Industry Insight

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The pillars of innovation

27 October 2023

BFSB Deltec combined logo

The word ‘innovation’ often calls to mind the technical and the complex. We think of new industrial or biomedical revolutions, such as reusable rockets or antibiotics, or ground-breaking consumer products, such as smartphones.




Family offices: investing considerations

17 October 2023

BFSB Quantfury combined logo

As the affairs of ultra-high-net-worth individuals (UHNWIs) become more complex, the need for a family office increases. A family office is a private wealth management advisory entity that performs a wide array of functions and services for a family, whether distinct from a family operating business or not.




UK IHT reporting requirements for non-UK (deemed) domiciled individuals

30 August 2023

Buzzacott logo

When someone not domiciled in the UK dies holding UK assets, it can be difficult to understand the UK inheritance tax (IHT) reporting requirements. Practitioners and clients need to know that there’s a requirement to report even when no IHT is due. 


A case for trusts in Latin America

14 August 2023


The COVID-19 pandemic has brought much uncertainty into all our lives and high-net-worth individuals (HNWIs) have not escaped unscathed. 




SEZs: catalysts for economic growth and innovation

14 August 2023


In the ever-evolving landscape of global economics, special economic zones (SEZs) have emerged as powerful drivers of economic growth and innovation, creating unique ecosystems that attract businesses and investors alike.




Key US developments from 2022 – and their impact in 2023

31 January 2023


A slew of tax changes for international investors took place in 2022 and many of these changes will have ripple effects far into 2023.




Five trends that will define the legal industry in 2023

23 January 2023

Clio logo

It has been an unpredictable few years for the legal industry, filled with highs and lows for the profession including significant changes to how legal professionals work.




US court deems a foundation a foreign trust, leading to tax penalties

17 January 2023


Foreign assets are complex for US tax reporting. A recent US court decision also shows that differentiating a foundation from a trust is pivotal.




US IRS gets another John Doe summons in fight against cryptocurrency tax fraud

09 November 2022


The US Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has received further approval from a federal court to root out cryptocurrency tax fraud.




US poised to get tougher on crypto-investments

05 September 2022


Right now, regulatory control differs across American federal government agencies: cryptocurrency is treated as ‘property’ for tax purposes, in many ways resembling stock. Some say that cryptocurrency reporting also resembles a foreign bank account report, in that both are priorities for Internal Revenue Service (IRS) attention and both require care in reporting.




Crypto winter: why trustees freeze out digital assets at their peril

16 August 2022

Saffery Champness logo

A chill wind has blown through parts of the red-hot digital assets landscape but a permafrost is unlikely.

There’s no denying that the recent crash in cryptocurrencies has been devastating, with the collapse of ‘stablecoin’ TerraUSD and its sister token Luna grabbing the headlines, and cryptocurrencies overall reported to have lost USD2 trillion in value from their peak in 2021. This so-called ‘crypto winter’ may tempt trustees who find these and other digital assets opaque and unfamiliar to keep the door closed on such volatile nascent innovations in anticipation of its demise. Doing so could be a mistake; in fact, in all likelihood, ignoring digital assets may be impossible for trustees in the future.

US foreign accounts penalty case heads to Supreme Court

16 August 2022

Later in 2022, the Supreme Court of the United States (the Supreme Court) plans to hear Bittner v United States.This case presents a conflict over statutes under the Bank Secrecy Act 1970 (BSA). The question is whether a ‘violation’ under the BSA is the failure to file an annual foreign bank and account report (FBAR) no matter the number of foreign accounts or whether there is a separate violation for each account that isn’t properly reported.

The Cook Islands: Expert provider of international trust solutions – a guide to new divorce and separation laws, international trust law and private trust companies

10 June 2022

Cook Islands Logo

The Cook Islands is a recognised jurisdiction for the establishment of international trusts. The emphasis in the past has been on protecting trust assets from frivolous and sometimes vexatious claims by third parties against settlors. Cook Islands international trusts and private trust companies are also used for intergenerational wealth management.







Six ways the probate process can be improved – as told by legal professionals

Exizent logo

16 May 2022

From unknown assets and hefty admin fees to delays from third parties that lead to lengthy case timescales, the probate/confirmation process is far from simple. This is why, in 2021, 52 per cent of legal professionals in the UK felt their firm could handle the process more efficiently.


The rise of digital in legal probate – will it stick?

Exizent logo

21 March 2022

Stable technology has been a pillar of success for many modern-day businesses across the last few decades and, while the legal sector has been renowned for somewhat lagging behind, it’s fair to say that all law firms have upped their tech usage across the past two years.


A new initiative in trust law

Cook Islands Finance

21 February 2022

The Cook Islands international relationship property trust is a novel way for couples to manage their assets in the event that they separate or divorce.

