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FATCA classification for Australian SMSF

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Does anyone know how an Australian SMSF is classified for FATCA purposes? My wife and I have an Australian SMSF (we are not US citizens and we are Australian tax payers) and we have an investment account with a US broker through which we invest in equities globally.  We have been asked to complete a W8 form (W-8BEN-E) and we have to state whether our SMSF is a non reporting FFI or an NFFE or something else. Depending on what we select we may also have to provide a GIIN number. This relates to something labelled 'tax treaty provision on Section 871(m)'.  Is anyone familiar with this and able to let us know how an Australian SMSF is classfied for FATCA?

Thanking you in advance

Jacques

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Hi @Jacques,

 

Thanks for following up! We have some really handy information about the Australian FATCA requirements on our website; however, the Global Intermediary Identification Number is an Internal Revenue Service (IRS) registration number, so it's best to contact them directly for more information. You can find contact details for the IRS on their website at https://www.irs.gov/

Thanks.

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Hi Jacques

 

I'm no expert on FATCA.

 

After some quick googling the sense I have is that SMSFs (indeed all super funds) are exempt from FATCA requirements and are non-reporting Foreign Financial Institutions (FFIs).

 

This external page talks about SMSFs being exempt.

 

And this external guide is about completing the W-8BEN-E form. Sections 2.3 (individual trustee) and 2.4 (corporate trustee) relate to SMSFs.

 

Hopefully someone who is an expert replies here to confirm that this information is correct.

 

This is my personal view; I’m an ATO employee who chooses to help out here in my own time.

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Thank you so much for looking into this!  Based on my own superficial reading it makes sense that Australian SMSF are classified as non-reporting FFI.  I will try and complete the form in the coming days with that classification. 

 

The broker (Interactive Brokers is the name) has also requested that we provide a GIIN which is some kind of Global Identifier that we would have to apply for and which then is reported to the IRS.  This sounds strange to us as we already have our ABN number and our understanding is that there is a FATCA tax agreement between the IRS and the ATO and that SMSFs do not have to report directly to the IRS through any additional identifiers.

 

Do you or does anybody know whether it is necessary for an Australian SMSF with an international broker account to apply for a GIIN number in order to comply with FATCA?

 

Thank you

 

Jacques

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ATO Certified

Community Support

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Hi @Jacques,

 

Thanks for following up! We have some really handy information about the Australian FATCA requirements on our website; however, the Global Intermediary Identification Number is an Internal Revenue Service (IRS) registration number, so it's best to contact them directly for more information. You can find contact details for the IRS on their website at https://www.irs.gov/

Thanks.

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