FinCen Issues Temporary Exemption from Mandatory Electronic Filing of FBAR

In late 2011, FinCen proposed to mandate e-filing of certain reports required under the Bank Secrecy Act effective June 30, 2012. The FBAR was included among these reports. However, on February 24, FinCen announced that a general exemption from mandatory e-filing of the FBAR would be in effect until July 1, 2013. This e-filing exemption is applicable to all U.S. persons required to file the FBAR. Thus, paper FBARs can be filed for calendar years 2011 and 2012.

The temporary e-filing exemption does not relieve U.S. persons from the obligation to file an FBAR, nor does it affect the required date the FBAR must be received. Thus, calendar year 2011 FBARs are still due by June 30, 2012 in paper form or by e-filing.

United States persons who have a financial interest in or signature authority over a foreign financial account may be required to file an FBAR. No report is required if the aggregate value of the accounts does not exceed $10,000.

FinCen encourages FBAR filers to sign up to file their FBARs by accessing the FinCen e-filing website at

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This advice is not intended or written to be used for, and it cannot be used for, the purpose of avoiding any federal tax penalties that may be imposed, or for promoting, marketing or recommending to another person, any tax related matter.

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