The divorce or separation of high‑net‑worth (HNW) settlors of a trust, and the powers of matrimonial courts to reach and distribute trust assets to meet spousal claims, are a recurring problem for trustees.






Moving to the UK: an entrepreneur’s quick guide

Lombard Odier

26 January 2022

Entrepreneurs see the UK’s business‑friendly environment as one of its most important assets, according to recent research from Lombard Odier. Retaining tax incentives for start‑ups is also seen as a top priority.



Reflective loss and trusts – some clarity at last

Ocorian logo

08 December 2021

Readers may be aware of a universal common-law principle of company law known as ‘reflective loss’. This says that where a company suffers a loss due to the actions of another party, the company and not the shareholders can bring a claim for recovery. How does this impact in the Crown Dependencies?


What do entrepreneurs want from their advisors?

02 November 2021

UK entrepreneurs have proved remarkably resilient of late. Faced with the twin challenges of COVID-19 and Brexit, around half have changed their business strategy.



Could environmental schemes change your tax status?


02 November 2021

The change in subsidy payments is encouraging farms and estates to look at ways they could manage their land for environmental benefit, but could this shift in focus have implications for inheritance tax?




Probate in the UK: a paper-heavy industry

Exizent logo

21 October 2021

The estates administration process in the UK is ‘slow and inefficient’ and is causing stress, frustration, and even mental health issues for those involved, according to research from Exizent.


Law firms' cost focus will drive financial innovation in the sector

TSF logo

12 October 2021

The latest research by PwC has confirmed the top three business priorities for legal firms, to improve the use of technology, standardise and centralise processes and improve the service offering, haven’t changed over the last year. But what the pandemic has brought into sharp focus for legal firms across the UK is a desire to reduce costs. In 2019, cost reductions were last on a long list of priorities for firms. Fast-forward to 2020 and it overtook critical challenges including the use of data analytics in decision-making and reducing cyber threats, to become the sector’s fourth priority.


Establishing US trusts while maintaining non‑US advisors


13 September 2021

In the US, clients are facing uncertainty surrounding legislative changes in Washington that will impact their personal financial picture. This uncertainty comes at a time when nearly 69 million Baby Boomers are approaching retirement age and their focus turns to estate plans and intergenerational wealth transfers.


The pandemic has put outsourcing in the spotlight

Ocorian logo

13 September 2021

Outsourcing is an often‑cited word in the context of managing private client wealth. The role that third‑party advisors and administrative partners can play has grown and, given the complexity of the sector, will be central to how firms and their partners navigate a rapidly changing global marketplace and sophisticated investment landscape.


Country house renaissance


13 September 2021

The English country house is back, and all the contents and collections that go with it. In truth, they never really went away: country house style, and the houses themselves, have always had cachet and allure, and have usually held their own in the marketplace. But now, they are frankly fashionable, and are seeing a renaissance in their fortunes.



TEAM up for relocations

3 September 2021

The events of the past two years put many wealthy individuals’ travel plans on hold. Yet despite, or in some cases because of, the COVID‑19 crisis, relocation is a topic that private clients continue to discuss with their advisors.



What role could a wealth tax play in the nation’s finances?


3 August 2021

For several years, economists and academics have been considering the introduction of a wealth tax, which would redraw the landscape for the taxation of individuals: indeed, we contributed to a paper produced by the London School of Economics last year. The most recent contribution to the debate has come from the Wealth Tax Commission, an independent project launched in July 2020 to consider whether a wealth tax should be introduced to help pay for the cost of the COVID-19 pandemic.


NFTs: Authenticity, accessibility and equitability in the art world


8 June 2021

In March 2021, tongues in the international art world were set wagging when Christie’s auction house sold Beeple’s digital collage Everydays: the first 5,000 days, compiled by the artist from 5,000 images curated over a 13-year span, for a huge USD69 million as non-fungible token (NFT). What is truly astounding about this sale is not the price fetched for the work of art, but the highly publicised convergence of digital art and crypto tokens backed by one of the world’s oldest and most reputable auction houses, therefore lending credibility to the transaction.



Sustainability at the portfolio level

4 June 2021

We believe that sustainability represents the biggest investment opportunity of our lifetime. Our fiduciary duty as investment managers is to preserve and grow our clients’ assets, taking this fundamental shift into account, and building on our bespoke approach to managing their wealth.


What investors can learn from Bill Gates’ climate warning

23 March 2021

When one of the world’s wealthiest individuals writes a book on avoiding climate disaster – and suggests changes we all need to make to our lifestyles – it is easy to be cynical.

