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Old 12.02.2014, 08:51
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Postfinace DEMANDS past FBARs

Hi all,
Postfinance sent me an "unregistered" letter last week asking for my FBAR from 2012.

Has anybody else also received this demand?

Has anybody tried to cut a deal with them?
Ein Blumenstrauss wäre schön!
An FBAR will be saving them mega CHF in goup 2 with the DOJ deal.

What cand they do if you say that you never received the letter?
After all they didn't even send it as registered mail!
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Old 12.02.2014, 08:59
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Re: Postfinace DEMANDS past FBARs

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Hi all,
Postfinance sent me an "unregistered" letter last week asking for my FBAR from 2012.

Has anybody else also received this demand?

Has anybody tried to cut a deal with them?
Ein Blumenstrauss wäre schön!
An FBAR will be saving them mega CHF in goup 2 with the DOJ deal.

What cand they do if you say that you never received the letter?
After all they didn't even send it as registered mail!
They just freeze your account, it's easy! Then you contact them & they say fill in the form & once we have checked it all out we will let you use the account again.
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Old 12.02.2014, 10:02
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Re: Postfinace DEMANDS past FBARs

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They just freeze your account, it's easy! Then you contact them & they say fill in the form & once we have checked it all out we will let you use the account again.
You’re probably right.

When I signed that waiver last year I more or less did open the gates to the concentration camp on my own in respect to my data privacy.

According to NPA II.G

“Closure of Accounts of Recalcitrant Account Holders

The terms of an NPA will provide that the Swiss Bank agrees to close any and all accounts of recalcitrant account holders, as defined in Section l47l(d)(6) of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code. The terms of the NPA will require that the Swiss Bank implement procedures to prevent its employees from assisting recalcitrant account holders to engage in acts of further concealment in connection with closing any account or transferring any funds. The terms of the NPA will also provide that the Swiss Bank agrees not to open any U.S. Related Accounts (as defined in Paragraph I.B.9, above, but without regard to the dollar limit or the reference to the Applicable Period) except on conditions that ensure that the account will be declared to the United States and will be subject to disclosure by the Swiss Bank.”

I guess I’ll just let them close my account and have them pay me out in a combination of physical gold and cash.
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Old 12.02.2014, 10:05
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Re: Postfinace DEMANDS past FBARs

I wonder what their reaction would be if I asked them for an end of year bonus of 10% of my account in return for the FBAR. They by all means would be 40% ahead of the game!
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Old 12.02.2014, 22:15
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Re: Postfinace DEMANDS past FBARs

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I guess I’ll just let them close my account and have them pay me out in a combination of physical gold and cash.
Failure to supply the requested documentation, followed by a request to close the account could be construed as an indication of criminal activity in which case they could freeze the account as well
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Old 13.02.2014, 15:21
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Re: Postfinace DEMANDS past FBARs

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Failure to supply the requested documentation, followed by a request to close the account could be construed as an indication of criminal activity in which case they could freeze the account as well
As far as I can recall I never said that I would close the account, but that I'd let THEM close it.
According to the FATCA regs. and the NPA Program the banks are obligated to CLOSE the accounts of recalcitrant account holders, not FREEZE them. I see no legal basis the banks have, neither Swiss nor US for that matter, for freezing the accounts.
The Postfinance is entering the NPA with the DOJ not the account holder and as such Postfinance has the obligation to pay a possible fine and NOT the account holder. If they want to minimize their penalty by being able to prove to the DOJ that my account has been reported by me in the past I think it would be quite nice to receive something in return.
And I think it should be more that just a "feuchte Händedruck"
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Old 13.02.2014, 16:41
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Re: Postfinace DEMANDS past FBARs

@Uncle Tell:
This is from an article in last Sunday's Sonntagszeitung:
"Deshalb ergreifen die Banken drastische Massnahmen. So werden Konten von Amerikanern, deren Steuerstatus nicht vollständig geklärt ist, einfach blockiert. Solange sie nicht alle erforderlichen Dokumente und Formulare liefern, kommen sie nicht an ihr Geld.

Die Kategorie-2-Banken nehmen dabei in Kauf, Schweizer Gesetze zu brechen, wie Tobias Rohner, Partner der Anwaltskanzlei Bill Isenegger Ackermann, sagt. «Banken reicht der Verdacht auf Steuerhinterziehung, um Gelder ihrer Kunden zu blockieren. Es ist allerdings fraglich, ob das nach Schweizer Recht zulässig ist.»"

http://www.sonntagszeitung.ch/wirtsc...?newsid=274101

You might consider contacting an attorney.
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Old 13.02.2014, 16:47
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Re: Postfinace DEMANDS past FBARs

Google Translate of the above text:

Quote:
"That's why the banks to take drastic measures. Thus, accounts of Americans whose tax status is not fully understood, simply blocked. As long as they do not provide all the required documents and forms, they do not get their money.

