Setting up a trust

Establishing a trust can provide significant taxation and other benefits for wealthy families. 

A trust is an arrangement whereby a person (“the Settlor”) transfers assets to another person (‘the Trustee’) so that they can be used to benefit other persons (“the Beneficiaries”). Trusts established in certain attractive tax jurisdictions can provide a number of tax planning, asset protection and other benefits.

 

Trust Solutions and Opportunities

Tax planning

Tax advantages can arise from the fact that once a trust is established, neither the Settlor nor the Beneficiaries are the legal owners of the trust assets.  A trust based in a tax friendly jurisdiction can earn income and capital gains free of taxation in that location.

Protection of family property

A trust can provide an effective arrangement for the orderly distribution of assets to family members or other Beneficiaries.  An individual can ensure that dependants are provided for in the future by establishing an appropriate trust.

Family property that is held in trust is not controlled by individual family members and cannot therefore be sold or “squandered” by them.  In addition, as the Trustees own the property, it could be protected from “forced heirship” legislation and claims from any creditors of the Settlor or Beneficiaries.

Centralisation of assets

A diverse portfolio of world-wide assets can be managed centrally through a suitable trust arrangement.  This can provide significant benefits for individuals who are internationally mobile.  In addition, individuals who own a number of companies in different jurisdictions could benefit from establishing a trust as part of a tax-efficient holding structure for these companies.

Anonymity

In many jurisdictions, there is no requirement to register the creation of a trust.  Details of the Settlor, Beneficiaries and the terms of the trust are therefore not publicly available.  Where confidentiality is important a trust provides substantial advantages over a company or a foundation.

 

Trusts are highly flexible structures, which can be tailored to the precise requirements of the client.  Although legal title to the assets is transferred to the Trustees, clients can be confident that those assets will be safeguarded and will be managed in accordance with their intentions.


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