How To File Your FBAR
How to File Your FBAR – FREE & EASY
Filing your own FBAR can save you money and it’s quite easy to do.
Once you’ve done it once or twice, you’ll be able to file your FBAR in 15-30 minutes.
Here’s our help guide to filing your own FBAR.
Before you get started on the FBAR form, think about all the non-US bank accounts you have access to.
You need to report every account you have control over.
The bank account doesn’t even need to be your account, it could be a business account or an account you manage for one of your children.
If you’re a treasurer of a club or charity, you may have access to their bank accounts too.
Finally, don’t forget about pension accounts, retirement accounts and trading accounts (stocks/shares/securities) etc.
Next, you’ll need information for each of these accounts.
You’ll need to know the;
• Account number
• Address of the bank/institution
• Highest balance that occurred in the account during the calendar year.
Once you have all this info, you’re already halfway there 🙂
You can only file your FBAR online.
There are two online filing options.
You can download the FBAR PDF to your computer, complete it with your information and then upload it to the FBAR BSA filing service. The benefit of doing it this way is you can save your progress as you go.
The second option is to file your FBAR live on the FBAR BSA filing website, but you cannot save your progress, you must do it one go.
To use the first option (preferred by most), you’ll need Abode Reader installed on your computer or tablet.
If you don’t have Adobe Reader already, you can download using this link, free of charge:
When you’re ready to go with Adobe Reader, download the FBAR PDF here:
On the first page, make up a filing name… something like MY2021FBAR, and then click on the save button.
Save the form somewhere on your computer where you can easily find it again, such as on your desktop.
Next, move to page 2 and complete the personal information section.
Don’t use any unnecessary spaces, symbols, or punctuation.
If you’re in the UK, remove the space from your UK postcode.
Answer 14 needs to be answered and it’s self-explanatory.
Next, move to bank account information.
There are 3 parts to this section, and it’s important you complete the correct part;
1. Accounts in your name only
2. Joint accounts (even if the other person is not a US citizen)
3. An Account that is not yours, but you have control over it.
What if I’m way behind on my U.S. tax returns?
There is a special IRS program to help you catch up on your U.S. taxes safely, without fines and penalties
It’s for American citizens that didn’t know they had to file U.S. tax returns each year, and have therefore fallen behind. Some more than 30 years! With the IRS Streamlined Procedure, say goodbye to overdue tax returns, late fees, and penalties. If you have children, we can backdate your Child Tax Credit Refund for 3 years.
Get a quote here.
An account in your name only:
This is simple to complete if you have all your information to hand.
Don’t use any punctuation or symbols, and remove spaces from your post code if applicable.
You’ll be asked about the bank account type.
There are 3 types;
1. Bank accounts
2. Securities accounts
3. Other accounts
Bank accounts cover all types of bank accounts.
Securities accounts are for trading accounts that are used for buying and selling stocks and shares across financial markets.
Other accounts is for everything else, such as a pension, retirement or Superannuation account. If you’re in New Zealand, use other for your KiwiSaver account.
To add a second account, look for the + symbol next to the title “Information on Financial Account(s) Owned Separately”.
You’ll then see a new section load up for your second bank account.
Complete this section of every bank account that is solely in your name.
Remember to save your progress as you go.
In the next section, you can enter information for joint bank accounts.
Remember, if the person that holds the account with you is not a US citizen or Green Card holder, you still need to enter their basic information.
Question 25 will ask for an ITIN or SSN. Obviously, a non-US person will not have one, so change the TIN type to Foreign.
Continue on until all your joint bank accounts are listed.
ARE YOU FILING LATE?
If you’re filing your FBAR late (later than October 15 if you’re living outside of the United States) then you need to choose a reason for late filing from the drop down menu on page 1. There are plenty of choices to choose from.
Before you can sign and submit your FBAR, you must use the validation button on page 1 to check that all the fields have been entered correctly.
If there is a problem, look for yellow or red highlighted sections and correct them.
Once you can validate without any errors, click on Sign the Form and then click Save.
You can click on Validate as many times as you need to.
READY TO FILE:
Once you’ve signed and saved, you’ll be ready to file.
When the “Ready To File” button turns to a lighter grey colour and becomes clickable, you’re ready to submit your FBAR.
Follow the instructions on screen and upload your FBAR.
That’s it, you’re all done!
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