General Instructions

Future developments.   For the latest information about developments related to Form W-8IMY and its instructions, such as legislation enacted after they were published, go to www.irs.gov/formw8imy.

What’s New

Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA).   In 2010, Congress passed the Hiring Incentives to Restore Employment Act of 2010, P.L. 111-147 (the HIRE Act), which added chapter 4 of Subtitle A (chapter 4) to the Code, consisting of sections 1471 through 1474 of the Code and commonly referred to as “FATCA” or “chapter 4.” Under chapter 4, foreign financial institutions (FFIs) that are participating FFIs and certain registered deemed-compliant FFIs are generally required to identify their U.S. account holders, regardless of whether a payment subject to withholding under chapter 3 or chapter 4 is made to the account. In January 2013, final regulations were published that provide due diligence, withholding, and reporting rules for both U.S. withholding agents and FFIs under chapter 4. Additionally, temporary and proposed regulations were published in February 2014 providing updated rules under chapter 4 as well as guidance coordinating chapters 3 and 61 with chapter 4. U.S. withholding agents and FFIs will be required to begin withholding under chapter 4 on certain payments beginning on July 1, 2014.

  This form, along with Forms W-8BEN, W-8ECI, and W-8EXP, has been updated to reflect the withholding and documentation requirements of chapter 4. In particular, this Form W-8IMY is now used by an intermediary or flow-through entity to certify as to its status under both chapter 3 and chapter 4 and to address special provisions for intermediaries and flow-through entities that are FFIs.

  In general, intermediaries and flow-through entities receiving reportable amounts will be required to provide both their chapter 3 status and the chapter 3 status of persons for whom they receive such payments.

  An intermediary or flow-through entity receiving a withholdable payment will be required to provide its chapter 4 status and the chapter 4 status of persons for whom it receives a withholdable payment when required for chapter 4 purposes. Failure to provide this information may subject the intermediary or flow-through entity to withholding at a 30% rate.

Qualified Securities Lender.   Section 541 of the HIRE Act added section 871(m) (formerly section 871(l)) to the Code, which provides that certain dividend equivalent payments are treated as U.S. source dividends subject to withholding at a 30% rate under chapter 3 (absent a code based exemption or applicable income tax treaty provision) and under chapter 4. For this purpose, the term “dividend equivalent” includes “any substitute dividend made pursuant to a securities lending or sale-repurchase transaction that (directly or indirectly) is contingent upon, or determined by reference to, the payment of a dividend from sources within the United States.

  Notice 2010-46 (2010-24 I.R.B. 757), however, provides that a withholding agent is not required to withhold on a dividend equivalent payment that is a substitute dividend made to a Qualified Securities Lender (QSL) that certifies to the withholding agent that it is acting as a QSL. The required certifications for QSL status have been added to this Form W-8IMY. For more information about QSLs or withholding on dividend equivalents generally, see Notice 2010-46, which can be found at www.irs.gov/file_source/pub/irs-utl/notice_2010_46.pdf.

Note.   For definitions of terms used throughout these instructions, see Definitions, later.

Purpose of Form

Under chapter 3, foreign persons are generally subject to U.S. tax at a 30% rate on income they receive from U.S. sources that consists of interest (including certain original issue discount (OID)), dividends, rents, premiums, annuities, compensation for, or in expectation of, services performed, or other fixed or determinable annual or periodical (FDAP) gains, profits, or income. This tax is imposed on the gross amount paid and is generally collected by withholding under section 1441 or 1442 on that amount. A payment is considered to have been made whether it is made directly to the beneficial owner or to another person, such as an intermediary, agent, trustee, executor, or partnership, for the benefit of the beneficial owner.

Under chapter 4, withholding agents must withhold at a 30% rate under sections 1471 and 1472 on withholdable payments made to nonparticipating FFIs (including when the nonparticipating FFI is a flow-through entity or is acting as an intermediary), certain other foreign entities, and certain account holders of FFIs. For example, if a U.S. withholding agent makes a payment of portfolio interest described in section 871(h) to an account maintained by a nonparticipating FFI, the payment will be subject to a 30% withholding tax under section 1471 even if the nonparticipating FFI is an intermediary or flow-through entity and the beneficial owner for whom the intermediary or flow-through is acting is a foreign individual who provides a valid Form W-8BEN.

