Reasonable tax rates and safety of assets are two global concerns of anyone on his feet, be it a person or a business of any caliber. Herewith, the more confidentiality is the better, and the best variant is where you can find it all in one place. Guatemala is a jurisdiction attractive from many perspectives.

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International tax planning, whether for business or personal purposes, often requires involvement of low-tax jurisdictions. Provided you fulfill your obligations under tax laws of both countries, dealing with tax havens is absolutely within the law. When it’s not within the law, it becomes a “tax haven abuse” and leads to non-pleasant consequences. Herewith, it is worth to know what offshore transactions constitute concern of your home tax authorities.

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To follow up the article on second citizenship and passport scams, we would like to comment on the new “line of products” in this market – EU citizenship and passport, in particular citizenship of such countries as Latvia, Lithuania, the Czech Republic, Slovenia, Belgium, Switzerland. Most of the offers are not real, or better to say “too good to be real”. Common sense and certain facts to know about should help you to detect a fake.

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Recently, due to pressure from the G20 to render active campaign against tax evasion, a lot of low-tax countries and territories, also called tax havens and secrecy jurisdictions, are taking practical steps towards the OECD’s standards of transparency. The disclosure of customer information may impair relations with the customer, but fear to impair relations with the leading world powers appears to be stronger. Existing bilateral tax treaties are being revised and new tax information exchange agreements are being signed and negotiated. How badly it affects the practical confidentiality of tax havens?

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Name your reasons for having bearer shares in your offshore corporation. Anonymity of owners, freedom of share transfer with no reporting or taxes, maybe something else. While this instrument can play its role in certain circumstances, it can hardly bring you the expected benefits nowadays. There are a lot of downsides, which you probably have never heard or thought about.

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The higher is your tax burden, the more you are tempted to go for a sophisticated tax planning techniques involving offshore entities. However, your home tax authorities keep their nose to the wind. Among others, Germany is known for its elaborated anti-avoidance legislation, developed to prevent its taxpayers from using offshore transactions aiming to reduce their German tax liability.

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Back to the issue of offshore companies and trusts for UK residents, additionally to the previously discussed CFC regulations covering mainly UK legal entities, there also exist certain anti-avoidance provisions targeting UK resident individuals. Those are mainly contained in S739-742 of ICTA 1988.  Those provisions mean to prevent UK residents from using foreign companies and trusts, which would allow them to avoid paying UK taxes.

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Looking for new opportunities in terms of international business tax planning, we examined the Israeli foreign trust regulations and found this vehicle indeed worth of attention. Israel is a low-profile jurisdiction with a wide network of double-tax treaties, attractive tax treatment of certain offshore income and no tax haven connotations.

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If you are an American taxpayer, and you look for or already have an offshore bank account or a company or other legal entity existing under the laws beyond the United States, you might be unaware of reporting and tax obligations imposed on you by the IRS. It’s better to be safe than sorry. Here we are giving certain facts and figures for your information.

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If you have taken the far-reaching and irrevocable decision of giving up your US citizenship to permanently disconnect from your US tax obligation, you still have to settle your exit with the IRS. On June 17, 2008 a new law came into force that made the process relatively easier. However, if you are wealthy enough, giving up your US citizenship proves to be a rather expensive step.

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