Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA)

Date
What's new 
27 July 2017

List of Approved Certificate Authorities
The list of US IRS-approved Certificate Authorities has been updated and will take effect from 31 July 2017.

If the Reporting SGFI has a valid certificate from an approved certificate authority, based on the prior version of the list (available in FAQs - FATCA Filing Process), the Reporting SGFI may continue to use it until it expires.

27 July 2017

REMINDER: FATCA Return Filing for Reporting Year 2016
FATCA Return filing for Reporting Year 2016 has ended on 31 May 2017. Reporting SGFIs that have not submitted their FATCA Return must do so immediately.

Enforcement action will be taken against Reporting SGFIs that did not submit their FATCA returns on time.

3 April 2017  FATCA Return Filing for Reporting Year 2016
The FATCA Paper Nil Return for Reporting Year 2016 is now available for download.

Please refer to the FATCA Reporting Requirements section for more information and download of the Paper Nil Return.   
3 March 2017  FATCA Return Filing for Reporting Year 2016
FATCA Return Filing for the Reporting Year 2016 will commence on 15 April 2017. All reporting SGFIs are required to submit a FATCA Return to IRAS, setting out the required information in relation to (1) every US Reportable Account that is maintained in Calendar Year 2016 and (2) all payments made to each nonparticipating financial institution (“nonparticipating FFI”) in Calendar Year 2016, by 31 May 2017.

Reporting SGFIs that did not (i) maintain any US Reportable Accounts and (ii) make any payments to any nonparticipating FFI in Calendar Year 2016 may continue to submit a Paper Nil Return for Reporting Year 2016. The Paper Nil Return for Reporting Year 2016 will be made available for download from 3 April 2017. Please subscribe to the IRAS eAlerts if you wish to be informed of updates to the IRAS FATCA webpage.

Please refer to the FATCA Reporting Requirement section for more information.
5 January 2017 Amendments to the Income Tax (International Tax Compliance Agreements) (United States of America) Regulations 2015 ("FATCA Regulations")

Regulation 14 of the FATCA Regulations has been amended to align the description of the CPF accounts/investments with the recent amendments to the Central Provident Fund (“CPF”) Act which came into effect on 1 Jan 2017.

The amendments to the FATCA Regulations do not change the types of CPF accounts/investments that are excluded for FATCA reporting purposes.

The amendments to the FATCA Regulations can be found  here.

Past updates can be found here.

Singapore-US IGA

Singapore and the US signed a FATCA Model 1 IGA on 9 December 2014 to help ease Singapore-based FIS' ('SGFIs') FATCA compliance burden.

A copy of the IGA is available here. (494KB)

FATCA Registration

Reporting SGFIs can register at the FATCA Registration Portal  as a "Registered Deemed-Compliant Financial Institution (Including a Reporting Financial Institution under a Model 1 IGA)" and obtain a Global Intermediary Identification Number (GIIN) from the US IRS to be included in the US IRS' Foreign Financial Institution (FFI) List.  

More information on FATCA registration can be found on the IRS website.

FATCA Regulations, Guidance and Clarification Note

In late 2014, the Ministry of Finance (MOF), the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (IRAS) and the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) held a public consultation on the FATCA Regulations, as well as Guidance which elaborates on the obligations of Reporting SGFIs under the Singapore-US IGA. Responses to key feedback received from the public consultation can be found here. Please click on the following links for the:

FATCA Reporting Requirements 

FATCA Return Filing for the Reporting Year 2016 has ended on 31 May 2017. Reporting SGFIs that have not submitted their FATCA Return must do so immediately.

Under the FATCA Regulations, a Reporting SGFI is required to submit an annual return to IRAS setting out the required information in relation to (1) every US Reportable Account and (2) all payments made to each nonparticipating financial institution. Reporting SGFIs must prepare and transmit to IRAS via the IDES, a FATCA reporting packet that is formatted using FATCA XML Schema Version 2.0.

Reporting SGFIs that did not (i) maintain any US Reportable Account and (ii) make payment to any nonparticipating FFI are required to provide a nil return by either (a) preparing a FATCA reporting packet and transmitting it through the IDES, or (b) completing a paper FATCA Nil Return and mailing it to IRAS.  

Please click on the following links for the: 

Enforcement action will be taken against Reporting SGFIs that did not submit their FATCA returns on time.

Overview of FATCA Reporting through IDES
The table below provides an overview of the steps that a Reporting SGFI should take to prepare for FATCA data reporting through IDES: 

 1. Preparing the FATCA reporting data file in XML format
  • Generate the FATCA reporting data file in accordance with the FATCA XML Schema. (Please see details in section below on FATCA Data Format).
  • Validate the FATCA reporting data file against the FATCA XML Schema. 
  • If necessary, seek the services of an IT professional or vendor to assist in capturing and preparing the data in accordance with the FATCA XML Schema.