The Category 2 banks take this into account, to break Swiss law, as Tobias Rohner, partner of the law firm Bill Isenegger Ackermann says. "Banks ranges of suspected tax evasion to block funds to their customers. However, it is questionable whether this is permitted under Swiss law. '"
But let's be brutally honest here, UT. The bank doesn't need you. They don't care about you. As an American you're a gigantic hassle. It sucks, but that's how it is. So your choice is to either comply with the request or have your accounts frozen and/or closed, without them giving you so much as a candy heart for the favor. An attorney probably would not be worth the expense. Sorry!!
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Old 13.02.2014, 18:07
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Re: Postfinace DEMANDS past FBARs

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As far as I can recall I never said that I would close the account, but that I'd let THEM close it.
According to the FATCA regs. and the NPA Program the banks are obligated to CLOSE the accounts of recalcitrant account holders, not FREEZE them. I see no legal basis the banks have, neither Swiss nor US for that matter, for freezing the accounts.
The Postfinance is entering the NPA with the DOJ not the account holder and as such Postfinance has the obligation to pay a possible fine and NOT the account holder. If they want to minimize their penalty by being able to prove to the DOJ that my account has been reported by me in the past I think it would be quite nice to receive something in return.
And I think it should be more that just a "feuchte Händedruck"
and what would you do if they close it and then refuse to give you any money until you produce the documents?
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Old 13.02.2014, 18:31
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Re: Postfinace DEMANDS past FBARs

I won't have anything more to do with PostFinance. I closed my account when they 'asked' me to sign a form giving them my permission to violate Swiss law.

They're falling all over themselves to be obedient minions of the US congress and its IRS busybodies. Frankly, I won't mind it a bit if they take advantage of their best-of-class minion position and invest heavily in the US market — just in time to ride the dollar (and their own net worth) into the dirt. Good riddance.
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Old 13.02.2014, 19:11
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Re: Postfinace DEMANDS past FBARs

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I won't have anything more to do with PostFinance. I closed my account when they 'asked' me to sign a form giving them my permission to violate Swiss law.

They're falling all over themselves to be obedient minions of the US congress and its IRS busybodies. Frankly, I won't mind it a bit if they take advantage of their best-of-class minion position and invest heavily in the US market — just in time to ride the dollar (and their own net worth) into the dirt. Good riddance.
Fair enough - but name another bank that doesn't do that but does accept US persons?
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Old 13.02.2014, 19:42
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Re: Postfinace DEMANDS past FBARs

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Fair enough - but name another bank that doesn't do that but does accept US persons?
I'm truly sorry, but I can't.

(Can anybody here relate how Raiffeisen deals with 'US persons'?)
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Old 13.02.2014, 20:37
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Re: Postfinace DEMANDS past FBARs

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As far as I can recall I never said that I would close the account, but that I'd let THEM close it.
According to the FATCA regs. and the NPA Program the banks are obligated to CLOSE the accounts of recalcitrant account holders, not FREEZE them. I see no legal basis the banks have, neither Swiss nor US for that matter, for freezing the accounts.
And what do you think they do when the close your account? (hint: they don't give the money back to you)...
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Old 13.02.2014, 20:39
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Re: Postfinace DEMANDS past FBARs

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I'm truly sorry, but I can't.

(Can anybody here relate how Raiffeisen deals with 'US persons'?)
So you're putting the money under that mattress then
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Old 13.02.2014, 21:22
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Re: Postfinace DEMANDS past FBARs

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So you're putting the money under that mattress then
No need for that — besides, it'd be a pretty thin mattress. My other (Swiss) bank has made no such 'requests' of me (a Swiss). It has also been suggested to me that Raiffeisen has been more friendly to Americans, but I'm still awaiting any documented or anecdotal evidence.

Last edited by Texaner; 14.02.2014 at 08:37.
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Old 13.02.2014, 21:26
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Re: Postfinace DEMANDS past FBARs

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No need for that. My other (Swiss) bank has made no such 'requests' of me (a Swiss). It has also been suggested to me that Raiffeisen has been more friendly to Americans, but I'm still awaiting any documented or anecdotal evidence.
They aren't.

My tri-national daughter wanted to open a rent account, they said no.

However, they could use an old, stagnant account she had.

So they did.

Tom
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Old 13.02.2014, 21:28
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Re: Postfinace DEMANDS past FBARs

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I'm truly sorry, but I can't.

(Can anybody here relate how Raiffeisen deals with 'US persons'?)
Well, let's put it this way:

http://isaacbrocksociety.ca/2012/07/...rican-clients/
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Old 13.02.2014, 21:44
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Re: Postfinace DEMANDS past FBARs

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and what would you do if they close it and then refuse to give you any money until you produce the documents?
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And what do you think they do when the close your account? (hint: they don't give the money back to you)...
The Postfinance is trying to cut a deal with the DOJ with by way of thr NPA Program not ME.
When I opened the account with them I signed a privacy waiver, a W9, a form allowing them to report FATCA information, and a declaration that I am 100% tax compliant. Now if that is not enogh for them well tough snit!
As far as I know neither the Swiss nor the US have accused me of either tax fraud or tax evasion, so in my point of view Postfinance has no right to freeze my account.
I'm in the fortunate position that I'm not in desparate need of these funds so I'll let them sweat it out and see just how hard up they are for my FBAR. I'm almost 100% sure that they have no legal ground to block my money. They are just trying to save as much CHF as they can and don't give a rat's butt about their account holders. So let them pay 50% of my account as a penalty in the NPA Program.

What really bothers me the most is they forgot the magic word.

PLEASE
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Old 13.02.2014, 21:56
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Re: Postfinace DEMANDS past FBARs

Do which bank would you guys recommend for US citizens? I have postfinance also and I would consider switching if they start asking me for FBARs
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Old 13.02.2014, 22:00
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Re: Postfinace DEMANDS past FBARs

I think I am in the minority here, and I am not positive they still take new U.S. customers, but take a look at Migrosbank. I have 2 accounts with them plus an investment accout (that they required in order to distinguish me as a U.S. tax person). Monthly fee for the regular accounts is only 3 CHF and includes a debit card. Annual fee for the investment account is about 30 plus small fees. At first I was mad about the hoops they made me jump through but after hearing everyone else's stories about their banks, I am rather happy with mine. Feel free to PM if you have questions about how it works.
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