Foreign persons are also subject to tax at graduated rates on income they earn that is considered effectively connected with a U.S. trade or business. If a foreign person invests in a partnership that conducts a U.S. trade or business, the foreign person is considered to be engaged in a U.S. trade or business. The partnership is required to withhold tax under section 1446 on the foreign person’s distributive share of the partnership’s effectively connected taxable income. The partnership may generally accept any form submitted for purposes of section 1441 or 1442, with few exceptions, to establish the foreign status of the partner. See Regulations sections 1.1446-1 through 1.1446-6 to determine whether the form submitted for purposes of section 1441 or 1442 will be accepted for purposes of section 1446.

For purposes of section 1446, Form W-8IMY may only be submitted by an upper-tier foreign partnership or a foreign grantor trust, both of which must furnish additional documentation for their owners.

Additional information.   For additional information and instructions for the withholding agent, see the Instructions for the Requester of Forms W-8BEN, W-8BEN-E, W-8ECI, W-8EXP, and W-8IMY.

Who Must File

Except as otherwise provided, you should provide Form W-8IMY when receiving a reportable amount or withholdable payment (see Definitions, later) on behalf of another person or as a flow-through entity. When receiving a withholdable payment, your chapter 4 status is also required to be included on the form unless otherwise provided in accordance with these instructions. Form W-8IMY must be provided by the following persons.

  • A foreign person, or a foreign branch of a U.S. person, to establish that it is a qualified intermediary that is not acting for its own account, to represent that it has provided or will provide a withholding statement, as required, or, if applicable, to represent that it has assumed primary withholding responsibility under chapters 3 and 4 of the Code (excluding section 1446) and/or primary Form 1099 reporting and backup withholding responsibility.

  • A foreign person to establish that it is a nonqualified intermediary that is not acting for its own account, to certify its chapter 4 status (if required), to certify whether it reports U.S. accounts under chapter 4 (if required), and to indicate, if applicable, that it is using the form to transmit withholding certificates and/or other documentary evidence and has provided, or will provide, a withholding statement, as required. A U.S. person cannot be a nonqualified intermediary.

  • A U.S. branch that is acting as an intermediary to represent that the income it receives is not effectively connected with the conduct of a trade or business within the United States and either that it is using the form (a) to evidence it is treated as a U.S. person under Regulations section 1.1441-1(b)(2)(iv)(A) with respect to any payments associated with the Form W-8IMY, or (b) to certify to its chapter 4 status and to transmit the documentation of the persons for whom it receives a payment and has provided, or will provide, a withholding statement, as required.

  • A financial institution incorporated or organized under the laws of a U.S. territory that is acting as an intermediary or is a flow-through entity to represent that it is a financial institution (other than an investment entity that is not also a depository institution, custodial institution, or specified insurance company) and either that it is using the form (a) to evidence it is treated as a U.S. person under Regulations section 1.1441-1(b)(2)(iv)(A) with respect to any payments associated with the Form W-8IMY, or (b) to certify that it is transmitting documentation of the persons for whom it receives a payment and has provided, or will provide, a withholding statement, as required.

  • A foreign partnership or a foreign simple or grantor trust to establish that it is a withholding foreign partnership or withholding foreign trust under the regulations for sections 1441 and 1442 and to certify its chapter 4 status (if required).

  • A foreign partnership or a foreign simple or grantor trust to establish that it is a nonwithholding foreign partnership or nonwithholding foreign simple or grantor trust for purposes of sections 1441 and 1442, to certify to its chapter 4 status (if required), and to represent that the income is not effectively connected with a U.S. trade or business, that the form is being used to transmit withholding certificates and/or documentary evidence, and that it has provided or will provide a withholding statement as required.

