General Instructions

Purpose of Form

Form 8957 is used by an FI to register itself and its branches, if any, as a participating foreign financial institution (PFFI), a registered deemed-compliant foreign financial institution (RDCFFI), a limited foreign financial institution (Limited FFI), a limited branch (Limited Branch), or a sponsoring entity (Sponsoring Entity). It is also used by an FI to renew its Qualified Intermediary (QI), Withholding Foreign Partnership (WP), or Withholding Foreign Trust (WT) Agreement, if applicable. In connection with its FATCA registration, an FI (other than a Limited FFI, or Limited Branch) or a U.S. financial institution (USFI) acting as a Lead FI or Sponsoring Entity will be issued a GIIN and will be identified on the IRS FFI List. The first IRS FFI List will be posted electronically by June 2, 2014, and will be updated monthly thereafter.

How To Register

Online registration.   The FATCA registration website is a secure web-based system that enables FIs to register electronically from anywhere in the world without the need to print, complete and mail paper forms. FIs are encouraged to register online at www.irs.gov/fatca.

Paper registration.   FIs should not mail Form 8957 prior to January 1, 2014. The IRS will not be in a position to accept and process these forms before that date. FIs that choose to register using the paper form must mail Form 8957 and all required attachments to:

Internal Revenue Service 
FATCA, Stop 6099 AUSC 
3651 South IH 35 
Austin, Texas 78741

If an FI chooses to file a paper registration form, the IRS will establish an online FATCA account for the FI and provide the FI with information on how to access the online FATCA account to view, manage, and edit its FATCA information. Additionally, for FIs that register for PFFI or RDCFFI status using the paper form, once that registration has been approved, a GIIN will be assigned and posted to the FI’s online FATCA account. If the paper FATCA registration form is incomplete, the FI will be contacted by mail to provide additional information necessary for the IRS to process the registration form and establish the FI’s online account.

Who Is EligibleTo Register

The following entities are eligible to register (on behalf of themselves and their branches) for the specific purposes described below, as well as to obtain a GIIN (unless the entity is a Limited FFI or Limited Branch).

  • For an FFI, or foreign branch of an FFI or USFI, that is treated as a Reporting FI under a Model 1 IGA — to authorize one or more points of contact to receive information related to registration on the FI’s behalf.

  • For an FFI, or foreign branch of an FFI that is treated as a Reporting FI under a Model 2 IGA:

    — To authorize one or more points of contact to receive information related to registration on the FI's behalf, and

    — To confirm that it will comply with the terms of an FFI Agreement, as modified by the applicable Model 2 IGA.

  • For an FFI, or branch of an FFI, other than one covered by an IGA:

    — To enter into an FFI Agreement to be treated as a PFFI,

    — To agree to meet the requirements to be treated as a RDCFFI, or

    — To confirm that it will comply with the terms applicable to a Limited FFI or a Limited Branch.

  • For an FI seeking to act as a Sponsoring Entity — to agree to perform the due diligence, reporting and withholding responsibilities on behalf of one or more sponsored FFIs.

  • For an FI, including a foreign branch of a USFI, currently acting as a QI, WP, or WT — to renew its QI, WP, or WT Agreement.

  • For a USFI wishing to act as a Lead FI for purposes of registering its Member FIs — to identify itself as such.

A foreign branch of a USFI located in a Model 2 IGA jurisdiction does not need to register unless such foreign branch needs to renew its QI, WP, or WT Agreement.

Before CompletingForm 8957

There are four parts to the FATCA registration form. An FI will need to complete only the relevant parts of the form for the particular type of registration requested.

Part 1 must be completed by all FIs to provide basic identifying information.

Part 2 should be completed only by a Lead FI and must be completed via the FATCA registration website. A Lead FI will identify in Part 2 each Member FI for which it is acting as a Lead FI and that is treated as a PFFI (including a Reporting FI under a Model 2 IGA), RDCFFI (including a Reporting FI under a Model 1 IGA), or Limited FFI. Additionally, for purposes of registration, a Member FI may include a foreign branch of a USFI that is registering to obtain a GIIN or to renew its QI Agreement.

