Category Archives: Tax

The Importance of Offshore Asset Protection

‘Tis the season for gifting greeting cards and presents and chocolates, for spending time with loved ones, and for making resolutions for the upcoming year—but did you know that looking into offshore asset protection isn’t out of place during this time of year? In fact, offshore asset protection can actually help you secure the finances you need to keep your loved ones in mind well into your—and their—future.

How does it work?

Offshore asset protection is a form of general asset protection, also known as debtor-creditor law. In the most general definition of the term, asset protection involves employing legal techniques to protect your assets from creditors. Offshore asset protection ( www.EsquireGroup.Com/Offshore-asset-protection ), by extension, provides a means of protecting your assets from the claims of creditors by keeping them offshore. This can be done by opening an offshore bank account, trust, precious metals account, etc. By investing your assets offshore, you are securing those hard-earned assets from those who could otherwise attempt to gain legal access to them, thus ensuring those assets are safe for your and your family’s future.

Because the season of giving doesn’t need to apply to your creditors

Sure, it’s the season of giving, and you are all for giving back to others during their times of need—however, that most likely does not apply to your creditors. The gift you really want to give during the holiday season is to your loved ones. You save up all year to be able to show them how much they mean to you during this particular season, so why not protect your assets by investing in offshore asset protection? It’s the best way to ensure your financial assets are secure and accessible well into the future, creditors or no.

Who do you need to protect your finances from?

We’ve already mentioned creditors, but those aren’t the only entities who pose a threat to your assets. Offshore asset protection can also help you protect your assets from lawsuits. What happens if you or your business end up involved in a costly legal suit? You don’t want to lose your hard-earned assets to court procedures in addition to the lawsuit itself. Sure, you want the money you store offshore to be able to protect you from emergency situations, but if the entity filing the claim doesn’t know how much you have stored offshore, they are a lot less likely to file a frivolous claim or to ask for an unprecedented amount that could end up threatening those savings.

The same goes for more insidious risks, too. If your assets are offshore and you’ve gone through the proper channels to ensure offshore asset protection, those assets are a lot less likely to become susceptible to identity theft.

You can also protect your assets from the IRS by investing in offshore asset protection. To be clear, this does not suggest anything underhanded. You still need to disclose all of your assets when you file your taxes ( www.EsquireGroup.Com/about ), whether or not they are stored offshore. However, if you are wondering how offshore asset protection can possible save you from the IRS if you need to disclose your assets anyways, remember that there are some countries who want you to invest your money in their offshore or foreign accounts, and that means you may be able to avoid some taxation, saving you even more on your investment.

Of course, the final reason to choose offshore asset protection has been made very clear by recent economic activity. As a business entity, the best way to ensure your business’s success into the future is to diversify. Well, it’s no different when it comes to your own personal assets: you can diversify where your assets are invested to ensure they are more broadly protected from economic fluctuations and crashes.

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Posted by on December 19, 2017 in Tax


Take Your Business Overseas: How International Tax Experts and Other Professionals Can Help

As technology and global connectivity continue to change, grow, and evolve, so, too, does the world of business. More than ever before, business owners have the opportunity to take their businesses to the next level by opening themselves up to an international audience. Web-based technology and community makes it easier than it ever has been to adapt your business to the wants and needs of a foreign marketplace, and to present your offerings and conduct business transactions with customers in countries near and far. Of course, there are a few things to consider before you go international—although the process may be easier than ever, care must still be taken to do it right. Recklessness can derail your operations, both abroad and at home. But by surrounding yourself with experts like international tax consultants ( EsquireGroup/International-tax-consultant ) and global marketers, you can increase your business’s chances of success overseas.

Here are a few pieces to have in place as you prepare to take your business international.

Know Your Market

No matter how successful your business is at home, it might require some tweaking for it to do well internationally. Different markets have different needs, and they approach business in different ways, so it’s important that you determine if and how you need to adapt before venturing into the international market. And of course, no two countries are exactly alike, so what might work in one foreign market may be a bust in the next. Do your research, talk to business owners in your desired market, take trips to those locations, talk to an international tax consultant, and keep yourself as informed as possible during the decision-making process.

