IF YOU HAVE FOREIGN ACTIVITY, BEWARE, YOU MAY HAVE A FILING REQUIREMENT WITH THEM.
Since learning about the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) BE-10 survey compliance requirement with an upcoming deadline of June 30 for all new filers, many have asked me “How was I supposed to know I needed to file?” I recall a story that someone shared regarding a professional in her twenties who was shocked to learn, several years into her career, that see needed to file Form 1040 annually with the IRS. She responded, “How was I supposed to know?” The need to file an individual tax return may be much more well-known but the BEA doesn’t seem to be doing any more advertising than the IRS on its filing requirements.
Any U.S. person that had a foreign affiliate – that is, that had direct or indirect ownership or control of at least 10 percent of the voting stock of an incorporated foreign business enterprise, or an equivalent interest in an unincorporated foreign business enterprise – at any time during the U.S. person’s 2014 fiscal year must file.
The benchmark survey is extensive and there is no dollar minimum to avoid filing. However, U.S. persons with smaller investments only have to fill out a portion of the survey. The survey, as well as the instructions, can be found at http://www.bea.gov/surveys/respondent_be10.htm.
Please note that penalties for failing to report range between $2,500 and $25,000 and an injunctive relief commanding compliance. Willfully failing to report can result in a fine not to exceed $10,000 and imprisonment of up to one year.
If you have questions, as you complete the survey, please feel free to contact Sara Stubler or your MarksNelson advisor.
About the author
Sara Stubler specializes in international and corporate tax. She provides solutions that help her clients minimize tax burdens, increase cash flow, and maximize profits.