  • A foreign partnership or foreign grantor trust to establish that it is an upper-tier foreign partnership or foreign grantor trust for purposes of section 1446 and to represent that the form is being used to transmit withholding certificates and/or documentary evidence and that it has provided, or will provide, a withholding statement, as required.

  • A flow-through entity (including a foreign reverse hybrid entity) transmitting withholding certificates and/or other documentary evidence to claim treaty benefits on behalf of its owners, to certify its chapter 4 status (if required), and to certify that it has provided, or will provide, a withholding statement, as required.

  • A nonparticipating FFI acting as an intermediary or that is a flow-through entity using this form to transmit a withholding statement and withholding certificates or other documentation for exempt beneficial owners described in Regulations section 1.1471-6.

  • A QSL certifying to a withholding agent that it is acting as a QSL with respect to U.S. source substitute dividends received from the withholding agent pursuant to a securities lending transaction (as described in Notice 2010-46).

  • A foreign intermediary or flow-through entity not receiving withholdable payments or reportable amounts that is holding an account with a participating FFI or registered deemed-compliant FFI providing this form for purposes of documenting the chapter 4 status of the account holder. However, no withholding statement is required to be provided along with Form W-8IMY if it is being provided by an FFI solely to document such an account when no withholdable payments or reportable amounts are made to the account. Also note that the entity may instead provide Form W-8BEN-E when it is not receiving withholdable payments or reportable amounts to document its status as an account holder.

This form may serve to establish foreign status for purposes of sections 1441, 1442, and 1446. However, any representations that items of income, gain, deduction, or loss are not effectively connected with a U.S. trade or business will be disregarded by a partnership receiving this form for purposes of section 1446 as the partnership will undertake its own analysis.

Do not use Form W-8IMY if you are described below.

  • You are the beneficial owner of U.S. source income (other than income that is effectively connected with the conduct of a trade or business within the United States) and you need to establish that you are not a U.S. person, establish your chapter 4 status (if required), or claim a reduced rate of withholding on your own behalf under an income tax treaty (if applicable). Instead, submit Form W-8BEN, Certificate of Status of Beneficial Owner for United States Tax Withholding and Reporting (Individuals) or Form W-8BEN-E, Certificate of Foreign Status of Beneficial Owner for United States Tax Withholding and Reporting (Entities).

  • You are filing for a hybrid entity claiming treaty benefits on its own behalf. Instead, provide Form W-8BEN-E to claim treaty benefits. However, if you are receiving a withholdable payment you may also be required to provide this Form W-8IMY to establish your chapter 4 status (unless you are a disregarded entity) and the chapter 4 status of each of your owners. See the instructions to Form W-8BEN-E for more information about hybrid entities claiming treaty benefits.

  • You are filing for a reverse hybrid entity that is not claiming treaty benefits on behalf of its interest holders. Instead, provide Form W-8BEN-E on your own behalf.

  • You are the beneficial owner of income that is effectively connected with the conduct of a trade or business within the United States. Instead, provide Form W-8ECI, Certificate of Foreign Person’s Claim That Income Is Effectively Connected With the Conduct of a Trade or Business in the United States.

  • You are a nonresident alien individual who claims exemption from withholding on compensation for independent or certain dependent personal services performed in the United States. Instead, provide Form 8233, Exemption From Withholding on Compensation for Independent (and Certain Dependent) Personal Services of a Nonresident Alien Individual, or Form W-4, Employee’s Withholding Allowance Certificate.

  • You are filing as a disregarded entity (a business entity that has a single owner and is not a corporation under Regulations section 301.7701-2(b) is disregarded as an entity separate from its owner). Instead, the single owner (if a foreign person) should provide the appropriate Form W-8 based on the single owner's status.

  • You are filing for a foreign government, international organization, foreign central bank of issue, foreign tax-exempt organization, foreign private foundation, or government of a U.S. possession claiming the applicability of section 115(2), 501(c), 892, 895, or 1443(b), and, if required, claiming an exemption from chapter 4 withholding. Instead, provide Form W-8EXP, Certificate of Foreign Government or Other Foreign Organization for United States Tax Withholding and Reporting. However, these entities should use Form W-8BEN-E instead if they are claiming treaty benefits or are providing the form only to claim exempt recipient status for Form 1099 and backup withholding purposes.

