Expanded Worldwide Planning Stories-3

EWP Stories-Part 3-Tax Shield

Expanded Worldwide Planning
International Tax Planning

Stories
Part 3: Tax Shield

EWP adds tax deferral, income, estate tax benefits and dynasty tax planning opportunities. Assets held in a life insurance contract are considered tax-deferred in most jurisdictions throughout the world. Likewise, PPLI policies that are properly constructed shield the assets from all taxes. In most cases, upon the death of the insured, benefits are paid as a tax free death benefit.

The best comment made about the tax benefits of PPLI is from the October 1994 article in Offshore Investment by Professor Craig Hampton:

“I was visiting a gentleman at his home in the Piccadilly district of London. It was explained to me that his net worth exceeded $100 millionU.S. by a substantial margin. I noticed the presence of a computer terminal on a large desk in his den. It was surrounded by reams of paper dealing with offshore investing.

It soon became apparent that his affluence was due to his own efforts when he said to me:

“You’re a bright young man who obviously knows his craft. But what can you tell me that I don’t already know about finances?”

I leaned forward and made this simple statement:

“Through the creative use of international life insurance, your financial affairs can be arranged so that you will never have to pay income taxes for the rest of your life!” The gentleman took serious notice, and thus was born the Hampton Freeze.”

The Hampton Freeze is the name coined for the various PPLI designs developed by Professor Craig Hampton in the early 1990s. These designs were utilized in cases where the premium was over $100M, but can also be employed for PPLI policies with lesser amounts of premium.

Oddly enough many of the tax benefits used for the sophisticated designs like the Hampton Freeze utilize the same tax benefits common to all life insurance policies.

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by Michael Malloy, CLU TEP RFC.

CEO, Founder @EWP Financial

Michael Malloy-CLU-TEP

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Expanded Worldwide Planning Stories-2

EWP STORIES-Asset Protection

Expanded Worldwide Planning
International Tax Planning

Stories
Part 2: Asset Protection

Our asset protection model is called The EWP Da Vinci Code. Our model is highly effective, yet conservative, and offers more asset protection than the recently invented options available to wealthy families. In today’s world of financial transparency, there is no hiding of financial assets. The EWP Da Vinci Code brings you peace of mind through a long-established and secure financial structure—life insurance, in the form of PPLI. We will share more with you on The EWP Da Vinci Code later in this Chapter.

Asset Protection is a prudent subset of financial planning. As we will read later in this article, some consider asset protection a deceptive, sleight-of-hand trick that deprives creditors from receiving what is lawfully due to them. The law is a double-edged sword that cuts both ways. Our article deals with both sides of this sharp blade.

We take an expansive approach to asset protection, which produces a simple and straightforward solution to this drama? What is the drama you correctly ask?

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by Michael Malloy, CLU TEP RFC.

CEO, Founder @EWP Financial

Michael Malloy-CLU-TEP

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

EWP & Trust Substitute-Part 2

International Tax Planning & Trust Substitute—Part 2

EWP (Expanded Worldwide Planning) and Trust Substitute

Private Placement Life Insurance (PPLI) in Action

A Stradivarius Violin Plays the EWP Super Trust

 

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In Part 1 we spoke about how a beginner’s violin knows nothing of the deep, rich, and more pleasing tone of the Stradivarius violin. We equated the Stradivarius violin with the more sophisticated uses of asset structures that employ PPLI to its full effect. In Part 2 we will learn about the EWP Super Trust, which indeed uses the deep, rich, and more pleasing tone of the Stradivarius violin.

Ironically, the most simple PPLI structure, a Frozen Cash Value (FCV) policy, offers wealthy families the most advanced structuring possibilities available in the world today. A family can place almost any asset class that is located almost anywhere in the world into a FCV policy, and still have it compliant with tax authorities worldwide.

The FCV PPLI structure almost eliminates the concept of cash value in the traditional sense. The growth element of the assets in the policy is paid out as a tax-free death benefit at the death of the insured person(s) in the contract. The amount of the death benefit to qualify as life insurance is just a percent or two of the total assets contributed to the policy, as there must be a risk shifting element to qualify as life insurance under the laws of the jurisdictions who issue the policies.

The maximum the owner of the policy can withdraw is the total value of the premium contributed to the policy. This includes in-kind premiums. The structures that we create for the world’s wealthiest families have sizable premium contributions, frequently in the hundreds of millions and multiple billions. Therefore, if withdrawals from the policy are wished, there is plenty to withdraw. More frequently there are no withdrawals, as these families can accomplish what they wish inside the existing FCV PPLI structure.

In essence, the policy is composed of a small amount of life insurance and the worldwide holdings of a family, offering them the maximum amount of privacy, asset protection, and tax efficiency that is possible. With its own three elements of owner, insured, and beneficiary, it goes far beyond the three elements of a trust: settlor or trustor, trustee, and beneficiary. How is this possible? How can it be fully compliant with the U.S. tax code for those families that have a connection to the U.S.?

The EWP Super Trust

FCV PPLI relies on §7702. Section 7702(a), in defining life insurance, states in part, “the term ‘life insurance contract’ means any contract which is a life insurance contract under the applicable law.”

The meaning of “the applicable law” in both §7702(a) and §7702(g) mean that life insurance policies issued under the laws of other countries are indeed life insurance contracts, even if they do not meet the various cash value tests mentioned in the §7702(a).

The insurance laws of these countries allow the death benefit of the insurance contract to be less than its cash value. In fact, within these countries, a life insurance contract is fully compliant with a cash value well in excess of the death benefit of the insurance policy.

The insurance companies that issue FCV PPLI policies design the policies to conform to the laws of the countries where these insurance companies are domiciled. You then have an insurance policy that is fully compliant under “the applicable law” of these countries. Most nations in the world, including the U.S., allow their citizens to purchase life insurance policies that are issued from countries outside their own.

