I have received my (not) FATCA letter.
Background: I opened my Scotia iTrade account without providing citizenship information. I was a permanent resident of Canada at the time. I did not fill out US paperwork W-9 or W-8BEN. The trading account is inactive. I have whited-out the account number and address.
Last Friday, I received a voice message from Scotia iTrade regarding this case number. I am planning to ignore them for the moment. This will, of course, increase the cost of FATCA implementation.
- The letter makes no mention of freezing or closing my account. But it does say I must respond to the letter or I will be subject to 30% withholdings on US income sources.
- It seems that this is a fishing expedition to obtain US status information.
- Renewal of the forms must take place every three years. This is new to me.
- Certain information is allegedly “required” to open an account–such as “driver’s license, passport, citizenship card or age of majority card”. Does this mean if you prove you are a Canadian resident, they will be satisfied?
- No mention of FATCA or new Canadian regulations conforming to FATCA appear in this letter. Instead, Scotia iTrade claims to be “a Qualified Intermediary for the Unites States Department of Treasury Internal Revenue Service (IRS)”.