Even if your business’s concept and offerings are appropriate for a certain foreign market, there are a few other things to consider as well, such as logistics, exchange rates, and the cost of doing business in that country. Consulting with foreign logistics experts, international tax consultants, and financial advisors will help you make the best decision.

Connect with an International Tax Consultant

Even business owners with the best of intentions can get themselves into a great deal of trouble over incorrect foreign tax practices. You may think you fully understand a foreign financial system, but often there are rules and regulations that slip by you if you aren’t an expert. If you’re planning on expanding your business to a foreign market, it is so important that you consult with an international tax consultant. They will provide the guidance and services needed to make sure that everything you are doing financially ( EsquireGroup/About ) meets the legal tax standards for both your home country and the foreign country you’re operating in. An international tax consultant can be the difference between a successful business venture, and hefty fines or even jail time, so their services are a good investment.

Measure Your Results

As with any new venture, it’s important that you measure your results at regular intervals to make sure your investment into a foreign market is worth it. Look deeply at your results to make sure you’re breaking even—you may be doing a lot of business, but if expenses and taxes are high, you may not actually be profiting, so it’s important to analyze carefully and regularly, and talk to an international tax consultant.

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Posted by on October 23, 2017 in Tax


Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program: 3 Things to Know

The Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program is a program that was enacted to encourage people to come forward and report foreign income or assets that they had previously been illegally sheltering. The idea behind the program is that, by offering minor, non-criminal penalties (as opposed to the much stiffer penalties one would normally face in this situation), more people will come forward, pay the taxes they owe, and operate more scrupulously going forward. If you’ve made the decision to shelter offshore assets, and would now like to come clean, but fear legal repercussions, the Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program ( ) is likely a good fit for you. Before you submit to the program, here are a few things to keep in mind.

It’s a Lot of Work

Although the outcome is worth it, the Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program takes a great deal of effort, and it can be months or even years before your submission is completed and accepted and you’re in the clear. You will be required to submit a seemingly endless amount of paperwork, reports, statements, and information on your finances, and you will have to file or amend up to eight years worth of tax returns. The process might seem gruelling at times, and the thought of the work involved may make you second-guess your decision. However, rather than being deterred by the work involved, it’s better to make a plan and find the support you need to properly engage in the process. Once it’s over, you’ll be happy you went through with it.

Avoiding Prosecution Isn’t a 100% Guarantee

Although the purpose of the Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program is to give individuals who committed financial ( ) indiscretions a means of avoiding prosecution if they come forward, it’s actually not a 100% guarantee. While it’s extremely unlikely that you’ll get into any kind of legal trouble, it’s important that you use the program as intended, or you could be putting yourself at risk. Essentially, this means that you must make a full disclosure. If you make a partial disclosure, you can still find yourself in trouble once the undisclosed amounts are discovered.

The Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program also does not cover assets that were acquired through illegal means; if you were sheltering money that you obtained through legal work or investments, you’re fine, but if you disclose the sheltering of money you obtained through organized crime, laundering, or other illegal means, the program will not protect you, so it’s best to contact a lawyer to discuss other means for disclosure.

It’s Intended for Those Who Knew They Were Doing Wrong

The Offshore Voluntary Disclosure program is intended for people who deliberately failed to disclose foreign income or assets and were directly responsible for what they were doing. If your assets were hidden by an accountant whom you trusted, without your knowledge of the situation, you may not be legally at fault, so the program isn’t for you. If you discover that someone lied about disclosing assets on your behalf, the best way forward is to contact law enforcement for assistance.

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Posted by on September 18, 2017 in Tax


Utilizing the Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program to Your Advantage

If the thought of being investigated by the IRS makes you feel uneasy, you may want to get your financial situation in order before it is too late. Withholding information regarding foreign income or assets is a criminal offense, but there is a way to make amends with the government before you come under investigation. The Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program ( Esquiregroup.Com/Offshore-voluntary-disclosure-program ) offers individuals a way to erase their past mistakes and move forward in a more truthful manner.

