Law no. 17/2019, was officially published, which approves the Regime of Communication of Financial Information, amending the Decree-law no. 64/2016, of 11 of October, and the Decree-Law no. 61/2013, related with the mandatory automatic exchange of information in tax matters and with the obligation to comply with the communication rules and due diligence related with the bank accounts qualified as “subjected to communication” of holders and beneficiaries residing in other Member States of the European Union or in other participant jurisdictions, such as the United States of America.

According to this Law, reporting financial institutions (determined in the Decree-Law no. 61/2013) must also communicate to the tax authorities the bank accounts held by beneficiaries residing in Portugal which exceed 50,000 euros in the end of each year, as a result of article 10.º-A of said Decree-Law no. 64/2016.

In addition, the obligation of identification of bank accounts and due diligence is extended to all holders and beneficiaries, despite of their residence, even the obligations of communication to the tax authorities is limited to the entities mentioned above, as well as to residents in tax heavens.

The delay or lack of said communication is subject to a penalty, for corporations, ranging between 500 and 22,500 euros (in case of negligence). Furthermore, omissions and inaccuracies included in such communication are subject to penalties, for corporations, from 500 to 11,250 euros (in case of negligence).

This communication must be executed by reporting financial institutions until 31 of July of each year, taking in consideration the information of the previous year, including 2018.

This Law establishes a transitory provision which indicates the deadlines for the reporting financial institutions to analyze the preexistence accounts (in 60 days) and new accounts (in 90 days) in accordance with the said new communication regime, as from the entry into force of this Law, i.e., from 15 February 2019.