Correcting Foreign Information Reporting Noncompliance: Voluntary Disclosure Programs

Navigating Penalty Abatement for Failure to File Forms 5471, 5472, FATCA and FBAR

Recording of a 110-minute CPE webinar with Q&A

Conducted on Tuesday, August 15, 2017
Recorded event now available

This webinar will provide CPAs and tax advisers with a practical guide to navigating the process of requesting abatements of IRS penalties due to client failure to properly file required international information forms such as the FBAR, Form 8938, and Forms 5471 and 5472. The panel will focus on the role of compliance professionals and advisers in identifying potential foreign information reporting issues, correcting filing deficiencies, and navigating various penalty abatement relief programs.


The IRS continues to increase its attention and resources to foreign tax compliance reporting by U.S. persons over the past several years. Tax reporting of international accounts and activities can be complex, and failure to file foreign tax informational forms typically trigger more severe penalties than failure to file most required domestic tax forms.

The Internal Revenue Code sets penalties for failure to file Forms 5471 and 5472 at $10,000 per unfiled return. Additionally, Code Section 6038(c) provides for a reduction of 10% or more of foreign taxes available for credit under Sections 901, 902 and 960.

Likewise, the penalties for failure to file the FBAR (FinCEN Form 114) range from $10,000 for non-willful failure to the greater of $100,000 plus 50% of the account balance at the time of the violation for willful noncompliance.

Tax advisers and compliance professionals are often the first parties to discover possible noncompliance with these complex foreign information requirements and are in the best position to seek remedy in the form of penalty abatement.

Advisers serving clients with offshore assets must be able to identify instances where clients have risk due to missing or incorrect foreign information filings. They should also be fully knowledgeable of the requirements and processes for requesting abatements of penalties for failure to file required foreign tax information.

Listen as our experienced panel provides best practices for documenting and filing requests for abatement of foreign tax penalties.


  1. Identifying foreign information noncompliance scenarios
  2. Delinquent information return program
  3. Streamlined disclosure program
    1. SDOP for U.S. resident
    2. SFOP for Non-U.S. resident
  4. Offshore voluntary disclosure program (OVDP)
  5. What filings and submittals are required for penalty abatement requests
  6. Current IRS procedures for evaluating voluntary submittals


The panel will discuss these and other important topics:

  • What foreign reporting forms are subject to foreign tax reporting penalties?

  • What are the penalty structures for non-willful and willful failure when other violations are in place?

  • What are the standards for “reasonable cause” abatement?

  • What documentation and submissions must accompany a corrective filing or penalty abatement request?

  • What is the IRS penalty abatement decision tree model and how does it apply to requests to abate foreign tax penalties?


Learning Objectives

After completing this course, you will be able to:

  • Identify the various disclosure programs and options to bring non-compliant taxpayers into compliance.
  • Discern the filing and documentation requirements for the various disclosure programs.
  • Determine the penalties applicable to various types of failure to file situations and penalty abatement opportunities.
  • Recognize the differences between willful and non-willful failure to disclose as determined by the IRS.
  • Identify the best approach to take when representing a client who has failed to meet foreign asset filing obligations.


Joshua Ashman, CPA, Partner
Expat Tax Professionals, New York

Mr. Ashman is an international tax accountant. He counsels Americans abroad regarding filing their U.S. taxes. He specializes in expat-specific issues and complicated tax matters. He previously held a senior management position in the international tax practice of PwC.

Ephraim Moss, Esq., Partner
Expat Tax Professionals, New York

Mr. Moss is a U.S. attorney specializing in international tax matters. He has extensive experience in counseling clients on matters such as cross-border tax structures, tax return treaty positions, expatriation matters and disclosure of foreign financial accounts. In recent years, he has focused his practice on assisting delinquent taxpayers utilize the various IRS disclosure programs and regularly represents client before the IRS. Prior to co-founding Expat Tax Professionals LLC, he held a managerial position in the international tax practice of Ernst & Young.

Nathan Mintz, Tax Counsel
Expat Tax Professionals, New York

Mr. Mintz is a U.S. attorney specializing in U.S. international tax matters. He has extensive experience in providing tax counsel to individuals and businesses with respect to U.S. inbound and outbound tax issues. In recent years, he has focused his work on tax issues affecting U.S. citizens living abroad, providing guidance under both U.S. domestic tax laws and international income tax treaties. Previously, he held a managerial position in the international tax practice of PwC.

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CPE On-Demand

Includes video streaming of full program plus handouts (available within a week of the live webinar).

Strafford is a NASBA-approved CPE provider for On-Demand webinars.

This program is eligible for 2.0 CPE credits.

  • Field of Study: Taxes.
  • Level of Knowledge: Intermediate.
  • Advance Preparation: Printing and reviewing Program Outlines and materials.
  • Teaching Method: Seminar/Lecture.
  • Delivery Method: QAS Self-Study.
  • Prerequisite: 

    Three years+ business or public firm experience at mid-level within the organization, preparing complex tax and information reporting returns. Specific knowledge and understanding of foreign asset reporting requirements, FBARs, offshore voluntary disclosure programs, and opportunities to reduce penalties for failure to disclose foreign assets, familiarity with Streamlined Domestic Offshore Procedures (SDOP) and Streamlined Foreign Offshore Procedures (SFOP) and standards for establishing reasonable cause and non-willful cause for failure to file or disclose.

On-Demand Webinar & CPE Processing $182.00

Recorded Event

Includes full event recording plus handouts.

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Recorded Webinar Download $147.00

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