QI agreement


Withholding agreement [§1.1441-1(e)(5)(iii)]

(iii)(A) In general [§1.1441-1(e)(5)(iii)(A)]

[Reserved]. For further guidance, see §1.1441-1T(e)(5)(iii)(A).

The IRS may, upon request, enter into a withholding agreement with a foreign person described in paragraph (e)(5)(ii) of this section pursuant to such procedures as the IRS may prescribe in published guidance (see §601.601(d)(2) of this chapter). Under the withholding agreement, a qualified intermediary shall generally be subject to the applicable withholding and reporting provisions applicable to withholding agents and payors under chapters 3, 4, and 61 of the Internal Revenue Code, section 3406, the regulations under those provisions, and other withholding provisions of the Internal Revenue Code, except to the extent provided under the agreement.

(iii)(B) Terms of the withholding agreement [§1.1441-1(e)(5)(iii)(B)]

[Reserved]. For further guidance, see §1.1441-1T(e)(5)(iii)(B).

The agreement shall specify the obligations of the qualified intermediary under chapters 3 and 4 and, for a qualified intermediary that is an FFI, require the qualified intermediary to satisfy the documentation, withholding, and reporting obligations required of a participating FFI or registered deemed- compliant FFI (including a reporting Model 1 FFI as defined in §1.1471- 1(b)(114)) with respect to each branch of the qualified intermediary other than a U.S. branch that is treated as a U.S. person under paragraph (b)(2)(iv)(A) of this section. The agreement will specify the type of certifications and documentation upon which the qualified intermediary may rely to ascertain the classification (e.g., corporation or partnership), status (i.e., U.S. or foreign and chapter 4 status) of beneficial owners and payees who receive reportable amounts and reportable payments collected by the qualified intermediary for purposes of chapters 3 and 61, section 3406, and, if necessary, entitlement to the benefits of a reduced rate under an income tax treaty.

The agreement shall specify if, and to what extent, the qualified intermediary may assume primary withholding responsibility in accordance with paragraph (e)(5)(iv) of this section. It shall also specify the extent to which applicable return filing and information reporting requirements are modified so that, in appropriate cases, the qualified intermediary may report payments to the IRS on an aggregated basis, without having to disclose the identity of beneficial owners and payees. However, the qualified intermediary may be required to provide to the IRS the name and address of those foreign customers who benefit from a reduced rate under an income tax treaty pursuant to the qualified intermediary arrangement for purposes of verifying entitlement to such benefits, particularly under an applicable limitation on benefits provision.

Under the agreement, a qualified intermediary may agree to act as an acceptance agent to perform the duties described in §301.6109- 1(d)(3)(iv)(A) of this chapter. The agreement may specify the manner in which applicable procedures for adjustments for underwithholding and overwithholding, including refund procedures, apply in the context of a qualified intermediary arrangement and the extent to which applicable procedures may be modified. In particular, a withholding agreement may allow a qualified intermediary to claim refunds of overwithheld amounts. The agreement shall specify the manner in which the qualified intermediary may deal with payments to other intermediaries and flow-through entities and the obligations of a qualified intermediary that acts as a qualified securities lender with respect to payments of substitute dividends under chapters 3 and 4.

In addition, the agreement shall specify the manner in which the IRS will verify compliance with the agreement, including the time and manner for which a qualified intermediary will be required to certify to the IRS regarding its compliance with the agreement (including its performance of a periodic review) and the types of information required to be disclosed as part of the certification. In appropriate cases, the IRS may require review procedures be performed by an approved auditor (in addition to those performed as part of the periodic review) and may conduct a review of the auditor’s findings. The agreement may include provisions for the assessment and collection of tax in the event that failure to comply with the terms of the agreement results in the failure by the withholding agent or the qualified intermediary to withhold and deposit the required amount of tax. Further, the agreement may specify the procedures by which amounts withheld are to be deposited, if different from the deposit procedures under the Internal Revenue Code and applicable regulations.

To determine whether to enter a qualified intermediary withholding agreement and the terms of any particular withholding agreement, the IRS will consider the type of local know-your-customer laws and practices to which the entity is subject, as well as the extent and nature of supervisory and regulatory control exercised under the laws of the foreign country over the foreign entity.

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