Today the Internal Revenue Service unveiled its online registration portal to be used by foreign financial institutions (FFIs) to register under the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA).  The portal, which is accessible here, allows FFIs to access their online account to add or modify registration information.  The portal provides that FFIs can make use of the portal now, but no registrations will be final until January 1, 2014:

Prior to January 1, 2014, any information entered into the system, even if submitted as final by the website user, will not be regarded as a final submission, but will merely be stored until the information is submitted as final on or after January 1, 2014.  

FIs can use the remainder of 2013 to become familiar with the FATCA registration website, to input preliminary information, and to refine that information.  On or after January 1, 2014, each FI will be expected to finalize its registration information by logging into its online account on the FATCA registration website, making any necessary additional changes, and submitting the information as final.  

As registrations are finalized and approved, FFIs will be issued global intermediary identification number (GIINs).

The online registration portal also includes a number of manuals and guides to assist FFIs in the registration process, as follows:

  • FATCA Registration Overview (available here)
  • FATCA Registration Online User Guide (available here)
  • Tips for Logging into the FATCA Registration System (available here)
  • Instructions for Form 8957 (available here)
  • Global Intermediary Identification Number (GIIN) Composition (available here)