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Offshore Company Formation- International tax planning

Beware of cheap founders!

You may find numerous providers of company formations on the Internet, but only very few of them are tax counsels for international tax law. Most formation agencies are not able to adequately advise their clients. These “cheap founders” regularly install bogus companies, which cannot stand up to an audit by international tax authorities. Very quickly this will result in misuse of tax treaties and a charge of tax evasion. Therefore, any formation of companies abroad belongs in the hands of experienced specialists, who are familiar with international tax law and with law regarding fiscal offences.

It is important that all characteristics of a permanent establishment are met by the foreign company. A mail box or an answering machine do not constitute a regular registered office. The nominee director should be an attorney in the formation country, and the nominee shareholder should be a tax office or at least a nominee company, which is the property of a tax office.

If you request any offers from our competitors, please enquire about the following facts:

  • Is any nominee director offered in the company’s country of registered office?
  • Is this nominee director a resident for tax purposes in the company’s country of registered office?
  • Is the nominee director an authorized attorney in the country of registered office?
  • Is the nominee director available at any time?
  • Regular registered office in the country of registered office: Is a regular business address installed or only a mailbox and/or answering machine?

Anti-deferral tax (states which know anti-deferral tax, such as Germany or the USA)

For example Germany: Essentially, the Außensteuergesetz (German law on external tax relations) stipulates in §§ 7-14 AstG that fictitious taxation occurs for the German shareholder, if the latter exerts a predominant influence on the foreign company (majority shareholder), if the foreign company obtains only passive profits and the foreign company is located in a low-tax area, i.e. with less than 25% income tax. Legal consequences: it is fictitiously taxed, that means even if the profit has not been distributed, and not using the Halbeinkünfteverfahren (half income procedure ~according to which only 50% of capital gains are taxed), but with income tax.

Please ask:

  • Is any nominee partner provided in the country of registered office?
  • If yes, is it a legal entity, consequently a tax office with place of residence in the country of registered office?
  • Can you please give any explanations on the anti-deferral tax?

Tax law consultation

Of course we know that there are enterprises, which found foreign companies for less money. But we also learn every day how amateurish many enterprises install companies, and we are often asked for help to “repair” those constructions, which unfortunately is impossible in most cases.

Many details must be considered by our clients, which concern the national and the respective country law, such as for the USA, England or Spain. Therefore, with us you will be continuously coached on “both” sides by experts (specialized attorneys/tax counsels). This is an invaluable advantage, because the formation of foreign companies without any specialized attorneys or tax counsels for international tax law may be economic suicide.

You must also consider that it usually does not suffice to just found a foreign company. After the formation, special circumstances occur, for which we will advise you:

  • How to register the dependent branch office?
  • Who will file the company’s tax declaration? We will find competent tax counsels for you in the formation country.
  • What must any contracts between your company and your international customers look like to make it legally airtight?
  • Will you be advised by experienced tax counsels for international tax law on both sides?
  • Are you coached beyond formation?
  • Will you be supported in the following cases: contracts between company and customers, freelance contracts, employee contracts, issuing of invoices etc.?

Company accounts in foreign countries

Most founders offer “help in opening an account”. In most cases, the account cannot be opened, since foreign banks usually do not open an account if any foreigner is the authorized or sole authorized person. Opening an account abroad is usually only possible if the client appears at the bank with his nominee director in person, and signs the application. Of course, the company director (nominee director) must be creditworthy. There may be exceptions to this procedure, for example in case of our formations in Cyprus. This does, however, only work because our Cypriot attorneys and tax office have outstanding relations with the banks, which means a mutual trust which has been growing for years.

Conclusion:

If you consider all mentioned facts, you will realize that if you look at it realistically, our formation fees are more favourable than those of other founders, who forsake their clients after formation and/or give them false advice during formation. We claim to be compared in price only with international tax counsel and auditing companies. Their daily rates are, however, between 3,500.00 to 7,000.00 Euros only for “consultation”.

Other important facts

Our investigations showed that most cheap founders specialize in one company form. Many founders offer exclusively the English Limited company as legal form. The English Limited company is a good legal form in terms of capital stock, piercing the corporate veil and income taxes in the main rate, but is not always the ultimate solution. If we compare it e.g. to the Cyprus Limited company, companies in Cyprus pay only 10% income tax, and distribution profits are completely tax-free. Then again, if you found a company you must always consider the “subject”, which means for example that financial service providers cannot be established in every country without any time-consuming and expensive authorizations.

Summary of questions to competitors in order to obtain really comparable offers:

  • Is any nominee director offered in the company’s country of registered office?
  • Is this nominee director a resident for tax purposes in the company’s country of registered office?
  • Is the nominee director an authorized attorney in the country of registered office?
  • Is the nominee director available at any time?
  • Regular registered office in the country of registered office: Is a regular business address installed or only a mailbox and/or answering machine?
  • Do you know the relevant and up-to-date documents, decrees and orders of financial authorities, for example on the assumption of a bogus company in case of foreign relations?
  • Is any nominee partner provided in the country of registered office?
  • If yes, is it a legal entity, consequently a tax office with place of residence in the country of registered office?
  • Can you please give any explanations on the anti-deferral tax?
  • Are you advised by experienced tax counsels for international tax law on both sides (e.g. home country and country of registered office)?
  • Is there any coaching beyond formation?
  • Will there be any support in the following cases: contracts between company and customers, freelance contracts, employee contracts, issuing of invoices etc.?

 

 

 

 

 

 

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