The Common Reporting Standard (CRS) is a standard developed by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) for the automatic exchange of information. Guernsey joined in a joint statement issued on 28 November 2013 by 36 countries, and a further statement in March 2014 by 44 countries, committing to the early adoption of the CRS. On 6 May 2014, the OECD issued a Declaration signed by 48 jurisdictions welcoming the OECD Standard for Automatic Exchange of Financial Account Information. In total, 58 countries and jurisdictions have now formally committed to implementing the CRS for first exchange of information in 2017, in respect of accounts open at the end of 2015, and new accounts from 2016, with a further 35 jurisdictions committed to implementing the CRS by 2018.
CRS - Guidance Notes
As the OECD guides provide comprehensive commentary and examples for the CRS and Due Diligence Standards, the Guidance Notes provided by the Director should only to be considered supplementary to the OECD commentary and covering those aspects where is necessary to assist with the practical aspects of the CRS that are specific to implementation by Guernsey Financial Institutions.
This Guidance Notes includes references and quotations from the following OECD publications:
These publications should be considered as the core guidance provided for the CRS and referred to in the first instance.
The copyright owner of this material remains the OECD.
Guernsey Guidance Notes
Guernsey is committed to the adoption of the global Common Reporting Standard on Automatic Exchange of Information ("the CRS") with effect from 1 January 2016, with first reporting taking place in 2017. Guernsey is one of approximately 60 jurisdictions working to this implementation timetable, including all EU Member States (with the exception of Austria, which will have an extra year before implementation of the CRS).
The UK has indicated that it would wish to move from the existing intergovernmental agreement ("the UK IGA") that it has with Guernsey (and the other Crown Dependencies and the Overseas Territories) to the CRS, as from 1 January 2016.
A number of options exist for how the transition could be achieved, to satisfy the UK's wish to ensure that no "gaps" occurred in the data that would have been reported under the UK IGA for 2016 but which may not be reported under the CRS until 2018. After consultation with Guernsey Financial Institutions, it has been agreed with the UK that for 2016 the CRS reporting requirements should be supplemented by the provision of information on pre-existing individual low value accounts and pre-existing entity accounts in respect of UK residents. This means that the UK can receive 2016 calendar year information in 2017 solely under the CRS, thus avoiding any need for Guernsey Financial Institutions having to make separate (and possibly duplicate) returns under both the UK IGA and the CRS. I should make it clear that the intention is that due diligence already undertaken on UK reportable accounts for the purposes of the UK IGA will not need to be repeated for the CRS.
The CRS does not provide for any special arrangements, such as the Alternative Reporting Regime ("the ARR", for "Non-Doms") which exists under the IGA. As a result of the adoption of the CRS from 1 January 2016, reporting of 2016 data for all relevant UK accounts will be required in 2017 including all UK non-domiciled account holders. The ARR will therefore be available only under the UK IGA, and for 2014 and 2015 only.
We will be consulting with our legal advisers regarding the steps required to achieve this transition. Further guidance will be issued, as necessary.
Anyone having other technical issues relating to the submission of reports, should check the IGOR Forum and post questions if necessary. This can be found by following this link: https://igorforum.digimap.gg/
A new tool has been created by Digimap in order to help technical personnel quickly understand the technical requirements of CRS XML reporting. This is now available at:https://crsbuilder.digimap.gg/
An IGOR User Guide for CbCR, CRS and FATCA has been created to provide IGOR users with further assistance with their reporting: IGOR - Guernsey user guide [1Mb]
OECD CRS avoidance scheme reporting
As part of ongoing efforts to maintain integrity of the Common Reporting Standard, the OECD allows interested parties to report schemes that may circumvent reporting under the Standard. All schemes reported using this form will be analysed and risk assessed by the OECD. Submissions may be made on an anonymous basis.
Guernsey has also committed to introduce Mandatory Disclosure Rules which would require promoters of avoidance arrangements and service providers to disclose information on CRS avoidance arrangements or opaque offshore structures to the Revenue Service. For more information please see Mandatory Disclosure Rules.
Competent Authority Agreements
Singapore (signed 7th April 2017) [365kb] (superseded by Singapore's signing of the MCAA on 22nd June 2017)
Background information to the Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance in Tax Matters ("the MAC") can be found here.
Multilateral Competent Authority Agreement [448kb] signed 29 October 2014
Exchange of letters
Bermuda Exchange of Letters [8Mb] 4 February and 5 March 2019