NRI Worldwide > NRIssues
US NRIs meet with IRS on Offshore Voluntary Disclosure issue
Report dated 25/08/2011 @ 6:39 PM
A delegation of NRI representatives under the aegis of the National Indian American Coordinating Council met with Internal Revenue Service officials to discuss their concerns about the new Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Initiative (OVDI) and its implementation.
The delegation was headed by Dr Thomas Abraham, Founder President and Chairman Emeritus of the Global Organisation of People of Indian Origin (GOPIO) and included several eminent NRI businesmen and women.
The meeting in Washington DC was arranged by the office of Congressman Steve LaTourette of Ohio.
Several concerns were discussed and suggestions made by the delegation to persuade the IRS to change their mandate.
The IRS officials offered some dispensations and advice.
US turns down NRI plea to extend deadline on offshore accounts
Report dated 21/08/2011 @ 1:14 AM
The US Treasury Department has turned down the US NRI community's request to extend the deadline for disclosing offshore accounts from August 31 to December 31.
The Department stated that they do not comtemplate granting an across-the-board deadline extension for all taxpayers thus also turning down the Global Organisation of People of Indian Origin (GOPIO) plea for the reduction in penalties.
The GOPIO had complained that the 2011 Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Initiative was not publicised in ethnic newspapers and other community media, to which the Department responded that it had promoted awareness by posting information in eight foreign languages including Hindi.
The GOPIO have decided to continue their efforts for reconsideration by the Treasury and relief as requested in a letter sent to President Barack Obama.
Information update on inheritance of agricultural land by NRIs
Report dated 17/08/2011 @ 5:42 PM
Indian laws governing investments by NRIs are governed by the Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA), that prohibits NRIs and PIOs from buying agricultural land anywhere in India.
On the other hand NRIs can continue to hold agricultural land they own in India provided they acquired the land legally before accepting foreign citizenship.
NRIs can also acquire agricultural land by way of inheritance. Such property can only be sold to a resident in India but the seller will have to pay capital gains tax on the proceeds of the sale. After the tax is paid the remaining sale proceeds may be remitted abroad but should not exceed $1 million in any financial year.
The conclusion therefore is that inheritance of agricultural land is not covered by the ban on NRIs, it is in fact an exception to the rule.
NRI group wants offshore account disclosure deadline in US extended
Report dated 14/08/2011 @ 10:31 PM
GOPIO (The Global Organisation of People of Indian Origin) has asked for an extension of the deadline for US NRIs to disclose their offshore accounts, from August 31 to Dec 31.
GOPIO president Inder Singh, at a meeting in Toronto of the global group, said the deadline extension was requested because the information for people with overseas accounts to disclose their accounts to the IRS was not clearly conveyed.
GOPIO has also asked for a reduction in penalties for those disclosing their offshore accounts over $10,000, calling the penalty of 25 percent of the highest balance during the year 'a bit excessive'. They are also asking that the limit be raised to $250,000.
GOPIO has 76 chapters in around two dozen countries. Toronto is its first chapter in Canada.
Bank gives NRI temporary possession of 'disputed' Mumbai flat
Report dated 13/08/2011 @ 1:42 AM
The Small Industrial Development Bank of India (SIDBI) that sealed the Mumbai flat of Tokyo based NRI Kiran Chettiyar, has agreed to give her temporary possession of the flat.
Earlier in April, the bank sealed the flat after developer Radha Kishan Construction failed to fulfill its commitment.
When Ms Chettiyar went to Mumbai in July she found her flat sealed and moved to a hotel. She approached the Debt Recovery Tribunal (DRT) for compensation of Rs.25 lakhs for mental agony and the cost of filing the petition.
The SIDBI then filed an affidavit with the DRT claiming they were made to believe the flat was still in possession of the developer.
Meanwhile Chettiyar has been paying for electricity and the equated monthly installments on the home loan.