Thus, the FCV PPLI is fully sanctioned for U.S. buyers, and buyers from other nations in the world who wish to avail themselves of this truly remarkable structuring tool: a Trust Substitute that we call an EWP Super Trust.

FCV PPLI asset structures have been in use by U.S. persons and non-U.S. persons for over 25 years without a challenge by the IRS. Our mission at Expanded Worldwide Planning is to make the most advanced asset structuring techniques available to wealthy families throughout the world.

Why not take advantage of this exceptional opportunity which is supported by 100s of billions of dollars of successful structures that have been put in place over these 25 years?

We offer you another chart which shows what a properly structured PPLI policy can accomplish for non-U.S. persons who own real estate in the U.S. compared with structures that just use trust and other entities.

PPLI with IDF vs. Other Real Estate Structures

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A Safe Drive to the Ultimate Destination

We will use a multi-lane motorway or freeway as our analogy on how life insurance is ideally positioned to serve the needs of wealthy families worldwide. Life insurance is recognized throughout the world as a useful financial planning tool to address the retirement, financial planning, and estate tax needs of families. Where is life insurance positioned on this motorway?

The fast lane is for those drivers who are the risk takers, traveling at ever faster speeds until they hear the sound of a patrol car chasing them down. In the slow lane are those drivers who wish to drive the speed limit, or wish to travel at a leisurely pace to reach their destination. In the middle lanes are those drivers who wish to blend into the flow. Not be the fastest on the road, or the slowest. In the universe of financial planning tools, life insurance structures are traveling in these middle lanes.

These middle lane drivers are avoiding the newest innovations in planning techniques championed by those in the fast lane, and, also, staying away from strategies that accomplish little which are adopted by those in the slow lane. The drivers in the middle lanes will reach their destination safely with little risk of a confrontation with the authorities, who are concentrating on the drivers in the fast lane.

By using life insurance as its basic framework, the families driving in the middle lanes accomplish the maximum amount of privacy, asset protection, and tax efficiency. A PPLI life insurance based structure is indeed the best building block available to achieve the six principles of EWP, and be fully compliant with tax authorities worldwide.

Tax Avoidance vs. Tax Evasion

This brings us to the topic of the regulation of financial planning structures. One key distinction is the difference between what is termed tax avoidance and tax evasion. For some regulatory bodies there is little or no distinction between these two concepts. With our EWP approach to asset structuring, we see a large distinction between tax avoidance and tax evasion. On what grounds do we take this position?

Admittedly, our position is self-serving because our clients’ are the world’s wealthiest families. At the same time we challenge those who take the high moral ground of calling tax avoidance and tax evasion the same thing. Our view can be summarized in IRC v. Duke of Westminster, Baron Thomas Tomlin wrote:

“Every man is entitled if he can to order his affairs so that the tax attaching under the appropriate Acts is less than it otherwise would be. If he succeeds in ordering them so as to secure this result, then, however unappreciative the Commissioners of Inland Revenue or his fellow taxpayers may be of his ingenuity, he cannot be compelled to pay an increased tax.”

Yes, there is some line between tax avoidance and tax evasion, but it is not as simple as saying that putting money in a tax-deferred retirement savings account is morally fine because these accounts are intended by the government. But it is immoral to employ tax avoidance such as—assigning low value to intangibles sold to corporate subsidiaries in order to assign profits to low-tax jurisdictions—because this behavior was not intended by legislators.

Defining the line between tax avoidance and tax evasion involves drawing a line that governments themselves have failed to draw adequately, and places blame squarely on the taxpayer for their behavior. This is all based on a rudimentary idea about what the politicians who wrote the law “intended.”

Conclusion

An EWP Super Trust is a unique vehicle for creating the maximum amount of privacy, asset protection, and tax efficiency for the world’s wealthiest families. We await the opportunity to create one for you!

by Michael Malloy, CLU TEP RFC, @ Advanced Financial Solutions, Inc

Michael Malloy-CLU-TEP

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

EWP & Trust Substitute

International Tax Planning & Trust Substitute—Part 1

EWP (Expanded Worldwide Planning) and Trust Substitute

Private Placement Life Insurance (PPLI) in Action

The Dangers of Over Reliance on Trusts

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The more sophisticated tools gravitate toward the most sophisticated users of these tools. A Stradivarius violin is used by a master violinist and not a beginner. When clients and advisors initially approach us about Private Placement Life Insurance (PPLI), they are confused about its uses.

For the most part, what these clients and advisors have read about are beginning uses of PPLI. They have not explored the upper reaches and more sophisticated uses of asset structures that employ PPLI to its full effect. To keep to our analogy, they have picked up a beginner’s violin, and know nothing of the deep, rich, and more pleasing tone of the Stradivarius violin.

We will now discuss the sixth principle of Expanded Worldwide Planning (EWP), Trust Substitute. We will of course speak of the obvious use of a PPLI asset structure in place of a trust structure in some civil law jurisdictions, but we will also expand our discussion to explore the very nature of trust and how they differ from the sophisticated structures that we use for the world’s wealthiest families. Our discussion will also touch on why a PPLI structure is a far better tool for the client who seeks both maximum privacy, asset protection, and tax efficiency, as well as full compliance with the world’s tax authorities.

Advisors Don’t Know What They Don’t Know

The confusion about the uses of PPLI structures that we mentioned in our opening paragraph is exacerbated by the system that educates attorneys, accountants, trust officers, and asset managers. There is virtually no mention of PPLI Structures in colleges, universities, law schools, and the other training grounds of these professionals.

For instance, attorneys spend time learning the various uses of trusts, so they produce these for their clients, even when they are not the best tool for the job at hand. They don’t know what they don’t know.

If we are going to use a PPLI structure as a substitute for a trust structure, or in combination with a trust. Let us ask ourselves the basic question: what is a trust and how did it come to be in existence in the first place.

Let us look at a chart that compares Trusts vs. Life Insurance for creating asset structures for wealthy clients.