Giving Form W-8IMY to the withholding agent.   Do not send Form W-8IMY to the IRS. Instead, give it to the person who is requesting it. Generally, this person will be the one from whom you receive the payment, who credits your account, or a partnership that allocates income to you.

When to provide Form W-8IMY to the withholding agent.   Give Form W-8IMY to the person requesting it before income is paid to you, credited, or allocated to your account. If you do not provide this form, the withholding agent may have to withhold at the 30% rate (for a payment subject to withholding under chapter 3 or a withholdable payment under chapter 4), backup withhold, or withhold at the applicable rate for net effectively connected taxable income allocable to a foreign partner in a partnership under section 1446. Generally, a separate Form W-8IMY must be submitted to each withholding agent from whom you receive a payment.

Expiration of Form W-8IMY.   Generally, a Form W-8IMY remains valid until the status of the person whose name is on the certificate is changed in a way relevant to the certificate or there is a change in circumstances that makes the information on the certificate no longer correct. The indefinite validity period does not extend, however, to any other withholding certificates, documentary evidence, or withholding statements associated with the certificate.

Change in circumstances.   If a change in circumstances makes any information on the Form W-8IMY (or any documentation or a withholding statement associated with the Form W-8IMY) you have submitted incorrect for purposes of chapter 3 or chapter 4 (when relevant), you must notify the withholding agent within 30 days and file a new Form W-8IMY or provide new documentation or a new withholding statement (as applicable). You must update the information associated with Form W-8IMY as often as is necessary to enable the withholding agent to withhold at the appropriate rate on each payment and to report such income.

  See Regulations sections 1.1441-1(e)(4)(ii)(D) for the definition of a change in circumstances for purposes of chapter 3. See Regulations section 1.1471-3(c)(6)(ii)(E) for the definition of a change in circumstances for purposes of chapter 4.

Definitions

Account holder.   An account holder is generally the person listed or identified as the holder or owner of a financial account (other than an agent or nominee that is not an FFI). For example, if a partnership is listed as the holder or owner of a financial account, then the partnership is the account holder, rather than the partners of the partnership. However, an account that is held by a disregarded entity is treated as held by the person owning the entity.

Amounts subject to withholding.   Generally, an amount subject to chapter 3 withholding is an amount from sources within the United States that is fixed or determinable annual or periodical (FDAP) income. FDAP income is all income included in gross income, including interest (as well as OID), dividends, rents, royalties, and compensation. FDAP income does not include most gains from the sale of property (including market discount and option premiums), as well as other specific items of income described in Regulations section 1.1441-2 (such as interest on bank deposits and short-term OID).

  Withholding under chapter 4 applies to payments of U.S. source FDAP income that are withholdable payments as defined in Regulations section 1.1473-1(a) to which an exception does not apply under chapter 4. The exemptions from withholding provided for under chapter 3 are not applicable when determining whether withholding applies under chapter 4. For exceptions applicable to the definition of a withholdable payment, see Regulations section 1.1473-1(a)(4) (exempting, for example, certain nonfinancial payments).

  For purposes of section 1446, the amount subject to withholding is the foreign partner’s share of the partnership’s effectively connected taxable income.

Beneficial owner.   For payments other than those for which a reduced rate of, or exemption from, withholding is claimed under an income tax treaty, the beneficial owner of income is generally the person who is required under U.S. tax principles to include the payment in gross income on a tax return. A person is not a beneficial owner of income, however, to the extent that person is receiving the income as a nominee, agent, or custodian, or to the extent the person is a conduit whose participation in a transaction is disregarded. In the case of amounts paid that do not constitute income, beneficial ownership is determined as if the payment were income.

