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William Byrnes (Texas A&M) tax & compliance articles

Posts Tagged ‘law’

for research of ‘Home Mortgage Cramdown in Bankruptcy’ – Richard Gendler awarded title of “Doctor of Law”

Posted by William Byrnes on December 11, 2013


After a successful dissertation defense on October 22, 2013, Thomas Jefferson School of Law awarded the degree of Doctor of Science of Law, called a “J.S.D.” degree, to Dr. Richard S. Gendler. The J.S.D. is a research-based doctoral degree, the most advanced law degree in the United States. It requires three to five years of legal research and writing on a unique issue of law that makes a substantial and novel contribution to a field of study. The J.S.D. degree is equivalent to a Ph.D. in law, which first requires the completion of the Bachelor, J.D., and LL.M. degrees. …

Associate Dean William Byrnes added, “Dr. Richard Gendler has undertaken ground-breaking empirical research for his Ph.D. of all Chapter 13 cases that were filed in the Southern District of Florida from 2009. Dr. Gendler scrutinized the effectiveness of cure of mortgages on homeowners’ principal residences relative to the use of lien stripping in Chapter 13 plans, both for underwater and non-underwater mortgages. ….”  

The dissertation topic was “Home Mortgage Cramdown in Bankruptcy.”  The dissertation provided an extensive study into the interplay between the recent home mortgage crisis and U.S. Bankruptcy Law.  Read about Dr. Richard Gendler’s research and findings about cramdown and bankruptcy at http://www.tjsl.edu/news-media/2013/10956

 

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20% discount code for 400 page analysis of FATCA Compliance

Posted by William Byrnes on October 11, 2013


To purchase LexisNexis® Guide to FATCA Compliance and save 20%, visit the LexisNexis Store.  The link for the 20% discount is:

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Over 400 pages of compliance analysis !! now available with the 20% discount code link in this flier –> LN Guide to FATCA_flier.

The LexisNexis® Guide to FATCA Compliance was designed in consultation, via numerous interviews and meetings, with government officials, NGO staff, large financial institution compliance officers, investment fund compliance officers, and trust companies,  in consultation with contributors who are leading industry experts. The contributors hail from several countries and an offshore financial center and include attorneys, accountants, information technology engineers, and risk managers from large, medium and small firms and from large financial institutions.  A sample chapter from the 25 is available on LexisNexis: http://www.lexisnexis.com/store/images/samples/9780769853734.pdf

Analysis by FATCA Experts – 

Kyria Ali, FCCA is a member of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (“ACCA”) of Baker Tilly (BVI) Limited.

Michael Alliston, Esq. is a solicitor in the London office of Herbert Smith Freehills LLP.

Ariene d’Arc Diniz e Amaral, Adv.  is a Brazilian tax attorney of Rolim, Viotti & Leite Campos Advogados.

Maarten de Bruin, Esq. is a partner of Stibbe Simont.

Jean-Paul van den Berg, Esq.  is a tax partner of Stibbe Simont.

Amanda Castellano, Esq. spent three years as an auditor with the Internal Revenue Service.

Luzius Cavelti, Esq. is an associate at Tappolet & Partner in Zurich.

Bruno Da Silva, LL.M.  works at Loyens & Loeff, European Direct Tax Law team and is a tax treaty adviser for the Macau special administrative region of the People’s Republic of China.

Prof. J. Richard Duke, Esq. is an attorney admitted in Alabama and Florida specializing over forty years in income and estate tax planning and compliance, as well as asset protection, for high net wealth families.  He served as Counsel to the Ludwig von Mises Institute for Austrian Economics 1983-1989.

Dr. Jan Dyckmans, Esq. is a German attorney at Flick Gocke Schaumburg in Frankfurt am Main.

Arne Hansen is a legal trainee of the Hanseatisches Oberlandesgericht (Higher Regional Court of Hamburg), Germany.

Mark Heroux, J.D. is a Principal in the Tax Services Group at Baker Tilly who began his career in 1986 with the IRS Office of Chief Counsel.

Rob. H. Holt, Esq. is a practicing attorney of thirty years licensed in New York and Texas representing real estate investment companies.

Richard Kando, CPA (New York) is a Director at Navigant Consulting and served as a Special Agent with the IRS Criminal Investigation Division where he received the U.S. Department of Justice – Tax Division Assistant Attorney General’s Special Contribution Award.

Denis Kleinfeld, Esq., CPA. is a renown tax author over four decades specializing in international tax planning of high net wealth families.  He is Of Counsel to Fuerst Ittleman David & Joseph, PL, in Miami, Florida and was employed as an attorney with the Internal Revenue Service in the Estate and Gift Tax Division.

Richard L. Knickerbocker, Esq.  is the senior partner in the Los Angeles office of the Knickerbocker Law Group and the former City Attorney of the City of Santa Monica.

Saloi Abou-Jaoude’ Knickerbocker Saloi Abou-Jaoude’ Knickerbocker is a Legal Administrator in the Los Angeles office of the Knickerbocker Law Group concentrated on shari’a finance.

Jeffrey Locke, Esq.  is Director at Navigant Consulting.

Josh Lom works at Herbert Smith Freehills LLP.

Prof. Stephen Polak is a Tax Professor at Thomas Jefferson School of Law’s International Tax & Financial Services Graduate Program where he lectures on Financial Products, Tax Procedure and Financial Crimes. As a U.S. Senior Internal Revenue Agent, Financial Products and Transaction Examiner he examined exotic financial products of large multi-national corporations. Currently, Prof. Polak is assigned to U.S. Internal Revenue Service’s three year National Research Program’s as a Federal State and Local Government Specialist where he examines states, cities, municipalities, and other governmental entities.

Dr. Maji C. Rhee is a professor of Waseda University located in Tokyo.

Jean Richard, Esq.  a Canadian attorney, previously worked for the Quebec Tax Department, as a Senior Tax Manager with a large international accounting firm and as a Tax & Estate consultant for a pre-eminent Canadian insurance company.  He is currently the Vice President and Sr. Wealth Management Consultant of the BMO Financial Group.

Michael J. Rinaldi, II, CPA. is a renown international tax accountant and author, responsible for the largest independent audit firm in Washington, D.C.

Edgardo Santiago-Torres, Esq., CPA, is also a Certified Public Accountant and a Chartered Global Management Accountant, pursuant to the AICPA and CIMA rules and regulations, admitted by the Puerto Rico Board of Accountancy to practice Public Accounting in Puerto Rico, and an attorney.

Hope M. Shoulders, Esq. is a licensed attorney in the State of New Jersey whom has previously worked for General Motors, National Transportation Safety Board and the Department of Commerce.

Jason Simpson, CAMS is the Director of the Miami office for Global Atlantic Partners, overseeing all operations in Florida, the Caribbean and most of Latin America. He has worked previously as a bank compliance employee at various large and mid-sized financial institutions over the past ten years.  He has been a key component in the removal of Cease and Desist Orders as well as other written regulatory agreements within a number of Domestic and International Banks, and designed complete AML units for domestic as well as international banks with over three million clients.

Dr. Alberto Gil Soriano, Esq.  worked at the European Commission’s Anti-Fraud Office in Brussels, and most recently at the Legal Department of the International Monetary Fund’s Financial Integrity Group in Washington, D.C. He currently works at the Fiscal Department of Uría Menéndez Abogados, S.L.P in Barcelona (Spain).

Lily L. Tse, CPA. is a partner of Rinaldi & Associates (Washington, D.C.).

Dr. Oliver Untersander, Esq. is partner at Tappolet & Partner in Zurich.

Mauricio Cano del Valle, Esq. is a Mexican attorney who previously worked for the Mexican Ministry of Finance (Secretaría de Hacienda) and Deloitte and Touche Mexico.  He was Managing Director of the Amicorp Group Mexico City and San Diego offices, and now has his own law firm.

John Walker, Esq. is an accomplished attorney with a software engineering and architecture background.

Bruce Zagaris, Esq. is a partner at the Washington, D.C. law firm Berliner, Corcoran & Rowe, LLP.

Prof. William Byrnes was a Senior Manager then Associate Director at Coopers & Lybrand, before joining academia wherein he became a renowned author of 38 book and compendium volumes, 93 book & treatise chapters and supplements, and 800+ articles.  He is Associate Dean of Thomas Jefferson School of Law’s International Taxation & Financial Services Program.

