CRS and FATCA expert

Have You Been Tricked by your CRS Regulator Like This?

Peter Cotorceanu CRS, CRS Regulator, FATCA

Most fiduciaries are conscientiously trying to comply with FATCA and CRS as best they can. Therefore, it’s more than a little frustrating when regulators try to change the rules mid-stream—and in ways not authorised by local law. In a couple of CRS countries, regulators have purported to impose obligations on Financial Institutions (FIs) that go beyond what local law requires. …

CRS and FATCA expert

Game Over for CRS Avoidance?

Peter Cotorceanu CRS, CRS Avoidance, OECD

As I mentioned in an e-mail yesterday, the OECD has published a discussion draft of proposed new rules requiring disclosure of CRS avoidance techniques. (The draft document, which was published only two days ago, is available here. The OECD’s press release is available here.) Among other things, the rules would: Target advisors and fiduciaries (“Intermediaries”) with “material involvement in the …

CRS and FATCA expert

Hot off the Press: On SRIP trusts, Singapore blinks… Or, is that a wink?

Peter Cotorceanu CRS, OECD, SRIP trusts

On 18 July, Singapore published adjustments to its OECD CRS FAQs (available here), featuring modification of the guidance on settlor reserved investment power (SRIP) trusts. In the prior version of the FAQ (as analysed in my blog of 25 April), the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (IRAS) stated in FAQ B.5 that a SRIP trust would not qualify as an …

Panama Antes Up: AEOI Regulations Published

Peter Cotorceanu Blog, CRS, FATCA, OECD

The relationship between Panama and international tax transparency has proved a bit tumultuous over the past two years (or hadn’t you heard?). As a result, the country’s release of FATCA and OECD CRS regulations on 12 May (available here) prompted considerable curiosity (in me anyway) as to Panama’s chosen approach. Unfortunately, my poor Spanish hampers any detailed analysis of the …

The OECD and the G-7: The Dynamic Duo of Fighting Tax Crime

Peter Cotorceanu Blog, CRS, CRS Disclosure Facility, OECD

On 5 May, the OECD announced the opening of a “CRS Disclosure Facility”. (The Announcement is available here.) The Disclosure Facility is intended to facilitate reporting of “loopholes”, “schemes”, “products”, or “arrangements” that may be used for circumventing CRS. The OECD’s announcement was followed on 13 May by a formal request from the G-7 member states at the annual meeting …

CRS and FATCA expert

Cayman CRS Guidance Part 2: Entity Equity-Interest Holders

Peter Cotorceanu Blog, Cayman Guidance Notes, CRS, Entity Equity, Interest Holders, OECD

In the last blog, we looked at several aspects of the Cayman CRS guidance that go above and beyond what CRS itself requires. In today’s blog, we look at a different aspect of the Cayman guidance. At first blush, this aspect appears to follow a requirement of the OECD’s CRS Implementation Handbook that flatly contradicts CRS. Read closely, however, it …

CRS and FATCA expert

The new Cayman Guidance Notes: CRS on Steroids?

Peter Cotorceanu Cayman Guidance Notes, CRS

CRS’s global success depends on the integrity of local enforcement, especially in traditional “tax havens”. Cayman’s new CRS guidance notes put its financial services industry on notice that CRS will be enforced vigorously on the Islands. The new guidance notes were issued on 13 April 2017. They came hot on the heels of the previous draft, which was issued on …

CRS and FATCA expert

Trusts with Settlor Reserved Powers: The New CRS Avoidance Tool?

Peter Cotorceanu CRS, CRS Avoidance Tool, OECD

In a topic critical to the CRS classification of certain trusts, a divergence is emerging between the prevailing consensus view and the rule as expressed in recent local guidance. To wit, are discretionary trusts for which the settlor reserved control over the investments of the trust assets nonetheless “managed by” their trustees? If the answer is no, then in the …

OECD Releases Updated CRS Commentary and FAQs (Part 1)

Peter Cotorceanu Blog, CRS Commentary and FAQs, OECD

Following months of rumor and prognostication about a materially amended Commentary to the Common Reporting Standard (CRS Commentary), the OECD released the second edition of the Standard for Automatic Exchange of Financial Account Information in Tax Matters on 6 April, available here. In contrast to the predictions of forthcoming seismic changes, the actual changes (at least in current form) are …

Why, and When, the OECD’s CRS Implementation Handbook and FAQs Should be Ignored.

Peter Cotorceanu Blog, CRS, OECD

In my last blog, I showed why the OECD’s FAQ (Available here) saying that all Protectors are “Account Holders” in FI trusts doesn’t make sense. Worse than that: Why that FAQ is flatly wrong and directly contradicts the OECD’s very own definition of “Account Holders” in the Common Reporting Standard itself. I won’t re-tread that discussion here. If you haven’t …