Insurance and Trust Comparison

Insurance Trust

◆ Contractually based and used by millions

◆ Tax deferral

◆ Insurance Company is beneficial owner

◆ Simplified or limited reporting

◆ Tax-free asset transfer

◆ No capital gains taxes

◆ Asset protection

◆ Provides some asset protection

◆ Sometimes seen as tool for the rich

◆ More stringent reporting requirements

◆ Tax filings for trust and possibly beneficiaries required by some jurisdictions

◆ No tax deferral

What Is a Trust and Where Did It Come From?

In its most basic form, it is a three-party relationship in which someone, the trustor or settlor, transfers assets to a trustee, for the benefit of a beneficiary.

A trust establishes the distinction between a legal and a beneficial owner. The legal owner was referred to as a “trustee” (because he was “entrusted” with property) and the beneficial owner was the “beneficiary”.

Roman law had a well-developed concept of the trust (fideicommissum) created by wills. However, these testamentary trusts did not develop into the inter vivos (living) trusts which apply while the creator lives. This was created by later common law jurisdictions. The waqf is a similar institution in Islamic law, restricted to charitable trusts.

In England during the time of the Crusades in the 12th century, the law of trusts was constructed as part of “equity”, a body of principles made by the Courts of Chancery, which sought to correct the strictness of the common law. The trust was an addition to the law of property, in the situation where one person held legal title to property, but the courts decided it was fair, just or “equitable” that this person be compelled to use it for the benefit of another.

When a landowner left England to fight in the Crusades, he conveyed ownership of his lands in his absence to manage the estate and pay and receive feudal dues, on the understanding that the ownership would be conveyed back on his return. However, Crusaders often encountered refusal to hand over the property upon their return. Unfortunately for the Crusader, English common law did not recognize his claim. As far as the King’s courts were concerned, the land belonged to the trustee, who was under no obligation to return it. The Crusader had no legal claim.

The disgruntled Crusader would then petition the king, who would refer the matter to his Lord Chancellor. The Lord Chancellor could decide a case according to his conscience. At this time, the principle of equity was born. The Lord Chancellor would consider it “unconscionable” that the legal owner could go back on his word and deny the claims of the Crusader (the “true” owner). Therefore, he would find in favor of the returning Crusader. Over time, it became known that the Lord Chancellor’s court (the Court of Chancery).

PPLI Structure vs. Trust Structure

Just as a Trust Structure has three elements: trustor or settlor, trustee, and beneficiary, a PPLI, and, indeed, every life insurance policy has three elements: owner, insured, and beneficiary. Using this three party relationship successfully makes many of the advanced structuring possibilities of EWP possible.

As we discussed in our chapter on Succession Planning, some civil law jurisdictions do not recognize trust in the same light as in most common law jurisdictions. In some asset structuring situations, a PPLI asset structure can be a viable substitute for a trust. Upon death of the insured person(s), the value of the assets in a PPLI policy plus any death benefit is paid directly to the beneficiaries listed in the policy. This can facilitate the transfer of wealth and eliminate the need for a trust.

Conclusion

Trusts serve an essential purpose in planning for the world’s wealthiest families, but over reliance on them is a grave mistake. If done correctly, the marriage of a trust with a properly structured PPLI policy can indeed be a happy one. Please contact us today to find out how you can benefit from this happy marriage, which has served the most sophisticated clients worldwide for over 25 years.

by Michael Malloy, CLU TEP RFC, @ Advanced Financial Solutions, Inc

Michael Malloy-CLU-TEP

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

EWP & Tax Shield-Part 3

Expanded Worldwide Planning-EWP and Tax Shield

Private Placement Life Insurance (PPLI) in Action

PPLI Benefits U.S. Persons with Real Estate–Part 3

 

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The universality of Expanded Worldwide Planning (EWP) is not to be denied. This is objectified by Wikipedia. In the first sentence of their page on International Tax Planning, Expanded Worldwide Planning (EWP) is featured.

We are taking a cue from Wikipedia. Over the next few weeks, we will feature one of the six principles of Expanded Worldwide Planning (EWP). The six principles are: privacy, asset protection, tax shield, succession planning, compliance simplifier, and trust substitute. Today we feature the tax shield.

PPLI Benefits U.S. Persons with Real Estate

The benefits of using PPLI for U.S. persons investing in real estate in the U.S. are substantial. Why don’t more U.S. persons take advantage of these benefits? At Advanced Financial Solutions, Inc., we maintain that it is because of profound misunderstandings about the Investor Control Doctrine and the diversification requirements of variable contracts under IRS code section 817(h).

Ironically, these misunderstandings have been clarified by the Webber decision, Webber v. Commissioner, 144 T.C. No. 17 (June 30, 2015). In the popular press, and in many tax journals, this same Webber decision was interpreted as the ‘nail to the coffin’ for PPLI.

Let us explore how the Webber decision makes it clear that in a properly structured PPLI policy, U.S. real estate can be held and still be fully compliant with the IRS. We will do this through the lens of what the Webber decision tells us about the Investor Control Doctrine and the diversification requirements of variable contracts under 817(h).

These are the key points of the Webber decision that support the inclusion of U.S. real estate in a properly designed PPLI policy:

The egregious flaunting of what is known as the Investor Control Doctrine by Jeffrey T. Webber, William Lipkind, his attorney, and the manager of his Insurance Dedicated Fund (IDF) (Butterfield Bank) has blinded advisors and their clients to an essential point in the tax court’s decision. Judge Lauber, the presiding judge, found no objection to the private companies and other investments that were placed as in-kind premium in the two PPLI policies that were in question. There is nothing in the rules regarding PPLI either before or after Webber which would prohibit the use of private company securities, actively operated and closely business interests, and real estate enterprises within a policy IDF or Separately Managed Account (SMA).

