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us expat tax guide – germany

When does an American in Germany need to file an FBAR?

US citizens and green card holders living in Germany are required to file a Foreign Bank Account Report (FBAR) if the combined balances of all their foreign financial accounts exceed US$10,000 at any point during the calendar year.

This includes checking, savings, and investment accounts at foreign financial institutions.

How should multiple financial accounts be reported on an FBAR?

The process involves detailing the account numbers, the highest balance during the year for each account, and the address of the financial institution.

This ensures that all overseas financial interests are fully disclosed to the IRS.

Do accounts with minimal or zero balances need to be reported?

Yes, all foreign accounts, regardless of their balance, must be disclosed. This includes digital payment platforms like PayPal, which may hold minimal funds or no funds, but are still subject to reporting requirements.

Are pension accounts included in FBAR filings?

It depends. The need to report pension accounts can vary, often requiring a detailed examination of the account’s specifics and the individual’s reporting obligations. It’s recommended to get a tax professional for advice in these matters, as they can accurately support you with your reporting obligations, ensuring that you do not miss any deadlines or make any mistakes.

What are the FBAR filing deadlines and how do extensions work?

The initial deadline is April 15th of the year following the reported calendar year, with an automatic extension to October 15th, allowing filers extra time to ensure their reports are accurate and complete.

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