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Trusts and Estates Law and Tax Journal: October 2011

Caroline Cohen outlines the pros and cons of French tax reform for the non-resident investor

On 6 July 2011 the French parliament adopted a major reform of wealth taxation in the Finance Act 2011. Some deputies made a claim in front of the Constitutional Council, stating that some articles of the Act were against the principle of equality of the taxpayers. However, the Constitutional Council decided that the Act did not contain any provisions against the Constitution. The new law, dated 29 July, was officially published on 30 July and is now in force. This reform constitutes an important change in the taxation of private assets in France and will have a big impact on non-resident individuals. Indeed, if the new law represents good news in the shape of a revised wealth tax, its effect on non-residents may be less than welcome.

Wilsons

Fiona Campbell-White assesses whether we are still at liberty to leave our property to whomever we choose, however irrational

In Banks v Goodfellow [1870], the case we all know as the one setting down the conditions that a testator has to satisfy in order to be deemed to have capacity to make a will, Cockburn CJ underlined a testator’s testamentary freedom under English law (para 565):

Marilyn McKeever welcomes a shift in attitude towards non-doms

The most important of the recent spate of government consultations for trusts and estates practitioners are those on ‘non-doms’ and the proposed statutory residence test. I will consider the former here, while the latter is discussed in an article by Tim Gregory of Saffrey Champness on p12 of this issue. The consultation on the ‘reform of the taxation of non-domiciled individuals’ proposes some helpful technical changes to the Byzantine remittance rules. Perhaps more importantly, it seems to indicate a changing attitude towards non-doms.

The consultation on ss31 and 32 of the Trustee Act 1925 introduces positive changes, finds Laurence Morgan

On 26 May 2011, the Law Commission (the Commission) published its Supplementary Consultation Paper on ss31 and 32 of the Trustee Act 1925. The paper was a follow-up to the Law Commission’s Intestacy and Family Provision Claims on Death (2009) Consultation Paper, no 191, published on 29 October 2009.

The case of Barclays Bank Trust Co Ltd v HMRC is a rare examination of the workings of trusts for disabled beneficiaries, as Mark Lindley explains

The decision of the Court of Appeal in Barclays Bank Trust Co Ltd v HMRC [2011], handed down in July this year, is superficially notable for providing some rare judicial consideration of the provisions of s89 Inheritance Tax Act 1984 (the Act), which concerns one of the so-called ‘favoured trusts’ for tax purposes, namely, trusts for disabled beneficiaries.

Tim Gregory discusses the proposed simplification of the residence test

As promised in the 2011 Budget, on 17 June the government issued its long-awaited consultation documents into the statutory residence test and the reform of taxation of non-domiciled individuals. The underpinning principle of these proposals is simplification of the current system; it is hoped that the changes will give more certainty to the internationally wealthy and remove some of the administrative burden faced by many involved in the wealth management industry in the UK, as well as some of the similar burden faced by HMRC in these cases.

Forsters LLP

Zahra Kanani sets out recent developments in anti-money laundering, enforcement and BPR

The purpose of this article is to look briefly at the government’s proposals in relation to the UK’s anti-money laundering regime following the Budget 2011, the new ‘special relief’ for oppressed taxpayers and the availability of business property relief for group structures.

Ruth Moore sums up planned changes to the Forfeiture Act

The Forfeiture Act was introduced in 1982 after a number of decided cases seemed to produce inconsistent results. The Act stayed unchanged for a number of years, but some undoubtedly inequitable cases have caused the law to be reconsidered. Re DWS deceased [2001], in particular, was considered to be very inequitable. Although concerns were passed to the Law Commission it has taken until 2011 to get a new act, the Estates of Deceased Persons (Forfeiture Rule and Law of Succession) Act, into the statute book to correct those inequities. The new act has received Royal Assent but is not yet in force.