What is the Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program?

The Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program was first introduced by the Internal Revenue Service in the United States in 2012. The program is designed to support taxpayers who come forward voluntarily and report their previously undisclosed foreign accounts and assets. This allows the IRS the opportunity to resolve a large number of cases without examination, while also offering taxpayers a chance to willingly resolve the issues in their previous income tax reports before they come under official investigation. To be eligible, a taxpayer must have invested legal source funds in their previously undisclosed assets. If any funds or assets are derived from criminal activity of any kind, you may not access the Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program. It is also important to report any intentionally withheld offshore accounts or assets before coming under investigation by the IRS. If you are currently under civil examination or criminal investigation by the IRS, it is too late to partake in the program. It is important that all taxpayers who choose to access the Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program (OVDP) do so voluntarily, not because they are already facing the threat of persecution. The program is not designed as a way out for those who are currently being criminally charged; it exists to assist those who acted intentionally by offering them a way to make it right. Once under investigation, if you are found guilty of withholding information from the US government, you may face a wide range of charges. If you are willing to make a change now, before it gets to that point, you will not only save yourself money, but you will also avoid potential jail time.

Accessing the Program and Avoiding Criminal Consequences

Taxpayers who wish to voluntarily disclose their offshore accounts and assets will avoid prosecution and limit their exposure to civil penalties by utilizing the Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program. By partaking in this program, those who have previously evaded taxes ( Esquiregroup.Com/About ) can prove that they ought to be trusted with their yearly income tax declarations moving forward. Through the program, taxpayers file up to eight years of tax returns and Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts (FBARs). These FBARs include such things as bank accounts, mutual funds, trust funds, and any other kinds of financial interests. Once filling out the questionnaires and other supporting documentation that discloses the nature of the taxpayer’s finances, the OVDP allows these individuals the opportunity to settle their debts. Once they are paying back their taxes owing, including interest and any penalties placed on those undeclared taxes, previously dishonest taxpayers can move on with their lives—without the threat of criminal investigation or imprisonment. By choosing to take part in the program, the taxpayer will not be criminally prosecuted, and any non-compliance older than eight years will be forgiven.

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Posted by on August 29, 2017 in Tax


Taking Your Business Worldwide : The Importance of an International Tax Consultant

It’s an exciting time to be in almost any line of business. Web-based communications and technology have opened up a literal world of opportunity in almost every sector. Whether you’re dealing in products or services, serving a large audience, or a specific niche, there are more opportunities than ever before because you can tap into an international audience at the click of a button. Of course, many businesses find themselves hesitant to take the leap into international business because they know that the tax implications can be a little complicated. There is always a risk of misstep, and that can have serious consequences. However, with the help and guidance of an international tax consultant ( EsquireGroup.Com/International-Tax-Consultant ), you can enter the international market with competence and confidence.

If you’re nervous about getting in tax trouble over international business, here are a few things to keep in mind.

Operate with Ethical Motives

If you are operating ethically, you shouldn’t fear getting into any international-tax-related trouble. If you run your business with integrity, there should be nothing to fear. Of course, sometimes mistakes do happen, and even an inadvertent error in tax procedures can raise suspicion and create a headache for you. This is exactly why it’s a good idea to consult regularly with an international tax consultant and have them inform any decisions related to international transactions. If you’re not out looking to skirt the law, and if you have a good international tax consultant to save you from potentially troublesome errors, then you should have nothing to fear.

Operate Transparently

Transparency in business is important, especially when it comes to tax matters. Being secretive or participating in convoluted tax schemes just makes it look like you have something to hide or like you’re trying to stretch the law, and that type of behavior will only invite an audit or investigation. If the thought of dealing with international taxes makes you nervous, and if you’re worried you’ll make mistakes in the process, remember that being completely open and transparent will save you trouble. Your clients and business relationships will see you as trustworthy, and any misstep or mistake won’t look so suspicious. Talk to your international tax consultant about how to manage your international transactions and financial statements to optimize transparency and trustworthiness.

