Swiss Banks Threaten to Seize Money of Recalcitrant Clients to Settle U.S. Tax Dispute

By Colby Adams

Facing the possibility of stiff monetary settlements, several Swiss banks are threatening to seize funds from U.S. clients who refuse to declare their offshore accounts to the Internal Revenue Service. Under the tax agency's offshore voluntary disclosure program, Americans who failed to submit a Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts, or FBAR, on funds held abroad can shield themselves from criminal prosecution by disclosing their hidden income and paying a fine based on the total value of their overseas assets. The IRS program complements a U.S. Justice Department plan under which Swiss banks not already under investigation for aiding...