On 10 June 2021, the Mauritius Revenue Authority (MRA) published a communique containing the common errors made by Mauritius Financial Institutions when submitting Common Reporting Standard (CRS) reports.
The communique identifies five (5) common errors.
1. Wrong Interpretation of Undocumented Accounts
Certain MFIs are incorrectly reporting accounts as “undocumented” on the basis that self-certification forms are either incomplete or not available.
Accounts should only be reported as undocumented upon satisfying specific conditions (for e.g account has a hold-mail instruction or an “in-care-of” address).
2. Reporting Entities As Controlling Persons
A number of MFIs have reported entities as controlling persons of Passive NFEs.
Controlling Persons are defined as natural persons who exercise control over an entity and should be interpreted in line with FATF Recommendations 2012.
3. Mismatch Between Country of Residence and Country Codes
The MRA has identified instances where country codes were transposed. For example, the reportable address was in South Africa but the country code reported was AZ (Azerbaijan) instead of ZA (South Africa.
MFIs are requested to ensure that country codes allocated to their account holders are correct and match the jurisdiction to which the information is to be reported.
4. Wrong Entity Classification
The MRA has identified several cases of wrong entity classification. For example, passive NFEs have been wrongly classified as FIs or as Active NFEs.
Entities that have been wrongly classified as FIs should deregister themselves on the MRA’s CRS portal and submit amended self-certification forms to their respective banks.
5. Incorrect Reporting For Joint Accounts
Individual accounts held jointly are required to be reported as individual accounts where each holder of a jointly held account is attributed the entire balance or value of the joint account, as well as the entire amounts paid or credited to the joint account.
These are the common errors the MRA wishes to draw attention to in 2021.
Last year the MRA published a 23 FAQ on CRS that is also very useful.
Taxpayers should also be advised that the MRA has published a comprehensive guidance note on the implementation of CRS.