Residents of 3 more countries now subject to U.S. interest reporting
Rev. Proc. 2017-31, issued in April (supplementing Section 4 of Rev. Proc. 2014-64, as supplemented by Rev. Procs. 2015-50, 2016-18, and 2016-56), added Belgium, Colombia, and Portugal to the list of nations with which Treasury and the IRS have determined that automatic exchange of deposit interest information is appropriate. Such information is collected under Regs. Secs. 1.6049-4(b)(5) and 1.6049-8 (interest paid to certain nonresident aliens). In general, interest aggregating $10 or more during a calendar year that relates to a deposit maintained in the United States that is paid to a nonresident alien individual who is a resident of any of the countries specified in the revenue procedure is reported to the IRS and the individual on Form 1042-S, Foreign Person's U.S. Source Income Subject to Withholding, for the calendar year in which it is paid.
Automatic accounting method change procedures updated
In Rev Proc. 2017-30, the IRS updated the list of automatic changes in accounting procedure to which the automatic change procedures in Rev. Proc. 2015-13, as clarified and modified by Rev. Proc. 2015-33, and as modified by Rev. Proc. 2016-1, apply.
The new procedure applies to Forms 3115, Application for Change in Accounting Method, filed on or after April 19, 2017, for a year of change ending on or after Aug. 31, 2016, filed under the automatic change procedures.
Private debt collection is said to be underway
The IRS announced in April (News Release IR-2017-74) that it was beginning that month to assign overdue tax accounts to private collection agencies under Sec. 6306, enacted in late 2015 by the Fixing America's Surface Transportation Act, P.L. 114-94. The program involves certain tax debts (1) that have been removed from the IRS's active inventory due to a lack of resources or an inability to find the taxpayer; (2) for which more than one-third of the applicable limitation period has passed and no IRS employee has been assigned to collect the debt; or (3) that have been assigned for collection, but more than 365 days have passed without interaction with the taxpayer for collection purposes. The four companies participating in the program must follow applicable provisions of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, P.L. 95-109, as amended (15 U.S.C. §1692 et seq.), and are authorized to discuss and set up payment agreements. The news release, however, noted that payments are made directly to the IRS and highlighted how taxpayers may distinguish representatives of the companies from fraudulent impostors. Both the IRS and the companies will notify taxpayers by mail with details intended to identify the tax owed and assure taxpayers that the letters and subsequent contacts are legitimate, the Service said.