The Tax Court’s key issue was the fact that Mr. Webber was on the board of every company in which the policy invested, invested his own funds from his personal wealth and his IRAs, and that he negotiated the terms of every loan on behalf of the company and then gave the instruction to Mr. Lipkind and Butterfield Bank. The court states, “The record includes more than 70,000 emails to or from Mr. Lipkind, Ms. Chang (Webber’s accountant), the IDF Investment Manager, and/or Lighthouse (the insurance company) concerning petitioner’s “recommendations” for investments by the separate accounts. Mr. Lipkind also appears to have given instructions regularly by telephone.”

IRC Sec 817(h) provides a detailed overview of the investment diversification requirements of variable insurance products. The regulations address a wide range of investment alternatives that are not found in retail variable life and annuity products such as direct investment in real estate, and commodities.

Treasury regulations 1.817.5 provide very detailed guidance on the investment diversification rules. The regulations interpret these rules for investment asset classes such as real estate, and allow for a period of time to meet the diversification requirements of IRC Sec 817(h). For non-real estate accounts, the regulations provide for a one-year period to meet the diversification requirements. Real estate accounts provide for a five-year start up period and a two-year liquidation period.

The court states: “The “investor control” doctrine posits that, if the policyholder’s incidents of ownership over those assets become sufficiently capacious and comprehensive, he rather than the insurance company will be deemed to be the true “owner” of those assets for Federal income tax purposes. In that event, a major benefit of the insurance/annuity structure–the deferral or elimination of tax on the “inside buildup”–will be lost, and the investor will be taxed currently on investment income as it is realized.”

It is clear from reading the Webber decision that, if Mr. Webber had followed the very language stated in his policy, his PPLI structure would have worked, and complied with the Investor Control Doctrine and the diversification requirements of 817(h). The court record reads: “As drafted, the Policies state that no one but the Investment Manager may direct investments and deny the policyholder any “right to require Lighthouse to acquire a particular investment” for a separate account. Under the Policies, the policyholder was allowed to transmit “general investment objectives and guidelines” to the Investment Manager, who was supposed to build a portfolio within those parameters.”

PFIC + Subpart F + GILTI = All Redefined with PPLI

Distributions from a properly structured PPLI policy are distributions from a life insurance policy. Like all policies, both U.S. and issued in other jurisdictions around the world, the distributions are subject to the tax code sections that apply to life insurance.

In a properly structured policy, one can withdraw all basis in the policy, which are the premiums paid, tax free, and take very low cost loans to withdraw the remaining funds. The costs of these loans is equivalent to an administrative charge, and is usually in the range of 25 bps. When the policy is held until the death of the insured life, the amount of the loan is merely subtracted from the death benefit, therefore, the loan need not be repaid.

The 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA), has brought an increase in taxation for those who have subpart F income. Just like Passive Foreign Investment Company (PFIC) income, subpart F income can be structured inside a PPLI policy, and, therefore, shielded from tax. PPLI has been used for many years to shield PFIC income.

TCJA gave us a new section of the tax code, Section 951A. For those who have an interest in a controlled foreign (CFC), particularly if they are not C corporation shareholders, there is a new opportunity to use a PPLI structure to shield this income from tax. Section 951A gives us Global Intangible Low-taxed Income (GILTI), which if held in other than a C corporation, has very unfavorable tax consequences that can be greatly mitigated by using PPLI.

Hedge Fund Life Insurance

One distinct benefit of a PPLI policy is the ability to place tax inefficient investments like hedge funds into a tax-friendly environment. Some advisors have even coined the term, Hedge Fund Life Insurance, to highlight the advantages of combining hedge fund investments and life insurance into one tax-advantaged asset structure.

The numbers tell the story well on the chart below.

                                                     View Image in PDF format

The chart compares a taxable investment to one held in a PPLI account over the long-term. The very clear winner is the PPLI account. Even over a ten year period there is more than $3M more in the PPLI account. The chart does not even show the death benefit which is always more than the cash value account. In a properly structured policy, the death benefit is also tax-free, making a PPLI asset structure the undeniable victory in the quest for tax efficiency.

Conclusion

Let us summarize the tax advantages of holding investments in a PPLI asset structure:

Tax-deferred “inside build-up” of policy cash values. The industry has preserved the tax preferred treatment of life insurance for decades.

Non-recognition of capital gains. The policyholder has the ability to switch investment options within the product without triggering taxation. Life insurance separate accounts are legally the owners of the investments within variable insurance products. The life insurer receives a reserve deduction equal to its investment income.

The option of tax-free access to policy cash values through a partial surrender of the cash value and low-cost policy loans. A policyholder may take a partial surrender of the cash value and recover his tax basis in the contract first. Policy loans with a net cost of approximately 25 basis points per annum also receive income tax-free treatment.

The policy’s basis is its cumulative premiums. Once the policyholder has recovered his basis in the contract, the policyholder has a contractual right to a policy loan which allows the policyholder to borrow up to ninety percent of the policy cash value.

Income tax-free death benefit. The policy cash value grows on a tax-free basis. The policyholder can access investment gains within the policy on a tax-free basis during lifetime, and beneficiaries receive the death benefit income-tax free.

Estate tax-free death benefits through the use of third party ownership of the policy, such as an irrevocable life insurance trust (“ILIT”). IRC Sec 2042 provides that as long as the insured does not retain any incidents of ownership within the policy, the death proceeds will not be included in the taxable estate of the decedent.

Look no further if you wish to achieve the utmost in privacy, asset protection, and tax efficiency. You have arrived when you implement a PPLI asset structure. Please contact us today to let us know how we can assist you in creating your own bespoke PPLI asset structure.

by Michael Malloy, CLU TEP RFC, @ Advanced Financial Solutions, Inc

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#michaelmalloy #PPLI #EWP #privateplacement #lifeinsurance #advancedfinancialsolutions

 

 

 

EWP & Tax Shield-Part 2

Expanded Worldwide Planning-EWP and Tax Shield

Private Placement Life Insurance (PPLI) in Action

The Hampton Freeze & Beyond–Part 2

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The universality of Expanded Worldwide Planning (EWP) is not to be denied. This is objectified by Wikipedia. In the first sentence of their page on International Tax Planning, Expanded Worldwide Planning (EWP) is featured.

