The Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts Report (FBAR) form, formerly TD 90-22.1 now known as FinCEN Form 114 must be electronically filed by June 30th. As it is not required that this form be filed at the time of filing an individual tax return, this form can be easily overlooked.
This form must be filed by anyone having a financial interest in or signature authority over at least one financial account located outside of the U.S., where the aggregate value of all foreign financial accounts exceeded $10,000 at any time during the calendar year. This is an informational form only and does not have a tax due, however, the penalty for a person who is required to file an FBAR who fails to properly file a complete and correct FBAR may be subject to a civil penalty not to exceed $10,000 per violation for non-willful violations that are not due to reasonable cause. For willful violations, the penalty may be the greater of $100,000 or 50 percent of the balance in the account at the time of the violation, for each violation.
For those individuals who fail to file the FBAR form by June 30th , there are several options to help alleviate some of the high penalties and fines. One option is the Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program, where some taxpayers may be eligible for penalties as low as 5 percent of the account balance, although most will pay a 27.5 percent penalty. As you can see, the 27.5 percent may not alleviate much, so I would recommend discussing with your tax advisor if you meet the criteria for filing this form.