 2. Enrolling with IDES

  • IDES is open for enrolment. To enrol, the Reporting SGFI will need:
  1. Its GIIN;
  2. A valid email address; and
  3. A digital certificate purchased from an US IRS-approved Certificate Authority. Please allow sufficient time (minimally two weeks before enrolment) to acquire the digital certificate as the Certificate Authority will need time to verify the Reporting SGFI's credentials before issuing the digital certificate.
  • Please refer to Section 6 to 8 of the IDES User Guide for enrolment instructions and the functions available to users of the IDES (i.e. the Reporting SGFI's administrator and end users).
  • During enrolment, Reporting SGFIs should only upload the digital certificate that is purchased from an US IRS-approved Certificate Authority, and not IRAS' or US IRS' public key.
  • The IDES Enrolment site can be accessed here.

 3. Preparing the FATCA reporting packet for transmission 

  • Reporting SGFIs may refer to Section 9 of the IDES User Guide on the data preparation instructions for Model 1 Option 2 reporting arrangement.
  • In preparing the FATCA reporting packet, the Reporting SGFI is required to adopt US IRS' prescribed file naming convention (which is case-sensitive) strictly.
  • IRAS' public key can be download here.
  • Reporting SGFIs are advised to seek the services of an IT professional or vendor to assist them with the preparation of the FATCA reporting packet if required.  

 4. Transmitting the FATCA reporting packet to IRAS, via the IDES  

  • The Reporting SGFI will transmit the FATCA reporting packet to IRAS via the IDES Gateway. The transmitted file will only be released to the US IRS upon IRAS' approval.
  • The Reporting SGFI will be able to upload and transmit a file using web UI or SFTP. Please refer to Section 11 of the IDES User Guide
  • The Reporting SGFI will receive transmission-related alerts (subject to the user’s Alert Preferences settings) from the IDES after it has submitted the FATCA reporting packet.

    Please note the following:
    a. In the event that the Reporting SGFI’s FATCA reporting packet is rejected by IRAS and the Reporting SGFI receives an email alert (with Alert Code: RC005 “Transmission is rejected by its own HCTA”), the Reporting SGFI is requested to contact IRAS to find out the reason for the rejection.
    b. The Reporting SGFI should contact IDES Customer Support ( questions@ides-support.com) for assistance if:
    - It does not receive an email alert from the IDES to update on the status of the submission within 10 minutes after a FATCA reporting packet has been submitted; or
    - It receives an alert (not being Alert Code: RC005 “Transmission is rejected by its own HCTA”) from IDES informing that the submission is unsuccessful and is not sure why the alert is triggered.
  • Reporting SGFIs are regarded to have submitted their FATCA return to IRAS for the reporting year when they receive an email alert (with Alert Code: RC023 “Successful upload and approved by the HCTA (Model 1 Option 2)”) from IDES informing them that their FATCA reporting packet has been approved by IRAS. No further action is required until the US IRS informs IRAS that the submitted FATCA reporting data file/packet contains error(s). Should this be the case, IRAS will in turn notify the affected Reporting SGFI of the error(s). Affected Reporting SGFIs will be given additional time to correct the error(s) and submit a revised FATCA reporting packet through the IDES.

   
FATCA Data Format

Reporting SGFIs will need to have processes in place to collate and prepare the required data in accordance with the prevailing FATCA XML Schema set out in the table below. Data submitted to IRAS in any other format will not be accepted. 

 Version  Status   XML Schema  User Guide
 2.0

Current

 

FATCA XML Schema
(US IRS' Publication Date: 31 August 2016)
Note: XML Schema Version 2.0 supports IDES FATCA Reporting for current and previous Reporting Years.
FATCA XML ver2.0 User Guide

(US IRS' Publication 5124, Draft)

IRAS' Supplementary Instructions for Preparing FATCA Reporting Data File (Updated for FATCA XML Schema v2.0) 


FAQs

FAQs have been prepared to assist Reporting SGFIs with fulfilling their FATCA obligations. The FAQs will be updated on a regular basis as and when there are new developments.


FAQs - General

FAQs for Account Holders

FAQs - FATCA Filing Process (updated)

Contact us
Please contact us for assistance or clarification on FATCA.
Email address: FATCA@iras.gov.sg


Subscribe to IRAS eAlerts

You can subscribe to IRAS eAlerts so that you will be informed when there are updates to the IRAS FATCA webpage.