IRS 3520 Forms and Instructions

The IRS 3520 Forms series is a set of two forms required by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to be filed annually by foreign trusts with at least one United States owner, or by United States persons who either own any portion of a foreign trust, are beneficiaries of a foreign trust, made transactions with a foreign trust, or received certain gifts from a foreign trust during the current tax year. A United States person is defined by the IRS as either a citizen or resident alien of the United States, a domestic partnership or corporation, any estate other than a foreign estate, or any domestic trust.

The series is comprised of the IRS Form 3520, Annual Return to Report Transactions with Foreign Trusts and Receipt of Certain Foreign Gifts, and the IRS Form 3520-A, Annual Information Return of Foreign Trust With a U.S. Owner. You can find fillable versions of both forms below.

The IRS additionally provides specific instructions for filing Form 3520 and Form 3520-A.

What Are Forms 3520 and 3520-A?

IRS Form 3520, also known as the "IRS Foreign Trust Form", is a form filed with the IRS by United States persons (and also executors of estates of U.S. deceased) in order to report certain transactions made with foreign trusts; ownership of any portion of a foreign trust; and receipt of certain gifts or bequests from foreign individuals, partnerships, corporations, or estates.

More specifically, a Form 3520 reportable event may occur when:

  • U.S. residents create a foreign trust;
  • U.S. residents transfer money or other property to a foreign trust;
  • U.S. residents are treated as owners of any portion of the assets of any foreign trust during the current tax year;
  • U.S. residents receive distributions from a foreign trust during the tax year;
  • U.S. owners of beneficiaries of a foreign trust receive a loan;
  • U.S. residents receive either a gift or bequest equal to $100,000 or more, from a nonresident alien or foreign estate or a gift greater than $16,076 (amount adjusted for inflation) from a foreign partnership or corporation.

IRS Form 3520-A is a form filed with the IRS annually by foreign trusts that have at least one U.S. owner in order to provide information about the trust, its U.S. beneficiaries who receive a distribution from a foreign trust, and any U.S. person treated as an owner of any portion of the foreign trust. Additionally, the foreign trust is required to furnish the required annual statements; otherwise, the U.S. owner or U.S. beneficiary must complete and attach Form 3520-A while filing Form 3520.




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This document is submitted to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) annually by foreign trusts with a U.S. owner to inform the IRS about the trust, its American beneficiaries, and any U.S. trust owner.

This form is a formal statement used by people and entities obliged to tell the fiscal authorities about the transactions they have had with foreign trusts throughout the year.

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