FATCA FAQs - General

General FAQs involving FATCA .  See KB2601 for other FATCA related FAQ topics.


Q1: I am not a U.S. taxpayer. Why do I have to submit IRS Form W-8?
A1: IRS Form W-8 is used to certify your status as a non-U.S. taxpayer. It is also used to claim reduced tax withholding on dividends and other income paid with respect to U.S. securities. Without proper documentation, brokers may be required to impose exceptional withholding tax on transactions occurring in the account and/or report the account as noncompliant to tax authorities. 
Q2: I submitted IRS Form W-8. Why do I have to submit additional documentation?
A2: In certain cases, the IRS Form W-8 you submitted is insufficient to establish your status as a non-U.S. taxpayer. This often occurs when certain U.S. connections are found to be associated with your account (e.g., U.S. mailing or permanent address, U.S. telephone number, U.S. place of birth, citizenship or Green Card).  The presence of these U.S. connections requires us to collect additional documentation before we can designate you as a non-U.S. taxpayer.
Q3: I am an existing client. Why did I receive a request for additional documentation to support my tax status?
A3: We will request additional documentation from existing clients if:
·         Your account details show any U.S. connections (e.g., U.S. mailing or permanent address, U.S. telephone number, U.S. place of birth, citizenship or Green Card) or an address outside the country you identified on your IRS Form W-8 for purposes of claiming treaty benefits; or
·         Our records show you moved or otherwise experienced a change of circumstance with respect to your account;
Q4: I was asked to submit a proof of identity document and a proof of address. I provided that information when I opened my account. Isn’t that sufficient to resolve this issue?
A4: It is necessary for us to have current information on our clients.  Expired or out-of-date documents cannot be accepted. Please make sure all documentation you submit is legible, has not expired and all proof of address documentation is less than 12 months old.  It is important that you promptly respond to our requests for documentation so that the correct withholding rate is applied to your account.
Q5: I responded to your email and provided the requested documents. Now I received an email saying my response was insufficient to resolve the issue. Why?
A5: We cannot accept proof of address documentation that is more than 12 months old or which is nor legible. Please verify that the proof of address document submitted, such as a bank or brokerage statement or a utility bill, is less than 12 months old. You should also confirm you submitted all required documentation. In certain cases, the documentation must be submitted from the country with which you claimed treaty benefits or tax residency to be acceptable. 
Q6: I do not wish to submit any additional documentation or complete a new IRS Form W-8. What will happen if I do not respond?
A6: It is imperative you response to the email request with appropriate documentation. Failure to do so may result in exceptional U.S. tax withholding being imposed on your account, reporting of your account to tax authorities and other remedial measures.
Q7: The information in your records is incorrect. I have no connection to the U.S. What can I do to remedy this situation?
A7: It is not uncommon for a client to have changes to their tax residency, which they have not informed us about, thereby resulting in out-of-date or inaccurate records.  In these situations, the quickest and most effective way to remedy the situation is to provide the requested information so that our records are complete. You should also log into Account Management and make any required changes.
We do not provide tax advice. Please consult your tax advisor for advice in completing tax forms and determining your taxpayer status.