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Frequently asked questions

Retail Banking and Wealth Management – Canada

What is the CRS?

The Common Reporting Standard (CRS) is an information-gathering and reporting requirement for financial institutions in participating countries, to help fight against tax evasion and protect the integrity of the tax system. Canada has enacted legislation to implement the CRS in Canada.

The Canadian CRS legislation requires financial institutions to identify and report accounts held by individuals who are tax resident outside of Canada or the U.S. If an account is reportable, certain account information is reported to the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA), including the name, address, date of birth, tax residency, tax identification number, the balance or value, and total amounts of interest or payments credited. The CRA may share this account information with the tax authority where the account holder is tax resident.

Why are you asking me for this information?

We must collect information about your tax residency and U.S. person status in order to comply with Canadian law related to the Common Reporting Standard (CRS) and Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA).

How can I determine my tax residency?

Your tax residency is usually the country where you permanently reside, but each country has its own rules regarding tax residency. For more information regarding tax residency, please contact a professional tax advisor or visit the Canada Revenue Agency website.

How is the CRS different from FATCA?

Canadian legislation relating to FATCA requires financial institutions to identify and report accounts held by individuals who are U.S. Persons, which includes individuals who are tax resident in the U.S. and U.S. citizens. By comparison, Canadian legislation relating to the CRS requires financial institutions to identify and report accounts held by account holders who are tax resident outside Canada and the U.S.

Why does the form ask if I’m a U.S. Person?

The Individual Tax Residency Self-Certification Form is a combined form for both the CRS and FATCA. This is in line with industry standards and CRA forms. The U.S. Person question relates to FATCA and the Tax Residency questions relate to the CRS.

Even if you have previously provided us with information relating to FATCA, we need you to provide it again for CRS purposes – the CRS is governed by different provisions of Canadian law.

Will HSBC respect my data privacy?

Yes. Customer information is protected by a strict code of privacy and security which all members of the HSBC Group are subject to, including our staff and third parties. HSBC will only disclose this information to the CRA if it is required to do so under local law.

Page last updated April 2018