Use Your International Tax Consultant Proactively, Not Just Reactively

Of course, your international tax consultant is good for more than just managing challenges and cleaning up mistakes as you transition your business to an international one. The best way to use your international tax consultant is proactively, not reactively. Seek their advice on how to manage international transactions and revenue and what considerations you should be keeping in mind before even making the leap to international.

Taking on the challenges of international business and related taxes ( EsquireGroup.Com/About ) is a major milestone for your business, and it is not always an easy one. An international tax consultant is an essential part of your strategy to manage your finances, operate within the laws of all countries involved, and plan ahead as you take your business worldwide.

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Posted by on July 29, 2017 in Tax


What is R & D tax finance?

The financing for any business is the toughest part of running the business. It is relatively easier to deliver quality goods to your end customer, than, having to get time-critical finances for your projects and business. But, if your company is working on research and development activities, then you need not worry about your finances. This is because the government of Australia has come up with a scheme that will help manage the finances of such business. One such scheme is called the R&D tax finance.

The R&D tax finance is short means, that your business activities will be financed by some external company/agency. But this comes with a set of terms and conditions. Read on to know more about the R&D tax finance ( ) option.

This scheme is started by the Australian government as a joint venture with the AusIndustry (This runs on behalf of Innovation Australia). This scheme was started mainly to encourage the companies that are working on research activities – this helps in the economic growth of the country, which in turn helps in good capital creation for the country.

To avail the R&D tax finance – means to avail the benefit of being funded by another company/agency, your company should classify as an R&D company. How do you qualify for this activity?

1.  Your company/project should be working on research activities – which are purely technological and scientific in nature.

2.  The results of your research activities should not be known to the general public and it should also not be easily deducible to equally competent technicians.

3.  Your project/business should be registered with the AusIndustry.

If your company meets all of these conditions, then you are eligible to avail the R&D tax credit from the government. The tax credit is a monetary benefit that you can avail. This helps to cover the cost of your business. The amount that you spend on staff, material, contractors, sub-contractors, softwares etc., can be re-covered from the government with the help of this R&D tax credit facility.

But you can avail this facility only after you qualify for the benefit. But before this time, if your business needs finances to run efficiently, you can avail the R&D tax finance. This means that there are some legal entities which are ready to finance your operations. The R&D tax finance comes with a set of terms and conditions. These agencies finance your project with a particular fixed rate of interest. The terms and conditions of the financing depend on the type of research you are undertaking. Make sure that you read all the terms and conditions of the R&D tax finance thoroughly before going in to an agreement.

You can repay the amount to the parent/funding company only after you get the R&D tax credit ( ) from the government. This helps you to run your business efficiently without having to worry about the financing part of it.

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Posted by on September 22, 2016 in Tax


What is R&D Tax Loan?

If you are interested in running your own business, but you are hesitant about the huge capital expenditure that has to be incurred, then you can go ahead and read this article. Read on to find out how you can avail the R&D tax loan ( Swansonreed/R&D-Tax-Loans ) and what are the benefits that are in store for you?

Before you talk about the R&D tax loan, there are a few terminologies that you need to be familiar with :

1.  R&D Activities : You need to be well aware of what activities classify under this stream. Your project activities are considered as R&D activities if they satisfy the following criteria.

a.  Your project is working on research that is not already known to the general public.

b.  The results of your research activities are not easily deducible by equally competent technical persons.

c.  Your project is based on the principles of technology and is scientific in nature.

d.  Your project goes from the phase of experiment – which leads to data collection, analysis and finally a result which is the outcome of your research activities.

2.  R&D Tax Credit : If your company is working on such activities which qualify as the R&D activities, then you are eligible to avail a credit facility from the government. The tax incentive provided by the government has two core components :

a.  A refundable tax-offset for companies whose annual turnaround is less than $20million.

b.  A non-refundable tax offset for all other companies/business whose turnaround is greater than $20 million.

