The IWTA International Tax Journal

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Breaking News Update: U.S. Department of Treasury Offers Tax Relief to NRAs Remaining in USA During Covid-19 Pandemic

Breaking News Update: U.S. Department of Treasury Offers Tax Relief to NRAs Remaining in USA During Covid-19 Pandemic

Breaking Tax News as of April 21, 2020: The following is an addendum to our original blog post of April 20, 2020 entitled:

“The Perfect Storm of Timing, Tragedy and Tax Law: NRAs and Covid-19”

Recognizing the unusual circumstances non-resident aliens have faced while sick, trapped or morally obligated to remain in the USA during the Covid-19 pandemic, the U.S. Department of Treasury has relaxed rules regarding what is commonly referred to as “the substantial presence test.”

The Perfect Storm of Timing, Tragedy and Tax Law: NRAs and Covid-19

The outbreak of COVID-19 (the coronavirus) has significantly disrupted and impacted the world. The global nature and dramatic lock down /stay at home orders undertaken by governments around the world have left many individuals and families dislocated. Among the victims: non-United States persons (NRAs) stricken with the disease while visiting the U.S. and unable or unwilling to return to their country of residence.

What is a Withholding Agent and Why are They Important?

IRC 1473(4) and 1.1473-1(d), define a withholding agent as any person in whatever capacity having control, receipt, custody, disposal, or payment of any item of income of a foreign person that is subject to withholding. In the eyes of the U.S. federal tax authorities, a person is considered to have custody of, or control over a distribution of funds or income, if a person is the one who ultimately has the authority to release the funds or income. If such person does not properly withhold the correct amount of tax they will be subject to pay the tax not withheld.

FACTA Filing: What U.S. Citizens Need to Know About Foreign Asset Reporting

The Foreign Account Tax Compliance Tax Act (FATCA) became law in 2010 and is a major development in the taxation of Americans living abroad. FATCA is a tax law that requires U.S. citizens at home and outside of the United States (U.S.) to file annual reports on any foreign account holdings. FATCA is intended to prevent tax evasion by U.S. citizens and residents via the use of offshore accounts.