well with the said amended regulation. Under FATCA, all of the If Group’s entities and their branch offices are considered to be Non-Financial Foreign Entities that are subsidiaries of a listed entity. If provides W-8BEN-E forms, which disclose and prove its status under FATCA on request. In order to facilitate requests for the receipt of the information, W-8BEN-E forms for all of the If Group entities are also made available to you online www.if-insurance.com/fatca.​