Dr. Robert J. Munro is the author of 35 published books is a Senior Research Fellow and Director of Research for North America of CIDOEC at Jesus College, Cambridge University, and head of the anti money laundering studies of Thomas Jefferson School of Law’s International Taxation & Financial Services Program.

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Interview with William H. Byrnes, IV, Associate Dean at Thomas Jefferson School of Law

Posted by William Byrnes on September 5, 2013


Professor William H. Byrnes was a pioneer of online legal education, creating the first LL.M. offered online through a law school accredited by the American Bar Association. Now as Associate Dean for Graduate & Distance Education Programs at Thomas Jefferson School of Law, Professor Byrnes teaches courses including Federal Tax, International Tax, and International Business Transactions. Professor Byrnes has an impressive record in academics and research, and was kind enough to set aside time to speak with MastersinAccounting.info

Read the full interview at > William Byrnes Interview <

How did your professional experiences shape your approach to the classroom?

As a Senior Manager then Associate Director of Coopers & Lybrand, a three year associate to a renowned senior figure in the international tax industry, and undertaking a three year fellowship at the International Bureau of Fiscal Documentation on the topic of transfer pricing. I advised clients in many countries. Large diverse multinational groups required a robust sensitivity for intercultural business practices and social differences.

In the nineties, I was a tax professor in South Africa during the time of its change to a full democracy with the corresponding upheavals. During those years, I experienced the challenges of classroom integration of cultures, languages, and economic backgrounds. Moreover, being a pioneer of online education in the field of tax during those years, I developed a pedagogical understanding of knowledge and expertise acquisition, and of mapping education processes to learning outcomes. …. .

I bring all of these experiences holistically to a “flipped” classroom, learner-centered approach.  ….

Read the full interview at > William Byrnes Interview <

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The Roman Development of the Practice and Law of Charity

Posted by William Byrnes on September 2, 2013


Download the 60 page article at > http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2314731 <

This article traces Roman charity from its incipient meager beginnings during Rome’s infancy to the mature legal formula it assumed after intersecting with the Roman emperors and Christianity. During this evolution, charity went from being a haphazard and often accidental private event, to a broad undertaking of public, religious, and legal commitment. Charitable giving within ancient Rome was quite extensive and longstanding, with some obvious differences from the modern definition and practice of the activity.

The main differences can be broken into four key aspects. First, as regards the republican period, Roman charity was invariably given with either political or ego-driven motives, connected to ambitions for friendship, political power or lasting reputation. Second, charity was almost never earmarked for the most needy. Third, Roman largesse was not religiously derived, but rather drawn from personal, or civic impetus. Last, Roman charity tended to avoid any set doctrine, but was hit and miss in application. It was not till the imperium’s grain dole, or cura annonae, and the support of select Italian children, or alimenta were established in the later Empire that the approach became more or less fixed in some basic areas. It was also in the later Empire that Christianity made an enormous impact, helping motivate Constantine – who made Christianity the state religion – and Justinian to develop legal doctrines of charity.

This study of Roman charitable activities will concern itself with several streams of enquiry, one side being the historical, societal, and religious, versus the legal. From another angle, it will follow the pagan versus Christian developments. The first part is a reckoning of Roman largesse in its many expressions, with explanations of what appeared to motivate Roman benefactors. This will be buttressed by a description of the Roman view of society and how charity fit within it. The second part will deal with the specific legal expressions of euegertism (or ‘private munificence for public benefit’ ) that typify and reveal the particular genius that Romans had for casting their activities in a legal framework. This is important because Rome is the starting point of much of charity as we understand the term, both legally and institutionally in the modern world.  So studying Roman giving brings into highlight and contrast the beginnings of Charity itself — arguably one of the most important developments of the civilized world, and the linchpin of the Liberal ethos.

Download the 60 page article at > http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2314731 <

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A Review of the Development of an Internet Delivered LL.M Program in the United States

Posted by William Byrnes on August 27, 2013


This entire article may be downloaded at > William Byrnes’ SSRN academic page <

This article reviews the development of the first Internet delivered LL.M program (i.e. LL.M. of International Tax and Offshore Financial Centers, the ‘Program’) in the United States.

The paper comprises four sections: In Part 1 the economics reasons for, and logistics considerations of, the Internet delivered Program are addressed. Part 2 reviews the pedagogical approach to legal education employed in the United States, criticisms thereof, and finally examines an emerging pedagogical trend in the United Kingdom. Part 3 reviews the teaching tools employed in the Program International Tax and Offshore Financial Centers, and Part 4 reviews the practical aspects of developing the Program, obtaining ABA acquiescence, and reviews the Internet delivered law courses that came before it. Finally, the article concludes with some personal observations.

In Part 1 the economics reasons for, and logistics considerations of, the Internet delivered Program are addressed.

Part 2 reviews the pedagogical approach to legal education employed in the United States, criticisms thereof, and finally examines an emerging pedagogical trend in the United Kingdom. In particular, this part concludes that the grounding of a LL.M (Masters) level legal education program exclusively using the Socratic method (case study) roots of traditional Juris Doctorate (graduate) legal education may neither meet the goals, nor produce the skills sought by this Program. By example, some legal education writers have negatively critiqued the primary use of the Socratic method in even graduate legal education’s pedagogy. The scope of the negative critiques are presented from the perspective of economic efficiency over educational quality, as well as the perspective of professional development, and also from the perspective of a feministic approach.  These critiques are followed by a review of suggested alternatives. This part ends with an examination of the emerging United Kingdom literature supporting a pedagogy based upon ‘student-centered learning’.

Part 3 reviews the teaching tools employed in the International Tax Program. Part 4 reviews the practical aspects of developing the Program, obtaining ABA acquiescence, and it reviews the Internet delivered law courses that came before it. Finally, the article concludes with some personal observations.

Keywords: LL.M Program, Legal Education in the US, Legal Education in the UK, Internet Delivered Law Courses, C&IT in Legal Education, CAL, CBL, Socratic Teaching Method, Alternatives to Socratic Teaching.

This entire article may be downloaded at > William Byrnes’ SSRN academic page <

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The Development of the Law of Charity and Charitable Practices

Posted by William Byrnes on August 22, 2013


The entire article may be downloaded at > William Byrnes’ SSRN academic page <

This article describes the ancient legal practices, codified in Biblical law and later rabbinical commentary, to protect the needy. The ancient Hebrews were the first civilization to establish a charitable framework for the caretaking of the populace. The Hebrews developed a complex and comprehensive system of charity to protect the needy and vulnerable. These anti-poverty measures – including regulation of agriculture, loans, working conditions, and customs for sharing at feasts – were a significant development in the jurisprudence of charity.

The first half begins with a brief history of ancient civilization, providing context for the development of charity by exploring the living conditions of the poor. The second half concludes with a searching analysis of the rabbinic jurisprudence that established the jurisprudence of charity. This ancient jurisprudence is the root of the American modern philanthropic idea of charitable giving exemplified by modern equivalent provisions in the United States Tax Code. However, the author normatively concludes that American law has in recent times deviated from these practices to the detriment of modern charitable jurisprudence. A return to the wisdom of ancient jurisprudence will improve the effectiveness of modern charity and philanthropy.

The entire article may be downloaded at > William Byrnes’ SSRN academic page <

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video interview with William Byrnes

Posted by William Byrnes on August 16, 2013


When William Byrnes returned to the United States in 1998 to establish the International Finance and Taxation program leveraging online communication technologies, both international tax programs and distance learning programs were in their infancy. Through engaging a renown and talented faculty of industry professionals, and the support of an immensely engaged student body from professional and financial service firms, the international tax program blossomed over the past 15 years to become a cutting edge industry leader that it is today.

Just recently, National Law Journal wrote “Perhaps no one in legal academia has more experience with online master’s degrees than William Byrnes, Associate Dean for Graduate and Distance Education Programs at Thomas Jefferson School of Law.” (May 20, 2013)

His article that reviews the development of the first Internet delivered LL.M program in the United States may be downloaded at > William Byrnes’ SSRN academic page <

The article comprises four sections: In Part 1 the economics reasons for, and logistics considerations of, the Internet delivered Program are addressed. Part 2 reviews the pedagogical approach to legal education employed in the United States, criticisms thereof, and finally examines an emerging pedagogical trend in the United Kingdom. Part 3 reviews the teaching tools employed in the LL.M. Program, and Part 4 reviews the practical aspects of developing the LL.M. Program, obtaining ABA acquiescence, and reviews the Internet delivered law courses that came before it. Finally, the article concludes with some personal observations.

