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BECOMES LAW THE Trust (Capital and Income) Act 2013 received royal assent on 31 January. Trustees of the 14,000 charities with permanent endowments


ENGLANDANDWALES TRUST CAPITAL AND INCOME ACT


can now treat the capital appreciation on those assets in the same way as income, without first having to apply to the Charity Commission.


CORPORATE VEIL AUK Supreme Court decision has emphasised that the English courts are permitted to pierce the corporate veil only in rare circumstances. In VTB Capital v Nutritek [2013] UKSC 5 the Court unanimously ruled that those who misuse a company are not parties to the contracts entered into by that company when none of the parties concerned intend that to be the case. Several large-scale fraud cases, in which claimants were hoping to go after individuals who had made contractual claims through a company, were on hold pending the VTB decision, according to law firm Withers. Those claims are now likely to come to life. ‘The principle of piercing the corporate veil remains intact, though this decision firmly limits its effect,’ said Stephen Ross of Withers.


ENGLANDANDWALES FURTHER RESTRICTIONS ON PIERCING THE


ATHLETES THE UK GOVERNMENT has granted a tax amnesty to non-resident competitors in the London Grand Prix athletics event this July. Non-resident sports professionals are usually forced to pay a proportion of their worldwide endorsement and sponsorship income to HMRC if they compete at UK events. However, a boycott of UK events by Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt has forced Chancellor George Osborne to grant Grand Prix competitors the same tax exemptions as were given to athletes at last year’s London Olympics, and which will also apply to the 2013 Champions League football tournament final and the 2014Commonwealth Games. Osborne stressed, however, that this was a one-off concession and not a reversal of HMRC policy.


UNITED KINGDOM TREASURY WAVERS ON TAXING FOREIGN


18 APRIL 2013


AUSTRALIA


MULTINATIONAL TAX PLANNING THE AUSTRALIAN government has amended its general anti-avoidance rule to combat profit-shifting by multinational companies. The Taxation Laws Amendment (Countering Tax Avoidance and Multinational Profit Shifting) Bill will give the Australian Tax Office extra powers to scrutinise multinationals’ use of the transfer pricing rules in intragroup transactions. It can also replace actual arrangements with deemed arm’s-length conditions, or reconstruct or unwind international transactions to cancel any tax benefit. The stricter anti-avoidance provisions are expected to collect an extra


AUD1 billion each year. However, if implemented as they stand, they may also catch ordinary tax planning by small businesses and individuals, say tax advisors Cooper Grace Ward. ‘It is important to ensure commercial, family or other factors motivating a decision are properly documented,’ says the firm.


BRAZIL


MONEY LAUNDERING RULES TIGHTEN BRAZIL’S new anti- money laundering legislation came into effect on 3 March. The 12.683 Anti- Money Laundering Act was passed following the Mensalão scandal, in which a former minister of the Lula government was convicted of corruption, money laundering and bribery in collaboration with entrepreneurs and bankers. The new Act extends the definition of money laundering to cover the proceeds of any crime, not just serious offences


such as gun-running, terrorism and drug dealing. It now also applies to fraud, bribery and corruption, from which most laundered


funds arise in Brazil. It also greatly extends the list of professions that are required to make suspicious activity reports.


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