Instead of focusing this Healy Highlight on a specific jurisdiction we have had a search around the internet for some interesting articles concerning company law and tax (everyone’s favourite).

Due Diligence for the Swiss (tax-news.com)

Switzerland’s Federal Council is proposing to increase the due diligence requirements for clients of financial institutions in Switzerland.  This is help prevent banks & intermediaries from accepting ‘untaxed’ assets from investors.

The exact due diligence required doesn’t seem to be set in stone. The article points out the requirements will depend on the risk posed by the party concerned.  One example stated is for the financial intermediary to be able to ask the investor to declare they have fulfilled their tax obligations.

Will be interesting to see if this approach is approved in Switzerland. It support the view that transparency, making sure you have detailed information about clients, is the long term direction that will be favoured by the offshore/international finance industry.

Google’s Pride in Planning (independent.co.uk)

There have been several high profile ‘disclosures’ recently about the mega-millions of dollars that MNC’s aren’t paying in tax, from hotels to coffee to tech giants.  This article explains the pride that Google’s chairman has in their tax planning strategies.  As a corporate services firm, Healy Consultants discusses international tax issues with business owners regularly and legitimate strategies to minimize taxation obligations.  Any company with international business operations should have tax planning considerations as part of their planning processes.

The Fiscal Cliff

Barack_Obama_in_the_Oval_OfficeYou can find numerous articles about the Fiscal Cliff Debate such as this on the CNN Money website.  It seems those on very high income will get a tax rate increase. This is all not confirmed yet and as per the latest news articles, the debate is causing volatility in the US$. But there is a deadline so something will have to be confirmed soon.

Would be interesting to analyse the spread between low & high personal income tax rates in countries around the world.

Let us know your views on the above and any other recent industry news stories that interested you.