Tuesday, December 11, 2007
Saturday, December 8, 2007
is to arrange your financial affairs so as to minimize your taxes. There are four basic ways to reduce your taxes, and each basic method might have several variations. You can reduce your income, increase your deductions, and take advantage of tax credits.
Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) is a key element in determining your taxes. Lots of other things depend on your AGI (or modifications to your AGI)-- such as your tax rate and various tax credits. AGI even impacts your financial life outside of taxes: banks, mortgage lenders, and college financial aid programs all routinely ask for your adjusted gross income. This is a key measure of your finances.
Because your adjusted gross income is so important, you may want to begin your tax planning here.
What goes into your adjusted gross income? AGI is your income from all sources minus any adjustments to your income. The higher your total income, the higher your adjusted gross income. As you can guess, the more money you make, the more taxes you will pay. Conversely, the less money you make, the less taxes you will pay. The number one way to reduce taxes is to reduce your income. And the best way to reduce your income is to contribute money to a 401(k) or similar retirement plan at work. Your contribution reduces your wages, and lowers your tax bill.
You can also reduce your Adjusted Gross Income through various adjustments to income. Adjustments are deductions, but you don't have to itemize them on the Schedule A. Instead, you take them on page 1 of your 1040 and they reduce your Adjusted Gross Income. Adjustments include contributions to a traditional IRA, student loan interest paid, alimony paid, and classroom related expenses. A full list of adjustments are found on Form 1040, page 1, lines 23 through 34. The best way to boost your adjustments is to contribute to a traditional IRA.
As you can see, two of the best ways to reduce your taxes is to save for retirement, either through a 401(k) at work or through a traditional IRA plan. Contributions to these retirement plans will lower your taxable income, and lower your taxes.
Increase Your Tax Deductions
Taxable income is another key element in your overall tax situation. Taxable income is what's left over after you have reduced your AGI by your deductions and exemptions. Almost everyone can take a standard deduction, and some people are able to itemize their deductions.
Itemized deductions include expenses for health care, state and local taxes, personal property taxes (such as car registration fees), mortgage interest, gifts to charity, job-related expenses, tax preparation fees, and investment-related expenses. One key tax planning strategy is to keep track of your itemized expenses throughout the year using a spreadsheet or personal finance program. You can then quickly compare your itemized expenses with your standard deduction. You should always take the higher of your standard deduction or your itemized deduction.
Your standard deduction and personal exemptions depends on your filing status and how many dependents you have. You can increase your standard deduction and personal exemptions by getting married or having more dependents.
The best strategies for reducing your taxable income is to itemize your deductions, and the three biggest deductions are mortgage interest, state taxes, and gifts to charity.
Take Advantage of Tax Credits
Once we've tweaked our taxable income, we are ready to focus our attention on various tax credits. Tax credits reduce your tax. There are tax credits for college expenses, for saving for retirement, and for adopting children.
The best tax credits are for adoption and college expenses. Not everyone is in a position to adopt a child, but everyone could take some college classes. There are two education-related tax credits. The Hope Credit is for students in their first two years of college. The Lifetime Learning Credit is for anyone taking college classes. The classes do not have to be related to your career.
You may also want to avoid additional taxes. If at all possible, avoid early withdrawals from an IRA or 401(k) retirement plan. The amount you withdraw will become part of your taxable income, and on top of that there will be additional taxes to pay on the early withdrawal.
One of the best, and most abused, tax credit is the Earned Income Credit (EIC). Unlike other tax credits, the EIC is credited to your account as a payment. And that means the EIC often results in a tax refund even if the total tax has been reduced to zero. You may be eligible to claim the earned income credit if you earn less than a certain amount.
Increase Your Withholding
You can avoid owing at the end of the year by increasing your withholding. More money will be taken out of your paycheck throughout the year, but you will get bigger refund when you file your taxes.
You can contact me and discuss how you can convert your income or part of your income into an offshore company and pay little or no tax at all!
Merry Christmas America!
Sunday, November 25, 2007
The OECD update on offshore tax havens targeted specifically Austria, Luxembourg, Switzerland and Singapore claiming that these popular, well regulated, private and secure jurisdictions have been less than fully cooperative with recent amendments to international standards for information sharing.
Interestingly enough, Singapore is the jurisdiction that has been favoured by many seeking to remove assets from the European Union and the other nations that signed up to the EU Savings Tax Directive. Having not agreed to the terms of the directive, Singapore has benefited substantially from an inward flow of international assets and funds and has gained ground in terms of its popularity as an offshore tax haven of note.
Naturally enough the jurisdiction is more than keen to maintain its newly found status and is therefore seemingly attempting to tread the incredibly fine line between cooperation and maintaining a competitive edge – but Singapore must tread carefully, the influence and far reaching authority of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development should never be underestimated.
The other offshore centres mentioned specifically by the OECD in its tax haven update - namely Austria, Switzerland and Luxembourg - have all signed up to the terms of the EU Savings Tax Directive and yet still they have been heavily criticised for not doing enough to counter tax evasion.
In a damning comment aimed right at Austria, Luxembourg and Switzerland the OECD update on offshore tax havens reads ‘a number of offshore financial centres that are committed to implement standards on transparency and the effective exchange of information standards developed by the OECD’s global forum on taxation have failed to do so.’
The chairman of the organisation’s fiscal affairs division did not go so far as to outwardly threaten the jurisdictions, but it is apparent that they have not done enough to implement the standards for transparency and exchange of information that were developed by the Global Forum back in 2000. It’s likely that the offshore centres named will have significant pressure exacted upon them in coming months and it will be very interesting to see how they work to tread the fine line between giving sufficient access to bank information for tax purposes and remaining attractive in order to win and retain offshore business.
Thursday, November 15, 2007
This week I have been visiting Irland looking at the tax situation over here... and it has been quite interesting!
With an income tax of more than 45% and a Capital Gains Tax of 20% you can say that I'm fairly happy to find yet another place on this fantastic planet that really need some help from Mr. Jarl Moe ...
