As a resident U.S. 1040 filer, do I have to attach IRS Form 8938

Q. As a resident U.S. 1040 filer, do I have to attach IRS Form 8938
“Statement of Specified Foreign Assets”

A: On December 14, 2011 the IRS released guidance on the new form arising from the “Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act”. The draft form is much broader than the FBAR forms.

The form encompasses financial accounts held by non-U.S. financial institutions and other financial assets held outside the account, such as a partnership interest or shares of your corporation. There are rules for interests in non-U.S. estates, trusts, pension plans and deferred compensation plans.

If your filing status is single/married separate, you must file the form if the total value of your specified foreign assets is more than $200,000U.S. on the last day of the year or are more than $300,000U.S. at any time in the year. The threshold is doubled for joint filers.

Among other information, the form requires that you note the maximum value for each account and for other assets. Part III discloses your gross foreign investment income reported on the tax return.


Proper completion of this form will require more time and information than the FBARs. You should consult with your advisor early in 2012 in order to implement a cost-effective manner to summarize the required financial information. You may have to review your periodic statements to determine if you meet the filing threshold.

Failure to file a complete and accurate form by the due date may be subject to a $10,000U.S. penalty with an additional penalty up to $50,000U.S. for continued failure to file after IRS notification. The statute of limitations for the return may also be extended until 3 years after date you file the form.

IRS information on this new form may be retrieved at
You should consult with your professional advisor on all related matters