Good news on the FBAR front - Page 13

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Good news on the FBAR front - Page 13


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  #121 (permalink)  
Old 29th June 2015, 03:04 AM
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....And I'm happy to report that FinCEN has introduced Web filing for FinCEN Form 114 that does not require the proprietary Adobe Reader plug-in. It appears to work on all types of tablets, smartphones, and PCs using open Web standards. The new online form is available here. (I have not yet tested this form.)

Thank you, FinCEN.
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  #122 (permalink)  
Old 29th June 2015, 12:24 PM
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How is this better? This is what I am having a problem with. You don't have a choice; you must do it on-line. I would never, otherwise put my SS# and banking data on my computer ever. This requires saving it to the Adobe on-line as well. If it's any different, I can't tell.

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  #123 (permalink)  
Old 29th June 2015, 03:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lisaaaaaad View Post
How is this better? This is what I am having a problem with. You don't have a choice; you must do it on-line. I would never, otherwise put my SS# and banking data on my computer ever. This requires saving it to the Adobe on-line as well. If it's any different, I can't tell.
The "improvement" to the system is that you can simply upload a pdf file without having to register with the FinCEN office. This also improves things for those folks who do not have online access (like a friend of mine) so that they can ask a friend to submit the form online for them.

Granted, the online-only submission is a major PITA for those who aren't online (like my friend). But at least they don't have any restrictions on how many FBAR reports can come from a single e-mail address or any such nonsense.

And, although they recommend that you keep a file copy of what you have submitted, you don't have to keep it on your computer (and certainly NOT in some cloud storage location!). You can always print off a copy for your files and then delete the file from your hard disk. (Yeah, I know deleted material can often be recovered from a hard disk - there are electronic "shredders" if you really want to make sure it's gone and not recoverable.)
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Bev

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  #124 (permalink)  
Old 30th June 2015, 01:22 AM
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Originally Posted by Bevdeforges View Post
The "improvement" to the system is that you can simply upload a pdf file without having to register with the FinCEN office.
No, that's not the only improvement. There's now an option to fill out a standard Web form transmitted directly to FinCEN via an encrypted HTTPS connection. You can do that on your locked down "walled garden" Apple iPad, as one example. No plug-ins are required. I haven't fully tested the new option yet, but it does seem to be working well in my limited testing.

The PDF upload option is still available.

Both are much more secure than foreign postal mail paper filing or fax transmission ever was (or could be).

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Old 30th June 2015, 01:58 AM
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The web form doesn't seem to have a way to save a partially completed filing and then return to it later (possibly with the browser closing or the computer/tablet/etc shutting-down/rebooting/crashing in the interim).

For people with many financial accounts and who like to take their time in entering and checking and rechecking their work, this is less than ideal. That's the one thing using Acrobat Reader has going for it.

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  #126 (permalink)  
Old 30th June 2015, 06:06 AM
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Yes, that's correct. If you have some large number of accounts to report then FinCEN's current, first version of the Web form isn't ideal.

If you do use the pure Web form, I see that you have the option of downloading a PDF copy of your submission if you wish. (You can also just hit "Print" in your browser before submission. Or both.) And I see that FinCEN now supports both Adobe Reader and Foxit Reader to view the PDF copy of your Web submission. Progress! Keep improving, FinCEN.

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  #127 (permalink)  
Old 30th June 2015, 03:27 PM
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Originally Posted by BBCWatcher View Post
Progress! Keep improving, FinCEN.
The best "improvement" of all would be to simply go away. The FBAR is a futile exercise. Honest people hate it and criminals laugh at it (and don't file it).

What a brilliant strategy; round up all the honest people while you don't inconvenience the criminals in the slightest way.

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  #128 (permalink)  
Old 1st July 2015, 02:51 AM
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....while you don't inconvenience the criminals in the slightest way.
No, FinCEN Form 114 accomplishes that. It provides a simple, unambiguous, easily triggered prosecutorial weapon against individuals who commit all kinds of underlying crimes that are more difficult to pursue in court. That's the whole point. It's a very effective tool based on criminal justice principles dating at least as far back as Al Capone's 1931 prosecution for tax evasion. (Capone served 7 1/2 years in prison and paid large fines.)

Moreover, if that weren't true, then other governments wouldn't have the same or even much more onerous foreign reporting requirements.

That's not your objection, really. Or at least it's an unrealistic one, inconsistent with what sovereigns do around the world. Including Canada, notably via Form 1135.(*) Your objection, distilled to its essence, is that you think U.S. citizens ought to be able to maintain the rights and privileges of that citizenship without particular U.S. citizenship-tied obligations (taxes and financial reporting). Fine, fair enough, but unless you're also campaigning heavily online against CRA Form 1135 then I've more accurately described your position.

(*) CRA Form 1135 also demands that Canadian residents disclose all "specified foreign properties." That includes foreign real estate, foreign patents, foreign copyrights, and much more. The United States government doesn't require anywhere near that level of reporting detail. Canadian tyranny!

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  #129 (permalink)  
Old 1st July 2015, 06:40 AM
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