Property investing is very popular in this country both inside and outside the boarder and now, after my information the people of Dublin will save taxes the next years simply following and benefiting from the Cyprus tax treaty.
PS. For some travel info on my Dublin trip visit http://jarlmoe.wordpress.com/
Sunday, October 28, 2007
Well, the dust has (almost) settled, and it’s time for a quick review of what Chancellor Darling’s pre-budget report actually means for us.
I should stress at the outset that if you hold business or property assets, and are thinking about selling them, then you should go out and get professional advice from a tax advisor about whether to try to do so before or after the 6th April next year. This is very much my personal understanding of the “headline issues” only… in no way am I trying to give tax advice.
The overall summary is that it’s a welcome piece of news for us property investors, but bad for us business owners (so once again, I’m in a “he giveth with one hand, he taketh with the other) situation.
OK, time to review the current arrangements for Capital Gains Tax (CGT):
1: Everyone gets a tax-free allowance each year for “capital gains” (businesses, property, shares, etc.). In the analysis that follows, I’m pretty much going to ignore this, because it makes the explanation easier, and doesn’t really change the “impact”
2: Some things (like the house you live in) is exempt from CGT.
3: The “basic rate” for capital gains has been 40%, but with a wrinkle, as follows:
3.1: For “business assets”, like shares in a private (unquoted) company, shares in companies quoted on AIM, shares where you own 5% or more of a given company, or where you’re a Director or Employee of the company, you get “business taper relief”, which has been good. Basically, provided you hold onto the asset for one year, you effectively pay tax at 20% instead of 40% (so-called 50% taper relief)… and if you hold onto the asset for two years or more, you effectively pay tax at 10% (so-called 75% taper relief.) For those of us who’ve built businesses, and then sold them, this has been, well good… since it means that we’ve paid 10% tax on our gains.
3.2: For “non-business assets”, like rental property, you get “non-business taper relief”. This cuts in MUCH more slowly, with not a penny reduction until you’d held the asset for 2 years (at which point you get a reduction from 40% tax down to 38% - woo)… and “full relief” only after you’ve held it for 10 years (at which point you get a reduction from 40% tax down to 24%.)
Some quick illustrations when explain why we property investors have been campaigning to be treated like business owners (given we’re regulated like them!)
Hold a business for 2 years, pay tax at 10% when you sell it. Hold a rental property for 2 years, pay tax at 38% when you sell it. Hold a business for 10 years, pay tax at 10% when you sell it. Hold a rental property for 10 years, pay tax 24% when you sell it. Here’s the proposed new rule…
Capital gains tax will be at 18%, irrespective of how long you’ve owned the thing, and irrespective of whether the thing is a “business” or a “non-business” asset. You can probably see, therefore, why someone who’s got a few buy to lets, and was thinking of cashing out, is probably going to hang on until next April to sell, all of a sudden… and pay tax at 18% rather than between 24-40%.
Likewise, however, pity the poor businessman who has worked the last 7 years, ploughing his life savings into the thing, working all hours, and looking forward to selling out when he hits 60 in 2010… suddenly, he’ll pay 18% tax rather than 10%… almost double what he would have paid.
Expect to see a few small businesses up for sale over the next few months, as people try to sell up under the current rules rather than the proposed new ones…
… but if that’s you looking to sell, go and see a real accountant first, eh?
Saturday, October 27, 2007
This weekend 26th and 27th of October I am speaking at the Property Man's event in York, UK.
Even more exiting as I am teaching people how to pay ZERO Captial Gains tax on all their income from their property investing.
Talk about bundle!
Sunday, September 30, 2007
will be speaking at the Internet Summit in Singapore in October 2007.
Several of our great friends will share powerful information together with us...
Stay tuned on http://www.internetmillionaireincubator.com/special/
Before Singapore we will be checking out Shangai in China and have several meetings to PUSH success forward together with you.
Part of the seminar will be recorded in MP3 so stay tuned!
PS. I just started a BRAND NEW Jarl Moe travel blog at http://jarlmoe.wordpress.com/
Wednesday, September 26, 2007
As I am touring USA right now speaking to the public about how to save more tax and use the international law to their benefit.....
Its time for you to learn some of the terms you must know but inside and outside USA in egards of finance and money.
Here we go:
Family, friends and fools, the first source of money used by most entrepreneurs.
A purchase of a controlling interest (more than 50%) of a company’s ownership by another company or outside investor in exchange for cash or shares with the intent to acquire its assets and operations.
Individual or angel investors.
Investors or gamblers that risk money they can’t afford to lose.
A notification from the SEC instructing a company to withdraw its IPO because its registration statement is not in accordance with securities laws.
Blank Check Offering
Also known as SEC Rule 419, is an initial public offering of an early-stage company that has not finalized the exact type of business it will run (or acquire). In a blank check offering, investors are betting on the success of the (usually seasoned) management team, more so than on the company's proposed products or services. Because of their high risk, so-called "blank check companies" are required to put investors' funds into an escrow account.
A Board of Directors or Operating Board of the company. Consists of individuals who oversee the company’s development on behalf of and for the benefit of the shareholders. The Board advises the senior management team and sets certain corporate policies.
A limited amount of equity capital or short term debt financing typically acquired within 6-18 months of an anticipated public offering or major round of equity investment.
The rate at which a company is spending its cash.
Broken IPO (sometimes called a "break issue")
A situation in which the stock price falls below the offering price after the underwriter has determined the initial price of the IPO.
A purchase of a controlling interest (more than 50%) of a company’s ownership by an outside investor ("leveraged buyout" or "LBO") or management team ("management buyout" or "MBO") in exchange for cash and debt with the intent to acquire the company’s assets and operations.
The percentage of the return collected by VC’s on their limited partners investments.
The net amount of cash generated ("built") or expended ("burned") by a company.
Class A/B Stock
Issuing stock of different classes with different terms and rights. (e.g.: voting vs. non-voting)
VC’s returning money to investors when the VC has earned more than the agreed carry.
A meeting or event when the investment capital is transferred to the company in exchange for equity or debt and, after the required legal documents are executed between the investor and the company.