  Foreign partnerships, foreign simple trusts, and foreign grantor trusts are not the beneficial owners of income paid to the partnership or trust. The beneficial owners of income paid to a foreign partnership are generally the partners in the partnership, provided that the partner is not itself a partnership, foreign simple or grantor trust, nominee, or other agent. The beneficial owners of income paid to a foreign simple trust (that is, a foreign trust that is described in section 651(a)) are generally the beneficiaries of the trust, if the beneficiary is not itself a foreign partnership, foreign simple or grantor trust, nominee, or other agent. The beneficial owners of income paid to a foreign grantor trust (that is, a foreign trust to the extent that all or a portion of the income of the trust is treated as owned by the grantor or another person under sections 671 through 679) are the persons treated as the owners of the trust. The beneficial owner of income paid to a foreign complex trust (that is, a foreign trust that is not a foreign simple trust or foreign grantor trust) is the trust itself.

  The beneficial owner of income paid to a foreign estate is the estate itself.

Note.

A payment to a U.S. partnership, U.S. trust, or U.S. estate is treated as a payment to a U.S. payee that is not subject to 30% withholding for purposes of chapter 3 and chapter 4. A U.S. partnership, trust, or estate should provide the withholding agent with a Form W-9. For purposes of section 1446, a U.S. grantor trust or disregarded entity shall not provide the withholding agent a Form W-9 in its own right. Rather, the grantor or other owner shall provide the withholding agent the appropriate form.

Chapter 3.    Chapter 3 means Chapter 3 of the Internal Revenue Code (Withholding of Tax on Nonresident Aliens and Foreign Corporations). Chapter 3 contains sections 1441 through 1464.

Chapter 3 withholding rate pool.   A chapter 3 withholding rate pool is a payment of a single type of income, based on the categories of income reported on Form 1042-S (for example, interest or dividends), that is not subject to withholding under chapter 4 but is subject to a single rate of withholding for chapter 3 purposes and is paid to foreign persons or, in the case of a zero-percent pool, U.S. exempt recipients not included in a separate pool of exempt recipients. See the instructions for the withholding statement of a QI, later.

Chapter 4.    Chapter 4 means Chapter 4 of the Internal Revenue Code (Taxes to Enforce Reporting on Certain Foreign Accounts). Chapter 4 contains sections 1471 through 1474.

Chapter 4 status.   The term chapter 4 status means a person’s status as a U.S. person, specified U.S. person, foreign individual, participating FFI, deemed-compliant FFI, restricted distributor, exempt beneficial owner, nonparticipating FFI, territory financial institution, excepted NFFE, or passive NFFE. See Regulations section 1.1471-1(b) for the definitions of these terms.

Chapter 4 withholding rate pool.   The term chapter 4 withholding rate pool means a pool identified on a withholding statement (see the description for a withholding statement of a QI and an NQI, later) provided by an intermediary or flow-through entity with respect to a withholdable payment that is allocated to payees that are nonparticipating FFIs. The term chapter 4 withholding rate pool also includes a pool identified on an FFI withholding statement provided by a participating FFI or registered deemed-compliant FFI with respect to a withholdable payment that is allocated to a class of recalcitrant account holders subject to withholding under chapter 4 as described in Regulations section 1.1471- 4(d)(6)(i) (including a pool of account holders to which the escrow procedures for dormant accounts apply). Finally, a chapter 4 withholding rate pool also includes a pool of U.S. persons included in a U.S. payee pool described in Regulations section 1.6049-4(c)(4) provided by a participating FFI (including a reporting Model 2 FFI), a registered deemed-compliant FFI (including a reporting Model 1 FFI), or a QI.

Deemed-compliant FFI.    Under section 1471(b)(2), certain FFIs are deemed to comply with the regulations under chapter 4 without the need to enter into an FFI agreement with the IRS. However, certain deemed-compliant FFIs are required to register with the IRS and obtain a GIIN. These FFIs are referred to as registered deemed-compliant FFIs. See Regulations section 1.1471-5(f)(1) and also an applicable IGA for entities treated as registered deemed-compliant FFIs.

