January 20, 2013. San Francisco, CA. Safe Harbor CPAs, a leading San Francisco CPA firm, has announced an increases focus on the OVDP (Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program), which is an IRS program to help taxpayers come into compliance with US laws regarding overseas bank accounts. The firm is expanding its focus on San Francisco Bay Area residents who have overseas business and financial interests.
“San Francisco is an international city with many residents who retain ties to their home countries and overseas interests,” explained Chun Wong, CPA, managing partner at Safe Harbor LLP. “Increasingly, however, the IRS is cracking down on residents and citizens who have foreign bank accounts or assets. The OVDP is an IRS program designed to help people get into compliance with US regulations and laws. Our firm is increasing its assistance for taxpayers throughout this complicated process.”
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About the OVDP (Oversease Voluntary Disclosure Program)
The IRS has reopened the offshore voluntary disclosure program (OVDP) to help people hiding offshore accounts get current with their taxes and announced the collection of more than $4.4 billion so far from the two previous international programs. The newest program is similar to the 2011 program in many ways, but with a few key differences. Unlike the 2011 program, there is no set deadline for people to apply. However, the terms of the program could change at any time going forward. For example, the IRS may increase penalties in the program for all or some taxpayers or defined classes of taxpayers or decide to end the program entirely at any point.
Under the 2011 Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Initiative (OVDI), the penalty framework required individuals to pay 25-percent of the amount in the foreign bank account in the year with the highest aggregate account balance covering the 2003 to 2010 period. The IRS also created a new penalty category of 12.5-percent for “small offshore accounts.” Taxpayers whose offshore accounts or assets were less than $75,000 in any calendar year covered by the OVDI qualified for this lower rate. In addition, some taxpayers qualified for a 5-percent penalty, including taxpayers who did not open the foreign account, or cause the account to be opened, if additional requirements were met; and foreign residents who were unaware that they were U.S. citizens.
Persons seeking more information about the OVDP and compliance issues are encouraged to contact Safe Harbor LLP for a no obligation consultation.
IRS Circular 230 Notice
The Internal Revenue Service requires Safe Harbor LLP to inform the reader that any tax advice contained in this correspondence cannot be used for the purpose of avoiding penalties under the Internal Revenue Code or for promoting, marketing or recommending to another party any transaction or matter addressed.
About Safe Harbor CPAs – a Professional CPA Firm in San Francisco
Safe Harbor LLP is a CPA firm that specializes in accounting and tax services for individuals and businesses throughout the San Francisco Bay Area and greater California. Safe Harbor CPAs helps both individuals and businesses with tax preparation, IRS audit defense, and audited financial statements. The firm prides itself on friendly yet professional service and utilizes state-of-the-art Internet technology to provide quality customer service.
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