A "collar," in terms of an IPO, is the lowest price that the issuer will accept for shares of a planned initial public offering.
An asset (tangible or intangible) that could be pledged by a company to secure debt.
A state of an entrepreneurial company’s growth, from its initial formation to its liquidity event (e.g. public offering, acquisition, merger, etc.)
Comparable Public Company
A publicly traded company with characteristics (e.g. industry, revenues, company stage, etc.) similar to the company seeking capital.
An ownership of more than 50% of the equity of a company or the ownership of the greatest amount of equity compared with the other shareholders (“plurality”.)
A note, warrant, preferred share, or other specialized security that will be exchanged (i.e.: converted) into a predetermined number of common shares of the company at a predetermined, future time.
Cost of Goods Sold
The direct costs associated with the sales of the company. Would include such items as materials and labor directly used to manufacture the products.
Legal condition imposed on a company which defines positive and negative trends of a financing or the operations.
The ratio of current assets to current liabilities, i.e.: current assets divided by current liabilities.
An amount of principal and interest payable on a regular basis to repay a loan.
A failure of a company to comply with the covenants and/or terms and conditions of the financing.
Direct Public Offering ... the practice of selling shares of an IPO directly to the public without using an underwriter. The DPO strategy is often used by companies that have struggled to raise capital through conventional channels and/or companies conducting small offerings in which traditional underwriting fees would be prohibitive.
The process of evaluating the merits, risks and potential of an investment opportunity.
"Earnings Before Interest and Taxes". EBIT is equivalent to the Operating/Gross Profit.
A state of a company that typically has completed its seed stage financing and has a founding or core senior management team, proven its concept or completed its beta test, has minimal revenues, has no positive earnings or cash flow.
Operating profit, less interest and taxes. Also know as the Net Profit.
The ownership of a company, represented in stock (common and/or preferred.)
ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning)
Very complicated, functionally integrated software that is designed to consider solving a problem for the entire Enterprise (e.g.: For a large company, their world-wide inventory problem.)
Executive Summary (ES)
A short summary of a complete business plan. Includes the pertinent information required for a potential capital provider to make a preliminary assessment of the investment opportunity.
A company that has completed its early stage and has a complete senior management team, significantly increasing revenues, positive earnings and cash flow.
Must be filed by "insiders" prior to any "intention" to sell shares of their company's restricted stock - i.e. issued stock that is currently unregistered with the SEC. Form 144 is a notice of the insider's intention, (not obligation), to sell the shares. If the shares are not sold within three months time, then Form 144 must be amended.
Fully-Diluted Outstanding Shares
The number of shares representing the total company ownership, including the common shares and the current conversion or exercised value of the preferred shares, options, warrants, and other convertible securities.
Gross Margin, less direct operating costs.
Sales, less Cost of Sales.
Hockey Stick Sales
Most new ventures have sales projections that have a curve that looks like a hockey stick. The sharper the growth rate, the fewer people really believe your projections.
A target ROI, determined by an investor to compensate for the risks related to the particular investment.
IPO (Initial Public Offering)
A company’s first offering of SEC-registered, common stock to the public.
Categories used by professional VC’s to initially evaluate venture capital seekers. Might include investment region, company stage, industry, required capital amount, and other factors.
A debt financing with repayment rights that are to be paid after any senior security in a liquidation scenario.
An investor that: makes an significant equity capital investment; and, is designated to monitor the investment on behalf of the other investors.
Using debt to add to the available cash to grow the company. Or, to acquire cash without selling more equity.
The sale or exchange of a significant amount of company ownership for cash, debts, or the equity of another company.
A pre-specified period of time - typically the first 180 days after an IPO - when a company's executives, officers and other insiders are restricted from selling their shares. Underwriters impose lock-ups because they are concerned that if
insiders sell shares soon after an IPO, the company's stock price will fall, undermining the initial public offering price and the post-IPO trading market.
The number of outstanding shares times the current price/per share. This is used to value publicly traded companies. Also known as the Market Valuation.
An integration of two independent companies, through a pooling of interests, a purchase, or a consolidation, where a new company is formed to acquire the net assets of the initial companies.
Short term financing (equity and/or debt ) for a company that is within 6-18 months of an anticipated public offering.
Multi-level Marketing. A sales strategy that recruits numbers and layers of outside people to actually sell the products.
Operating profit less interest and taxes, also know as Earnings.
The ratio of net profit to the revenues (sales.)
A legal investment document that provides investors with the company’s business plan, investment information, and key investment risks. Often also known as the Private Placement
Memorandum, or PPM.
Other People’s Money.
A right to purchase a specific amount of company equity at a defined price.
The overhang is a large block of stock (often shares of a recent IPO) that puts downward pressure on prices after it is released on the market. In the IPO market, the overhang effect often comes into play when the lock-up period expires on insider-owned shares of a company that has recently gone public.
For VC's, this is the difference between the amount of money raised in a fund and the amount invested.
The total number of common shares held and shown on the corporate balance sheets. The amount does not include convertible equity such as preferred shares, warrants and options.
The pre-money valuation of a company plus the total capital raised from the investment round. An arbitrary valuation of a company using various calculation methods.
P/E Ratio ("Price-Earnings Ratio")
The ratio of the price of a share of stock versus the earnings represented by that share. Or, the ratio of the market capitalization to the earnings of a company. The ratio is used to compare the company’s valuation with similar public and private companies.
Private Placement Memorandum. A legal investment document that provides potential investors with the company’s business plan, investment information and key investment risks. Also known as Offering Memorandum or Private Placement Offering. Usually filed with the state or federal government agencies.
Professional Venture Capital Providers
Accredited investors that raise investment funds targeted at taking ownership positions in selected private companies in exchange for capital.
From the Latin, “for form.” Financial projections/budgets of a business or venture.
The registration and selling of common shares to the public under the rules and supervision of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
After a company files its S-1 registration statement and does not come out of its quiet period until 25 days after its stock has started trading. The quiet period is designed to prevent companies from overtly publicizing their initial public offerings.
