By Pablo Garciga, Funaro & Co. PC
A major paradigm shift is on the horizon in determining sales tax nexus in the USA. Historically, physical presence has been required before a state has been permitted to impose its sales and use tax on transactions of out-of-state vendors. In an era when many states are insolvent, they have devised ways around this principle; the most recent of which is a direct attack opposing it.
By David J Kidd, Citroen Wells Financial Audit & Accountancy Services
London as favoured location? There was a recent report that London and New York are still the favoured places for the world's wealthy to buy houses, but competition is growing from Beijing and Dubai. Quality of life and economic activity were, according to the report, among key factors for the wealthy in choosing where to invest. London came top of the list in most factors and was still expected to be top of the list in a decade's time. This report was prepared prior to the UK Budget on 21st March 2012 when adverse tax measures, uncertain in detailed scope, were announced; and it remains to be seen whether London can continue to be a favoured place. This article covers the main changes.
By Prof Robert Anthony, Anthony & Cie
In its recent budget legislation, the UK government made a change which affects the tax paid by residents who have lived in the UK for more than 15 years while earning income from abroad. For many years, the UK has attracted a number of Asian, Middle Eastern, African, South American, European and more recently Eastern European individuals who do not have to pay tax on their worldwide income. U.S. nationals who are taxed on their worldwide income will not be as affected as others, as it is the effective rate of tax which could be an issue.
By Sonal Shah, Lawrence Grant
The current rules on residency have been based on cases decided over a hundred years ago. The rules have never been easy to apply, they lack certainty and this has hindered international mobility. The UK government recognised that in order to safeguard the UK's attractiveness as a destination for individuals and businesses, the current rules of residency were unsustainable. We have good news!
Liability to UK income tax and capital gains tax is dependent on the residence status of the individual. The term 'residence' appears many times in UK tax legislation but until now this has never been properly defined in that legislation. Instead, for almost 200 years the courts have been establishing a range of factors which can affect the determination of an individual's residence status. How long an individual spends in the UK in a tax year is important to this decision as well as the principle of whether they are coming to the UK temporarily.
Despite an excellent credit rating and flawless company reputation, the bank is not advancing funds. The reason: the bank is not prepared to comply with FATCA rules. "We are already seeing problems like this today when Swiss banks are involved. They are expected to increase with other financial institutions in the near future as well," warns Oliver Biernat, auditor and specialised consultant for international tax law at the Benefitax accounting firm in Frankfurt. "FATCA applies whenever US citizens or German companies in which US citizens hold shares want to open an account with or apply for a loan from a German bank."
By Helen E. Ijewere, Saffron Professional Services
Value-added Tax (VAT) is charged at 5% and is payable on the supply of all goods and services that are consumed within, and enter Nigeria, other than those goods and services listed as exempt in the First Schedule to the VAT Act.
By Sonal Shah, Lawrence Grant Chartered Accountants
UK businesses are selling an increasing proportion of their goods and services online. Cross-border trade has also increased as customers have been able to identify suppliers, anywhere in the world, offering a greater choice of merchandise and competitive prices. The ease of setting up businesses online and the greater choice for retail businesses in where they locate, with no need to have a physical presence on the high street, could make it more difficult to trace suppliers and collect VAT.
By Prof Stefano Loconte and Giusy Antonelli, Loconte & Partners
Recently the Advocate General of the ECJ expressed an opinion in case C-546/2014, Degano Trasporti, which was favourable to the extinguishment of debts arising from VAT in the case of composition with creditors.
The European Commission's latest bi-annual listing of Member States' VAT rates http://ec.europa.eu/taxation_customs/resources/documents/taxation/vat/how_vat_works/rates/vat_rates_en.pdf has just been published. The rates shown are those applicable as at 1 July 2012.
By Graeme Saggers, Nolands SA
A recent amendment to the Value-added Tax (“VAT”) Act has meant that foreign suppliers of electronic services are likely to levy VAT at a rate of 14% on any supplies to South African residents.
By Marc Nideröst, LL.M., Treuhand- und Revisionsgesellschaft Mattig-Suter und Partner
VAT payers domiciled outside of Switzerland have to furnish a security according to the VAT liability of one year. In addition, they have to appoint a VAT representative domiciled in Switzerland.
By Toon Hasselman, Limes international
By Sabina Mexis, Devry Smith Frank LLP
The Excise Tax Act (“ETA”) does not clearly define what “carrying on business” means for purposes of the GST. “Business” is defined in subsection 123(1) of the ETA as follows:
When an EU taxable person makes a supply of goods or services to a customer in another EU member state, he normally asks his customer to provide a VAT number in order to dispense with charging the local VAT. One may wonder whether this is a legal obligation. This is especially interesting if the customer is clearly a taxable person according to the doctrine of the supplier's country, but is nevertheless unable to provide a VAT number.
By Timothy W. Clarke, Moodys Gartner Tax Law LLP
A trust is an obligation binding the trustee to deal with property for the benefit of one or more beneficiaries. A trust is formed when the settlor conveys property to a trustee to be held and used for the benefit of the beneficiary -- or a settlor indicates an intention to hold property for the benefit of the beneficiary by words or conduct. The terms of a trust are frequently governed by a written declaration or deed conveying the property and describing the obligations imposed on the trustee. In such circumstances there is little question as to the trust’s existence. But in cases involving aggressive tax plans, the tax authorities occasionally challenge the existence of a trust because it is a “sham”.
By Prof. Robert Anthony, Anthony & Cie
European Property in the residential sector sales seems to have slowed down substantially. Whilst London and Paris as well as other capitals still seem to be selling, it is much harder to obtain finance. This results in a diminution of volume. Certain prime assets remain in demand and the purchasers obviously are better protected due to their liquidity.
By Raghu Marwah, R N MARWAH & CO LLP
On 9 July 2015, India entered into an Inter-Governmental Agreement (IGA-1) with the United States of America under which it has been agreed to share data on a reciprocal basis with regard to the financial holdings and interests of U.S. residents in India and Indian nationals in the USA. Similarly, on 3 June 2015, the Indian government signed the OECD’s Multilateral Tax Treaty aimed at establishing a Common Reporting Standard for all partner jurisdictions. But what is FATCA and why does it sound so alarming?
By Graeme Saggers, Nolands
The introduction of a withholding tax on interest paid to non-residents in South Africa was first announced in 2012. Since then it has seen a number of delays as legislation and systems have been refined. However, it finally came into official effect on 1 March 2015. The withholding tax is applied to all interest to foreign residents (excluding those with permanent establishments in South Africa or who are present in South Africa for more than 183 days in a year) which was or is paid or became due and payable after 1 March 2015.