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Producing Leaders in the Legal Academy

Posted by William Byrnes on July 26, 2013


Excerpts from the Loyola Lawyer (Fall 2012). 

William H. Byrnes, IV is a pioneer in online education. .. 

Byrnes has an affinity for the civil law and civilian education. He notes: “The insights I received from New Orleans and the civil law allowed me to see different perspectives. At a regular common law institution, I would have never been able to do this.”

“The problem with common law (case law) is that it implies there is only one way to solve a problem,” he says. “Thus, you seem to be stuck in a pigeonhole when a judge rules on a case. But this is not so in the civil law. The civil law really highlights that there are different types of logic that can be used to approach a problem. …”

Read the article at > Loyola Lawyer Fall 2012 <

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The Not-So-Irrevocable Trust: Unlocking Trust Assets

Posted by William Byrnes on July 18, 2013


The “irrevocable” label might have some clients feeling like they are locked into previously established irrevocable trusts for life, which might not always be the case. There are many reasons why a client might remain interested in preserving an irrevocable trust, but after the fiscal cliff deal made the generous $5 million estate tax exemption and spousal portability permanent, there are equally strong reasons why a client might prefer to terminate. …

The choice to terminate will force clients to reevaluate insurance and other trust held assets and lead to what are often long overdue replacement or reallocation discussions.

When Can an Irrevocable Trust Be Terminated?

Read the full analysis at ThinkAdvisorhttp://www.thinkadvisor.com/2013/06/17/the-not-so-irrevocable-trust-unlocking-trust-asset

 

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Business Transactions and Contract Drafting courses for Brazilians

Posted by William Byrnes on May 8, 2012


Business Transactions and Contract Drafting courses for Brazilians
11 – 27 June (3 weeks, about 90 classroom training hours) in San Diego on campus

Partners include OAB, AGU, UNAFE, and APAMAGIS

– (International) Contract Drafting
– Business Transactional Law
– US Legal Research and Writing
– Intro to US Law

Individualized and group practical case studies with feedback

Contact William Byrnes wbyrnes@tjsl.edu
Or see the law school website for more information http://www.tjsl.edu/graduate/leep

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Battle Brewing Over Employments Status of Financial Advisors

Posted by William Byrnes on February 7, 2012


Are you an employee or independent contractor of your firm? If you’re doing business in California and get the classification wrong, you could be in for criminal charges and up to a $25,000 fine.

California State Bill 459—which would impose strict recordkeeping requirements and severe penalties on firms that misclassify employees as independent contractors—passed the state senate on June 2. The bill moved to the Assembly and went on to a hearing at the Assembly Committee on Labor and Employment two weeks later. The bill is expected to come to a vote in the Assembly later this summer.

Under the bill, firms that mischaracterize employees as independent contractors can be subject to fines of up to $25,000. They also will be required to keep records verifying independent contractor status for at least two years or face a fine of $500 per employee and misdemeanor criminal charges.

Read this complete analysis of the impact at AdvisorFX (sign up for a free trial subscription with full access to all of the planning libraries and client presentations if you are not already a subscriber).

For in-depth analysis of income taxation, see Advisor’s Main Library: Income Taxes.

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SEC Softening its Stance on Private Placements

Posted by William Byrnes on September 26, 2011


The Obama Administration’s 2012 federal budget proposal has revived two budget proposals that recent scandals have directed a slew of regulatory attention on private placement. Considering examinations of private placements recently being characterized by a FINRA executive as a “major, major initiative, it would seem strange for the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) to consider relaxing rules for marketing private placements.

Nevertheless, that’s exactly what SEC Chairman Mary Schapiro told members of Congress the agency is planning.

Speaking before the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, Shapiro said that the SEC is going to “take a fresh look” at rules relating to private placements and other securities offerings, both public and private. Specifically, she said that the agency will reconsider the private placement public marketing ban and the 500-investor threshold that categorizes a company as “public.”

Read this complete analysis of the impact at AdvisorFX (sign up for a free trial subscription with full access to all of the planning libraries and client presentations if you are not already a subscriber).

For previous coverage of private placements in Advisor’s Journal, see Private Placements Becoming Much Riskier for Firms (CC 11-78) and Private Placements Becoming Much Riskier for Firms (CC 11-78).

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FINRA Rule 45-30: Expansive new Complaint Report Requirements

Posted by William Byrnes on September 2, 2011


FINRA is digging deep into your customer comment box, and starting July 21, nothing will be off limits to the regulator.

Brokerages often expand beyond securities activities to diversify their income streams and broaden the scope of services they offer their clients. Keeping up with the assorted regulators and what are often cumbersome and confusing combinations of rules has always been a chore for those firms.

Not long ago, firms at least have been able to keep their professions separated, dealing, for instance, with securities and insurance regulators as isolated entities with little overlap in their bailiwicks. But increasingly, regulators like FINRA are erasing this dichotomy, peaking into all of a firm’s activities, even activities that are unrelated to the subject of the regulator’s jurisdiction.

Read this complete analysis of the impact at AdvisorFX (sign up for a free trial subscription with full access to all the planning libraries and client presentations if you are not already a subscriber).

For previous coverage of FINRA rulemaking in Advisor’s Journal, see FINRA Plans New Power Grab as SEC Falter (CC 11-67), Broker Bonus Arbitration Bottleneck Forces FINRA to Reconsider Arbitrator Qualification Standards (CC 11-08), and SEC Approves FINRA Suitability and Know-Your-Customer Rules (CC 11-17).

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IRS QTIP Ruling: Perils of Future Changes

Posted by William Byrnes on August 25, 2011


Clients often want to use Qualified Terminal Interest Property trusts (QTIPs) to separate certain funds to care for a surviving spouse, while retaining some measure of control over the general distribution of the funds—whether they will be distributed to children or a charity. But navigating the QTIP rules as client’s circumstances naturally endure change can be cumbersome.  The danger exists when errors that seem trivial, result in eliminating any transfer tax benefit of the trust.

A recent IRS private letter ruling (PLR 201117005) provides us with a good reminder of the QTIP rules and an example of creative QTIP planning that provides the surviving spouse with adequate lifetime income while giving the grantor (and the surviving spouse) a degree of post-death control over disposition of the trust assets.

Read this complete analysis of the impact at AdvisorFX (sign up for a free trial subscription with full access to all the planning libraries and client presentations if you are not already a subscriber)

For a graphic illustration of the QTIP trust, see the Concepts Illustrated practice aid at G—Credit Shelter Trust and QTIP Trust.

For coverage of QTIPs and other techniques useful in estate planning for blended families, see the Advisor’s Journal article Estate Planning for Blended Families (CC 07-16).

For in-depth analysis of marital deduction planning, see Advisor’s Main Library: G—The Marital Deduction.

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Private Placements Becoming Much Riskier for Firms

Posted by William Byrnes on August 14, 2011


There may be an increased need for caution when offering the newest private placements to clients. FINRA and the SEC are actively examining private placements and the firms that sell them. And if the regulators believe that something is amiss, they won’t hesitate to impose severe fines on everyone involved in the sale. As part of its ongoing sweep of firms that sold interests in failed private placements, FINRA has issued sanctions against two firms and seven individual principals of those firms. FINRA accuses them of causing significant investor losses by failing to conduct a reasonable investigation before offering the private placements for sale to investors.

Read this complete analysis of the impact at AdvisorFX (sign up for a free trial subscription with full access to all of the planning libraries and client presentations if you are not already a subscriber)

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Could 2011 & 2012 Gifts Come Back to Bite the Grantor

Posted by William Byrnes on August 8, 2011


Whether or not to give substantial lifetime gifts in 2011 and 2012 is going to be a hot topic between now and the end of 2012. But deciding whether to take advantage of the record high ($5 million) gift, estate and GST tax exclusion amount and low (35%) transfer tax rate isn’t a trivial matter.

Even your most tax savvy clients are going to need help deciding whether to take advantage of the new law.

The problem is that the new law—which was put into place by the Tax Reform Act of 2010—is scheduled to lapse on January 1, 2013. So is it worth taking the risk that Congress will radically change transfer tax laws for years post-2012? And what will happen to your clients’ transfer tax liability if Congress does change the law?

Read this complete analysis of the impact at AdvisorFX (sign up for a free trial subscription with full access to all of the planning libraries and client presentations if you are not already a subscriber).

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FINRA Plans New Power Grab as SEC Falters

Posted by William Byrnes on August 2, 2011


FINRA is continuing its recent power-grab in the face of a largely impotent and underfunded Securities and Exchange Commission. As the next stage in an increasing series of regulations and information reporting requirements, plans are in the works for a new-and-improved examination program that could further increase the information reporting requirements of member firms and significantly increase their compliance burden.