"Return on Investment”, the profit to be returned to investors relative to their initial investment.
Also known as "Regulation Fair Disclosure" or "Reg. FD" is a newer (October 2000) SEC rule that requires companies to make all "material" information available to all investors at precisely the same time. This landmark ruling challenges public companies' long-standing practice of giving the news earlier to analysts, institutional investors and selected news wires such as Dow Jones, Reuters and Bloomberg.
Common shares acquired from the company in a private sale that are not pursuant to a registration statement.
An SEC rule that governs the sale of restricted shares once the public trading of the securities commences.
SEC Form S-11, covered under the Securities Act of 1933, is used to register securities of certain publicly traded real estate companies, including real estate investment trusts (REITs).
Securities and Exchange Commission, US Federal Government.
An additional sale of the common shares of a company to the public.
The purchase of company ownership from a shareholder instead of the company.
An initial state of a company’s growth that is characterized by a founding management team, business plan development, prototype development, beta testing.
A debt financing with repayment rights that are senior (ahead of) all other debt financing in a liquidation scenario or are secured by certain assets.
An SEC registration form that larger companies file when registering to go public. Form SB-1,
limits a small business's public offering to $10 million.
An SEC form that’s a "plain language" filing that small business issuers can use when registering to go public. Unlike Form SB-1, it allows small business issuers to raise unlimited capital. Unlike the better-known Form SB-1 this requires only two years of audited financials, rather than three, and permits financials to be prepared under generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) without rather the SEC's requirements for extensive narrative disclosure. (NOTE: The SEC defines a "small business issuer" as a US or Canadian company with less than $25 million in revenues in its last fiscal year, and whose outstanding publicly-held stock is worth no more than $25 million.)
Small Business Investment Corporations. Aided financially by the US Government’s Small Business Administration. SBIC’s function as smaller, local venture capital companies.
Formally adopted by the SEC in 1983 (as Rule 415) when interest rates were in double digits and could change significantly in the six or so weeks it took a giant corporation like GE to register an underwritten bond deal. Rule 415 instead allows companies to register securities that can be sold at will within two years, as long as it keeps meeting quarterly financial reporting requirements.
Standard Industrial Classification. Unique four digit codes assigned to industry by the US Department of Commerce. The codes classify different kinds of businesses.
A debt financing with repayment rights that are subordinated (lower than) any senior security in a liquidation scenario.
Also known as an underwriting group. A team of underwriters from different investment banking firms who work together to purchase a new issue of securities for resale to the investment public. The firm that heads the syndicate is referred to as the lead manager.
An option given to a party (typically an investor) that entitles them to purchase stock in the future in the company at a pre-determined price.
Tuesday, August 21, 2007
I "problem" for many friends is that they have already purshased property and now they wish to asset protect it and of course later sell it without paying CGT.
Soon my report will be ready...
Wednesday, August 1, 2007
One of them was...
Is it really true that an offshore identity will pay less stamp duty?
After studying this topic I can tell you the following.
For land in the UK, it is charged at:
0% if the price does not exceed £150,000 (£125,000 for residential properties)
1% if the price exceeds £150,000 but does not exceed £250,000
3% if the price exceeds £250,000 but does not exceed £500,000
4% if the price exceeds £500,000
So the question remains, how can we "bypass" the stamp duty in full?
The first key information is this....
If you where to buy your properties by using a UK Limited company you can sell the SHARES in the UK Limited company to the new buyer of your property, instead of selling the actually property you would sell the shares of the company that owns the property. Of course the purchaser then owns the shares and indirectly the property...
Do you get it?
If you use ONE UK Ltd per property you buy and only sell/transfer the shares to the new owner the stamp duty is 0,5%
Please note that the shares must be more than three years old... so you can not use this strategy in "flipping".
And how do we pay zero?
The rules in the UK clearly states that IF you where to sell the shares of a NON-UK company instead of a UK Ltd the stamp duty is 0%
Conclusion: It is really up to you to make your own calculations. Is it worth to have one Cyprus or one UK Ltd company per property to escape the Stamp Duty? Measure the yearly cost of maintaining the Ltd towards the Stamp Duty you must pay when selling and you have the answer.
If you have a property worth over 150K the stamp duty would be 4K
Your investment with establishing a Cyprus company is approximate 2K
(imagine having a property worth up to 500K and paying 3% = 15K!!!!)
In other words... If you wish to sell the property within one or two years you will SAVE money having the Cyprus company owning the property and selling the shares of a Cyprus company as the Stamp Duty and Capital Gains will be ZERO!
This strategy would apply for most countries within the EU and also USA and Asia.
P.S The above is for general information purposes only. It is not intended to be comprehensive or to provide any specific tax advice. For spesific advice on your case please contact me for full clarification http://www.moneyserve.biz/
Best wishes Jarl Moe "The NO Tax Man"
Thank you to all that attended.
My next seminar in London will be in the end of August.
Wednesday, July 18, 2007
The first one will be in london the 23rd of July 2007
Please go to www.jarlmoe.com/register.htm and register for the seminar
See you there..........
Be ready to be amazed.
Wednesday, July 4, 2007
Depending in your country the dividends tax may differ, to make sure you have the right details please contact your local tax office and ask them....
OFFSHORE TAX DIVIDENDS
Lets make this very simple for you!
If you set up a business, including setting up a business in YOUR OWN COUNTRY you can of course choose if it will be YOU or ANOTHER IDENTITY that will own the shares in your new venture.
The people who don't know better (yes im talking to you) usually set up a limited company and set them selves up as shareholders, almost with pride that they own the shares...
Let me tell you in a few words why this is COMPLETELY WRONG!
In setting up any company you must concider tax planning and the benefits you can have by doing things outside the box.
1) You set up a UK Limited Company and they slap you with up to 31% tax!
2) You set up a foreign company and pay zero!
How is this possible?
The answer is.... because the law say so!
UK vs CYPRUS
The UK has dividends tax and Cyprus does not have dividends tax.
So... If you make a Cyprus company the shareholder in your UK company instead of you, you will not pay any dividends tax on any profits....
