The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), the US Treasury Department’s wing tasked with overseeing potential violations of domestic financial laws, wants Americans to report whether they are using more than $ 10,000 in cryptocurrencies with overseas financial services or service providers have virtual assets.
FinCEN announced its intention to change the provisions of the Bank Secrecy Act for Foreign Banks and Financial Accounts (FBAR) in a notice released on New Year’s Eve, just three weeks before Treasury conduct is expected to change.
In a brief notice released on Thursday, FinCEN intends to propose an amendment to the provisions implementing the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) on Foreign Financial Account Reports (FBAR) to include the virtual currency as a type of reportable account.
There was no schedule for the publication or implementation of this new proposal.
The rule change appears to bring FBAR rules into line for crypto holdings in cash held by citizens or other US persons outside of the US. This could have the most visible impact on users of crypto exchanges like Bitstamp and Bitfinex.
Currently, FBARs must be submitted by individuals with a total of $ 10,000 in foreign financial accounts, including currencies. However, current regulations do not allow virtual currencies to be an FBAR reportable account. This change would end this exception.
According to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) website, FBARs must include the name on the account, the account number, the name and address of the overseas bank, the type of account, and the maximum value held during the year.
According to the website, people who fail to submit documents face various penalties, including fines.
It is unclear what additional information crypto holders may need to file, e.g. B. Blockchain addresses.
The Thursday announcement comes just days before the public comment deadline for another FinCEN initiative that requires an exchange to store customer information when cryptocurrencies worth more than $ 3,000 are transferred to non-hosted wallets and currency transaction reports for Transactions with a cryptocurrency of more than 10,000 US dollars per day are filed. comes to an end.
The public notice, released just a week before Christmas, has drawn the ire of the crypto community, both for its potential impact on various crypto projects and for a shorter comment period than usual on U.S. federal holidays.
If these two proposed rules are implemented, US persons may need to report crypto holdings and transactions above $ 10,000 regardless of where they are held.