Disregarded entity.   A business entity that has a single owner and is not a corporation under Regulations section 301.7701-2(b) is disregarded as an entity separate from its owner. A disregarded entity does not submit this Form W-8IMY to a withholding agent or FFI. Instead, the owner of such entity provides the appropriate documentation (for example, a Form W-8BEN-E if the owner is a foreign entity). See Regulations section 1.1446-1 and section 1.1471-3(a)(3)(v), respectively. However, if a disregarded entity receiving a withholdable payment is an FFI outside the single owner’s country of organization, the owner will be required to complete Part II of Form W-8IMY to document the chapter 4 status of the disregarded entity receiving the payment except as otherwise provided in these instructions.

  Certain entities that are disregarded for U.S. tax purposes may be recognized for purposes of claiming treaty benefits under an applicable tax treaty (see the definition of hybrid entity, later). See Form W-8BEN-E and the accompanying instructions for more information about a hybrid entity claiming treaty benefits on its own behalf.

Financial account.    A financial account includes:
  • A depository account maintained by an FFI;

  • A custodial account maintained by an FFI;

  • Equity or debt interests (other than interests regularly traded on an established securities market) in investment entities and certain holding companies, treasury centers, or financial institutions as defined in Regulations section 1.1471-5(e);

  • Certain cash value insurance contracts; and

  • Annuity contracts.

  For purposes of chapter 4, exceptions are provided for accounts such as certain tax-favored savings accounts, term life insurance contracts, accounts held by estates, escrow accounts, and certain annuity contracts. These exceptions are subject to certain conditions. See Regulations section 1.1471-5(b)(2). Accounts may also be excluded from the definition of financial account under an applicable IGA. See Regulations section 1.1471-5(b)(5) to determine when an FFI maintains a financial account.

Financial institution.   A financial institution generally means an entity that is a depository institution, custodial institution, investment entity, or an insurance company (or holding company of an insurance company) that issues cash value insurance or annuity contracts. See Regulations section 1.1471-5(e).

Fiscally transparent entity.   An entity is treated as fiscally transparent with respect to an item of income to the extent that the interest holders in the entity must, on a current basis, take into account separately their shares of an item of income paid to the entity, whether or not distributed, and must determine the character of the items of income as if they were realized directly from the sources from which realized by the entity.

Flow-through entity.   A flow-through entity is a foreign partnership (other than a withholding foreign partnership), a foreign simple or foreign grantor trust (other than a withholding foreign trust), or, for payments for which a reduced rate of withholding is claimed under an income tax treaty, any entity to the extent the entity is considered to be fiscally transparent (see above) with respect to the payment by an interest holder’s jurisdiction.

Foreign financial institution (FFI).   A foreign financial institution (FFI) generally means a foreign entity that is a financial institution.

Foreign person.    A foreign person includes a nonresident alien individual, a foreign corporation, a foreign partnership, a foreign trust, a foreign estate, and any other person that is not a U.S. person. It also includes a foreign branch or office of a U.S. financial institution or U.S. clearing organization if the foreign branch is a qualified intermediary. Generally, a payment to a U.S. branch of a foreign person is a payment to a foreign person.

Global intermediary identification number (GIIN).   The term GIIN means a global intermediary identification number. A GIIN is the identification number assigned to an entity that has registered with the IRS for chapter 4 purposes.

Hybrid entity.   A hybrid entity is any person (other than an individual) that is treated as fiscally transparent (rather than as a beneficial owner) for purposes of declaring status under the Code but is not treated as fiscally transparent by a country with which the United States has an income tax treaty. Hybrid entity status is relevant for claiming treaty benefits for purposes of chapter 3. A hybrid entity, may, however, be considered the payee for purposes of chapter 4 (see Regulations section 1.1471-3(a) defining who is a payee of a withholdable payment). See the special instructions for hybrid entities, later, and Regulations section 1.1471-3(d) for the documentation requirements with respect to entities receiving withholdable payments.

Intergovernmental Agreement (IGA).   An IGA means a Model 1 IGA or a Model 2 IGA. For a list of jurisdictions treated as having in effect a Model 1 or Model 2 IGA, go to www.treasury.gov/resource-center/tax-policy/treaties/Pages/FATCA-Archive.aspx.

