Clearing the air on the Tax Transparency debate

The legal community and the media seem to have a difference of opinion with regards to New Zealand being a safe tax haven. The recent media report of the country being an oasis for foreign trusts has invited sharp criticism from Geoffrey Cone, a prominent lawyer based in Auckland.

The answer to the question of tax transparency in New Zealand isn’t that hard to interpret. The OECD (Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development) has a transparent list of tax havens around the world and New Zealand does not feature on that list. One of the key features of being a safe tax haven includes the imposition of nominal taxes which is very less or isn’t charged at all. There is a divide on sharing information; the laws in place at such tax sanctuaries inhibit any such exchanges with other governments. New Zealand for one has always been transparent with its laws and does not permit such infringements of the common law.

The OECD had come up with a model agreement in 2002 on the exchange of information on tax matters and New Zealand was one of the very first countries to accept the verdict and featuring on the OECD’s accord to implement it in its own country.

The country on various occasions has maintained its stance and displayed superiority when it comes to the handling of foreign trusts. Strict laws are in place which is to be respected and adhered to by all individuals and private institutions. The government itself on more than one occasion has assisted other governments on providing relevant information pertaining to its tax transparency accord.

The year 2006 also saw new rules being introduced and implanted with regards to tax transparency. Under the new law, any New Zealand Trustee of a foreign trust is liable to compulsorily fill and submit a Foreign Trust Disclosure Form and keep financial records for any tax purposes, if they arise. This includes information like the trust deed, the settlement details, the assets and liabilities held by the trust etc and failure to act upon these rules attract heavy penalties. The law was further amended in the year 2011 after the World Standard Money Laundering Legislation came into effect.

About Cone Marshall

Geoffrey Cone is a partner at Cone Marshall and one of its founding members. The law firm was established in 1999. Karen Marshall is also a partner at the firm. Her role extends to acting a director of a trust company in the role of a trustee. Cone Marshall specializes in International Trust and Tax Planning and providing trustee and trust management services through its affiliates.

Cone Marshall has been providing its services for more than a decade to private banks, trustees and organizations based out of New Zealand. The firm also provides trust, tax and administrative services.

Ross Abelow Sets Up GoFundMe Campaign For Animal Shelters

Too many times often, when someone reaches a certain level of success, they forget what it took to get there. They forget their humbling beginnings. They forget to lend a helping hand to those that look up to them, in order for them to reach that pedestal of success.

Ross Abelow is a man that not only gives back to his community, he is a man that has not forgotten where he has came from, and therefore defies the stigma of people becoming a success and ultimately becoming selfish and arrogant. Mr. Abelow earned his license and right to practice law in New York in 1990. Growing up in New York, he went on to attend the State University of New York and then attending Brooklyn Law School, and eventually graduating in 1989. His specialties of law include families, specifically dealing with matrimonial and family law, and also entertainment law and commercial litigation. After spending 26 years obtaining experience as a lawyer, he would eventually become a partner of Abelow & Cassandro, Llp, a law firm of him and his partner.

Recently Abelow has decided to orchestrate a GoFundMe page aiming to help benefit animals living at animal shelters. The fundraiser originally started on January 23, 2016 and was set to reach a goal of raising $5,000 to help the city animal shelters with food, medical care, blankets for the homeless and vulnerable animals that reside within the shelters. With the campaign kicking off in the middle of the winter, Abelow is hoping that he is able to assist shelters in keeping unfortunate animals who do not have a place to call home, from dying. New York, a place which boast some of the harshest winters throughout the country is home to many homeless and abandoned animals who have neither food nor shelter.

It is truly wonderful that someone like Ross Abelow is willing to step forward and take the initiative in dealing with an epidemic that is ever so present in New York and surrounding locations throughout the country. Due to Ross Abelow, and his generous efforts, he is able to make a difference because of his name and his earned success.