Read this complete analysis of the impact at AdvisorFX (sign up for a free trial subscription with full access to all of the planning libraries and client presentations if you are not already a subscriber).

For previous coverage of FINRA regulatory action in Advisor’s Journal, see Broker Bonus Arbitration Bottleneck Forces FINRA to Reconsider Arbitrator Qualification Standards (CC 11-08),  SEC Approves FINRA Suitability and Know-Your-Customer Rules (CC 11-17), & New FINRA Rule Restricts Brokers’ Outside Business Activities (CC 10-110).

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CAASP firma convênio com a Thomas Jefferson School of Law, da San Diego Califórnia (EUA)

Posted by William Byrnes on May 10, 2011


Inscritos na OAB-SP têm desconto de 20% em curso internacional que começa no dia 5 de julho

A Caixa de Assistência dos Advogados de São Paulo (CAASP), por meio do seu Clube de Serviços, acaba de formalizar parceria com a Thomas Jefferson School of Law (TJSL), de San Diego, Califórnia (EUA). Agora, os inscritos na OAB-SP têm desconto de 20% no curso de verão “Introdução ao Sistema Legal Norte-Americano” (Introduction to US Legal System), que será ministrado de 5 a 28 de julho. Em vez dos US$2 mil usuais, os advogados paulistas pagarão apenas US$1,6 mil. Há também oferta de estadia por valores diferenciados.

Para se matricular, o advogado deve cumprir o seguinte procedimento: no endereçowww.tjsl.edu/graduate/caasp, acionar o aplicativo TJSL/SC/2011, imprimir e preencher a ficha de inscrição. Em seguida, é preciso escanear o documento e enviá-lo para mcewenc@tjsl.edu, endereço eletrônico da professora Carla Lima de Castro McEwen, coordenadora pedagógica do curso.

“O curso habilita para o Exame da Califórnia Bar Association e conta com renomados professores norte-americanos, além da advogada brasileira Carla McEwen, coordenadora pedagógica, que garantirá aos brasileiros todo o suporte necessário em língua portuguesa”, destaca o assessor para Assuntos Institucionais da CAASP, George Augusto Niaradi. “Com mais esta parceria na esfera educacional, a Caixa prossegue em uma de suas linhas prioritárias, que é disponibilizar a todos os segmentos da advocacia paulista cursos que supram sua necessidade de atualização permanente”, afirma o presidente da Caixa de Assistência, Fábio Romeu Canton Filho.

O curso “Introdução ao Sistema Legal Norte-Americano” proporciona uma visão geral da linguagem norte-americana sobre o sistema jurídico baseado na jurisprudência (commom law). O aluno tem a oportunidade de conhecer a estrutura da linguagem jurídica usada na prática legal nos Estados Unidos em petições, apelações ou correspondências, além de participar de uma série de palestras. A programação contempla 15 horas semanais de aulas presenciais e 15 horas semanais de pesquisa e estudos.

A Thomas Jefferson School of Law nasceu em 1969 como campus de San Diego, na Califórnia, da Western University College of Law, tendo evoluído até tonar-se uma escola  de Direito de ponta, assim reconhecida tanto por estudantes dos Estados Unidos quanto de diversas partes do mundo. Um fato marcante na história recente da TJSL é a construção de um moderníssimo campus em San Diego Downtown East Village, perto do coração da comunidade jurídica da cidade. As primeiras aulas nas novas instalações foram ministradas em janeiro de 2011. Dotada de um corpo docente de classe mundial, a TJSL conta com três centros de excelência acadêmica: o Center for Global Legal Studies, o Centro para o Direito e Propriedade Intelectual e  Centro de Direito e da Justiça Social – todos os três centros têm alcançado destaque em suas áreas por meio de ofertas de cursos e programas de extensão.

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Pound Wise and Penny Foolish: The IRS Rebuts Unsound Tax Positions

Posted by William Byrnes on April 28, 2011


In the midst of the tax filing season, the Internal Revenue Service released the 2011 version of its discussion of many of the more common “frivolous” tax arguments made by individuals and groups that oppose compliance with federal tax laws.

The Service suggested that “anyone who contemplates arguing on legal grounds against paying their fair share of taxes should first read their 84-page document, The Truth About Frivolous Tax Arguments.”  At AdvisorFYI, we are not contemplating any particular legal grounds for not paying a “fair share of taxes”, whatever that may be, but rather are interested in presenting some of the frivolous positions argued and how the Government generally responds. We’ve presented a few select ones below.

The 2011 IRS document explains many of the common “frivolous” arguments made in recent years and it presents a legal position that attempts to refute these claims.  The IRS claims, the document “will help taxpayers avoid wasting their time and money with frivolous arguments and incurring penalties.”

Congress in 2006 increased the amount of the penalty for frivolous tax returns from $500 to $5,000.  The increased penalty amount applies when a person submits a tax return or other specified submission, and any portion of the submission is based on a position the IRS identifies as frivolous.

Here are some of positions we found to be commonly marketed to the public, and how the IRS responds to the positions:  Read the analysis at AdvisorFYI

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Beware Private Placements: Lessons From MedCap, Provident and DBSI

Posted by William Byrnes on April 26, 2011


FINRA and the SEC are actively examining private placements and the firms that sell them. If the regulators believe that something is amiss, they won’t hesitate to impose severe fines on everyone involved in the sale.

FINRA has issued sanctions against two firms and seven individual principals of those firms.  FINRA accuses them of causing significant investor losses by failing to conduct a reasonable investigation before offering the private placements for sale to investors.

Read this two-page article by linking to AdvisorOne – a National Underwriters Summit Business open-access original content wealth management news portal.

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The Perils of Not Re-Visiting a Client’s Plan—a $3MM Tax Bill

Posted by William Byrnes on March 24, 2011


In a recent case, the IRS denied an estate a fractional interest discount on the family ranch, resulting in a seven digit tax bill and the likely liquidation of the family homestead.  The father had numerous options for securing a valuation discount on, or excluding the value of, a significant tract of property from his gross estate, but hadn’t done any planning since 1965, resulting in total denial of a discount.  When he died in 2004, the property was worth $6,390,000.  Don’t let this be your client.

The dispute between the IRS and the father’s estate centered on whether the property’s value in the gross estate was: (1) the undiscounted value of a fee simple interest in the property or (2) the aggregated value of the children’s fractional interests in the property—valued separately with fractional interest discounts.  Read this complete analysis of the impact at AdvisorFX (sign up for a free trial subscription with full access to all of the planning libraries and client presentations if you are not already a subscriber).

For previous coverage of valuation discounts in Advisor’s Journal, see IRS Rebuffed by Federal Court of Appeals in Valuation Discount Case (CC 11-21) and Valuation Discounts: Only for a Bona Fide Business (CC 10-60).

For in-depth analysis of valuation discounts, see Advisor’s Main Library: A—Family Limited Partnerships and Estate & Gift Tax Valuation Discounting.

 

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Investment Trusts (or Not) Via Limited Liability Companies

Posted by William Byrnes on March 14, 2011


Is a state law trust that is established as an investment trust to hold interests in an LLC, which has the power to vary its investments, classified as an investment trust?

Example:

LLC is organized under the laws of State as a limited liability company and is treated as a partnership for federal tax purposes.  LLC will acquire, hold and manage a portfolio of investments.  The governing document of LLC permits the managers of LLC to sell assets in the portfolio and acquire new assets.

LLC will issue two classes of interests:  common interests and manager interests.  Holders of common interests and holders of manager interests have different rights to the income, deductions, credits, losses, and distributions of LLC.  Manager interests will be held by a select group of investors who are also responsible for managing LLC.  The common interests of LLC will be held by Trust.

Trust is organized under the laws of State as a trust.  The governing documents for Trust provide that Trust is only permitted to hold common interests in LLC.  Trust will issue trust certificates and each certificate will entitle the holder to all the income, gain, profit, deductions, credits, losses, and distributions associated with one common interest in LLC.  The governing documents for Trust indicate that Trust is a trust for federal tax purposes.

