IRS amnesty program

If you have delinquent returns you may be eligible for the IRS streamline filing procedure. The IRS amnesty program is designed for US taxpayers who failed for many years, or ever, filing their tax returns.

The streamlined procedures let taxpayers file their last three years of delinquent returns and the last six years of FBars. 

To qualify for the Streamlined Procedures, the taxpayer must demonstrate in a written statement that his or her previous non-compliance was not willful. 

Other amnesty programs offered by the IRS include the Voluntary disclose program and the relief procedures for certain former citizens.  

Voluntary disclosure program

This program is for taxpayers who are concerned that their delinquency might be viewed by the IRS as willful and who seek to avoid potential criminal penalties.

A voluntary disclosure occurs when a taxpayer provides a truthful, timely, and complete disclosure to CI through designated procedures, including:

  • Cooperate with the IRS in determining the correct tax liability and
  • Make good faith arrangements with the IRS to pay - in full - the tax, interest and any applicable penalties owed.

A disclosure is timely if the IRS receives it before they:

  • Commenced a civil examination or criminal investigation
  • Received information from a third party (e.g., informant, other governmental agency, John Doe summons, etc.) alerting us to noncompliance
  • Acquired information directly related to specific noncompliance from a criminal enforcement action (e.g., search warrant, grand jury subpoena, etc.)

Relief procedures for certain former citizens

This program is for so-called accidental Americans who have renounced or plan to renounce their US citizenship and want closure with their IRS filing obligations. 

Only taxpayers whose past compliance failures were due to non-willful conduct may use these procedures. All the following criteria must be met:

  • You have relinquished your U.S. citizenship after March 18, 2010.
  • You have no filing history as a U.S. citizen or resident;
  • You did not exceed the threshold in IRC 877(a)(2)(A), related to average annual net income tax for the period of 5 tax years ending before your date of expatriation;
  • Your net worth is less than $2,000,000 at the time of expatriation and at the time of making your submission under these procedures;
  • You have an aggregate total tax liability of $25,000 or less for the five tax years preceding expatriation and in the year of expatriation (after application of all applicable deductions, exclusions, exemptions and credits, including foreign tax credits, but excluding the application of IRC 877A and excluding any penalties and interest).
  • You agree to complete and submit with your submission all required Federal tax returns for the six tax years at issue, including all required schedules and information returns. See FAQs 11, 12, and 16 for information on how to complete these returns.

Only taxpayers whose past compliance failures were due to non-willful conduct may use these procedures. All eligibility criteria must be strictly met to use these procedures.