We are taking a cue from Wikipedia. Over the next few weeks, we will feature one of the six principles of Expanded Worldwide Planning (EWP). The six principles are: privacy, asset protection, tax shield, succession planning, compliance simplifier, and trust substitute. Today we feature the tax shield.

PPLI Benefits Non-U.S. Persons with Real Estate

There are many obstacles that non-U.S. persons face in investing in U.S. real estate. The primary tax impediments to foreign investment in U.S. real estate in general and in real estate funds specifically are U.S. income, capital gains and withholding taxes. Adding Private Placement Life Insurance (PPLI) in combination with trusts and LLC elements eliminates or mitigates U.S., withholding taxes, U.S. income and capital gains taxes, and estate taxes.

Here is a list of the obstacles faced by non-U.S. persons investing in U.S. real estate:

Effectively Connected Income (ECI): Although non-U.S. investors’ gains from U.S. stock are generally not taxable, income and gain from their real estate investments are generally taxable under the ECI rules. Specifically, rental income and/or gains from the sale of U.S. real estate are both generally treated as ECI. U.S. source rental income allocable to a foreign investor is typically not entitled to any treaty preferences. ECI is generally taxed to such foreign investors under the same tax rates that apply to U.S. taxpayers, and foreign investors that receive ECI are required to file U.S. federal and state income tax returns. Finally, the FIRPTA rules described below can also transform sales of stock (or other equity interests) and/or capital gain dividends from REITs into ECI.

FIRPTA: Enacted in 1980 to combat perceived unfair advantages for foreign investors in U.S. real estate, the Foreign Investment in Real Property Tax Act (FIRPTA) imposes significant taxes on dispositions of US real property interests. Specifically, Section 897 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended, essentially treats such gain as ECI. In addition, as explained below, complicated withholding tax rules apply with regard to US counterparties in such transactions.

Non-US Regulatory Concerns: In addition to U.S. tax issues, non-US investors can have non-U.S. tax and regulatory concerns. For example, non-U.S. investors may need to comply with certain informational reporting requirements in their home jurisdictions.

Significant investment capital for U.S. real estate transactions and funds has been and will continue to be raised from non-U.S. investors. In light of this fact, it is important that real estate advisors, investors, and owners understand the tax challenges, as well as the potential solutions, involved when non-U.S. investors invest in U.S. real estate. PPLI is an integral element in these solutions.

Outstanding Results Realized

We will compare the various structures generally used by non-U.S. persons for investing in U.S. real estate with the addition of PPLI. Adding the PPLI advantage is a cost-effective way to give clients additional return on their investments and legitimate, enhanced privacy in their structures.

An insurance solution using PPLI or a Private Placement Variable Annuity (PPVA) contract can greatly simplify or eliminate many of these issues and make long term investing even more appealing.

All foreign Investors are exposed to a myriad of US tax consequences, including withholding taxes (30%), capital gains, and even U.S. Estate Taxes. Life insurance, and specifically Private Placement Life Insurance (PPLI), is a well-established tax and estate planning tool that many qualified investors utilize to mitigate and manage these exposures.

Most structures can remain intact with the simple addition of a compliant life or annuity policy. PPLI can accommodate most custodians, managers or funds, making the transaction as simple to set up as a trust or other less effective structures.

PPLI also provides simplified reporting and confidentiality. The policy is reported once, and not the assets held or underlying investments. The owner reports a life policy and not that they are investors or hold assets in the U.S.

The Summary Chart below compares using PPLI with other commonly used structures. The small additional expense of adding PPLI to a structure gives the non-U.S. person many additional benefits that cannot be achieved otherwise.

EWP & Tax Shield-PPLI with IDF vs. Other Real Estate Structures

  •                  CLICK HERE to enlarge image

We learn much valuable knowledge from your questions and comments. Please give us your thoughts on using PPLI in real estate structures.

by Michael Malloy, CLU TEP RFC, @ Advanced Financial Solutions, Inc

Michael Malloy-CLU-TEP

 

 

 

#michaelmalloy #PPLI #EWP #privateplacement #lifeinsurance #advancedfinancialsolutions

 

 

 

The EWP Da Vinci Code – Part 3

Expanded Worldwide Planning–EWP & Asset Protection

Private Placement Life Insurance (PPLI) in Action

The EWP Da Vinci Code–Part 3

The EWP Da Vinci Code - Part 3

 

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The universality of Expanded Worldwide Planning (EWP) is not to be denied. This is objectified by Wikipedia. In the first sentence of their page on International Tax Planning, Expanded Worldwide Planning (EWP) is featured.

We are taking a cue from Wikipedia. Over the next few weeks, we will feature one of the six principles of Expanded Worldwide Planning (EWP). The six principles are: privacy, asset protection, tax shield, succession planning, compliance simplifier, and trust substitute.

Domestic Asset Protection Trust vs. Offshore Asset Protection Trust

Today we feature asset protection. In this segment we will discuss the development of Domestic Asset Protection Trust (DAPT) and Offshore Asset Protection Trust (OAPT). We again alert you to the fact that a simpler and more time-honored approach to asset protection is using life insurance. In a sense, asset protection comes automatically with Expanded Worldwide (EWP).

Advisors debate which is better: a DAPT or an OAPT. We say that they do serve a purpose for some clients, but why not adopt The EWP Da Vinci Code, and receive not only outstanding asset protection benefits, but all the six principles of Expanded Worldwide Planning (EWP) in one complete package?

Why bring Leonardo da Vince into this discussion? Because Leonardo said, “Simplicity is ultimate sophistication.” We have taken this as our model in implementing Expanded Worldwide Planning (EWP) in our PPLI asset structures. We invite you to do the same.