Your business should perform a methodical book-keeping to record that the activities that your company is undertaking are purely research and development oriented. The following records need to be provided at the time of claiming the R&D tax credit :

o  The problem statement on which your research activities is being performed.

o  The time frame in which you plan to address and provide a solution to the problem at hand.

o  The overall expenditure of the research activity.

o  The persons involved in this research activity and the cost towards that.

AusIndustry specifies that all records for a period of 5 years need to be maintained and the same needs to be processed at the time of claiming for this benefit.

3.  R&D Tax Credit Finance : Since the R&D activities ( Swansonreed/What-We-Do ) have huge capital expenditure; there are some companies that are ready to finance the R&D activities of your business. This is called the R&D Tax Credit Finance.

Now that you know about all these things, we can talk about the R&D tax loan.

Since some companies are ready to finance your research activities, they provide a cash flow to your company even before you can avail the R&D tax credit from the government. The loan that is provided to you needs to be repaid once to avail the credit from the government. The R&D tax loans comes with a series of terms and conditions that are specific to your research activity. Make sure that you read all the terms and the rate of interest before you avail the facility.

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Posted by on September 1, 2016 in Tax


Consider Participating in an Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program

One of the temptations of keeping foreign assets and earning foreign income is the fact that it is very easy to avoid paying taxes on this money. Many people choose to hide some or all of their offshore earnings and income in order to keep all of it, or even most of it, to themselves. This can seem like an excellent idea, but unfortunately, it is illegal. So if you have decided to repair the less-than-optimal tax choices that you have made in previous years, how do you do it without incurring impossibly steep penalties? For many people, the solution is to find an offshore voluntary disclosure program that suits the needs of their situation.

What is Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program?

An Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program (OVDP), is a program set up to allow people with offshore accounts and other assets to get current with their tax returns while facing a minimum penalty for their financial choices. It is an incentive to taxpayers to pay what they owe, allowing the government to collect on the taxes that they need without needing to become embroiled in an expensive and prolonged legal battle. OVDPs rely on taxpayers to come forward willing to report on the money that was missing from their tax returns and provide an honest accounting of the money they are keeping in foreign countries.

Who Is Eligible for an OVDP?

The most important consideration in who is eligible to benefit from an offshore voluntary disclosure program ( ) is where the funds came from. If your offshore assets were attained illegally, either by theft or by unlawful sales or business practices, then you are not eligible for an OVDP. They exist to support the law, not to help people break it. You must also not be under investigation, whether criminal or civil, by the IRS. Finally, you cannot have made a submission to get a streamlined procedure.

What Do You Need to Do?

In order to be eligible for an offshore voluntary disclosure program, there are a few things you need to do to get the process started. First, you need to file up to 8 years of back taxes, or amend them to reflect a more accurate accounting of your finances. You will need to pay all of your back taxes, including any interest or penalties that you may have incurred. You will also have to pay a penalty on the highest value of unreported assets. Finally, there will be a variety of questionnaires to fill out that you will need to answer completely and accurately.

Why Participate in an OVDP?

An offshore voluntary disclosure program offers you the chance to return to a clean financial slate. It can seem difficult to give up money that you would rather keep, but the truth is that skeletons in your financial closet have a way of coming out into the open at the worst possible time. By opting to provide an accurate tax accounting ( EsquireGroup/about ) on your own, you can minimize your penalties as you bring your finances under control.

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Posted by on August 26, 2016 in Tax


Eligibility Criteria for Getting of R and D Tax Credits

There are many companies that are working on research and development activities, but unfortunately do not know that there is an added advantage for such companies. If your company is one, then you need to know about the R and D tax credit ( ) scheme. It is natural for you to assume that your company is not eligible for such credits or think that availing the credit facility is a tedious affair. But you are ‘wrong’ – the UK government has made this scheme so as to facilitate the growth of companies that are working in the research and development sectors. Read on to find out more about this initiative.

