STEP Wealth Structuring News Digest wrap-up – July’s top stories


Work and life proving to be too fast paced to keep up with all of the latest trust and estate sector news? Welcome to the wrap-up of the top ten most popular stories in the STEP Wealth Structuring News Digest throughout July. In case you missed them, here are the worldwide industry news stories most viewed by our readers.

Nolan family’s claim against trust company ruled within time limit: Jersey’s Royal Court has ordered the financial and trust services group Minerva to pay GBP11.5 million in damages to 13 members of the Nolan family. The family members lost large sums through fraudulent investments they were induced to make by one of Minerva’s former clients, Gerard Walsh.

Newspaper exposes clients of Jersey wealth advisor firm: The Guardian newspaper has obtained the names of 20,000 people, both UK and non-UK residents, who are said to be clients of the Jersey-based wealth management division of Kleinwort Benson or beneficiaries of trusts it administers.

Full text of OECD auto exchange standard: The OECD has published the full text of its Common Reporting Standard for the automatic exchange of tax information between jurisdictions.

HSBC retreats from Cayman Islands: HSBC has announced the winding down of its Cayman Islands corporate and retail banking operation, in a strategic withdrawal from the market.

Marketed schemes are doomed but individual planning will survive: A briefing paper from Farrer considers the future of tax planning in the UK in the face of government-inspired media hostility. It concludes that highly artificial marketed schemes will no longer work, but bespoke long-term tax planning for individual clients is still on the table.

New money laundering rules to identify trust beneficiaries: Singapore’s Monetary Authority has released a consultation paper on amendments to anti-money laundering guidance, embodying the latest FATF recommendations. The proposals specify procedures to identify beneficial ownership of companies and trusts; allow a risk-based approach for some politically exposed persons; and restrict cross-border funds transfers above SGD1,500.

Credit Suisse advisors about to be shopped to USA: Credit Suisse is preparing to pass the names of a thousand of its employees to US officials who are investigating tax evasion by American citizens. The employees – former and current client advisors who processed payments for US clients – have been given until 28 July to object.

Purpose trusts: a perplexing ruling: Keith Robinson TEP contemplates a recent Bermudan judgment on disclosure in the case of purpose trusts.

More on anti-offshoring and beneficial ownership legislation: The latest issue of Withers’ bulletin for investors based in Russia and the CIS countries includes a briefing on the proposed changes to Russia’s controlled foreign companies rules and other anti-offshore measures. It also discusses changes to the UK’s Tier 1 (Investor) visa scheme.

Court awards half of businessman’s Jersey trust to ex-wife: The Hong Kong Court of Final Appeal has awarded Kay Kan half the funds held in her ex-husband’s Jersey family trust, as part of her HKD840 million (USD108 million) divorce pay-off. The trust holds 85 per cent of the equity in Otto Lok-To Poon’s engineering firm, and its income consists solely of the firm’s dividends which are set by Poon himself, said the judge (case FACV20/2013, KLK and PLTO).

The STEP Industry News Digests provide a round-up of relevant industry news for trust and estate practitioners and other professionals in the wealth management sector. They provide brief summaries of topical news stories gathered from news providers internationally, providing a quick reference for busy practitioners to all the relevant news and issues. The News Digests also feature job listings from our recruitment site and list local STEP branch events and conferences. STEP’s digest services include twice weekly UK and Wealth Structuring (international) editions as well as a bi-weekly North America Digest focusing on the US, Canada and Mexico, and a Latin America Digest.

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