Choosing an Overseas Bank: First Ask These Questions

Colleen Murphy, International Man

International Man readers are a savvy bunch, well-familiar with the benefits of a foreign bank account. To recap just a few: financial diversification, access to investment opportunities in other countries, a measure of privacy, and the potential to earn a higher interest rate than your low-yield "savings" account at home. The advantages are numerous, but so are the considerations. Will my money be safe? How will I access the funds? How do I start the process?

Answers to these questions depend entirely on your personal circumstances, and anyone beginning to diversify should seek advice from a qualified professional. Before seeking (and paying) for any advice, it helps to think seriously about your needs and goals. Considering the following points will save you time and money. Continue reading "Choosing an Overseas Bank: First Ask These Questions"

June Gloom for US Tax Filers

Kevin Brekke, International Man

June brings privacy gloom for US tax filers. June 30 is the filing deadlinefor Treasury Form TD F 90-22.1 (the FBAR), wherein US persons get to stand financially naked by reporting their foreign held financial assets or accounts. The pat down was turned into a strip search with the introduction of the new IRS Form 8938 that greatly expanded the types of foreign assets now required to be reported to the US tax authorities.

Over the past 18 months, a series of changes to the reporting requirements for foreign assets held by US tax filers were introduced, including the release of the new form 8938 mentioned above. With each change came questions, as the instructions were not always clear and left tax filers hanging about how they should be interpreted - an unsettling situation, as the penalties for failure to file are absurdly extreme. However ...

There is some good news to report Continue reading "June Gloom for US Tax Filers"