First, the Treasury Regulations provide that a “business entity” is an entity recognized for federal tax purposes that is not properly classified as a trust under or otherwise subject to special treatment under the Code. [1]

In addition, an arrangement will be treated as a trust if it can be shown that the purpose of the arrangement is to vest in trustees responsibility for the protection and conservation of property for beneficiaries who cannot share in the discharge of this responsibility and, therefore, are not associates in a joint enterprise for the conduct of business for profit. [2]

There are arrangements that are known as trusts because legal title to property is conveyed to trustees for the benefit of beneficiaries, but which are not classified as trusts for purposes of the Code because they are not simply arrangements to protect or conserve the property for the beneficiaries.   These trusts, which are often known as business or commercial trusts, generally are created by the beneficiaries simply as a device to carry on a profit making business which normally would have been carried on through business organizations that are classified as corporations or partnerships (business entities) under the Code. [3]

Moreover, an “investment” trust will not be classified as a trust if there is a power under the trust agreement to vary the investments of the certificate holders. [4] An investment trust with a single class of ownership interests, representing undivided beneficial interests in the assets of the trust, will be classified as a trust if there is no power to vary the investments of the certificate holders.

The essential nature of an arrangement, whatever its form, as shown by the objects attained and the manner of their attainment, is what controls the classification of the arrangement as a trust.[5] In determining the character of an arrangement, the managerial powers of all parties to an arrangement will be combined in order to arrive at the full amount of permitted managerial activity and its object. [6]

Going back to our example, to determine whether Trust is an investment trust for tax purposes, it is appropriate to consider the nature and purpose of Trust.  Trust is holding the interests in LLC for the purpose of providing investors with the benefits of the managed investments of LLC.  These investment activities would result in Trust failing to be classified as a trust if Trust were permitted to engage in those activities directly.  Because the nature and purpose of Trust under this arrangement is to vary the investments of the certificate holders, Trust is likely a business entity for federal tax purposes and not an investment trust.

Restated, a state law trust that is established as an investment trust to hold interests in an LLC partnership, that has the power to vary its investments, is generally not classified as a trust for federal tax purposes.

Tomorrow’s blogticle will discuss relevant topics to wealth managers in 2011.

We invite your opinions and comments by posting them below, or by calling the Panel of Experts.


[1] Treasury Regulations § 301.7701-2(a).

 

[2] Treasury Regulations § 301.7701-4(a).

[3] Treasury Regulations § 301.7701-4(b).

[4] Treasury Regulations §  301.7701-4(c); See also Comm’r v. North American Bond Trust, 122 F.2d 545 (2d Cir. 1941), cert. denied, 314 U.S. 701 (1942).

[5] Morrissey v. Comm’r, 296 U.S. 344 (1935).

[6] See Comm’r v. Chase Nat’l Bank, 122 F. 2d 540 (2d Cir. 1941).

 

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Does the New Estate Tax Make the Bypass Trust Obsolete?

Posted by William Byrnes on January 17, 2011


President Obama’s tax compromise introduces a new estate tax concept for 2011 and 2012, the deceased spouse unused exclusion amount (DSUEA).  Essentially, the DSUEA allows a surviving spouse to utilize the unused exclusion amount of the first spouse to die.  The new law raises an important planning question: Is the bypass (credit shelter) trust obsolete as an estate planning device? Also: Do existing bypass trusts need to be amended in light of the new law?

In general, under the new estate tax, an estate’s exclusion amount, referred to as its applicable exclusion amount, is the sum of two components: the basic exclusion amount and the DSUEA. The basic exclusion amount for estates of decedents dying in 2011 and 2012 is $5 million. The second part of the equation, the DSUEA, is the amount of the first-to-die spouse’s exclusion amount that is not used by the that spouse’s estate. Note that a surviving spouse’s DSUEA is equal to the unused exclusion amount of the surviving spouse’s last deceased spouse.  Read this complete article at AdvisorFX (sign up for a free trial subscription with full access to all of the planning libraries and client presentations if you are not already a subscriber).

For previous coverage of Obama’s tax agreement, including its estate tax provisions, in Advisor’s Journal, see Obama Tax Agreement Faces Stiff Resistance in Congress (CC 10-112) and Obama Tax Agreement Passed by House (CC 10-117).

For in-depth analysis of the estate tax, see Advisor’s Main Library: Estate, Gift and GST Taxes.

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The Future of Estate Planning under the Obama Tax Cuts

Posted by William Byrnes on January 11, 2011


Why is this Topic Important to Wealth Managers? Presents discussion on the effect of the Obama Tax Cuts on the Estate Planning industry in general.  Also presents analysis regarding the estate tax burden on taxpayers.

The quintessential planning tool that many wealth managers relied on could easily become a thing of the past.  In other words, the Obama Tax cuts are creating concern for some wealth managers who sold life insurance to cover the tax of an estate at the death of the decedent. Sections 301-304 of the new law reinstated the estate tax, but nevertheless, created large exclusions, essentially removing the need for many to cover the estate tax burden with the purchase of life insurance.

Specifically, the applicable estate tax exclusion amount is $5 million under the law (and is indexed for inflation) for decedents dying in calendar years starting in 2011.  Married individuals’ will see a total exclusion of $10 million.  Furthermore, the new law reinstates the maximum estate tax rate of 35 percent.  To read this article excerpted above, access www.AdvisorFYI.com

 

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video-conference courses January 10th – March 20th

Posted by William Byrnes on December 20, 2010


Live lectured video-conference webinars (recorded for pod-cast) for lawyers, accountants, bankers, compliance officers, trust and company service providers

courses include online access to LexisNexis, Westlaw, CCH, Checkpoint, IBFD, BNA, Tax Analysts and many more library databases

Chartered Asset Manager

– International Compliance

– Information Security and Cybercrime Law

– Law of Banking and Financial Institutions

– Loan Workouts, Debt Collection & Foreclosure

– International Tax & Financial Centers

– International Estate Planning

– United States Corporation Tax

– Business Bankruptcy

– E-Business Contract Law

To enroll please contact Prof. William Byrnes (email williambyrnes@gmail.com) Skype professorbyrnes or call +1 (619) 374-6955

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What’s Next for the Estate Tax?

Posted by William Byrnes on November 13, 2010


The estate tax is scheduled to explode in 2011. Analysts have assumed for years that Congress would act to fix the estate tax before it expired in 2010 and reverted to its pre-2001 levels in 2011, but it is looking more and more likely that the current Congress will hand the problem off to the next Congress on January 11, 2011.  Although movement during the lame duck session is possible, it is not likely to generate any positive action on the estate tax.

Whether Congress acts on the estate tax or not, 2011 will likely bring drastic changes to the estate tax, requiring your clients to do significant tinkering on their estate plans. In the interim, estate planning professionals will continue to use disclaimer planning as a stop gap measure to deal with 2010′ s estate tax uncertainty. For instance, rather than split an estate’s assets between credit shelter and marital deduction trusts—which is unnecessary when there is no estate tax—all of the assets are devised to the spouse or the marital deduction trust.  The surviving spouse can then disclaim up to the tax-free amount— … Read this complete article at AdvisorFX (sign up for a free trial subscription with full access to all of the planning libraries and client presentations if you are not already a subscriber).

For previous coverage of the estate tax conundrum in Advisor�s Journal, see Estate Tax Chaos (CC 10-02).

For in-depth analysis of the federal estate tax, see Advisor�s Main Library: Section 2 A—Overview Of The Federal Estate Tax And Its Calculation.

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Unqualified Disclaimers Can Create an Unexpected Tax Bill

Posted by William Byrnes on October 27, 2010


A disclaimer in the estate planning context is a voluntary refusal to accept a gift from a will. A properly structured disclaimer can be a great tax planning technique, allowing the person making the disclaimer to pass a gift on to the next person in line—for instance, someone in the next generation—without being subject to the gift tax.  But a disclaimer should not be made lightly because a disclaimer that is not “qualified” for tax purposes can create serious gift tax consequences for the person making the disclaimer.

The danger of an improperly made disclaimer was clearly illustrated in a recent U.S. District Court, Estate of Tatum v. U.S. There, Son disclaimed his interest in the residue of his father`s estate. But because Son`s disclaimer was not a qualified disclaimer, Son was treated as if he received the gift and then made a taxable gift to his children, resulting in a gift tax bill for Son and his wife of over $1,600,000.

Read this complete article at AdvisorFX (sign up for a free trial subscription with full access to all of the planning libraries and client presentations if you are not already a subscriber).

