Many, if not most, US expatriates have bank accounts or other financial accounts in the countries where they live. The IRS calls these "offshore accounts", not because they are in exotic places like the Cayman Islands, but merely because they are not in the United States. Readers of this blog know that these accounts need to be reported to the US Department of Treasury every year.
Of course not every one follows the law or even knows what the law requires so it may well be that some of you have not properly reported these accounts. The IRS, in its efforts to crack down on the use of offshore accounts for tax evasion, has offered to let those taxpayers who have not reported these accounts or the income from them to avoid some penalties and criminal charges if they file a voluntary disclosure by or before September 23, 2009.
he IRS Commissioner’s full statement dated March 26, 2009 an be found here:http://www.irs.gov/newsroom/article/0,,id=206014,00.html