OIW Trust Associates LLC

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Monday, October 31, 2016

What attorneys don’t tell you about revocable trusts - That They Can Be Contested and Probated!

Nearly all of the states have adopted elements of the Uniform Probate Code in their own probate code so...

After the death of the settlor of a revocable trust, the trust may be contested on grounds similar to those available to a will contestant. Generally, contest grounds in an action to invalidate a revocable trust following the settlor’s death will be applied in the same manner as in contests of wills.

Two recent cases involving revocable trusts directly address standing. In the first, from New York, the issue was whether an heir of a deceased settlor of a revocable trust could contest the trust as well as the settlor’s pour over will that devised her estate to the trust. Allowing the disinherited heir to proceed, the court emphasized the testamentary nature of the revocable trust:

[R] trusts – used increasingly as devices to avert will contests – function essentially as testamentary instruments (i.e., they are ambulatory during the settlor's lifetime, speak at death to determine the disposition of the settlor's property, may be amended or revoked without court intervention and are unilateral in nature) and therefore must be treated as the equivalents of wills in the eyes of the law…[T]he rights and remedies of the parties interested in a revocable trust must be consistent with the rights and remedies of the parties interested in a decedent's will… Thus, a distributee who is entitled to file objections to probate should also be accorded standing to commence an action to set aside a revocable trust, since the latter is but another part of the decedent's testamentary plan.

University of Akron School of Law/Alan Newman

What else doesn’t your attorney tell you, that there are nonprobate instruments that transfer property on the death of a donor - non-testamentary transfers that are not subjected to Will act formalities or probate-Promissory notes.

Check our event schedule to learn more about leveraging your assets to avoid the Probate nightmare.

Information and People for Diligent Outcomes

Thursday, October 20, 2016

U.S. District Judge Rejects Tax Promoters’ Plea Agreement in United States v. Crithfield: A Rare Event, but a Warning to Defense Counsel

The Very Real Pirates of the Caribbean

Duane Crithfield and Stephen Donaldson led the captive insurance promoter Foster & Dunhill, which marketed a Business Protection Plan (BPP) that the government alleges was fraudulent. In the latest twist in the prosecution of the two promoters, a judge in the U.S. district court for the Middle District of Florida has rejected a plea agreement reached by the defendants and the prosecution, even though the Court had previously accepted it, because there was no “meeting of the minds.”1 This unconventional move by the judge is not only surprising, but offers a cautionary tale and some lessons for defense counsel.

In May 2013, Crithfield and Donaldson were indicted for promoting a tax shelter scheme relating to their marketing of a captive insurance arrangement, known as the Business Protection Plan (BPP). Both were charged with conspiracy to evade taxes, and aiding and assisting fraud and false statements pertaining to two particular clients (each client constituted a separate count).

"Furthermore, it is possible that defendants may now be in a worse position, not only because they have no plea agreement in hand that limits their exposure to three years and may instead be found guilty of all the charges and thus increase their exposure to 11 years (not to mention the legal fees that will be required to try the case), but also because this tactic likely frustrated both the prosecution and the court" 



"The Real Pirates of the Caribbean Playing Now in Tennessee" was a featured blog authored by us wherein we revealed that Tennessee Trust Promoters and their Attorney were promoting the services of Stephen Donaldson to their Clients without disclosing that Donaldson was under Federal Indictment.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

1.3 millions files from the Bahamas company registry leaked

1.3 millions files from the Bahamas company registry were anonymously released to German newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung about a month ago, jeopardizing the financial interests of a veritable cornucopia of VIPs.

Information on approximately 175 thousand shell companies, trust and foundations made the rounds and these details have been collected in Washington DC by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) to create a public Bahamas leaks database.

Among the myriad of prominent figures affected by these leaks are UK Home Secretary Amber Rudd, former EU Competition Commissioner Neelie Kroes, former Mongolian Prime Minister Sukhbaatar Batbold, current Argentine President Mauricio Macri and former Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet.

Plenty of wealthy individuals and companies have chosen to set up in the Bahamas thanks to its multiple tax breaks on company profits, capital gains, income and inheritance, and the anonymity awarded to its users.