When you purchase an automobile, you do not ask if it has turn signals. Of course, this is a standard part of the vehicle. Today you may pay extra for an advanced guidance system (GPS), but you might be able to do without it.

“Asset protection does not come as an extra feature with Expanded Worldwide Planning (EWP), it is part of the package, just like turn signals on a new vehicle.” ~ Michael Malloy

As we will read, the controversial aspects of DAPTs and OAPTs arise out of public policy issues: is the use of this particular trust the best for the common good.

It is not our place to take a position on public policy issues. At Advanced Financial Solutions, Inc. our role is to assist wealthy families in their quest to implement the six principles of Expanded Worldwide Planning (EWP). Asset Protection is one of these six principles, and it is achieved through the financial planning tool of life insurance.

Life insurance is considered a societal benefit. Life insurance relieves governments from providing families with the needed cash at the death of the family’s income earner. Life insurance encourages savings for retirement through the accumulation of the cash value in the policy. PPLI is a form of life insurance, and thus bypasses much of the attention that is focused on trust structures.

In terms of the actual PPLI contract, all investments are held in separate accounts in the policy, thus, they are not in the insurance company’s general account. For this reason they are not subject to the creditors of the insurance company, if the company were to become bankrupt.

When government regulators look to curb what they would term abuses of public policy: in other words, wealthy families who have gone too far in stretching tax and trust law, aggressive trust structures are a frequent target.

We now give you a brief history of DAPTs and OAPTs, and the public policy issues that raise concerns with government regulators.

According to Wikipedia:

“An asset-protection trust is any form of trust which provides for funds to be held on a discretionary basis. Such trusts are set up in an attempt to avoid or mitigate the effects of taxation, divorce and bankruptcy on the beneficiary. Such trusts are therefore frequently proscribed or limited in their effects by governments and the courts.”

What we might call the modern asset protection trust was formulated in the late 1980s, and the first jurisdiction to adopt it was in the Cook Islands. These trusts had spendthrift provisions and could be self-settled. These OAPTs had a one year fraudulent conveyance statute.

The Cook Islands legislation was soon followed by similar laws in the Cayman Islands, Belize, Nevis, the Channel Islands, the Isle of Man, and numerous other international financial centers.

In 1997, Alaska passed legislation allowing for irrevocable, discretionary, self-settled trusts. Ninety days later, Delaware followed suit, and as of this date some 16 states have passed DAPT legislation.

The controversy surrounding DAPTs and OAPTs arises from the degree to which OAPTs, in practice, often defeat deep-seated precepts of U.S. trust law. A key precept is that one ought not control and benefit from property and at the same time shield it from one’s creditors.

The underlying policy rationale for the non-enforcement of self-settled spendthrift trusts is clearly stated in A. Scott’s The Law of Trusts:

“It is immaterial that in creating the trust, the settlor did not intend to defraud his creditors. It is immaterial that he was solvent at the time of the creation of the trust. It is against public policy to permit a man to tie up his own property in such a way that he can still enjoy it but can prevent his creditors from reaching it.”

For a U.S. wealthy family to form a DAPT, it is not necessary to form a trust in a jurisdiction outside the U.S., so this can make the process less expensive and time consuming. This takes us back to the old adage: “you get what you pay for.”

The greatest deficiency of DAPTs is that they are necessarily governed by U.S. law. The DAPT fails to achieve the jurisdictional separation required to fully protect the asset.

Since only a quarter of states currently have DAPT statutes, it is probable that states where litigation is taking place are those in which DAPTs are expressly prohibited as being against public policy. In a conflict-of-law analysis, it is difficult to envision any judge in a non-DAPT state agreeing to apply the laws of the DAPT state.

OAPTs are more secure for several reasons:

  • a foreign trust is not subject to the jurisdiction of the U.S. courts, so a U.S. attachment order will have no effect within that foreign jurisdiction;
  • furthermore, creditors seeking to reach the assets embark on independent legal proceedings in the foreign jurisdiction in which the trust is located;
  • even a favorable foreign judgment may be a hollow victory. The creditor still may not be able to satisfy that judgment from the assets held in the trust unless she proves that the transfer to the trust constituted a fraudulent conveyance.

Conclusion

Most asset protection trusts established by U.S. settlors are considered grantor trusts under U.S. income tax law, meaning that all income of the trust is reportable on the grantor’s (the settlor’s) individual income tax return. Asset-protection trusts do not, in and of themselves, offer any tax advantages under U.S. income tax law.

So why not create a trust that not only gives you asset protection, but the whole formidable array of benefits that Expanded Worldwide Planning (EWP) provides? To achieve this outstanding result, we suggest using an International Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust (ILIT) which owns a properly structured PPLI policy–The EWP Da Vinci Code.

The ILIT has been in use for decades; it has withstood numerous court challenges, and avoids the taint of opposing public policy that you acquire with DAPTs and OAPTs.

Regarding U.S,. tax laws, a properly designed International ILIT, governed by the law of a foreign jurisdiction, is treated virtually the same as a domestic ILIT. For wealthy U.S. families, or those families with a connection to the U.S., an International ILIT in combination with a properly structured PPLI policy, is arguably the most efficient structure for the integration tax-free investment growth, wealth transfer and asset protection.

Please contact us today to find out if The EWP Da Vinci Code is right for you.

 

by Michael Malloy, CLU TEP RFC, @ Advanced Financial Solutions, Inc

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The EWP Da Vinci Code – 2

Expanded Worldwide Planning-EWP & Asset Protection

Private Placement Life Insurance (PPLI) in Action

The EWP Da Vinci Code–Part 2

The EWP Da Vinci Code - part 2

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The universality of Expanded Worldwide Planning (EWP) is not to be denied. This is objectified by Wikipedia. In the first sentence of their page on International Tax Planning, Expanded Worldwide Planning (EWP) is featured.

