Author Topic: W-8BEN-E form for USA Trades  (Read 724 times)

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Offline Rhonda

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W-8BEN-E form for USA Trades
« on: 20/11/2018, 04:14:59 PM »
We trade the NASDAQ markets through Firstrade for our SMSF. 

Firstrade has written to us advising: 
"we have been notified by our clearing firm Apex that the IRS requires us to have GIINs on file for accounts who select the chapter 4 status of Non-reporting IGA FFI and Reporting Model 1 FFI on the W-8BEN-Entity form. Please note that your account will be subject to the maximum NRA withholding of 30% if we don't have a GIIN on file before November 30, 2018. If you currently don't have a GIIN, please reach out to the IRS and apply for one. Once you obtained the GIIN, please resubmit the W-8BEN-E form with complete information and GIIN on line 9a."

Have we selected the wrong item to Question 5 Chapter 4 Status (that is we have ticked Nonreporting IGA FFI)?

Has anyone filled out this W-8BEN-E form for their Super Fund? and if so have you approached the IRS to get a GIIN?

Any help would be greatly appreciated,


Offline Campbell Sinclair

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Re: W-8BEN-E form for USA Trades
« Reply #1 on: 21/11/2018, 09:17:14 AM »
Hi Rhonda,

We are not experts in this area, but as part of experiences we have seen from our customers over time and some employees using the form we have some information to share. Please look over it all and make up your own decisions, looking for tax advice if you feel it necessary.

The GIIN is part of FACTA of which Australians / SMSFs are exempt as per the ATO:

Here is info about the GIIN itself if you are curious:

Regarding the IRS – as Australia has a lawful agreement with the USA, the 30% withholding FirstTrade are talking about does not apply to SMSFs. It is likely to be generic text, as for people from most countires outside the US it would apply. The link above from the ATO talks about how the NRA withholding of 30% changes due to our agreement with the USA.

There is some further discussion here that you may wish to review around FACTA which may be useful:

The solution here should be to correctly identify on  the W-8BEN-E form your correct entity type (‘Chapter 4 Status – FACTA status’) but then also provide the correct info from there on in that establishes your link as Australian.

Here is a guide from Macquarie that I usually point customers to on how to fill out the form, but if you need further help it would be best to talk with a tax adviser who is experienced with Aus – US relationships.

Offline Dave McCulloch

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Re: W-8BEN-E form for USA Trades
« Reply #2 on: 11/12/2018, 10:19:27 AM »
For individual investors (non US citizens) needing to complete a W-8BEN form, here is an example of how to complete it from Macquarie.