According to James N. Mastracchio and Sanpreet Dhaliwal of Dentons, “The Bahamas claims to be a transparent jurisdiction with a public register of companies, but the information shared from the seat of government in Nassau is limited.”

Furthermore, they write, “Although the Bahamas Corporate Registry is supposed to contain the names and addresses of all directors and officers, there is no requirement to register the owners of a company with the authorities.”

1.3m Files Leak In Bahamas Papers

FIVE months after the country’s financial services sector was dragged into the spotlight as a top tax haven in the infamous “Panama Papers”, international watchdogs yesterday unveiled a free online database created from 1.3 million leaked files from the Bahamas’ corporate registry.

The database by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) circumvents the local register’s costly retrieval fee and incomplete online registry by providing, for the first time, a publicly searchable forum of the names of directors and some shareholders of more than 175,000 Bahamian companies.

Released in tandem with detailed reporting on the offshore links to high-profile international politicians, including UK Home Secretary Amber Rudd, the latest instalment to the massive Offshore Leaks Database created by the ICIJ has labelled the country as the “Switzerland of the West”.

The reports detail the country’s longstanding struggle with international tax agencies, namely the United States’ Internal Revenue Service and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), since the 1930s.

Review Of Data Systems After 'Bahama Papers' Leak

British Prime Minister Cameron Under Fire Over Link To Bahamas Offshore Accounts

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Your Invited - Call to Action for Trust Implementation - PredictIt.org Has Hillary at 83% probability

Hillary Clinton Vows a 65% Estate Tax.

As unfathomable as it is for the voter minority to think about another Clinton in the White House, Clinton is favored to win by 83% on predictit.org and this week, Trump has been "Trumped."

For those of you with a trust structure that has not been fully implemented...
  • Consider that you be solely responsible for essentially screwing your family over by handing 65% of your estate to the Federal Government because you procrastinated and did not implement your trust structure.
  • Consider further that your family will be forced into the 3 to 6 month Probate Court bureaucracy and forced to retain a Probate attorney who will take between 2.5 and 5% of the value of your estate (not including costs and expenses).
  • Consider even further the chaos that your family will face and costs your family will endure because your business holdings and/or farm operations are entwined in the Probate Court system and family squabbles...
Ah! Imagine the fond memories of you now!

For those of you who have the knowledge but fail to act...Imagine the fond memories of you now!

Join us Monday evening for a frank discussion on Real-Life events and turmoil that can and will happen, and with the potential to destroy a lifetime of work, family unity and wealth!

The Ultimate Insurance Policy-The Wyoming Self-Settled Irrevocable Qualified Spendthrift Trust

Monday | Oct. 17 | 7:30 PM EST
Phone. 712-775-7035 | Code. 908702# | Mute/Un-mute. *6 | Bring questions for Q&A

Information and People for Diligent Outcomes

Friday, October 14, 2016

EU Financial Transaction Tax: Will It Happen?

On Monday, Finance Ministers for 10 European Union nations met with the purpose of finalizing work on a proposed financial transaction, or Robin Hood, tax.

While there’s still work to be done, Pierre Moscovici, the European Commissioner for Economic and Financial Affairs, Taxation and Customs, expressed his enthusiasm for the progress achieved.

Following the OECD’s input and research done by working groups on “the main sticking points—the treatment of derivatives on sovereign debt and how to make the tax cost-effective,” the EU’s Tax Commissioner believes “a final agreement has never been closer.”

Moscovici said, “The ten participating Member States have…made excellent progress on the Financial Transaction Tax and agreed on the four basic features which will form the backbone of the tax.”

“My services, together with the technical group of the participating countries, will now draft a legal text on which we’ll be seeking political agreement over the next weeks,” he added.

Furthermore, German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said, “The countries that had reservations last time have withdrawn them, so some countries now want to take a look at the possible consequences of the [final] text.”

“We want to have a decision by year-end, a positive one, if possible,” he added.

For the past three years, Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia and Spain have been engaged in negotiations to set up this tax after the original proposal brought up back in 2011 failed to elicit much excitement from the EU’s twenty-eight Member States.