  A Model 1 IGA means an agreement between the United States or the Treasury Department and a foreign government or one or more agencies to implement FATCA through reporting by FFIs to such foreign government or agency thereof, followed by automatic exchange of the reported information with the IRS. An FFI in a Model 1 IGA jurisdiction that performs account reporting to the jurisdiction’s government is referred to as a reporting Model 1 FFI.

  A Model 2 IGA means an agreement or arrangement between the U.S. or the Treasury Department and a foreign government or one or more agencies to implement FATCA through reporting by FFIs 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. An FFI in a Model 2 IGA jurisdiction that registered with the IRS to obtain a GIIN and agreed to comply with the terms of an FFI agreement is treated as a participating FFI, but may be referred to as a reporting Model 2 FFI.

Intermediary.   An intermediary is any person that acts as a custodian, broker, nominee, or otherwise as an agent for another person, regardless of whether that other person is the beneficial owner of the amount paid, a flow-through entity, or another intermediary.

Qualified intermediary (QI).

A QI is a person that is a party to a withholding agreement with the IRS (described in Regulations section 1.1441-1(e)(5)(iii)) and is:

  • A foreign financial institution (other than a U.S. branch of an FFI) that is a participating FFI, registered deemed-compliant FFI (including an FFI treated as a registered deemed-compliant FFI under an applicable IGA), FFI treated as a deemed-compliant FFI under an applicable IGA subject to due diligence and reporting requirements similar to those applicable to a registered deemed-compliant FFI under Regulations section 1.1471-5(f), or limited FFI (through December 31, 2015);

  • An exempt beneficial owner that is a central bank of issue that meets the requirements of and agrees to be treated as a participating FFI (including a reporting Model 2 FFI) or a registered deemed-compliant FFI (including a reporting Model 1 FFI) with respect to any account that it maintains and that is held in connection with a commercial financial activity described in Regulations section 1.1471-6(h) and for which it receives a withholdable payment;

  • A foreign branch or office of a U.S. financial institution or a foreign branch or office of a U.S. clearing organization;

  • A foreign corporation for purposes of presenting claims of benefits under an income tax treaty on behalf of its shareholders to the extent permitted to act as such by the IRS; or

  • A foreign entity other than an FFI that is acting as an intermediary for either withholdable payments or reportable amounts that the IRS accepts as a qualified intermediary.

Qualified securities lender (QSL).

A QSL is a person that:

  • Is a bank, custodian, broker-dealer, or clearing organization that is subject to regulatory supervision by a governmental authority in the jurisdiction in which it was created or organized and is regularly engaged in a trade or business that includes the borrowing of securities of domestic corporations (as defined in section 7701(a)(4)) from, and lending of securities of domestic corporations to, its unrelated customers; and

  • Is subject to audit under section 7602 or is a QI that satisfies the requirements for QSL status and acts as a QSL under its QI agreement.

For more information on QSLs and the requirements related to withholding on substitute dividends, see Notice 2010-46. You can find Notice 2010-46 in Internal Revenue Bulletin (IRB) 2010-24 at www.irs.gov/file_source/pub/irs-utl/notice_2010_46.pdf.

Nonqualified intermediary.

A nonqualified intermediary is any intermediary that is not a U.S. person and that is not a qualified intermediary.

Limited branch.   A limited branch means a branch of a participating FFI that is described in Regulations section 1.1471-4(e)(2).

Nonwithholding foreign partnership, simple trust, or grantor trust.   A nonwithholding foreign partnership is any foreign partnership other than a withholding foreign partnership. A nonwithholding foreign simple trust is any foreign simple trust that is not a withholding foreign trust. A nonwithholding foreign grantor trust is any foreign grantor trust that is not a withholding foreign trust.

Participating FFI.   A participating FFI is an FFI (including a reporting Model 2 FFI covered by an FFI agreement) that has agreed to comply with the terms of an FFI agreement. The term participating FFI also includes a QI branch of a U.S. financial institution, unless such branch is a reporting Model 1 FFI.