Part 3 should be completed only by an FI, including a foreign branch of a USFI, currently acting as a QI, WP, or WT that wishes to renew its respective agreement. Note: Part 3 should be completed only by an FI currently acting as a QI, WP, or WT and currently using an issued Employer Identification Number (EIN) to establish its applicable status. An FI that would like to apply to become a first-time QI, WP, or WT cannot do so using the paper Form 8957 or the FATCA registration website. Instead, the FI must complete Form 14345 in accordance with its instructions. It is advisable, but not required, for an FI applying for first-time QI, WP, or WT status do so before it submits its FATCA registration form. For more information about QI, WP, or WT Agreements, go to www.irs.gov/fatca.

Part 4 must be completed by all FIs and requires an FI to certify that the information provided in the FATCA registration form is accurate and complete and to agree or confirm that it will comply with its FATCA obligations, if applicable, in accordance with the status or statuses for which it has registered itself or any of its branches. An FI, including a Reporting FI under a Model 1 or 2 IGA, that is registering to renew its QI, WP, or WT Agreement will be agreeing to the terms of such renewed 2014 Model QI, WP, or WT Agreements.

Reporting FIs under a Model 1 or 2 IGA: Most Reporting FIs under a Model 1 IGA are registering only to obtain a GIIN and to authorize one or more POCs to receive information related to FATCA registration on behalf of the FI. Most Reporting FIs under a Model 2 IGA are registering only to obtain a GIIN, authorize one or more POCs to receive information related to FATCA registration on behalf of the FI, and to confirm that they will comply with the terms of an FFI Agreement as modified by the applicable Model 2 IGA.

A Reporting FI operating one or more branches not in an IGA jurisdiction is also agreeing to the terms of an FFI Agreement for any such branch, unless the branch is treated as a Limited Branch. Additionally, a Reporting FI requesting renewal of a QI, WP or WT Agreement is agreeing to the terms applicable to such renewed 2014 Model QI, WP, or WT Agreements.

Registration Definitions

For detailed information about definitions that apply for purposes of FATCA generally (Internal Revenue Code sections 1471-1474), see Treas. Reg. §1.1471-1. A Reporting FI under a Model 1 or 2 IGA should also refer to definitions that may apply under that agreement or apply pursuant to any applicable domestic law pertaining to its FATCA obligations.

Solely for purposes of FATCA registration, the following definitions are provided to help guide FIs through the process.

Compliance FI

A Compliance FI means a PFFI, Reporting FI under a Model 1 or 2 IGA, or USFI that agrees to establish and maintain a consolidated compliance program and to perform a consolidated periodic review on behalf of one or more Member FIs that are part of its EAG (the compliance group). A Compliance FI must meet the requirements to register as a Lead FI, and as part of that registration, it must identify each Member FI that is included in its compliance group. A Compliance FI must also have the authority to terminate the FATCA status of each Member FI within its compliance group.

Exempt Beneficial Owner

Exempt Beneficial Owner means an entity described in Treas. Reg. §1.1471-6 as: (1) a foreign government, a political subdivision of a foreign government, or a wholly owned agency or instrumentality of any one or more of the foregoing; (2) an international organization or a wholly owned agency or instrumentality thereof; (3) a foreign central bank of issue; (4) a government of a U.S. Territory; (5) a treaty-qualified retirement fund; (6) a broad participation retirement fund; (7) a narrow participation retirement fund; (8) a fund formed pursuant to a plan similar to a section 401(a) plan; (9) an investment vehicle used exclusively for retirement funds; (10) a pension fund of an exempt beneficial owner; or (11) an entity wholly owned by exempt beneficial owners. The term “exempt beneficial owner” also includes any entity treated as an exempt beneficial owner pursuant to a Model 1 or 2 IGA.

Expanded Affiliated Groupof FFIs (EAG)

An Expanded Affiliated Group of FFIs (EAG) means one or more chains of includible corporations connected through stock ownership with a common parent corporation which is an includible corporation, but only if the common parent owns directly stock in at least one of the other includible corporations totaling more than 50 percent of the total voting power of the stock of such corporation, and with a value equal to more than 50 percent of the total value of the stock of such corporation, and if stock meeting these vote and value requirements in each of the includible corporations (except the common parent) is owned directly by one or more of the other includible corporations. A partnership or any entity other than a corporation shall be treated as a member of EAG if such entity is controlled (within the meaning of section 954(d)(3), without regard to whether such entity is foreign or domestic) by members of such EAG (including any entity treated as a member of such EAG by reason of this sentence).

