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Principality of Liechtenstein: Traditional and Innovative

The Principality of Liechtenstein is a constitutional hereditary monarchy based upon democratic-parliamentary principles, which is celebrating its 300th anniversary this year. The small state is located in the heart of Europe, between Austria and Switzerland. It has 37,000 inhabitants, the capital is Vaduz, the official language is German, and the business languages are German and English. Liechtenstein can be reached very easily from different international airports such as from Zurich (within 1 hour), and from Munich and Milan (within 2 ½ hours). The Principality is independent and follows the customs treaty of 1923 with Switzerland, with which it has close...

The Cook Island – International Finance Center

In the heart of the South Pacific is the nation of the Cook Islands. Situated south of Hawaii and in the same time zone, Cook Islands is an independent nation, in free association with New Zealand, so all are New Zealand citizens. The Cook Islands established itself as an international finance center in the early 1980s, with the enactment of the International Companies Act 1981-82 and the International Trusts Act 1984. Since that time, through amendments to those acts and subsequent legislation, the Cook Islands has developed a robust asset protection framework. Its focus on protecting wealth has developed in...

Cases Analysis of Testamentary Succession of Foreigners’ Real Estate in China

Gao Mingyue, Gao Jie, Beijing Guantao Zhongmao (Shanghai) law firm 一、Background analysis of cross-border testamentary succession When the Chinese high-net-worth individuals allocate the asset globally, many foreign high-net-worth individuals purchase real estate in China. After living in China for several years, some foreign high-net-worth individuals finally return home. Some of them only purchase real estate as an investment. These people will process and arrange their own property under their own wills in their country, which naturally includes real estate in China. Therefore, they will face the wills made overseas inherit real estate in China. The situation above is also more...

Are Family Trusts the Panacea of Family Inheritance?

Some time ago, there was a piece of news that exploded suddenly in WeChat Moments. Hong Kong billionaire, Mr. Poon, had put his assets in an offshore trust a few decades ago. He, his wife and children were all beneficiaries of the trust. Decades later, when the couple got divorced, the wife took the husband to court in Hong Kong in order to divide the assets in the trust. The court eventually supported the wife’s claim that the assets in the trust were the communal property of both spouses, and they were divided equally between them. In this case, there...

The Impact of Individual Income Tax Anti-avoidance Clause on High Net Worth Individual (HNWI)

In 2018, the individual income tax law was amended to add article 8 anti-tax avoidance provisions, which are respectively made from three aspects: arm's length principle, controlled foreign corporation, and general anti-avoidance. Compared with the individual income tax law before, it is a new clause. For the first time, it is proposed that the tax authorities have the right to adjust the individual income tax, which is basically the same as the concept of "special tax adjustment" in the enterprise income tax law. The high net worth individuals must be more careful when making inside China or cross-border tax planning...

Stability and Longevity in Uncertain Times: Singapore's Business Advantage

Singapore's Minister of Trade and Industry, Chen Zhensheng, said in Singapore parliament on September 3, 2019, that Singapore needed diversification and innovation to cope with uncertainty in the world market. The uncertainties mentioned not only the US-China trade conflict but also including BREXIT, tense situation between Japan and South Korea, and the situation in Hong Kong. This is also a various challenge, not only including trade but also technical issues. He answered Mr. Christopher de Souza from Holland-Bukit Timah GRC's question on how Singapore's SMEs, regional headquarters, MNCs, and labor force could protect themselves from the side-effects of the trade...

The Dutch Holding – Europe’s Legal Answer to Tax Havens

Introduction When thinking of asset or profit shifting, capital protection, and tax benefits (even “tax havens”), the thoughts of many will jump to exotic destinations such as Seychelles, Marshall Islands, Mauritius, Emirates, Cyprus or even Hong Kong. However, what if such benefits could be found in the heart of EUROPE – and at that – completely legally and with a more developed infrastructure to provide support, stability, and longevity? This article will explore the legal advantages and tax benefits of The Netherlands. In terms of holding structures, the DUTCH HOLDING (DH) regime is a very popular one. In fact, insiders...

Is the Oversea Trust valid if it established base on the asset in China?

Now, a family trust is a popular topic, sweeping across the legal and financial world. But for this imported product, in fact, we have too many questions and confusion. Many basic legal problems need to be solved urgently. I.The Question As the head of the cross-border wealth planning and inheritance team of Shanghai Landing law firm, my team often involves one kind problem in the business processing: the trust property of the testamentary trust abroad (mainly Anglo American law system) is pointing in the mainland of China. The common case is as follows: Overseas testator will establish their trust in...