Ignition, a leading provider of GRC software solutions, and Oyster Consulting, an expert regulatory and compliance consultancy firm, are pleased to announce a strategic partnership to deliver solutions and services to the offshore financial services market.
A key focus of the partnership will be to support organisations in preparing for the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act, which came into effect in January.
While some components of FATCA have yet to be confirmed, there is sufficient guidance available to help organisations prepare for full compliance. To comply with the new FATCA regulations, all financial institutions – whether domestic or foreign – must classify clients and accounts as either US or non-US based.
Foreign Financial Institutions are also expected to identify US accounts and report specific information to the US Internal Revenue Service. FATCA requires all FFIs to undertake an electronic search of their data to identify clients with US indicia, such as address, zip code, nationality, etc.
The FFI may then need to approach each and every client identified as falling under the indicia to request self-certification of status through W-9, W-8BEN (Individual) or W-8BEN-E (Entity) forms. This is to ensure the correct withholding rate of tax is applied.
Oyster Consulting’s practical solutions help broker and dealers, investment advisors, hedge funds, mutual funds, ETFs and private equity firms protect and grow their businesses. Oyster Consulting provides financial firms support necessary to navigate the complex guidelines of FATCA.
Alison Morrison, managing director of Oyster Consulting, said, “This alliance provides offshore businesses with an exceptional service and solution package. From consulting services right through to the implementation of very specific tools, we’re perfectly aligned to provide a much needed and important service in the region. With the release of the final FATCA guidelines from the IRS, companies can rest assured that we will not only help them understand the requirements, but also implement solutions to ensure their business is ready.”
Ignition’s expertise is in providing Governance, Risk Management and Compliance (GRC) technology solutions for clients in areas such as fiduciary, fund management, corporate services, captive management and the public sector, where GRC is a top requirement.
To assist FFIs with FATCA requirements, Ignition is developing a suite of tools the first of which, a FATCA Self-Certification solution, automates the entire self-certification process through an online submission process and provides a clear pane of glass for the Responsible Officer to view overall status and drill down through to supporting documentation. The tool seamlessly deploys and integrates with existing front and back office systems for broader compliance and helps with customer on-boarding.
Christopher Eaton, Ignition’s director of business solutions, said, “Our partnership with Oyster Consulting means that we are truly able to offer the full spectrum of FATCA related services and solutions. Focus on GRC has led to greater demands on organisations and FATCA is high up on the agenda. The extensive experience provided through this partnership will allow these organisations to not only meet the FATCA requirements, but also maintain a high level of overall compliance, reducing their risk and leading to greater productivity.”