This initiative aims to develop “levies on stock, bond, derivative and other trading as a way to curb financial speculation and get the industry to make a “fair contribution”—projected at 57 billion euros a year—to state budgets.”

Under these renegotiated terms pitched by Austria, several items have been agreed to per a Bloomberg article on the meeting:
  • “Harmonized taxation would initially be applied to transactions of stocks issued in one of the participating countries.”
  • “All shares would be taxed after a transition period unless participating member states decide otherwise.”
  • “All derivatives” will be covered, “though initially products with public debt to 100 percent as direct underlying would be exempt.”
  • “Repurchase agreements, which are used for short-term financing, as well as transactions of public debt managers would also be excluded.”
  • “Market makers, who provide liquidity, would be subject to reduced tax rates.”
A final deal is expected by the end of 2016.

Will the Financial Transaction Tax Survive?

Despite these advancements, several pundits believe the Robin Hood Tax is a terrible idea.

Mark Gilbert, a columnist for Bloomberg View, says that the financial transaction tax in Europe is “unworkable, unwarranted and unwanted.”

Despite this recent meeting’s success, Gilbert’s thoughts (published only a month ago) might still hold true.

According to Gilbert, there are several problems with the financial transaction tax.

First, he writes, “the need for a coordinated policy change is one problem; if Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia and Spain go it alone, traders and investors will simply move their buying and selling to different jurisdictions that don't charge them for the privilege.”

Second, “the tax would indiscriminately penalize all market participants, be it farmers protecting their livelihoods in the agricultural futures market, savers already punished by zero interest rates putting money aside in the stock market for retirement, or traders speculating for profit.”

Third, Member States might not make any money from this experiment. Gilbert asserts that “the claim that the revenue raised would go into the coffers of participating countries is false; there's general agreement that a corresponding decline in gross domestic product erodes the wider tax take, meaning no net revenue is generated.”

Do you think the financial transaction tax will ever make it into law? Or, as predicted by Mark Gilbert, will it be “reduced to zombie status, wandering the corridors of Brussels”?

Fortune 500 Companies & Tax Havens: A Study

A new report released this week by Citizens for Tax Justice (CTJ), the Institute of Taxation and Economic Policy (ITEP) and the US Public Interest Research Group (PIRG) posits that Fortune 500 (US-based) companies have stashed away close to $2.5 trillion in offshore accounts in an effort to reduce their tax burdens.

Clark Gascoigne, Deputy Director of the FACT Coalition whose membership includes CTJ, PIRG and ITEP, said, “There’s been a lot of talk this week about how the tax system is rigged and this report is Exhibit A. Multinational corporations are now holding $2.5 trillion offshore. To put that in context, it is an amount larger than the GDP of France. By shifting their profits to tax havens, the largest U.S. companies have been able to avoid more than $700 billion in taxes. These loopholes simply aren’t available to average taxpayers and small businesses, who can’t afford to hire the lawyers and accountants to move money through shell companies created in tax havens.”

The report titled “Offshore Shell Games 2016: The Use of Offshore Tax Havens by Fortune 500 Companies” ranks Apple at the top of the list of tax avoiders with approximately $214.9 billion kept offshore followed by Pfizer ($193.6 billion), Microsoft ($124 billion), General Electric ($104 billion) and IMB ($68.1 billion).

Top 30 companies with the most money held offshore
According to the report, “multinational corporations use tax havens to avoid an estimated $100 billion in federal income taxes each year” with 367 of the top 500 companies keeping 10,366 tax haven subsidiaries.
Furthermore, the top 30 firms “with the most money officially booked offshore for tax purposes collectively operate 2,509 tax haven subsidiaries,” the most popular destinations being the Netherlands. As a group, these 30 companies “account for 66 percent or $1.65 trillion” of the total figure for Fortune 500 companies.

Percent of Fortune 500 companies with 2015 Subsidiaries in 20 top tax havens
The study goes on to claim that “if we assume that average tax rate of 6.2 percent applies to all 298 Fortune 500 companies with offshore earnings, they would owe a 28.8 percent rate upon repatriation of these earnings, meaning they would collectively owe $717.8 billion in additional federal taxes if the money were repatriated at once.”
For instance, in the case of Citigroup and its 140 offshore subsidiaries, “the financial services company officially reports $45.2 billion offshore for tax purposes on which it would owe $12.7 billion in U.S. taxes,” implying that it “has paid only a 7 percent tax rate on its offshore profits to foreign governments, indicating that most of the money is booked in tax havens levying little to no tax.”

