Owning UK property through offshore companies and trusts is not new and, until recently, has not been particularly news worthy. However, in the modern world there is an increasing belief that owning UK property through offshore structures must be linked to tax evasion.
While it is true that certain tax benefits still exist to offshore structures these have largely been eroded by the Government since 2012 and will cease altogether from 2017. So why do people still use these structures? The answer is that there are many reasons to.
The British media tends to forget that not everyone owning British property lives in a world free from persecution and direct Government intervention. Corporate ownership will often provide buyers with confidentiality and asset protection that they would not otherwise be able to achieve through private ownership. Further, there are an increasing number of property purchasers who wish to plan how best to hold property for the next generation and this too can often be achieved more easily through the use of offshore structures.
While nefarious tax evasion must be stamped out, tarnishing everyone with the same brush is a dangerous road that should be avoided at all costs.
Selling England by the offshore pound