An evolving online trading landscape

An evolving online trading landscape

22 March 2021

The first known mention of share trading dates back to 390BC, when citizens of the Roman Republic (which preceded the Roman Empire) received partes (shares) in contracting organisations as a reward for contributing to community efforts. According to texts attributed to the famous orator Cicero, these shares were tradable for money and their value would fluctuate depending on the success of the underlying firms.


Substance requirements in The Bahamas: changing with the times


19 February 2021

Globalisation has changed the face of business and, in particular, the way in which businesses operate. It is becoming more common for a business to be established in one jurisdiction, but the value of the goods or services sold by that business to be created in another jurisdiction. Additionally, we have entered an era in which it has become possible to conduct business from ‘the cloud,’ thereby obviating the need for physical store fronts, offices and staff, which further complicates the determination of where the real economic activity of a business is taking place.


The US election: what does it mean for markets?

8 October 2020

As the US election nears, polls continue to point to a likely victory for Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden. However, polls have not always been a reliable guide to the outcome of big votes, as learnt in 2016 with the twin shocks of Brexit and Trump’s win.


International banking: practical tips on setting up an account in another jurisdiction

Capital Security Bank Ltd

2 October 2020

As a CEO of an international private bank, I find that clients and practitioners will spend a great deal of time and effort in selecting the right offshore jurisdiction for them. They must take into account the jurisdiction’s legal framework and regulations and assess whether it meets their individual requirements in areas such as asset protection, privacy, and strength of regulator.



Estate Research 200

How do I gather financial information as an executor, attorney or deputy without being able to conduct my usual investigations?

1 June 2020

The Law Society Gazette, published by the Law Society of England and Wales, recently reported applications for grants of probate had fallen by 50 per cent since the beginning of UK lockdown. Initially this seems counter-intuitive, given that the BBC reported a spike in mortality at the beginning of April 2020. A casual review of social media channels would indicate that many private client practitioners are busier than ever.


Castleacre 200

An exemption clause protecting trustees can leave the trust vulnerable to claims

25 November 2019

The Trustee Act 2000 imposed a statutory duty on trustees with any unintentional breach of trust, leaving trustees vulnerable to personal and potentially unlimited liability: an uncomfortable reality for anyone taking on this unpaid voluntary role. Castleacre Director Hugo Johnsen examines the impact of exemption clauses on trustees, beneficiaries and trusts.

Is there a future for trusts after CRS?

21 October 2019

With wealth across Asia predicted to rise at a compound annual growth rate of 9.4 per cent to reach USD58.2 trillion by 2023, according to Boston Consulting Group, trusts are naturally growing in popularity. But the introduction of the Common Reporting Standard (CRS) has cast some doubt over the future of these structures in the region. Wendy Yeo TEP, Trust Director at Equiom Singapore, examines the future of trusts after CRS.

Challenges for lay trustees

16 October 2019

Anyone setting up a private trust is primarily seeking to protect assets for the beneficiaries. It is naturally within everyone’s interests to appoint responsible and trusted individuals to manage the trust.

New UK property tax changes introduced from 6 April 2019

6 August 2019

An update on the taxation of UK property including changes brought about at the start of the new tax year. Below is a summary of the main changes which non-UK residents holding UK property need to be aware of. Direct disposals Prior to 6 April 2019, a non-resident individual, company or trust would only be subject to a UK Capital Gains Tax (CGT) charge in limited circumstances, most specifically where UK residential property disposals took place.

A Bahamas LatAm approach driven by innovation

17 July 2019

Only five years ago, the Bahamas launched an innovative piece of legislation, the Investment Condominium Act 2014 , enhancing the jurisdiction’s fund product offerings. This legislation, the first of its kind in any international financial center (IFC), targeted Brazilian multi-market funds. The Bahamas Investment Condominium (ICON) was created to appeal to the Brazilian investment fund market. Effectively it is a civil-law product, introduced in a common-law context, and so its structure is familiar to the Latin American market.

Business from the beach: five golden rules

5 June 2019

You’ve heard of the work-from-home revolution, but how about working from the beach? Global tech entrepreneur Stan Stalnaker is a forward thinker when it comes to flexible working. Here, he shares his tips for how you can swap a dingy office for golden sands…

Seven habits of the new HNWIs

14 May 2019

Young high-net-worth-individuals (HNWIs) are not like their parents. They care about social impact, transparency, security and privacy. To service these digital natives, wealth management advisors need to adapt. Here are seven reasons why… 1. They want their wealth to have a positive social impact.

Four alternative assets young HNWIs are investing in

13 May 2019

Art, bitcoin, action figures – young HNWIs are pushing the boundaries on investment, and wealth management advisors need to keep up We are seeing the emergence of a new generation of internationally mobile high-net-worth individuals (HNWIs); and their behaviours and investment attitudes differ profoundly from those of previous generations.


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