We are taking a cue from Wikipedia. Over the next few weeks, we will feature one of the six principles of Expanded Worldwide Planning (EWP). The six principles are: privacy, asset protection, tax shield, succession planning, compliance simplifier, and trust substitute.

Quiet Protection of PPLI

Today we feature asset protection. Life insurance’s role as a protector of assets is quite different from our nature documentary example of a hunter and its prey. This role is more akin to the method used by dogs and cats in saving the lives of their families.

As you will read in the examples below, this protection was not brought about by physical strength. The type of strength we are speaking of is quietly hidden inside the frame of a small domesticated pet. This type of strength does not manifest until the proper circumstances arise. In this case, a threat to the master or family.

Life insurance in the form of PPLI can be seen to have this inherent quality of a quiet and inconspicuous protector of family assets.

Here are the examples:

From The Associated Press,

“Baby, a gray, white, and brown tabby cat, alerted a sleeping couple to a house fire in a Chicago suburb. Josh Ornberg and Letitia Kovalovsky were sleeping on a couch in the living room when Baby woke them, alarmed that a fire had broken out in the bedroom. The couple said that both they and the cat got out of the house safely.”

A CNN headline reads:

A German shepherd shielded his family from gunfire in a road rage incident. Michael Pearson’s article continues, “Following an altercation on an Atlanta road, the driver followed the family to a nearby strip mall and opened fire. The dog jumped in front of one of the children and a woman in the car and died of gunshot wounds behind a nearby building. Atlanta police Sergeant Gregory Lyon said,”They survived that only to find that their pet is now gone. It’s sad for the whole family, especially the day after Thanksgiving.”

Dog stays with owner for 20 hours after man breaks his neck in Michigan,” is the headline from Fox News. The story reads, “A Michigan man, Bob, slipped in the snow and broke his neck. With the closest neighbors far away, his golden retriever stayed with him for 20 hours. “By morning, my voice was gone and I couldn’t yell for help, but Kelsey didn’t stop barking,” Bob said. He lost consciousness, but Kelsey howled until a neighbor heard her and came to the rescue.”

Creditors vs. Debtors

By implementing the six principles of Expanded Worldwide Planning (EWP) through a properly structured PPLI policy, wealthy families achieve substantial asset protection benefits.

Historically trusts were employed to shield assets from excessive taxation, unreasonable claims of creditors, and bankruptcy. Trusts were developed in England originally to minimize the impact of inheritance taxes arising from transfers at death. The essence of the trust was to separate “legal” title, which was given to someone to hold as “trustee”, from “equitable title”, which was to be retained by the trust beneficiaries.

In both Roman times and as early as the 14th century in England, the use of trusts to shield lawful claims of creditors was recognized as a practice not conducive to sound public practice. Today we called it fraudulent conveyance.

The Romans utilized a type of trust known as a fideicommissum, which facilitated the transfer of assets at death. The Romans were also aware of the abuses of trust that went against public policy. Their great legal scholars Ulpian and Gaius developed the basic framework for the fraudulent conveyance laws as we know them today.

In England in the late 14th century, two laws were enacted that aimed to end popular types of fraudulent conveyance that were then in practice. One law sought to prevent debtors from conveying their lands to their friends until their creditors had come and gone away. Another law sought to end the practice of temporarily conveying their lands to “Lords and other great Men of the Realm” so as to deter creditors.

Another key component to our own asset protection laws are spendthrift clauses. A spendthrift provision creates an irrevocable trust preventing creditors from attaching the interest of the beneficiary in the trust before that interest (cash or property) is actually distributed to him or her.

These spendthrift provisions first became popular in the U.S. in the 19th century, and were controversial. Not just a few commentators thought that spendthrift clauses were a very bad idea. John Chipman Gray, a Harvard Law Professor whose half-brother (Horace Gray) was a U.S. Supreme Court Justice, registered his objections this way:

“The general introduction of spendthrift trusts would be to form a privileged class, who could indulge in every speculation, could practice every fraud, and, provided they kept on the safe side of the criminal law, could yet roll in wealth. They would be an aristocracy, though certainly the most contemptible aristocracy with which a country was ever cursed.”

Notwithstanding such objections, the spendthrift trust, of course, survived and thrived U.S. law.

Yet, such trusts had their limitations; for example, some states carved out exceptions for creditors holding judgments for unpaid alimony and child support. By far the biggest restriction was against spendthrift trusts which were self-settled trusts. That great commentator on trust law, George T. Bogert, firmly believed that the spendthrift provisions of self-settled trusts were unenforceable against public policy, and wrote:

“To hold otherwise would be to give unexampled opportunity to unscrupulous persons to shelter their property before engaging in speculative business enterprises, to mislead creditors into thinking that the settlor still owned the property since he appeared to be receiving its income, and thereby work a gross fraud on creditors who might place reliance on the former prosperity and financial stability of the debtor.”

In the late 1980s in the U.S. most legal practitioners were in agreement that spendthrift clauses could protect the rights of beneficiaries of trust, but you could not create a trust that exempted your assets from creditors, a self-settled spendthrift trust.

This leads us to our last segment of our Expanded Worldwide Planning (EWP) drama or play of opposites.

We look forward to bringing you Part 3 in our series on Asset Protection soon. Please give us your thoughts on what we have brought you so far.

Learning from each other is one of the great pleasures in life.

by Michael Malloy, CLU TEP RFC, @ Advanced Financial Solutions, Inc

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Expanded Worldwide Planning-EWP & Privacy

EWP-PRIVACY

Private Placement Life Insurance (PPLI) in Action

Part 1: Privacy

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The universality of Expanded Worldwide Planning (EWP) is not to be denied. This is objectified by Wikipedia. In the first sentence of their page on International Tax Planning, Expanded Worldwide Planning (EWP) is featured.
We are taking a cue from Wikipedia. Over the next few weeks, we will feature one of the six principles of Expanded Worldwide Planning (EWP). The six principles are: privacy, asset protection, tax shield, succession planning, compliance simplifier, and trust substitute.
Today we feature PRIVACY. Privacy is a key element. With FATCA, CRS, and Registers of Beneficial Ownership our clients are looking for ways to keep their affairs private, and still be compliant with tax authorities worldwide. But as you know, it is a cat and mouse game that takes study and constant attention to detail. As you can see from our image, we don’t quite know who is winning.

