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Offshore to become a lot less "secret"...

Discussion in 'General Board' started by Edwin, May 3, 2013.

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  1. Edwin

    Edwin Well-Known Member Exclusive Member

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    http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2013/may/02/tax-transparency-campaigners-treasury-deal

    This continues a recent trend for offshore jurisdictions to bow down and start disclosing details of who holds accounts there. However, it looks like they've watered down the measures (for now) by only disclosing information about bank accounts rather than company ownership. The latter is much more important because the smart structure is person->non-transparent company->bank account so all you find out is that XYZ company (based in the offshore jurisdiction) has assets in the bank, but not who those assets ultimately belong to.

    I imagine the pressure will continue to ratchet up towards FULL disclosure in the future. The wind's certainly blowing that way...
     
  2. Domain Forum

    Acorn Domains Elite Member

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  3. GreyWing

    GreyWing Retired Member

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    I agree, though I doubt it will be back dated in truth. Too many people of influence will have skeletons out there.
     
  4. Edwin

    Edwin Well-Known Member Exclusive Member

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    It doesn't have to be back-dated, it's still going to be a massive headache for many even if it's only "from here on out". I've not been able to find a specific cut-off date - the Treasury announcement itself was fairly vague - but if there's little or no warning being given, then it's the "chilling effect" that's as important as the immediate impact of the measures i.e. the message is now out there: "You don't know which jurisdictions will be next".
     
  5. GreyWing

    GreyWing Retired Member

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    Yes but if it isn't backdated then they will just move to another tax haven type country. By backdating it, you are sending the message it doesn't matter where you go and get away with it today, tomorrow we may do a deal with that tax zone and you'll have to pay anyway.
     
  6. Edwin

    Edwin Well-Known Member Exclusive Member

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    However, there are now MUCH fewer tax haven options than there were a year ago, for example. Tax havens seem to have been dropping like flies (if you're British, anyway) And if the tax haven is being used for "real business" rather than just parking assets, it can be a major pain in the proverbial to reestablish all the banking/payment relationships from scratch.

    So I can definitely see their strategy having some impact, though probably not on those with the in-house expertise needed to keep bouncing funds around from country to country.
     
  7. sdsinc Iceland

    sdsinc Active Member

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    Most of the so-called tax havens in Europe have been dead for many years anyway, especially Switzerland, especially if you're American... :rolleyes:

    Now if you are British and have opened an account in Jersey or Guernesey (for example) with a British bank, your details are stored in a computer database that is onshore (UK) or at the very least part of a larger infrastructure. So the veil of secrecy is rather thin and fragile anyway.

    Not to mention 'accidental' leaks due to hackers, whistle blowers or unscrupulous employees.

    Of course, you should own nothing in your own name. Own nothing, control everything :D
     
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