Qualified Intermediary Regime
The US Qualified Intermediary (“QI”) Regime places obligations on the payers of US-source Fixed, Determinable, Annual, Periodic (“FDAP”) income to identify and document their customers under a contract (a “QI Agreement”) with the US Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”). The QI Agreement may also provide for withholding and payment of tax.
Entering into a QI Agreement with the IRS places obligations on Financial Institutions (“FI”) to have procedures in place to:
Monitor and act on changes in their customer’s circumstances;
Review the overall effectiveness of their controls; and
Periodically certify these to the IRS.
There are severe penalties for non-compliance.
The QI Agreement
The QI Agreement sets out the requirements of the periodic review and the nature of the information that is to be provided to the IRS as part of the certification process. There is an emphasis on the holistic compliance approach that requires an analysis of QI’s policies, procedures and controls.
Pursuant to IRS Revenue Procedure 2017-15, the QI compliance programme requires the designation of an RO to establish and maintain the QI compliance programme, culminating in the periodic certifications to the IRS.
Thus, the QI compliance programme encompasses:
The RO designation,
Establishment of an internal control environment,
Factual information pertinent to tax documentation, withholding, and reporting,
The periodic review and certifications.
Our experienced team can draw on the practical experience in conducting QI periodic reviews and remediations over many years. We help you to develop governance around your ongoing compliance procedures and to meet your reporting and certification obligations to the IRS.