FATCA ID

Each registering FI will be provided a FATCA ID that will be used for purposes of establishing and accessing the FI’s online FATCA account. For all FIs other than Member FIs, the FATCA ID is a randomly generated six-character alphanumeric string. For Member FIs, the FATCA ID will be comprised of 12 characters: the first 6 characters will be the Lead FI’s FATCA ID, followed by a period, and the last 5 characters will be alphanumeric and assigned sequentially to each Member. The FATCA ID is not the same as the GIIN. The GIIN will be issued to an FI (other than a Limited FFI or Limited Branch), after the FI’s FATCA registration is submitted and approved.

Financial Institution (FI)

Financial Institution (FI) means an institution that is a depository institution, custodial institution, investment entity, or insurance company (or holding company of an insurance company) that issues cash value insurance or annuity contracts.

Foreign Financial Institution (FFI)

A Foreign Financial Institution (FFI) means a Financial Institution that is not located in the United States and includes: (1) an FFI treated as a Reporting FI under a Model 1 IGA, including foreign branches of a USFI or U.S. Territory FI, (2) an FFI treated as a Reporting FI under a Model 2 IGA and (3) a foreign branch of a USFI or a U.S. Territory FI that has in effect a QI Agreement.

GIIN

GIIN means a global intermediary identification number assigned to a PFFI or RDCFFI. A separate GIIN will be issued to the FI to identify each jurisdiction, including the jurisdiction of an FI's residence, in which the FI maintains a branch not treated as a Limited Branch.

It is anticipated that the IRS FFI List will be updated on a monthly basis to add or remove FIs (or their branches). The GIIN may be used by an FI to identify itself to withholding agents and tax administrators for FATCA reporting. GIINs are alphanumeric, comprised of 19 characters with the following format: XXXXXX.XXXXX.XX.XXX. A detailed breakdown that includes the information on each set of characters in the GIIN can be found in Appendix B – GIIN Composition Table of the FATCA Registration online user guide available at www.irs.gov/fatca.

Lead FI

A Lead FI means a USFI, FFI or a Compliance FI that will carry out FATCA registration for each of its Member FIs that is a PFFI, RDCFFI, or Limited FFI. A Lead FI is not required to act as a Lead FI for all Member FIs within an EAG. Thus, an EAG may include more than one Lead FI that will carry out FATCA registration for a group of its Member FIs. A Lead FI will be provided the rights to manage the online account for its Member FIs. If a Lead FI submits a paper Form 8957, the IRS will create an online FATCA account for the Lead FI and will provide the Lead FI with information on how to access its FATCA account, including a FATCA ID and temporary access code. The Lead FI will then need to carry out FATCA registration for each of its Member FIs via the FATCA registration website. Note: An FFI seeking to act as a Lead FI cannot have Limited FI status in its country of residence.

Limited Branch

A Limited Branch means a branch that, under the laws of the jurisdiction in which it is located, is unable to: (1) report, close, or transfer its U.S. accounts to a USFI, to a branch of the FFI that will report the U.S. account, to a PFFI, or to a Reporting FI under a Model 1 IGA, or (2) withhold, block, or close an account held by a recalcitrant account holder or nonparticipating FFI or otherwise transfer the account to a USFI, to a branch of the FFI that will report the account to the IRS, to a PFFI, or to a Reporting FI under a Model 1 IGA. A Limited Branch also includes a related branch under a Model 1 or 2 IGA that is treated as a nonparticipating FFI branch because it operates in a jurisdiction that prevents such branch from fulfilling the requirements of a PFFI or deemed-compliant FFI.

Limited FFI

A Limited FFI means an FFI that, due to local law restrictions, cannot comply with the terms of an FFI Agreement, or otherwise be treated as a PFFI or RDCFFI, and that is agreeing to satisfy certain obligations for its treatment as a Limited FFI.

