Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Tax Hunt Pushes Global Rich to Offshore Trusts

Debra Treyz said she may save one family millions in taxes on assets the Hong Kong-based parents are leaving to their U.S. children.

Treyz, managing director of global wealth advisory for JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM)’s private bank in New York, is helping her clients maximize a transfer of $40 million by setting up an offshore trust that will convert to a U.S. vehicle once they die. That may ensure the money won’t be subject to U.S. estate taxes when their children in the U.S. die.

Multinational families increasingly are turning to high-end estate and tax planners to reduce tax bills when they shift money to children living in the U.S., whether or not their kids are U.S. citizens. They’re doing so as countries step up information sharing in an effort to flush out tax dodgers, including a new round of a voluntary disclosure program by the U.S. Internal Revenue Service that brought in more than $4.4 billion from American taxpayers hiding assets offshore.

“Over the past 10 years there’s been an explosion” in the number of clients seeking advice on cross-border tax issues, Treyz said. “The minute you get these multijurisdictional families, you’re really playing three-dimensional chess.” Read more.......

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