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GRENADA | Grenada Parliament approves FATCA legislation

ST. GEORGE’S, Grenada, Mar 29, CMC – The Grenada parliament has given the green light to the controversial Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act Inter-Governmental Agreement (FATCA) with the United States.

The FATCA legislation demands that foreign banks provide information to America’s Internal Revenue Service (IRS) on any customer deemed a “US person” if they have more than US$50,000.

FATCAAWashington has said that the legislation aims to crack down on tax dodgers who hide hundreds of millions of US dollars in offshore accounts annually in an effort to avoid paying taxes.

Unlike other Caribbean countries, the Grenada government controls all 15 seats in the House of assembly and the legislation received easy passage with little or no debate.

It now goes before the Senate in April where the debate is likely to be a bit more intense given the interest groups represented in the Upper House.

According to the FACTA legislation, the Comptroller of Inland Revenue has been declared the competent authority with whom the IRS shall have direct communications when it comes to seeking information.

As the Competent Authority, the Comptroller will mandate his/her staff to gather information from financial institutions.

“Failure to comply with such a request is a summary offence punishable by a fine not exceeding EC$100,000.00 (One EC dollar =US$0.37 cents),” according to the legislation titled “United States of America—Grenada Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act, 2017”.

Where a financial institution provides inaccurate information in response to such a request on conviction of the summary offence it faces a fixed penalty of EC$50,000, or a fine not exceeding EC$300,000.

“A person who discloses or divulges any information or produces any document in contravention of this section commits an offence and is liable on summary conviction to a fine of not exceeding EC$5,000 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding one year,” according to the legislation.

The legislation once approved will be applied retroactively covering the years 2014, 2015 and 2016.

  • Countries: Grenada

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