International Financial Law Prof Blog

Editor: William Byrnes
Texas A&M University
School of Law

Monday, August 15, 2016

Reporting Unauthorized Disclosure or Misuse of Tax Information Exchanged Under an International Agreement

The United States has a number of agreements relating to the exchange of information for tax purposes. The most common FATCA_rollforms of such agreements are bilateral double tax conventions, tax information exchange agreements, intergovernmental agreements to implement the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA), and multilateral agreements. Depending on the agreement’s terms, the United States may exchange information as specifically requested, automatically, or spontaneously. Information is exchanged automatically under the provisions of agreements to implement FATCA and pursuant to country by country reporting requirements under Treas. Reg. §1.6038-4.

The United States takes its obligation to respect the Taxpayer’s Right to Confidentiality very seriously and has implemented safeguards to protect the confidentiality and prevent the unauthorized disclosure or misuse of taxpayer information.  The United States encourages anyone who is aware of a suspected unauthorized disclosure or misuse of information exchanged under an international agreement to which the United States is a party to file a report with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

Any person who discovers a possible unauthorized disclosure or misuse of taxpayer information should notify the office of Treaty Administration within the IRS Large Business and International Division. Send a description of the incident to the Exchange of Information Disclosure mailbox. Use the term "Report of Suspected Unauthorized Disclosure of Exchanged Information” in the subject line of the email.

The email description should include all relevant information:

  • Name and contact information (including telephone number and email address) of individual submitting the information, so that the IRS may contact you to clarify details or make further inquiries
  • Details about the incident, to the extent known
  • Do not include any taxpayer identification number (e.g., social security number, individual taxpayer identification number).

All alleged unauthorized disclosures or misuse of information will be investigated and appropriate actions will be taken.

Page Last Reviewed or Updated: 27-Jul-2016

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