“Behold, I set before you this day a blessing and a curse….” (Deuteronomy 11:26, King James Bible.) This is an apt phrase to describe the context of privacy today, where with a touch of a keystroke you can send megabytes of data around the world in an instant.
What was once private and personal becomes public and accessible to all. Computers and other electronic devices are part of our lives, whatever our opinion of them. These devices can add convenience and efficiency to our lives, but at a cost.

Electronic Privacy?
This thought is expressed by Andrew Grove, co-founder and former CEO of Intel Corporation. Mr. Grove’s thoughts on internet privacy appear on the Privacy page of Wikipedia:

“Privacy is one of the biggest problems in this new electronic age. At the heart of the Internet culture is a force that wants to find out everything about you. And once it has found out everything about you and two hundred million others, that’s a very valuable asset, and people will be tempted to trade and do commerce with that asset. This wasn’t the information that people were thinking of when they called this the information age.”

Expanded Worldwide Planning (EWP) has the six principles that matter most to wealthy families throughout the world today–no matter where they are located. They are the building blocks of any successful asset structure.

The ancient Greeks called man, “a political animal.” In today’s world almost all so-called facts are politicized. It is no different with privacy. Certain groups call the journalistic authors of the Panama Papers and the Paradise Papers heros of a free press. Others say that these same journalists were thieves, who unlawfully stold private financial data. Whatever your opinion, these events did happen, and the targets were most decidedly wealthy families throughout the world.

How does the privacy afforded by a properly structured PPLI policy protect the families whose financial information was published for the entire world to see?
The privacy principle of Expanded Worldwide Planning (EWP) accomplishes its objective in several key ways:

  • Upon transfer into the PPLI policy, the insurance company becomes the beneficial owner of all the assets in the policy;
  • If there is reporting to a tax authority for the asset structure, only one number is reported. This is the total cash value of all the assets in the PPLI policy. The individual assets are not reported;
  • The bank account that is usually opened in connection with a PPLI policy is opened in the name of the insurance company, not the policyowner. The policyowner has full access to the funds in the bank account in accordance with the assets inside the policy.

The Privacy Paradox
In connection to privacy, there is a concept called the privacy paradox that was first discussed by Bedrick, Lerner, and Whitehead, “The privacy paradox: Introduction, News Media and the Law.” We quote below from the Wikipedia Privacy page:

“The privacy paradox is a phenomenon in which online users state that they are concerned about their privacy but behave as if they were not. While this term was coined as early as 1998, it wasn’t used in its current popular sense until the year 2000.”

The authors go onto to explain this in more detail:

“Some researchers believe that decision making takes place on an irrational level, especially when it comes to mobile computing. Mobile applications are built up in a way that decision making is fast. Restricting one’s profile on social networks is the easiest way to protect against privacy threats and security intrusions. However, such protection measures are not easily accessible while downloading and installing apps.”

There is also another type of Privacy Paradox pertinent to Expanded Worldwide Planning (EWP) in the reporting of data breaches and news reporting on wealthy families. This is aptly put by Filippo Noseda of the Mischon de Reya law firm in London:

“It is somewhat curious that serious newspapers who have been covering both the private banking scandals and the erosion of privacy seem unable to make the connection between data protection on the one hand, and the Common Reporting Standard (CRS) and beneficial ownership registers on the other.”

Mr. Noseda also draws our attention to published material by The European Data Protection Supervisor (EDPS) where he questions the OECD’s goal of total financial transparency.
Mr. Noseda writes:

“As if they were living on planet Europa rather than in Europe, the European Parliament, the Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development (OECD), and politicians show complete disregard for the warnings raised by their own data protection bodies and instead appear hell-bent on introducing a system of total transparency.”

We have grown accustomed to the idea that transparency is a good thing, something that supports the common good. Like many concepts, if taken to an extreme, it becomes its opposite. A weapon in the hands of governments hungry for wealthy citizens’ tax dollars. As proponents of Expanded Worldwide Planning (EWP), we must question this overzealous approach to tax collection.

The History of Privacy
Let us end with some general historical information on privacy, and how Expanded Worldwide Planning (EWP) and PPLI can further the aims of wealthy families seeking increased privacy, asset protection, and tax efficiency.
We quote two eye-opening passages by Greg Ferenstein’s “The Birth and Death of Privacy: 3,000 Years of History…,” courtesy of Medium:

“Privacy, as it is conventionally understood, is only 150 years old. Most humans living throughout history had little concept of privacy in their tiny communities. Sex, breastfeeding, and bathings were shamelessly performed in front of friends and families.”
“Privacy-conscious citizens did find more traction with what would become perhaps America’s first privacy law, the 1710 Post Office Act, which banned sorting through the mail by postal employees.”

This last quote seems quaint in light of the large-scale, present-day concerns of unauthorized data sharing by social media sites.

Expanded Worldwide Planning (EWP) and PPLI are employed by our firm Advanced Financial Solutions, Inc. to not only give you enhanced privacy, we also keep you compliant with tax authorities worldwide. Our firm can be confident of our success, because PPLI and Expanded Worldwide Planning (EWP) asset structuring greatly simplifies the process, and in addition, gives you the privacy that you seek.
We invite you to take advantage of our services, and would enjoy hearing your comments and questions about the topic of privacy. Please contact us today for a no-obligation, introductory consultation.

by Michael Malloy, CLU TEP RFC, @ Advanced Financial Solutions, Inc

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