This is due to:
a) The tax agreement between UK and Cyprus
b) The Cyprus law
WHAT DO THE SMART PEOPLE DO?
The really smart people set up the Cyprus company to actually do their business with only a sales rep office in the country you operate in.....
In Cyprus the company pay 10% tax flat and NO DIVIDENDS TAX!
If you turn it around and make the UK company the shareholder in the Cyprus corp you can move the max dividents to the UK and pay your self divident tax in the UK and pay only 10%
Lets have a look at the details:
You pay tax at different rates on UK dividends (income from UK company shares, unit trusts and open ended investment companies) than you do on interest from savings, such as bank and building society interest.
Dividend tax rates 2007-2008
There are two different Income Tax rates on UK dividends. The rate you pay depends on whether your overall taxable income (after allowances) falls within or above the basic rate Income Tax limit.
The basic rate Income Tax limit is £34,600 for the 2007-2008 tax year.
It doesn't matter whether you get dividends from a company, unit trusts or open-ended investment companies, as all dividends are taxed the same way.
Understanding the dividend tax credit
Companies pay you dividends out of profits on which they have already paid (or are due to pay) tax. The tax credit takes account of this and is available to the shareholder to offset against any Income Tax that may be due on their 'dividend income'.
When adding up your overall taxable income you need to include the sum of the dividend(s) received and the tax credit(s). This income is called your 'dividend income'.
How tax credits are worked out
The dividend you are paid represents 90 per cent of your 'dividend income'. The remaining 10 per cent of the dividend income is made up of the tax credit. Put another way, the tax credit represents 10 per cent of the 'dividend income'.
If you pay tax at or below the basic rate
You have no tax to pay on your dividend income because the tax liability is 10 per cent - the same amount as the tax credit - as shown in the tables.
If you pay tax at the higher rate
You pay a total of 32.5% tax on dividend income that falls above the basic rate Income Tax limit (£34,600 for the 2007-2008 tax year). But because the first 10 per cent of the tax due on your dividend income is already covered by the tax credit, in practice you owe only 22.5 per cent.
Note that dividend income, like savings income, is taxed after your non-savings income (for example, wages and self-employment profit) at your highest tax rate.
If it falls both sides of the £34,600 higher rate tax bracket, it will be taxed partly at 10 per cent (and covered by the tax credit) and partly at 32.5 per cent (less the 10 per cent tax credit).
Can you claim the tax credit if you don't normally pay tax?
No. You can't claim the 10 per cent tax credit, even if your taxable income is less than your personal allowances and you don't pay tax. This is because Income Tax hasn't been deducted from the dividend paid to you - you have simply been given a 10 per cent 'credit' against any Income Tax due.
Declaring dividend income on your tax return
If you normally complete a tax return you fill in three boxes:
1. The 'dividend/distribution' - the actual amount you were paid
2. The 'tax credit' - as shown on the dividend voucher
3. The total of these two - the 'dividend income'
You pay any extra tax owing via either Self Assessment or PAYE (Pay As You Earn), depending on how you normally pay tax.
Hope this educational session has given you some inspiration on how YOU CAN SAVE MONEY!
If you need me... Im here.
Monday, June 25, 2007
This week newspapers in the UK are assisting the UK government in their SCARE campaign against offshore accounts. Of course... they are NOT TELLING YOU all the facts.
As I have told you in my previous blogs there is a HUGE difference in setting up accounts offshore as a person and setting it up as a company.
The story below, from one of the UK newspapers are telling you their story.
Let ME teach you how to do it, and why you should not be afraid to set up offshore companies or accounts.
The first rule
Do not ever set up an offshore account outside your country in your own name!
The second rule
Do not ever speak with a UK accountant about offshore tax planning!
So what will you do to act correctly? Here are my top 10 Tips!
Speak to a professional, international tax specialist outside your country that ONLY does this job for a living and are updated on all international rules and bank regulations daily.
Choose a company to work with that has years of experience and are established in the market place. Do not answer a small add that you see in the newspapers....
Remember that it is your right to do your international taxplanning and do what ever is needed to not pay more taxes than you have to, legally.
Choose a durestiction that is far out of the control of the government in your country.
Jersey and BVI would not be good choices if you are in the UK!
Cyprus and Seychelles would be the ideal solution for you.
Create a clear vision of what you would like to achieve in the next 5 financial years in your life
and your business to help the consultant help you prepare for such a plan.
Ensure that your bank accounts in the country that you are living in is never overdrafted as you would need a bank reference letter from your bank to establish a company offshore even though the account is not in your name, you would be a signatory and this requires a due diligence.
When you decide to set up a company, do not use a name of the company that will be related to your name in any way. Do not call it your last name or for name.
When you want to have an offshore account you must FIRST set up an offshore company, then set up the bank account. This way the account will not be in your name, but the money in the account will belong to the company. This will secure your identity but still give you full access.
Choose a bank that will assist you with the correct internet and card solutions
Do not speak to anybody about that this company is yours.
Especially not your accountant.
I will be happy to assist you in any way I can so feel free to contact me on http://www.jarlmoe.com/
Now, here is the scare story that you will NOT ever experience when you use us to set you up correctly!
340,000 offshore account holders miss tax deadlineBy Harry Wallop, Consumer Affairs CorrespondentLast Updated: 2:51am BST 23/06/2007
More than 340,000 people face the prospect of criminal prosecutions after failing to declare unpaid tax on offshore bank accounts to the taxman, it emerged yesterday.
The possible prosecutions follow a major crackdown by the HM Revenue & Customs on individuals who held overseas bank accounts and failed to declare tax to the British taxman.
The crackdown has identified about 400,000 people, from owners of holiday homes overseas to sophisticated City investors, who have offshore bank accounts and are not paying the right amount of tax on any interest earned from that account.
advertisementPaul Franklin, a spokesman for HMRC, said: "There used to be a general belief amongst many people that if you earned the money overseas, you didn't need to declare it.
"That's just not the case."
