Introducing the Common Reporting Standard (CRS)
Offshore tax evasion has become a growing concern for countries worldwide. In recent years, governments and financial institutions have become much more aware of the large amounts of undisclosed wealth held in offshore accounts.
In 2013 the G20 leaders committed to the Automatic Exchange of Information as a new global standard, and endorsed the Common Reporting Standard (CRS) for the automatic exchange of tax information between participating countries.
CRS creates a globally co-ordinated and consistent approach to the disclosure of financial accounts held by account holders. The agreement requires sharing of information between the tax authorities regarding accounts and investments.
To date over 90 countries have signed and agreed to the Automatic Exchange of Information Act.
The CRS regulation requires financial institutions such as RMB to report on account holders who have foreign tax residencies in participating jurisdictions and their associated accounts to the local tax authority.
RMB is in the process of preparing for the regulatory requirements. The required changes will be made to the client on-boarding process and forms. We will be requesting additional information from new clients, as well as remediating existing clients, by gathering additional information in order to determine the reporting classification of the account holder.
The new changes will come into effect on:
United Kingdom — 1 January 2016
South Africa — 1 March 2016