Member FI

A Member FI means an FFI that is registering as a member of an EAG that is not acting as a Lead FI and that is registering as a PFFI, RDCFFI, or Limited FI. For purposes of registration, a Member FI may also include a foreign branch of a USFI that is treated as a Reporting FI under a Model 1 IGA, or that is renewing its QI Agreement. A Member FI will need to obtain its FATCA ID from its Lead FI and provide the number on the paper FATCA registration form. The FATCA ID is used to identify the Member FI for purposes of registration and is not the same number as the GIIN. A GIIN is issued to FIs, other than Limited FFIs or Limited Branches, after the FATCA registration is submitted and approved.

Model 1 IGA

A Model 1 IGA means an agreement between the United States or the Treasury Department and a foreign government or one or more foreign agencies to implement FATCA through reporting by financial institutions to such foreign government or agency thereof, followed by automatic exchange of the reported information with the IRS. For a list of jurisdictions treated as having an IGA in effect, see “List of Jurisdictions” available at www.irs.gov/fatca.

Model 2 IGA

A Model 2 IGA means an agreement or arrangement between the United States or the Treasury Department and a foreign government or one or more foreign agencies to implement FATCA through reporting by financial institutions directly to the IRS in accordance with the requirements of an FFI Agreement, supplemented by the exchange of information between such foreign government or agency thereof and the IRS. For a list of jurisdictions treated as having an IGA in effect, see “List of Jurisdictions” available at www.irs.gov/fatca.

Nonreporting FI

A Nonreporting FI means an entity that is established in a jurisdiction that has in effect a Model 1 or 2 IGA and that is treated as a nonreporting FI in Annex II of the applicable Model 1 or 2 IGA or that is otherwise treated as a deemed-compliant FFI or an exempt beneficial owner under Treas. Reg. §1.1471-5 or §1.1471-6.

Participating FFI (PFFI)

A participating FFI (PFFI) means an FFI that: (1) is registering to agree to enter into an FFI Agreement, (2) is treated as a Reporting FI under a Model 2 IGA and that is certifying that it will comply with the terms of an FFI Agreement, as modified by the terms of the applicable Model 2 IGA, or (3) is a foreign branch of a USFI that has in effect a QI Agreement and that is also agreeing to the terms of an FFI Agreement, unless such branch is treated as a Reporting FI under a Model 1 IGA (see RDCFFI definition).

Point of Contact (POC)

A Point of Contact (POC) is an individual authorized by the FI (see Line 1 of Form 8957) to receive FATCA-related information regarding the FI and to take other FATCA-related actions on behalf of the FI.

Private ArrangementIntermediary (PAI)

A private arrangement intermediary (PAI) contract is a contractual arrangement between a QI and a PAI that is a RDCFFI or certified deemed-compliant FFI under which the PAI generally agrees to perform all of the obligations of the QI with respect to the accounts maintained directly by the PAI. For the requirements of a PAI contract, see the renewed 2014 Model QI Agreement available at www.irs.gov/fatca.

Qualified Intermediary (QI)

A Qualified Intermediary (QI) means an FFI (or foreign branch of a USFI) that has entered into a qualified intermediary withholding agreement (QI Agreement) with the IRS.

Registered DeemedCompliant FFI (RDCFFI)

A Registered Deemed Compliant FFI (RDCFFI) means: (1) an FFI that is registering to confirm that it meets the requirements to be treated as a local FFI, nonreporting FI member of a PFFI group, qualified collective investment vehicle, restricted fund, qualified credit card issuer, or sponsored investment entity or controlled foreign corporation (see Treas. Reg. §1.1471-5(f)(1)(i) for more information about these categories), (2) a Reporting FI under a Model 1 IGA and that is registering to obtain a GIIN, or (3) an FFI that is treated as a Nonreporting FI under a Model 1 or 2 IGA and that is registering pursuant to the applicable Model 1 or 2 IGA.

Reporting FI

A Reporting FI means an FI that is treated as a Reporting FI under the terms of a Model 1 or Model 2 IGA that is in effect. The term Reporting FI also includes a foreign branch of a USFI that is treated as a Reporting FI under the terms of a Model 1 IGA that is in effect. A foreign branch of a USFI treated as a Reporting FI under the terms of a Model 2 IGA is not required to submit a FATCA registration form to obtain a GIIN, unless it is renewing a QI Agreement.

Responsible Party

A Responsible Party means the individual responsible for the performance of the FI under the terms of a QI, WP, or WT Agreement.