The tax authorities launched an amnesty earlier this year to encourage people to come forward and pay the estimated £1.5 billion shortfall.
The deadline for the end of the amnesty was midnight last night, but by yesterday evening just 56,000 of the 400,000 people identified by HMRC had come forward.
Those that did make the deadline have to pay their unpaid tax, plus interest. They also face a fine equating to 10 per cent of their unpaid tax.
Yesterday 180 of the 700 staff at the Revenue's call centre in Dundee were dedicated to answering requests for the HMRC's 44-page booklet spelling out what taxpayers have to do.
Though there was a late surge of people calling the helpline the great majority of the 400,000 failed to come forward.
These people now face paying not only their unpaid tax, but also a penalty of up to 100 per cent of that amount.
More importantly, they face criminal prosecutions.
"In serious cases, you can go to jail for this," said Mr Franklin.
"There is little excuse not to have declared your offshore tax."
He insisted that HMRC was very happy with the number of people confessing to tax shortfalls, saying that many of the particularly serious offenders were the ones that had come forward.
"It's the first time we've ever conducted an amnesty of this kind, and we're very pleased with how it went," he said.
Friday, June 22, 2007
The only reason that some people got in trouble with the inland revenue and theese days are getting letters in their letterbox is because they where so stupid that they put their own name on the accounts, as the owner of the account!
Jersey and BVI where popular places to register their accounts at and now of course they get to pay the penalty for the wrong tax advice, or taking no advice at all.
HOW DO WE DO IT?
Our company set up offshore companies and accounts for many people every week and of course our job is to safeguard your assets and do your taxplanning both legal and correct.
When you set up a company this company is a separate legal identity than you, and it is not you that establish bank accounts, it is the company.
However, you can be the signatory on the account and access funds for the use of moving the company and your business forward.
So, in our case you are 100% safeguarded from the horrors of the section below.
If you wish to know more on how to pay zero tax legally, give us a call.
Have a great weekend!
No hiding place offshore now
The days of faraway tax havens have gone. However, non-taxpayers can still get some good rates overseas
Published: 14 April
The days when an offshore bank account meant keeping your financial affairs secret from the tax man are over. Customers of offshore accounts should have had a letter last week notifying them that details of their balances and interest payments will be passed to the Inland Revenue starting from the new financial year.
Moneynet savingssearch The days when an offshore bank account meant keeping your financial affairs secret from the tax man are over. Customers of offshore accounts should have had a letter last week notifying them that details of their balances and interest payments will be passed to the Inland Revenue starting from the new financial year.
Under last year's Finance Act, the Inland Revenue has the power to swap information with other tax authorities. The Government is agreeing a range of reciprocal arrangements to elicit more information about the undeclared income of UK residents. In turn, financial information will be passed to other governments' tax authorities about their citizens. These steps are intended to reduce dramatically money laundering and tax evasion.
Historically, two of the main factors for opening accounts offshore have been tax avoidance and tax evasion, though they are not not the only ones. With interest rates offshore now running at similar levels to the best available from UK savings accounts, there are few benefits for most of
us in an offshore account.
Donna Bradshaw, a director at independent financial adviser Fiona Price & Partners, says: "If you are a UK taxpayer there is no benefit. The rates are not as great as they used to be. People are going to look offshore only if they live overseas. Even then, if they are going to America it is not a good idea.
"All the [tax] loopholes have been closed. For people who are non-taxpayers there might be benefits, but rates in the UK are good, so why bother? If you are a non-taxpayer you get interest paid gross anyway."
People travelling abroad might be tempted by opening an offshore account, but there are practical difficulties, says Ms Bradshaw. Minimum balances will usually be high (see table), as are the minimum transaction sizes.
David Walker, senior tax consultant with accountant Bentley Jennison, also dismisses an offshore account for most people. "Unless you can take advantage of having money in a different jurisdiction, there is no point," he says.
"People think if you have money offshore you don't pay tax. That's not true. There might be non-taxpayers who can take advantage. If you go to a country regularly, you may want to have currency there rather than a foreign exchange account here: you might pay less commission." But offshore accounts score heavily for people whose earnings are all or in part from abroad and who are domiciled abroad.
"If someone is a UK resident but non-domiciled by birth or background, then an offshore account would be very useful," says Mr Walker. "They might work part of the time abroad. So they might be paid for offshore activities offshore and would pay tax on offshore accounts only if they bring money into the UK."
There may also be times when it is tax-efficient to roll up interest on an offshore account to have it credited after leaving the UK. For someone non-UK domiciled but with UK property interests, it may be possible to reduce inheritance liability by taking savings outside the UK estate.
But the days of using offshore accounts to hide deposits from tax authorities are well and truly gone, says Brendan McMahon, a partner with PricewaterhouseCoopers in Jersey. "There are very strong money laundering rules here," he says. "Any evidence of tax evasion or illicit activities mean that here the account will not be opened. There are very strong procedures to ensure this doesn't happen. Unlike in onshore jurisdictions, anything that happens wrongly generates a lot of adverse publicity."
It is not necessary for an individual to show that he or she is a non-taxpayer in the UK to open an account offshore. But a person can expect an increasingly rigorous check before an account is opened, especially if depositing large sums.
Northern Rock operates offshore accounts in Guernsey and the Bahamas. Tony Armstrong, director of corporate relations, says: "For both of our operations the fundamental is for verification of identity. That is a particular requirement for Guernsey. Applicants must complete the form, showing the name and address of their bank. We send this to the bank to confirm they know them, and that the signature is as shown.
"In the Bahamas, there are new verification of identification procedures which form part of our terms and conditions for an account. These are a good deal more comprehensive. There are requirements on bankers for verification of identity and national identity; confirmation of sources of income or wealth; confirmation of the purpose of an account and the potential of account activity; confirmation that the account holder has the right to beneficial use of deposits; and particularly for independent verification of any information supplied; together with a form for each applicant."
Reviews of procedures in other jurisdictions, including the Channel Islands, aimed at stamping out money laundering could lead to similar requirements in other offshore centres. Although some have been criticised for failing to co-operate with the major nations in clamping down on financial wrongdoing, most are now moving quickly to set up more rigorous checks.
