Last year Democrats Proposed 30% Tax on Foreign Banks that refuse to disclose US Taxpayers as part of continuing efforts by the IRS to quash offshore asset protection and tax evasion strategies conjured up by various financial planners. US Taxpayers with offshore or foreign bank account are required to disclose this information by filing IRS Foreign Bank Account Report.
The Baucus-Rangel bill proposed to impose a thirty percent (30%) withholding tax on income from U.S. financial assets held by a foreign financial institution unless the offshore bank agrees to disclose the identity of any U.S. taxpayers with an account at the foreign bank with additional condition to annually report on the foreign account balance including payments and withdrawals from the foreign bank account.
However, the FBAR game has suddenly changed with this new development from Germany. According to Tax Section of Businessweek , Germany has decided to buy stolen bank data from a former employee of an unidentified Swiss bank. The data contains names of German citizens who hold undisclosed foreign bank accounts.
Swiss government issued a statement expressing its concern over Germany’s decision to buy stolen information but IRS may make similar decision in light of the billions of dollars which the IRS may realize from its recent FBAR Voluntary Disclosure program.
Any offshore or foreign banks with complex operation will eventually realize that in the digital age, it would be nearly impossible to maintain banking secrecy as it existed in previous generations. The source for the stolen Swiss Bank data is from a computer specialist at the Swiss bank.