Single FI

A Single FI means an FI that does not have any Member FIs and that is registering for PFFI or RDCFFI status for itself or one or more of its branches. A Single FI may also include a foreign branch of a USFI treated as a Reporting FI under a Model 1 IGA or that has in effect a QI Agreement.

Sponsored FFI

A sponsored FFI means an investment entity or an FFI that is a controlled foreign corporation (CFC) having a Sponsoring Entity that will perform the due diligence, withholding, and reporting obligations on its behalf.

Sponsoring Entity

A Sponsoring Entity means an entity that will perform the due diligence, withholding, and reporting obligations of one or more sponsored investment entities or controlled foreign corporations (Sponsored FFIs).

United States

United States means the United States of America, including the States thereof, but does not include the U.S. Territories. Any reference to a “State” of the United States includes the District of Columbia.

U.S. Financial Institutions (USFI)

A U.S. Financial Institution (USFI) means an FI that is a resident of the United States.

U.S. Territory

U.S. Territory means American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Guam, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, or the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Withholding ForeignPartnership (WP)

A Withholding Foreign Partnership (WP) means a foreign partnership that has entered into a withholding foreign partnership agreement (WP Agreement) with the IRS.

Withholding Foreign Trust (WT)

A Withholding Foreign Trust (WT) means a foreign trust that has entered into a withholding foreign trust agreement (WT Agreement) with the IRS.

Special Rules

Lead FI and Member FIs of an EAG.   In general, all FFIs, other than exempt beneficial owners or certified deemed-compliant FFIs, that are part of the same EAG must be registered. For purposes of registration, an EAG may have more than one Lead FI and may organize itself for purposes of registration into subgroups under different Lead FIs. For example, an EAG of 10 FFIs may decide to select two different Lead FIs, Lead FI 1 and Lead FI 2. Lead FI 1 can carry out FATCA registration on behalf of four of its Member FIs and Lead FI 2 can carry out FACTA registration on behalf of four of its other Member FIs. All 10 FFIs within the same EAG will be registered, even though they are registered under two different Lead FIs.

  Consolidated Compliance Program: If an EAG has in place a consolidated compliance program, as described in Treas. Reg. §1.1471-4(f)(2)(ii), then Member FIs that elect to participate in the same consolidated compliance program should be registered as Member FIs by the Lead FI that is acting as the Compliance FI for the compliance group.

Model 1 IGA (Select Registered Deemed Compliant).   FIs that are treated as Reporting FIs under a Model 1 IGA (see the list of jurisdictions treated as having an IGA in effect at www.irs.gov/fatca) should register as RDCFFIs.

  A Reporting FI under a Model 1 IGA will be able to register and obtain a GIIN prior to July 1, 2014, and may generally find it convenient to do so. Nonetheless, such an FI is not required to provide a GIIN to withholding agents prior to January 1, 2015, and therefore has time beyond July 1, 2104, to register to obtain a GIIN. In addition, a Reporting FI under a Model 1 IGA must register prior to July 1, 2014, (1) if it maintains one or more branches (other than a Limited Branch or U.S. branch) in jurisdiction(s) that are not covered by a Model 1 IGA, (2) if it is renewing its QI, WP, or WT Agreement, or (3) if it intends to be a Lead FI for Member FIs that are not established in, and operating exclusively in, other Model 1 IGA jurisdictions.

Model 2 IGA (Select PFFI).   FIs that are treated as Reporting FIs under a Model 2 IGA (see the list of jurisdictions treated as having an IGA in effect at www.irs.gov/fatca) should register as PFFIs.

FFIs that are also Sponsoring Entities.   An FFI that will also act as a Sponsoring Entity for one or more Sponsored Entities is required to submit a second registration form to act as a Sponsoring Entity. The Sponsoring Entity will receive a separate Sponsoring Entity GIIN and should only use that GIIN when it is fulfilling its obligations as a Sponsoring Entity.

Sponsored FFIs.   An FFI that is a Sponsored FFI will be registered by its Sponsoring Entity. Details about how a Sponsoring Entity may register a Sponsored FFI will be posted online at www.irs.gov/fatca.

USFIs treated as Lead FIs.   A USFI that is registering as the Lead FI on behalf of its Member FFIs will register as a Lead FI and be issued a GIIN.


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