R and D Tax Credits

If your company is working on research activities, then the result or outcome of your research activities is not determinable. The capital expenditure on such activities is also very high – needless to say, the risk involved too. But such experimental activities are the need of the hour, since it helps in the economic growth of the country. Hence the government has come up with an initiative called the R & D tax credit. As the name indicates, it is the credit that is provided to companies that are working in this field. With this, you can reduce your company’s tax bill. It is either paid to you as a cash component or it can be reduced from the net corporate tax that you pay to the government.

Eligibility :

If your company is working on science and technology related projects, then you qualify for such activities. However, your research activities should be uncertain – meaning, the experiments that you conduct to deduce a solution should not already be known. Your experiments should lead to analysis and conclusion – and it should also be scientific in nature. Your research activities should deal with the uncertainties in that area of research and mention how and when the uncertainties are overcome.

These types of guidelines are listed by the ‘Department of Business, Innovation and Skills’. If your activities/projects qualify for these guidelines you can claim the R & D tax credit from the government.

Costs :

Not all the expenditure that your company incurs can be claimed under this act. The day to day running of your business and research activities will qualify for a claim. However, the capital assets do not qualify for this type of claim.

•  Staff costs : The staff costs can be claimed. Meaning, your staff should be working on only the research activities. Even contractors and sub-contractors who are totally involved in this research activity can be claimed under the R & D tax credit scheme.

•  Utilities and software : All utilities and software that are used purely for research activities only can be included in the claim. Utilities like power, water and fuel can also be claimed.

•  Material costs : All material used directly for R & D ( ) purposes can be included. However, telecommunication and data charges which are consumed in your project activities cannot be claimed under this scheme.

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Posted by on August 17, 2016 in Tax


What is R & D Tax Credit?

The UK government has some initiatives to promote research and development oriented businesses. The projects which work solely on research and advancement of technology are required for the strong economic growth of the country. To facilitate this growth, the UK government has initiated the R & D tax credit ( ) facility.

What is R & D Tax Credits?

The R & D tax credit is a scheme introduced by the UK government to help the business units that are working on Research and development activities. This facility can be availed by SME (Small and Medium Enterprises) or by large industries. If your business is R & D related, then your expenses will be very high. Also the risk involved is higher in running such business. Hence to encourage good research, the government has introduced a scheme called as the R&D Tax Credit. As the name suggests, it is a credit that your business unit could avail from the government. The money that you spend in research activities – like staff cost, material costs, software costs and the cost incorporated in hiring contractors can be covered with the R & D Tax credits.

Are you eligible to avail the credit?

There are some set terms and conditions for your business to avail this benefit. The R & D Tax credit scheme is applicable for companies that produce outputs in the domain of technology, medical sciences, new machines, prototypes, new software etc.

•  Your company should be regular payee of the CT (Corporate taxes). A minimum of 2 years is required prior to the time you can avail the R & D tax credit.

•  The research project should be part of your current business and your business should be oriented to improve processes, stability, safety or quality of life of the world. Meaning – it should be helpful to the larger section of the society.

•  Your project should be working extensively on research of some uncertainties in the technology, then you can avail this facility – provided you give a document stating the uncertainties that are faced and how your research is working towards overcoming the problems.

These are some criteria’s in which your business would not qualify for the R & D Tax Credit :

–  If your company is developing commercial products like software – you do not qualify for this; even though it helps the larger masses.

–  Projects working on arts, economics, social sciences and humanities do not qualify for this credit.

What is the process of availing R and D Tax Credits?

Once you know that you are eligible for this credit, availing this is a simple process. You need to fill in the details in the CT (Corporate tax) return form. In your CT return just mention if your company is a SME or a large company availing this facility. Although not mandatory, the HMRC (HM Revenue and Customs) encourages that you to fill in the details of why your project is R & D ( ) qualified and also to add a statement of the costs incurred for the research activity.

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Posted by on July 13, 2016 in Tax