On October 20, 2022, the panel that reviews foreign investment in the United States for national security concerns published its first ever enforcement guidelines. The Committee on Foreign Investment (CFIUS) in the United States, has never had written guidelines on this topic. While this is the first guidance issued by CFIUS, the guidelines reflect the increased focus on monitoring and enforcement which has been evident since the passage of the Foreign Investment Risk Review Modernization Act of 2018. This continues the trend toward more enforcement relating to foreign investments and more concern surrounding compliance with terms of agreements meant to mitigate national security risks.
On June 6, 2022, the US Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) released new and revised guidelines regarding the Russian investment ban established by Executive Orders 14071, 14066, and 14068. As a result of the executive orders, sanctions can be imposed on individuals or entities determined to have operated in the accounting, trust and corporate formation services, or management consulting sectors of the Russian Federation economy. OFAC has consistently been updating and revising the guidelines to keep the guidelines as clear and consistent as possible, in an attempt to keep Americans doing business in Russia out of legal trouble.
The IRS has decided to shutdown its Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program (OVDP) on September 28, 2018. The program offers amnesty from criminal prosecution and a set penalty structure for those who have previously failed to disclose foreign bank accounts and other foreign assets, including those held through undisclosed foreign entities. Failure to disclose could include failure to file the annual FinCEN Form 114,most commonly referred to as the foreign bank account report or “FBAR”, as well as the failure to report income from such accounts and assets on tax returns and the failure to provide various other foreign information forms and returns.