For in-depth analysis of qualified disclaimers, see the AUS Main Libraries Section 7 B1—What Transactions Constitute Taxable Gifts

 

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GRAT Strategy for Avoiding Gift on High Premium Payments May Be Coming to a Close

Posted by William Byrnes on October 18, 2010


Life insurance-based estate planning strategies for high-net-worth clients with estate liquidity issues run into the problem that premiums may be so high as to exhaust the client’s annual gift tax exclusion and lifetime exemption, resulting in unwanted gift tax exposure.  One way advanced planners have dealt with the gift tax problem of high premiums is through the use of a grantor retained annuity trust (GRAT).  But the U.S. House recently passed a bill—H.R.4849, the Small Business and Infrastructure Jobs Tax Act of 2010—that would severely curtail the use of GRATs, so the utility of this technique may soon be eliminated.

To illustrate this technique while it remains open, let’s assume you have an unmarried client, Max, who owns a number of restaurant franchises. His estate will be worth about $12 million, most of which is tied up in his franchises and other illiquid investments. Max’s estate will need around $6 million in liquid death benefit to cover the pending estate tax liability.  Read today’s article in your Advisor’s Journal at GRAT Strategy (sign up for a free trial subscription with full access to all of the planning libraries and client presentations if you are not already a subscriber).

For in-depth analysis of the topic of the use of GRATs, see Advisor’s Main Library Section 4. Estate Planning Techniques J—Grantor Retained Annuity Trusts

We invite your questions and comments by posting them below, or by calling the Panel of Experts.

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The Internal Revenue Code: Decoded

Posted by William Byrnes on October 8, 2010


Why is this Topic Important to Wealth Managers? Provides an introduction into the Internal Revenue Code so that tomorrow’s blogticle about specific sections of the Code may be better understood, in particular the taxation of life insurance companies.

How are the laws related to tax organized or in other words, what’s the general process in finding an answer to a tax question?

All federal laws of the United States arise out of the Constitution.  The Constitution has granted Congress certain enumerated powers, such as the power to regulate commerce among the several states.  Congress also has the power to create laws that are necessary and proper in governing based on its listed powers.  All powers not granted to the Federal government are reserved by the States through the 10th Amendment – meaning only the States may enact laws in those areas (al least this is how it is supposed to work).

Once Congress passes a necessary and proper law to carry out its enumerated powers, that law becomes a United States Statute, or a Statute already existing is either amended or deleted.  The Statutes of the United States are called the United States “Code”.

The United States Code is divided into 50 different titles.  Title 26 is perhaps the most infamous, being the “Internal Revenue Code”.  The Internal Revenue Code, or Title 26 of the United States Code is further delineated, into Subtitles, Chapters, Subchapters, Parts, and finally Sections and Subsections.

Congress has delegated the power of enforcement of these laws, which lies with the executive branch, of Title 26 to the Secretary of Treasury to create Regulations or Administrative Interpretations of the Statutes.  The regulations are not in and of themselves laws but rather, direction from the Secretary of interpretation of the laws.  The regulations have legal authority, which means they may be presented in court.  In almost all tax cases, there is some Statute, that is called into question, therefore the Court’s exclusive job is to rule on interpretation of the Statute as it applies to the situation before the court, not to overrule any statute, unless it found the law unconstitutional.  Therefore, additional law is generated by courts’ interpreting Statutes.  This is known as “case law”.

Read on about the The Internal Revenue Code: Decoded

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Offshore Planning’s Impact on Calculation of U.S. Income Tax Liability

Posted by William Byrnes on October 5, 2010


Why is this Topic Important to Wealth Managers? Discusses how international planning can impact clients’ tax position domestically.  Provides discussion on a number of common international tax concepts as they relate to U.S. taxpayers.

In previous blog this week, it has been briefly discussed that there may be a number of reasons a client may consider offshore planning, generally.  Today we will focus on one major component of offshore considerations, the impact of world-wide income on U.S. taxpayers. It is generally accepted that U.S. taxpayers are expected to pay income taxes on income earned from sources worldwide.  This concept is commonly referred to as “outbound” taxation.

It is the case that many sovereign nations will also have taxes on personal and/or corporate income that an individual or corporation could become subject to, creating in effect “double taxation.”  And some foreign nations choose to have very low or no tax rate on certain types of income, or on corporations in general, thus allowing foreign income to potentially escape foreign taxation (and current U.S. taxation in the year that it is earned).

What are some rules that that Congress has attempted to avoid double taxation or subject foreign income to U.S. taxation?

Check out the full blogticle at AdvisorFYI.

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Valuation Discounts: Only for a Bona Fide Business

Posted by William Byrnes on October 4, 2010


Valuation discounts are increasingly challenged by the IRS. Gone are the days when assets could be dropped into a family limited partnership with some transfer restrictions and forgotten about until a valuation discount was needed to reduce a gift or estate tax bill.  A recent U.S. District Court case, Fisher v. U.S., reminds us that times have changed.  Often, placing assets in a business entity is no longer enough to justify a valuation discount—the entity must be run like a business to justify the discount.   Read the analysis by our experts Robert Bloink and William Byrnes located at AdvisorFX Journal Valuation Discounts: Only for a Bona Fide Business

For some good news about valuation discounts, see our article in AdvisorFX Advisor’s Journal on the Jensen case.

From a tax perspective see Tax Facts Q 613. How is a closely held business interest valued for federal estate tax purposes?

After reading the analysis, we invite your questions and comments by posting them below, or by calling the Panel of Experts.

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The Changing Landscape of the Foreign Tax Credit Regime

Posted by William Byrnes on October 1, 2010


The tax landscape is changing for the amount U.S. multinational corporations may claim through the foreign tax credit.  This change is the result of the Statutory Pay-As-You-Go Act of 2010 that requires any increased spending must be offset by a corresponding increase in revenue.  The foreign tax credit modifications narrowly escaped becoming the offsetting revenue raising provisions of the Unemployment Compensation Extension Act of 2010 that extended unemployment benefits.  However, the success was short-lived, as these modifications were added to Pub. L. No. 111-226, the Education, Jobs and Medicaid Assistance Act  of 2010. This legislation provides $10 billion of elementary and secondary education funding to protect teacher jobs from being cut.  Nearly $10 billion over ten years is expected to be raised by altering various rules that corporations leverage to calculate their foreign tax credits and foreign-source income, providing the necessary revenue offset for this law.

In the article, we will examine the concept behind foreign tax credits offered in the United States; the history of foreign tax credits in the United States; the changes to the foreign tax credits; and the public policy behind the bill and the potential effects upon multinational corporations.  To download the free article, please link to LexisNexis here at Tax Law Community

You may post any questions or comments below  – Prof. William Byrnes

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Revocable Trusts

Posted by William Byrnes on September 24, 2010


Why is this Topic Important to Wealth Managers?   Provides a view with respect to revocable trust concepts and estate planning.  Presents identifying factors of the trust, what it’s commonly used for, as well as some of the benefits and detriments of its implementation. 

This week has mainly discussed the use of trusts with characteristics of complete transfers by grantors.  This edition will explore the revocable nature of trusts and how they are applicable to estate planning. 

The main difference between a revocable trust and one that is not, is that “the settlor reserves the right to terminate the trust and recover the trust property and any undistributed income.”  “The creation of a revocable living trust involves either the transfer of property to one or more trustees or the settlor’s declaration that he holds the property in trust for himself and that upon his death the property is to be held for other beneficiaries.”

For the complete blogticle and its analysis, see AdvisorFYI.

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Incidents of Ownership and Burden on the Estate

Posted by William Byrnes on September 22, 2010


Why is this Topic Important to Wealth Managers?   Discusses estate tax considerations in regards to life insurance policies.  Also, includes a detailed dialogue of the incidents of ownership concept. 

What do most wealth managers try to avoid when planning with life insurance and trusts?

That the Gross Estate for Estate Tax calculations would include the death benefit from the policy in the estate.

What are some common ways to avoid this dilemma when using a trust and life insurance in regards to estate planning?

For the answer to this question, and planning analysis, see the blogticle at AdvisorFYI

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IRS Proposed FATCA Guidance Expands Offshore Compliance Initiatives

Posted by William Byrnes on September 18, 2010


The IRS released proposals for FATCA guidance on August 27, 2010, in Notice 2010-60.  The notice outlines the shape of the regulations and raises grave concerns for a wide swath of transactions that have an offshore component— from foreign investments to captives and beyond.

Today’s analysis by our Experts William Byrnes and Robert Bloink is located at AdvisorFX Journal IRS Proposed FATCA Guidance Expands Offshore Compliance Initiatives.

After reading the analysis, we invite your questions and comments by posting them below, or by calling the Panel of Experts.