Failure to act would have put at risk the more important role offshore centres have for major corporate clients, who continue to avoid tax liabilities through careful planning. And the loss of that business is something the offshore centres are very keen to avoid.
This story is applicable for people who set up accounts in their own name and DO NOT use the benefit of the correct company structure.
You are going to be smarter than that, right?
Wednesday, June 20, 2007
Lately I have had many of my visitors of the Jarl Moe Blog asking me similar questions, so I thought I better make a summary of some of the most common questions and the answers...
WHAT IS AN OFFSHORE CORPORATION?
A corporation is an entity recognized by law as a separate "person" with limited liability. A corporation has the option to sell shares, the right to sue and be sued, and has perpetual existence.
HOW ARE OFFSHORE CORPORATIONS USED?
Offshore corporations may be used to own and operate businesses, issue shares, bonds or otherwise raise capital, guarantee obligations, hire employees, buy goods and services, sell goods and services, make contracts, rent office space, maintain checking and saving accounts, and maintain retirement plans for employees. Although most offshore corporations are private and closely held, some are publicly traded on major stock exchanges.
WHAT ARE ARTICLES OF INCORPORATION?
The Articles of Incorporation is the document which establishes the corporation and contains basic information such as the name, share structure, and purpose of the corporation.
WHAT ARE BY-LAWS?
The By-laws, or in some jurisdictions "Articles of Association", are rules the corporation creates for its shareholders, officers, and directors. By-laws are adopted by the Board of Directors as one of the first organizational steps in setting up a corporation. Upon instruction, we can adopt a standard set of By-laws for a new corporation. Unlike Articles of Association, By-laws are usually maintained internally but may be publicly filed if requested.
WHAT DOES A CORPORATE SEARCH REVEAL?
A corporate search will reveal the name of the corporation, the date of existence, amendments, and any other publicly filed document. Under Panamanian law for example, there is no requirement that the names of corporate officers, directors or shareholders be filed in any public registry. Such information, therefore, remains confidential.
WHAT ARE BEARER SHARES?
Bearer share certificates do not indicate the name of the owner. The certificate is endorsed in blank such that the person having physical possession of the document is the owner. Bearer shares facilitate the transfer of assets because transfer of ownership is accomplished simply by the transfer of the certificate. In most of the set ups that we arrange, Bearer shares are not used.
WHAT ARE REGISTERED SHARES?
Registered share certificates indicate the name of the owner on the document. The name of the shareholder is also recorded in the internal corporate records of the company. Although the registered owner is recorded in the corporation's internal records, no public registry of shareholders is maintained. The share registry is an internal corporate document available only to directors, officers and shareholders, under conditions specified in the jurisdiction's corporate statute.
WHAT ARE Shelf COMPANIES?
Shelf Companies are ready-made, never used corporations that have been created to meet a client's immediate needs.
WHAT IS A REGISTERED AGENT?
A Registered Agent is required to ensure that the corporation has an assigned representative at a known address to receive all service of process (legal notices) on its behalf. The Registered Agent forwards these documents to the address of record of the corporation.
ISN'T MOVINS ASSETS OFFSHORE ILLEGAL?
There is nothing illegal about moving assets offshore. It is when you move the assets into accounts offshore and do not declare their existence to the tax authorities that you break the law. Any assets over which you have control, domestic or offshore, are probably liable to taxes in your home jurisdiction.
WHY SHOULD I MOVE OFFSHORE?
Moving some of your assets offshore provides you access to modern (and ancient) methods of protecting your assets and reducing your taxes using trusts, international corporations, foundations and other legal entities.
WHAT IS ASSET PROTECTION?
Asset Protection is a term used to describe the concept of legally transferring your assets into a legal entity which will protect them from attack by frivolous litigation, seizing from government, attack from an estranged spouse - in fact anything which may threaten your hard earned wealth.
If I must declare my offshore assets, how can I use an offshore plan to legitimately reduce my taxes?
Taxes must be paid on profits made on assets under your legal ownership. By the use of certain offshore entities, which vary according to your home jurisdiction, a certain proportion of your assets will no longer bear taxes at the same rate. Please contact us for a plan based on where you reside.
A friend said that offshore asset protection is immoral, what are your views on that?
Some people are quite happy to stay in a system which allows vultures to pray on exposed assets. That is their individual choice. There are other people who prefer to leave the country they love to get away from the system. Offshore asset protection is somewhere in between. There is nothing immoral in trying to protect your hard-earned assets so that you and/or your family can benefit from them later on. It is the essence of rational self-interest.
If I open an offshore structure, will this lead to tax authority scrutiny?
What we advocate is not illegal; it therefore does not attract undue attention from the authorities. It is activities like money laundering, tax evasion and controlled accounts that the tax authorities are interested in, not law-abiding citizens protecting their assets and lowering their tax burdens.
Which is the best offshore center to use for asset protection and/or estate planning?
Most modern tax havens are very alike with respect to their tax laws and services, although some do offer entities not available in others. Certain tax havens have developed bad reputations over the years due to abuse by certain elements of the offshore industry, but most are quite safe. We have worked in perfect harmony with the Seychelles as a ZERO tax durestiction for the last 26 years! And CYPRUS are one of the best places to set up any international business within Europe with as low as 10% flat tax.
A combination of the two create the best harmony if you have a good turnover.
Can I retain control over my money, possibly through investment or bank accounts in my home jurisdiction?
Many people would like the 'safety' of an offshore asset protection structure but would like to keep complete control over the assets, trading accounts etc. This is possible but gives a direct link to the assets and will probably lead to any legal structures that were set up being ignored for both tax and protection purposes. Offshore asset protection does require you find people you trust to advise you and take care of finances for you.
How much does an asset protection structure cost?
At Moneyserve we believe in providing value for money for our clients. Furthermore, when providing our services, our focus is on building the quality and value of relationships with our clients over an extended period of time. Basic asset protection structures start as low as US$1,500 for an average family, with annual costs as low as US$1,800. Of course this cost rises with the complexity involved, but rarely exceeds US$30,000 initial cost.
