Panama Papers :What are they and What are offshore companies?

The ‘offshore’ companies they are formed through intermediaries. (Gtres ONLINE).The roles of Panama, massive and anonymous leak that has uncovered a huge list of world figures with opaque companies in the Central American country, including several Spaniards have certain current tax practices. These companies are legal: the crime is on the purposes for which they are created. However, both the Treasury and the Office of the National Court have already been put to pull the thread.

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What is an offshore company?

It is a society that is in a different country to the country in which it operates.

Is offshore company legal?

Yes, as long as everything is declared and obviously, if it is not constituted to facilitate the commission of crimes, such as money and others. The Spanish Finance Minister Cristobal Montoro said a year ago in an interview that “in principle” he is against corporate offshore, because they operate from other territories to avoid paying taxes. The Law on Joint Stock Companies of Panama dates back to 1927.

 Is it easy to create a society offshore?

It is very easy. Dozens of intermediaries – law firms as Mossack Fonseca – are offered on the Internet for dealing with the bureaucracy with all kinds of details and facilities. The most frequent companies in Panama are Corporations and have a remarkable business movement: according to the public record of the country, in 2015 registered 26,865 and 12,338 others were dissolved. In less than a week it can be created society. The minimum authorized capital is $ 10,000, but is not required to be deposited at the time.

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 How much offshore company costs?

In Panama you have to pay a single annual rate of $ 300 per company (250 the first year). You also have to pay the so – called “resident agent”, which is the legal broker who deals in the country of the efforts, in this case the lawyer or law firm. It has to be Panamanian. There surcharges, for example, whether to sign a power or if we want the three directors that have to appear in society put them intermediary. They are called “nominative” directors. The dignitaries, president, Secretary, Bursar also can put the firm. In total, at the beginning, it would have to pay about $ 1,000.

What advantages do these offshore corporations have?

Especially confidentiality. In fact, the appeal of the directors or officers “nominative” serves for the name of the person, or people – who constitute the society does not become officially reflected and difficult to trace. In addition, these companies have tax advantages: they are exempt from taxes if all activities are conducted outside. In Panama operating with US dollars, which is proposed as a great advantage by intermediaries. Some European banks such as Deutsche Bank and Bahrenberg Bank have admitted have since operated offshore companies belonging to some of its private banking clients, but always in a “legal”.

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What companies do they use?

These companies may have assets anywhere and can devote themselves to anything. It is not necessary that its board will meet or having office in Panama. Or employees. Companies can hold shares in other companies: it is what is called a holding company. There are multinational or listed companies have subsidiaries offshore in other countries, something legal. A particular, for example, can open an account in a Swiss bank from a company in Panama and its name will not show up as a starter. Use them to hide profits from criminal activities or hide assets to avoid paying taxes in the country of residence itself is illegal.

Is Panama a tax haven?

It is true that companies offshore are often based in tax havens – Belize, Virgin Islands, Cayman, Seychelles, etc. – by fiscal opacity. But Panama is not on the list of tax havens in Spain since 2011, the year in which the two countries signed a double taxation agreement. Europe, by contrast, considers itself a tax haven.

Panama What does all this?

His government says it has shown “an absolute commitment to transparency in the legal and financial services.” Also, remember that recently the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) it withdrew from the list gray body pointing to no partners with combating money laundering and terrorist financing.

 Are there many Spaniards goods abroad?

From 2012- 2013 -Exercise is mandatory to declare income, accounts, real estate, etc. abroad if they exceed 50,000 euros. Since then they have emerged 126,500 million euros new. Only in 2015, a total of 28,565 respondents reported for the first time they had property or rights in another country. In the first year, 2013, there were 135,927 filers money or goods abroad; and declared 15,000 million bank accounts, more than 10,500 were in Switzerland, Belgium, United Kingdom, Germany and Andorra.

 What about Panama?

According to data from the Treasury, they were declared in 2013 by Spanish taxpayers 1,139,138 million euros in the country : 52.2 million in accounts; 75.2 million shares or units; 980,000 euros in insurance and annuities or temporary; 976.9 million in securities and rights and 34 million in real estate.

What if nothing is declared?

Gestha recalls that since 2013 the Spanish law considers imprescriptible goods in undeclared abroad so that its value is taxed as capital gains not justified the marginal rate of income tax last year not prescribed, which in this case is 2011. The tax Agency may impose a fine of up to 150% of the amount of the defrauded quota, and if it exceeds 120,000 euros would be establishing the fact of tax crime.

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