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Estate and Gift Taxes, Tax Cuts and More

Posted by William Byrnes on September 14, 2010


Why is this Topic Important to Wealth Managers?  Author Ben Terner of the Panel of Experts offers detailed information that has a direct affect on clients’ planning objectives as it relates to estate and gift tax.   Provides a general discussion as well as detailed analysis of the current law and the affect of Congress’ current indecision.

Generally, “[g]ross income does not include the value of property acquired by gift, bequest, devise, or inheritance.” [1] Which means gift income or inheritance income received by the beneficiary is not taxable income to the individual who receives property by such gift, bequest, devise, or inheritance. [2] “Although the donated or inherited property itself is not taxable, income derived from such property is includable in gross income.” [3]

Read the analysis at AdvisorFYI

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Certifications starting Jan 18

Posted by William Byrnes on November 30, 2009


  1. ® CAM Chartered Asset Manager – Certification Course – ITX 604 International Financial Services with Expert Speaker – Dr. George Salis (Vertex)
  2. ® RFS Registered Financial Specialist Course – ITX 605 International Anti-Avoidance Legislation & Jurisprudence with Expert Speaker – Kithsri DeSilva (New Zealand Revenue)
  3. ® CITA Certified International Tax Analyst Course – ITX 608 European Union Taxation 3
  4. ® CWM Chartered Wealth Manager – ITX 613 Advanced Wealth Management – With Expert Speaker – George Mentz, JD, MBA, CWM (Chair, American Academy ® )
  5. ® CCA Chartered Compliance Analyst – Certification Course – ITX 616 Anti Money- Laundering and Compliance 2 – Expert Speaker – Dr. Robert J. Munro
  6. ® CAMC Certified Anti Money Laundering Consultant – Course – ITX 618 Financial Crimes & Security lead instructor Phillips Gay (CEO, National Assoc. Bank Security)
  7. ® CITA Certification International Tax – ITX 626 Advanced Income Tax (US) Expert Speaker – Robert Bloink, Esq. (prev. 7 years IRS Counsel)
  8. ® CAPA Certified Asset Protection Analyst Course – ITX 627 Civil Tax Procedure (US) Expert Speaker – Larry Fedro, Esq (prev. 37 years IRS Appeals Manager)
  9. ® CITA Certified International Tax Analyst Course – ITX 628 Corporation Tax (US) Expert Speaker – Hannah Bible J.D., LL.M.
  10. ® CTEP Chartered Trust and Estate Planner Certification – ITX 630 Estate & Gift (US) lead instructor Richard Duke, J.D., LL.M.
  11. ® CBA Chartered Bankruptcy Analyst Certification – ITX 638 Bankruptcy Procedure
  12. ® CBA Chartered Bankruptcy Analyst Certification – ITX 641 Bankruptcy Taxation, Accounting and Financial Reporting
  13. ® CIB Chartered International Banker – ITX 642 Law of Banking and Financial Institutions – Certified International Banker Programme
  14. ® CPM Chartered Portfolio Manager – ITX 643 Equity Investments and Strategies lead instructor Stephen Polak, MSA, CPA/PFS, CFE, CFF (25 years IRS LMSB)
  15. ® CLA Chartered Loan Analyst – ITX 644 Loan Workouts, Debt Collection and Foreclosure
  16. ® AAPM – CPC Certified Project Consultant – ITX PM – Contingent upon demand/enrollment – Experts C. Thong & Mentz. Contracts & Scope

Collaboration each course is 42 lecture hours  webcam-online for with showing and sharing of applications – recorded for on-demand viewingGlobal network built amongst students, faculty, and returning alumni.

Knowledge & Efficiency Stand out from peers with full access and training on the industry tax and financial services databases, Westlaw and Lexis, CCH, Checkpoint, IBFD, Tax Analysts, BNA, Westlaw Business, Westlaw China, Complinet, and Butterworths, amongst the others.

Technology Confidence with planning and compliance software such as Orbitax, CCH compliance, Compliance Resource Network, and tax risk management enterprise systems e.g. Vertex.

Posted in Courses, Teaching Opportunities | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Caribbean Historical Anecdotes of its Financial Centers

Posted by William Byrnes on September 26, 2009


I continue in my historical anecdotes leading back up to the subject of cross-border tax (financial) information exchange and cross-border tax collection.  This week, we start with the United Nations Declaration Regarding Non-Self Governing Territories, which is in the UN Charter, then turn the a few UK Reports about her territories, and the UN and OECS Human Development Indices.

Marshall Langer will be addressing these much more in-depthly during his lectures in October and November.

Chapter XI

Declaration Regarding Non-Self-Governing Territories

Article 73 

Members of the United Nations which have or assume responsibilities for the administration of territories whose peoples have not yet attained a full measure of self-government recognize the principle that the interests of the inhabitants of these territories are paramount, and accept as a sacred trust the obligation to promote to the utmost, within the system of international peace and security established by the present Charter, the well-being of the inhabitants of these territories, and, to this end:

     a. to ensure, with due respect for the culture of the peoples concerned, their political, economic, social, and educational advancement, their just treatment, and their protection against abuses;

     b. to develop self-government, to take due account of the political aspirations of the peoples, and to assist them in the progressive development of their free political institutions, according to the particular circumstances of each territory and its peoples and their varying stages of advancement;

     c. to further international peace and security;

      d. to promote constructive measures of development, to encourage research, and to co-operate with one another and, when and where appropriate, with specialized international bodies with a view to the practical achievement of the social, economic, and scientific purposes set forth in this Article; and

     e. to transmit regularly to the Secretary- General for information purposes, subject to such limitation as security and constitutional considerations may require, statistical and other information of a technical nature relating to economic, social, and educational conditions in the territories for which they are respectively responsible other than those territories to which Chapters XII and XIII apply.

 Article 74 

Members of the United Nations also agree that their policy in respect of the territories to which this Chapter applies, no less than in respect of their metropolitan areas, must be based on the general principle of good-neighbourliness, due account being taken of the interests and well-being of the rest of the world, in social, economic, and commercial matters.

 1999 Partnership For Progress And Prosperity: Britain And Her Overseas Territories 

In 1999, Robin Cook presented to Parliament a White Paper Partnership for Progress and Prosperity: Britain and the Overseas Territories (the “White Paper”).  The White Paper’s primary conclusion was that the Overseas Territories had successfully diversified their economies through developing global market positions in the offshore financial services industry but that the Overseas Territories required reputation maintenance through regulatory enhancement in order to maintain their global market position within this industry.  The White Paper noted that the Caribbean Overseas Territories were potentially susceptible to money laundering and fraud because of their proximity to drug producing and consuming countries, inadequate regulation and strict confidentiality rules. 

 Also, the White Paper proposed that Britain grant full citizenship, i.e. with right of abode, to the Overseas Territories citizens.  But this right of citizenship was not in exchange for implementing the more extensive regulatory regimes in alignment with the OECD Report.  In 2002, the UK enacted the British Overseas Territories Bill[1] in order to fulfil the Government’s commitment, announced in the White Paper, to extend full British citizenship to those who were British Dependent Territories citizens. 

Free Movement of Persons 

Note that the nationals of the US, Netherlands, French, Portugal and Spanish territories have full parent State nationality with rights of abode.  The non-colony status jurisdictions charged further discriminatory treatment, that they did not have the same rights of free movement and abode as the colonial nationals. 

 In its Report, the OECD members targeted trade in capital and services with the stick of sanctions, but did not offer a carrot, much less a lifeline, to the independent micro-economies.  Some Island states’ pundits allege that the OECD drive against tax competition is a geo-political move for re-(economic) colonization.  These commentators propose that the inevitable declining human development impact of the OECD’s drive against tax competition will be a brain drain to the OECD countries via legal and illegal immigration.     

The United Nations Human Development Report for 2009, to be released within a few weeks in October, will address the international issue of the movement of persons. 

The OECS Human Development Report 2002 

Because the UN Human Development Annual Report does not include all the Caribbean Islands, such as the non self-governing former colonies, the OECS Human Development Report is critical for the quantitative measuring and qualitative analysis of social and economic indicators for Eastern Caribbean territories, and to then be able to contrast these to other UN members captured by the UN Report.