Payee.   A payee is generally a person to whom a payment is made, regardless of whether such person is the beneficial owner. For a payment made to a financial account, the payee is generally the holder of the financial account. However, under certain circumstances a person who receives a payment will not be considered the payee. For purposes of chapter 3, see Regulations section 1.1441-1(b)(2). For purposes of chapter 4, see Regulations section 1.1471-3(a)(3).

Reportable amount.   Solely for purposes of the statements required to be attached to Form W-8IMY, a reportable amount is an amount subject to withholding under chapter 3, U.S. source deposit interest (including original issue discount), and U.S. source interest or original issue discount on the redemption of short-term obligations. It does not include payments on deposits with banks and other financial institutions that remain on deposit for 2 weeks or less or amounts received from the sale or exchange (other than a redemption) of a short-term obligation that is effected outside the United States. It also does not include amounts of original issue discount arising from a sale and repurchase transaction completed within a period of 2 weeks or less, or amounts described in Regulations section 1.6049-5(b)(7), (10), or (11) (relating to certain obligations issued in bearer form). See the instructions for Forms 1042-S and 1099 to determine whether these amounts are subject to information reporting.

Reverse hybrid entity.   A reverse hybrid entity is any person (other than an individual) that is not fiscally transparent under U.S. tax law principles but that is fiscally transparent under the laws of a jurisdiction with which the United States has an income tax treaty.

Territory financial institution.   The term territory financial institution means a financial institution that is incorporated or organized under the laws of any U.S. territory. However, an investment entity that is not also a depository institution, custodial institution, or specified insurance company is not a territory financial institution. A territory financial institution acting as an intermediary or that is a flow-through entity may agree to be treated as a U.S. person under Regulations section 1.1441-1(b)(2)(iv)(A).

U.S. branch treated as a U.S. person.   The phrase U.S. branch treated as a U.S. person means a U.S. branch of a participating FFI, registered deemed-compliant FFI, or NFFE that is treated as a U.S. person under Regulations section 1.1441-1(b)(2)(iv)(A).

Withholdable payment.   The term withholdable payment means an amount subject to withholding for purposes of chapter 4 as described in Amounts subject to withholding, earlier. Also see Regulations section 1.1473-1(a) for the definition of withholdable payment.

Withholding agent.   Any person, U.S. or foreign, that has control, receipt, custody, disposal, or payment of U.S. source FDAP income subject to chapter 3 or a withholdable payment under chapter 4 is a withholding agent. The withholding agent may be an individual, corporation, partnership, trust, association, or any other entity, including (but not limited to) any foreign intermediary, foreign partnership, and U.S. branches of certain foreign banks and insurance companies.

  For purposes of section 1446, the withholding agent is the partnership conducting the trade or business in the United States. For a publicly traded partnership, the withholding agent may be the partnership, a nominee holding an interest on behalf of a foreign person, or both. See Regulations sections 1.1446-1 through 1.1446-6.

Withholding foreign partnership (WP) or withholding foreign trust (WT).   A WP or WT is a foreign partnership or a foreign simple or grantor trust that has entered into a withholding agreement with the IRS in which it agrees to assume primary withholding responsibility for purposes of chapter 4 and under sections 1441 and 1442 for all payments that are made to its partners, beneficiaries, or owners, except as otherwise provided in the withholding agreement.

Withholding statement.    A withholding statement provides an allocation (by income type) to each payee (or withholding rate pool, if applicable) of each payment an intermediary or flow-through entity receives. The withholding statement forms an integral part of the withholding certificate, and the penalties of perjury statement provided on the withholding certificate shall apply to the withholding statement. The withholding statement may be provided in any manner the intermediary or the flow-through entity and the withholding agent mutually agree, including electronically if certain safeguards concerning electronic transmission are met. A withholding statement also provides information required for purposes of chapter 4 if the intermediary or flow-through entity is receiving a withholdable payment, in which case the entity must provide an FFI withholding statement, chapter 4 withholding statement, or exempt beneficial owner withholding statement (as applicable). See Regulations section 1.1471-3(c)(3)(iii)(B).


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