Profits reported collectively by American Multinational Corporations in 2012 to 10 notorious tax havens
This practice, says the report, is unfair: “multinational companies that depend on America’s economic and social infrastructure are shirking their obligation to pay for that infrastructure when they shelter their profits overseas.”

Suggested Measures to Eliminate Tax Avoidance in the US

So what needs to be done to combat tax avoidance?

The CJIT and its collaborators suggest the following measures:
  1. Do not allow American companies “to indefinitely defer paying U.S. taxes on profits they attribute to their foreign subsidiaries. In other words, companies should pay taxes on their foreign income at the same rate and time that they pay them on their domestic income.”
  2. Oblige companies “to publicly disclose critical financial information on a country-by-country basis (information such as profit, income tax paid, number of employees, assets, etc.,) so that companies cannot manipulate their income and activities to avoid taxation in the countries in which they do business.”
  3. Shut down “the inversion loophole by treating an entity that results from a U.S.-foreign merger as an American corporation if the majority (as op- posed to 80 percent) of voting stock is held by shareholders of the former American corporation.”
  4. Prevent these firms from transferring “intellectual property (e.g. patents, trademarks, licenses) to shell companies in tax haven countries and then paying inflated fees to use them.”
  5. “Reform the so-called “check-the-box” rules to stop multinational companies from manipulating how they define their status to minimize their taxes.”
  6. Reject the following: a) a “territorial” tax system; b) the establishment of “patent boxes,” and; c) “corporate integration proposals, which seek to lower taxes on capital by cutting corporate or capital gains and dividends taxes.”
Originally Posted by Mateo Jarrin

Friday, October 7, 2016

Wyoming LLC's Lead The Way Over Nevada and Delaware

For many years Nevada promoters touted Nevada as a tax-free State and "one of the best places to incorporate” because of their privacy and "asset protection" – until now.

On May 31, 2015 the Nevada State legislature passed into law a Gross Receipts Tax and has developed the first ever Nevada Commerce Tax Return.

Every for-profit business in Nevada must file a Nevada State Commerce Tax return by August 15th of each year, starting in 2016.  This includes pass-through entities such as S-Corps, LLC’s, and Partnerships.  This tax return is due even if a company has not previously paid any Nevada state taxes, is not generating a profit, or is a flow through entity. Also, remember this is a tax on your gross income so there are no deductions!

At this time, not all businesses are being required to pay the Gross Receipts Tax, but Nevada's history of fee's over the past ten years may hold a clue to future intent:

  • Nevada has increased its filing fees twice.
  • The “State Business License” (SBL) was re-created. Only specific businesses were required to pay a one time fee, as opposed to a yearly fee.
  • Nevada then started requiring all businesses file a SBL and pay a yearly fee.
  • Nevada then raised this yearly fee 3 times on corporations, over a period of 4 years.
  • SBL fees continue to rise.  It began at $100 then went to $200 for pass-though entities.  Corporation now pay $500.  Additionally, if you file or pay late, you will be assessed a $100 penalty fee.  There is also another $100 penalty fee if you file your Nevada Commerce Tax return late.
Look at what is currently required by Nevada.

Simply go to the Nevada Secretary of State’s website and type in the name of the person(s) you are looking for and all the business entities that person(s) is affiliated with, or has ever been affiliated with, will be listed.

On the State Business License form, you are required to list all officers, directors, shareholders, with their first and last names, home address, home phone, date of birth, SSN and the percentage of the company they own.

And...the new Nevada Commerce Tax Return form requires the total income and the source of that income for all companies, so they can make the determination if a tax is owed.

And...this is required from all Nevada corporations, even if you do not owe any tax, nor have any Nevada sourced income.

Wyoming is your best choice
Wyoming has not raised its fees in many years.  Wyoming has consistently been ranked the most business friendly state in the nation to start or operate a business.  Wyoming has no income tax, no gross receipts tax, and no State Business License.  Wyoming is much more private.  Wyoming does not require the listing of members or managers on the public record.

