The Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) is conducting their 2017 Benchmark Survey of Foreign Direct Investment in the United States also known as Form BE-12. They are sending out letters to businesses requesting the completion of this survey. This is a mandatory survey that collects economic data from U.S. entities and is a confidential survey that is only used for statistical purposes. A response is required from entities subject to the reporting requirements whether or not they were contacted by the BEA. US entities are required to file if they have a foreign individual or company that owns or controls a direct or indirect voting interest of 10 percent or more of the entity at the end of the fiscal year that ended in calendar year 2017.
Businesses that file the BE-15 annual survey will file the BE-12 in place of the BE-15. The BE-12 is a more comprehensive survey both in the number of entities that must file and with the amount of information gathered on foreign direct investment in the United States. There are several different versions of the form that may be required to be filed. These are forms BE-12A, BE-12B, BE-12C, and BE-12 Claim for Not Filing. To see which form you may be required to file, see the chart on the BEA website, which guides you through a few questions here.
Entities will be required to submit a copy of their 2017 annual financial statements with this form. The survey asks for financial information using the Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP) or asks companies to specify what other reporting standards they are using for reporting their financial information. The financial statements can be sent either through eFile on the BEA’s website, mailed, or faxed to the Bureau of Economic Analysis.
The nonfiling of Form BE-12 can result in penalties of $2,500 to $25,000 and injunctive relief commanding such filer to comply. Willful failure to file can result in not more than a $10,000 penalty, imprisonment, or both. Any officer, director, employee, or agent knowingly participating in the nonfiling may be subject to a fine, imprisonment, or both.