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What is a financial account?

So, as we all know by now, the FBAR (Report of Foreign Bank Accounts) requires US citizens to report their interest in any non-US financial account, if the combined maximum value of their non-US financial accounts exceeds $10,000 per year.

But, the term ‘financial account’ can sometimes leave people scratching their heads. It certainly is an all-encompassing term, and of course, it’s completely reasonable to be thorough and make sure no account is missed.

Well, we can define a financial account as:

Any account, which is designed for the purpose of holding funds or debt on behalf of another. The account can be used to withdraw and/or deposit against.

So with the above, we can create a rough list of account types we should be including.

Do include:

With the above two, it’s important to note that any account owned by a business/trust that you own, will be considered to be owned by you, and must be reported.

We must also include loan accounts such as:

Whilst you cannot necessarily put savings into these types of accounts, they are nonetheless considered a form of financial account.

What we don’t need to include:

Still unsure if you need to file a US tax return?

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