If you have a financial account in a foreign country with $10,000 or more in it, you are required to report the amount to the IRS once a year. The deadline for filing IRS Form 114, the Foreign Bank Account Report (i.e. the “FBAR”), has always been June 30.
Recent legislation that President Obama signed into law, the Surface Transportation and Veterans Health Care Choice Improvement Act, had a provision to also change the FBAR due date. In addition to changing the date to April 15, which is more in line with other common due dates for various types of tax returns, there is a six-month extension available, making that deadline October 16. But just like other tax filing deadlines, you must request the extension.
The new rule also waives any penalties for someone new to the process who is filing for the first time, a generous provision that will help anyone confused by the rules for FBAR filing. If you’d like to read the IRS guidance on FBARs, you can find it here.