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Tax and Jurisdictions

Switzerland and the US reached an agreement on Friday over the long-running tax evasion case between the US government and UBS.

The financial crisis has changed the financial services industry as we know it. Markets are focusing more on risk management, stock markets are volatile and corporate bonds not as safe.

Tax is never far from the headlines in an average year, but it has demanded particular attention in 2009. Conscientious wealthy families and their family offices have been reassessing their tax arrangements in light of this hiatus of activity. However, it is important to remember that tax planning is much more than a simple financial calculation.

Within the family office the role of the trustee is to safeguard assets and present investment options to the family. In today’s litigious society failure to manage these duties can be severe. Henry Frydenson outlines the pitfalls for trustees and offers advice on ways to avoid problems

The Swiss government announced yesterday it would seize UBS banking records rather than allow the US government to access the identities of 52,000 American UBS account holders, who include wealthy families.