Reasons to move out of Nevada

In 2016 you will have to file a tax return with Nevada, even if you are under the gross receipts tax limit. This is going to provide Nevada with inside information in regards your company. Information that Wyoming does not ask for.

In 2016 your minimum State fee to Nevada for a corporation, will be at least $650. If you had a Wyoming corporation, in most cases this fee would be $50.

In 2016 you may be required to list owners with Nevada. Wyoming does not ask for this information.

Reasons to move out of Delaware
Wyoming corporate statutes are clear in that Wyoming corporations may engage in stock buy-back programs without any restrictions.  The restrictions that apply to payment of corporate dividends, in Delaware, are not included in the provision of Wyoming law that specifically authorizes stock buy-backs.  The legal certainty provided by Wyoming law on this point is a clear advantage over the present state of Delaware corporate and case law.  Additionally, there are substantial savings on state franchise tax. 

Public companies save over $250,000 per year in state fees, by re-domiciling to Wyoming.
Since Wyoming has had limited liability companies available longer than any other state, has the strongest laws protecting the members and managers of an LLC, Wyoming is the obvious state of choice for establishing LLC corporations.

In 1977 Wyoming became the first state to authorize the limited liability company (LLC). WE INVENTED THE LLC. Other states followed suit by adopting LLC acts of their own, especially after the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) granted LLCs formed pursuant to Wyoming’s original LLC Act (Original LLC Act or Original Act) favorable partnership tax status in 1988.

With its adoption of the 2010 Wyoming Limited Liability Company Act, the Wyoming legislature has chosen an “opportune moment to identify the best elements of the myriad ‘first generation’ LLC statutes and to infuse those elements into a new, ‘second-generation’ uniform act.” On March 5, 2010, Governor Dave Freudenthal signed into law the 2010 Wyoming Limited Liability Company Act.

Wyoming has pioneered a new form of LLC that precludes creditors from any legal or equitable remedy other than a charging order against the LLC interest, even for Single Member LLC’s. The charging order is the “exclusive remedy.”  This means that you do not need to have 2 or more members in the LLC to get the charging order protection!

The Close LLC was created by an act of the Wyoming legislature especially for small LLC's which have a small number of Members, usually having ties to one another through family relationships or friends and business partners. Close LLC's are special classes of regular business limited liability companies electing to operate in a more informal manner likened to partnerships.

Regular business LLC's must conduct member and director meetings and provide members with written proposals for any major action to be voted on in the annual meetings.

So, Family LLC's usually do not hold annual meetings because the family regularly makes decisions around the breakfast table or wherever.

A board of directors also is not required, so there is much less paperwork required for ongoing operations.

The Wyoming Close LLC Law allows small LLC's to forego many traditional corporate formalities.

Limited liability — the law says members don’t have personal liability, even though they relax corporate formalities in operations.

Ease of operation, which operates without pomp and circumstance required in regular LLC's where a large number of members must receive information and vote.

Cost of operation is reduced because relaxed corporate governance means lower legal, accounting and administrative fees for lower total cost of operation.

Sunday, October 2, 2016

China’s yuan joins IMF global currency basket

The yuan took on the mantle of a global reserve currency Saturday, a milestone that is seen breathing life into China’s bond markets by prompting estimated inflows of as much as $1 trillion over the next five years.

The currency’s entry into the International Monetary Fund’s Special Drawing Rights –alongside the dollar, euro, pound and the yen―comes amid China’s efforts to boost its international usage and ambitions of providing an alternative to the dollar. Describing the inclusion as a “historic milestone,” IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde said in a statement Friday that it reflects the progress that the Asian country has made in reforming its financial systems and liberalizing markets.

Read entire story at http://imf.einnews.com/article/347522113/OtFqvo-NGmnCFLCA

MF Launches New SDR Basket Including Chinese Renminbi, Determines New Currency Amounts

September 30, 2016

Today, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) announced the launch of the new Special Drawing Right (SDR) valuation basket including the Chinese renminbi (RMB), and the new currency amounts that will determine the value of the SDR during the new valuation period.