It should be noted that the OECS Report noted that the Caribbean financial centers held approximately US$2 trillion in assets from international financial center activities.  The OECS stated that these international financial services contributed foreign exchange to its members’ economies, revenue to its governments, and that the sector created employment while developing human resources and contributing to the growth of technology.  The OECS concluded that the most important impact to the economies from international financial services was economic diversification.[2] 

1990 Gallagher Report 

In 1989, HMG commissioned the Gallagher Report (Survey of Offshore Finance Sectors of the Caribbean Dependent Territories) with the intent to review whether its territories’ offshore financial services sectors regulations met international standards.  Overall, the Gallagher Report presented proposals to extend the range and scope of offshore financial services in the COTs through the introduction of new measures designed to improve the regulatory framework especially with relation to banks, trusts, insurance and company management.  The Gallagher Report made specific recommendations to several jurisdictions.

By example, with regard to the British Virgin Islands, the Gallagher Report presented proposals to extend the range and scope of offshore financial services through the introduction of new measures designed to improve the regulatory framework as it relates especially to banks, trusts, insurance and company management.  Following the Gallagher Report’s proposals, the BVI government revised in 1990 the 1984 IBC Act, enacted a modern Banks & Trust Companies Act to replace the 1972 legislation; and passed the Company Management Act requiring companies providing registration and managerial services to be licensed.  In 1993, BVI enacted a Trustee (Amendment) Act in order to modernise the 1961 Trust Ordinance and the following year passed the 1994 Insurance Act.

With regard to Anguilla, Gallagher’s Report criticised the lack of up-to-date legislation, inadequate supervision of its financial sectors, and a confidentiality statute that encouraged “the type of business best avoided”.  Gallagher’s Report recommended the enactment of three draft laws, as well as the repeal of the Confidential Relationships Ordinance 1981.[3]  Following Gallagher’s Report, in 1992 the British Government aid agency engaged the consultancy firm of Mokoro to advise the Government of Anguilla on its economic strategy for the 21st century.  The Mokoro Report concluded that the development of additional economic activity in Anguilla principally required the development of the financial sector.  The 1993 Report stated that the financial sector’s socio-economic impact would be: 

  • Substantial additional government revenue.
  • Sizeable increase in the contribution of professional services to the GDP (Gross Domestic Product).
  • Range of new employment opportunities for young people.
  • Increase in professional trading.
  • Inward migration of Anguillans living overseas.
  • Increase in the number of visitors and a decrease in their seasonability.

As a result of the Report, Anguilla received a three-year 10.5 million English pound grant from the Minister for Overseas Development to research and to develop a Country Policy Plan.  In 1994, Anguilla updated its international financial center through enacting a package of twelve statutes.

Please contact me for further information or research that you would like to share on these topics at http://www.llmprogram.org.


[1] Bill 40 of 2001-2002 was enacted to fulfil the Government’s commitment, announced in March 1999 in its White Paper, to extend full British citizenship to those who were British Dependent Territories citizens.

[2] 2002 OECS Report p.23.

[3] The Confidential Relationships Ordinance, 1981, made it illegal to give other Governments information, including information regarding tax offences.

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England’s Historical Legislative Treatment of Charitable Institutions

Posted by William Byrnes on August 7, 2009


When asked to comment upon the various versions of health care reform bills that will soon be voted upon by Congress, I recalled quote by Russell Long, then Chair of the Finance Committee[1]:

         “When the Finance Committee began public hearings on the Tax Reform Act of 1969 I referred to the bill as ‘368 pages of bewildering complexity.’  It is now 585 pages  . . . .”

 This week I turn my blogticle to expiscate the eristic historical context of the tax advantaged treatment enjoyed by charitable institutions.  Why charitable institutions?  In the United States, charitable institutions are known as tax exempt ‘non-profits’ though some are profitable in the accounting sense.  By example, many hospitals, though profitable and even lucripetous, are granted by the federal and state revenue authorities tax exempt status as charities.  However, Congress has pretermitted any issues, and thus leverage, associated with the tax exempt status of health care providers in the various health care reform bills.

 England’s Historical Legislative Treatment of Charitable Institutions

In order to finance his reign, Henry VIII seized the Catholic Church’s and universities’ lands and with parliament enacted The Statute of Uses in 1536 and The Chantries Act in 1545.[2]  The Statute of Uses, in enacting the rule against perpetuities, terminated the situation that most English land, in order to escape feudal dues, was held from family generation to generation in dynastical, perpetual trusts owned by the Church.[3]  The Chantries Act provided for escheat of colleges’ possessions.[4]  The government established as an organ of itself with tax-exempt status by its sovereign nature the Church of England, replacing the Catholic Church.[5]

See-sawing in favor of charitable institutions, under Elizabeth I in 1597, parliament enacted a charitable corporation act that exempted specified institutions from government charges and the requirement of government consent when formed for the following purposes:

        to erect, found, and establish, one or more hospitals, maison de Dieu, abiding places, or houses of correction, . . . as well as for the finding, sustentation, and relief of the maimed, poor, needy or impotent people, as to set the poor to work, to have continuance forever, and from time to time place therein such head and members, and such number of poor as to him, his heirs and assigns should seem convenient.[6]

Furthering Elizabeth I’s charitable incorporation statute by suppressing the application of Henry’s Statute of Uses and its rule against perpetuities, four years later Parliament enacted the Statute of Charitable Uses, 1601, allowing real property transfers to perpetual charitable trusts.[7]  The Statute provided for exemption from the Statute of Uses for a transfer to a charity that provided:

        relief of aged, impotent and poor people, . . . maintenance of sick and maimed soldiers, schools of learning, free schools, and scholars in universities, . . . repair of bridges, ports, havens, causeways, churches, sea-banks and highways, . . . education and preferment of orphans, . . . relief, stock or maintenance of houses of correction, . . . marriages of poor maids, . . . aid and help of young tradesman, handicraftsman and persons decayed, relief of prisoners, . . . aid of any poor inhabitants.[8]

However, during the late sixteenth century and seventeenth century, the Crown often piecemeal interfered with religious charitable trusts, either voiding the trust or employing cy pres to divert the trust assets to the Crown’s favored religion.[9]  Charitable institutions once again falling out of the Crown’s blanket favor, two hundred years after and in the same vein as the Statute of Uses, Parliament revived a specific anti-charity statute, The Mortmain Act, in 1736.[10]  The Mortmain Act of 1736 invalidated real property transfers to any charity mortis causa as well as inter vivos transfers made one year or less before death.[11]  Though this statute limiting the funding of charities remained English law until The Charities Act, 1960, Parliament modified it in 1891 to allow for exceptions for devised property not to be used for investment, thus endowment, purposes.[12]

Prof. William Byrnes (http://www.llmprogram.org


[1] 115 Cong. Rec. S14,944 (1969) (statement of The Hon. Russell B. Long), reprinted in 1969 U.S.C.C.A.N. 2391, 2490.

[2] Evelyn Brody, Charitable Endowments and the Democratization of Dynasty, 39 Ariz. L. Rev. 873, 901, 909-10, 911-13 (1997) Henry VIII was by no means the first king to dissolve monasteries. 

[3] Brody at 901.

[4] Brody at 912-13.

[5] See Christine Roemhildt Moore, Comment, Religious Tax Exemption and The “Charitable Scrutiny” Test, 15 Reg. U. L. Rev. 295, 298-99 (2002-2003).

[6] See James J. Fishman, The Development of Nonprofit Corporation Law and an Agenda for Reform, 34 Emory L.J. 617, n.65 (1985).

[7] Lars G. Gustafsson, The Definition of “Charitable” for Federal Income Tax Purposes: Defrocking the Old and Suggesting Some New Fundamental Assumptions, 33 Hous. L. Rev. 587, 605 (1996) (citing An Act to redress the Mis-employment of Lands, Goods, and Stocks of Money heretofore given to Charitable Uses, 1601, 43 Eliz., ch. 4 (Eng.)).

[8] Oliver A. Houck, With Charity For All, 93 Yale L.J. 1415, 1422 (1984) (quoting Charitable Uses Act, 1601, 43 Eliz., ch. 4).

[9] See Norman Alvey, From Charity to Oxfam: A Short History of Charity Legislation 10-11 (1995).

[10] See Gustafsson at 606, 649 n.62 (noting that Mortmain statutes had previously been enacted in England but the Statute of Charitable Uses substantively repealed them); see also Brody, at 903 (noting that Parliament’s sentiments for legislating the statute are uncertain, but may have been due to anticlerical feelings).

[11] Alvey at 11.

[12] Brody at 905 n.147 (noting that the statute was modified in 1891 to allow either the court or the Charity Commissioners to grant exception for a mortis causa real property transfer to charity as long as the property was to be used for charitable activity rather than for investment purposes).

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