What is the minimum amount I should start with?
That depends on your reasons for going offshore. If it is for asset protection you should be considering how much you are risking by not going offshore, namely lawyers fees, time, loss of assets etc. If it is for tax reasons you should be looking at the annual costs against how much tax you can save (i.e. US$18,000 is 30% of US$60,000).
Are there any other advantages to going offshore?
Once a structure has been legally created it can be used for international trade and investment. This opens up a whole new arena that the average unstructured citizen cannot usually access.
How do I start?
The best place to start is to contact us at www.moneyserve.biz
A merchant account is basically an account or facility that allows you to accept credit card orders from your customers. It's that simple. If you accept credit card orders already with your existing business, then you are already familiar with this. But what is the difference or perhaps advantage of using an "offshore" card processing service vs. a local or domestic one?
Well, one thing that is certainly true about the US credit card business, is that it has become very competitive. This has been both a good thing for both consumers and business owners alike. As a consumer, you know that interest rates charged on credit card balances have come down. For business owners, it has meant that where as you were charged up to 7% in the past to process your customer's credit card purchases, those rates have come down to about 3% on average. All positive news. But, there are still problems for the US small businessman wanting to set up his or her own merchant account.
One major problem is of course the application requirements, and the possible deposit requirements. Some banks or credit card processors will not even accept your application unless your business has been operating for two years or more. Others want a security deposit of $ 5,000 or more. Some others even want to "hold back" your monthly card payments as an additional "security deposit" for possible "charge backs". In addition, especially in the case of US banks, they act as if they are doing you a favor to take your business. Aside from all this, we know of some clients that have had their merchant account "pulled away" simply because their business started to grow. What am I talking about?
Well, because every US bank is now paranoid about such things as "money laundering" and "suspicious transactions", any sudden change in your business volume sparks a reaction. We know of one client that was given a "we are closing your account" letter by his US bank, because his monthly volume went from $ 10,000 per month up to $ 18,000 per month in a fairly short time.
The bank said it was "suspicious". The client said it's called "advertising". Well, you know what they say, people that fail in business end up in banking....
This is one reason why you may want to look for a bank or credit card processor that understands your business, your needs, your problems - and is willing to help. Where can you find someone like that? Well, it all starts with being able to look beyond your own backyard.
Most people would agree that technology and modern telecommunications has provided at least some benefit. We now have fax machines, e-mail, and of course the Internet. What many people do not think about however, is the fact that the world has become a much smaller place.
What this means for the business owner is, you no longer are "locked in" to doing business with just the bank or company in your town or state. You can literally "shop the world" for the best rates, the best products, the best service, or what ever. You now can do business with a bank or credit card processor in Germany, Singapore, Holland, or any place else just as easily as "the bank down the road". In fact, nine times out of ten, you will find the level of service to be much better with a bank half way around the world, then you will with your neighborhood bank.
Why? They want your business, and they are willing to prove it. The other benefits are obvious. If you intend to be virtual, the best place to begin is by becoming virtual in fact. An offshore merchant account places you in a virtual / offshore jurisdiction with favorable tax consequences.
The problem of course with some offshore banks or credit card processors are the higher processing fees, when compared to current US rates. The fierce competition that has been seen in the US, has not reached some parts of the world, at least not yet. However that is slowly changing. In addition, such things as "Internet Banking" and offshore merchant accounts are new services that many offshore banks are just starting to take a look at. Even in a banking location such as Panama (with over 130 banks), these services are not even available with a handful of banks.
However, we did find a very reliable credit card merchant account service provider that wants to change all that. They are based in Europe, they have been in business for over 30 years, and their fees are extremely competitive (with both US bank rates, and especially their "offshore" competition). In addition, they will gladly accept a new business without any costly deposit requirements. This is the type of company to work with, because they want to work with you.
I know what you are probably thinking, "This all sounds very interesting, but what is the real benefit for me to do business with an offshore merchant account provider". Well, being able to get better service, little or no hassles getting your account opened, and lower or perhaps no deposit requirements are only the "tip of the iceberg".
The real benefits to you as a business owner are the tax reduction opportunities that become available through the use of a separate offshore-incorporated company (your company) to handle your credit card business for you. In addition, you also have a very legitimate and convenient way to get your business profits offshore. The fact of the matter is, if you have an offshore bank or merchant company process your credit card transactions for you, your money already is "offshore".
This being the case, you now have the means to really make the most of your business income and keep more of what you earn.
For additional information about obtaining an inexpensive offshore merchant account, or forming an offshore company for tax-advantaged strategies for your current business, please contact our office.
Wednesday, May 16, 2007
It is really an exiting industry and a powerful knowledge system
It never stops to amaze me on how people can change their life`s just by the way they are using their minds, by positive affirmations and visualization.
NLP has also taught me how absolutely essential it is to get out of the rat race and the normal way of doing things.
Most people are on the same train, and it is really going nowhere.
It is a repetition of their previous day, or it is doing the same as everybody else. Not really understanding the power of own direction or specialization or utilizing information.
As you might heard...
There are things that you know
There are things that you don`t know
There are things that you know that you don`t know...
and the biggest thing of all is
The things that you don`t know that you don`t know....
And that is how I feel about NLP
Now, looking at Personal Development and NLP from a business point of view it can do many things for you.
Definitley help you with
- Goal setting
- Business Development
- Understanding your employees
Just to mention some..........
And when it comes to International Tax Planning it is kind of the same...
To get a different result than you are getting now you must think differently, you must apply new knowledge.
My knowledge within this field has previously only been accessible for multimillionaires.
But not anymore, the world has changed and so have we.
Any individual that WANTs to SAVE money and THINK SMARTER can now get access to the same information that previously where not available to you at all..
My question to you would be, what are YOU going to do about it?`
Are you going to get off the train everybody is taking, go a different route and experience a new way?
If you are, let me know
You can start my getting my Ebook for FREE at www.jarlmoe.com