Financial access and security are vital requirements when contemplating retirement abroad. It is necessary to own assets safely held and easily available. One of the finest ways to solve these problems is with an offshore bank account. Just like anything there are a few safeguards that must be taken in opening an offshore bank account. It will first be understood it is both legal and easy to own such an account.
An offshore account is merely a bank-account with a bank that operates in country distinctive from the residence of the account holder. The anonymous or numbered accounts given publicity in several novels of intrigue and crime are now virtually things of the past. Offshore accounts are safe, probably safer than normal non-offshore accounts. Within a country the tax authorities could seize funds in a domestic account leaving the burden of proof of innocence of an offense on the account holder. It is much more difficult to take funds from an offshore account and may involve obtaining a court order which probably requires at the very least the prima facie proof of a crime. Because the Twin Towers attack in New York (9/11) increasing restrictions have been placed upon banks. Total privacy is currently difficult to acquire but a satisfactory level of performance could be found.
Advertisements is found in newspapers, financial journals and on the net offering introductions to banks and the establishment of offshore bank accounts. These must be ignored. The offers amount to the provision of freely available application forms, no genuine introductions and a pre-supply charge invoice in 3 or 4 figures avenue securities. Your own or company offshore account could be opened with no less than formality and, except, usually, in the event of an organization account, attendance reaches the bank isn’t required.
Small banks on Caribbean or Pacific Ocean island tax havens must be avoided. Such banks often manage their affairs as single accounts with larger banks so all that occurs is that an extra layer of charges and formalities is introduced. The place of such accounts also draws awareness of the account holder. It is advantageous to have the chosen bank operate in a location that is governed by the sort of common law to which is accustomed. Generally the decision will undoubtedly be between derivatives of British or Roman-Dutch law. The differences relate genuinely to burdens of proof and the status of women but there’s no need to consider such detail here. The preference also needs to be to have the bank work in a language in which is wholly fluent. The geographical and jurisdictional location relevant to the country of residence may also be important. Banks are increasingly succumbing to the pressure of governments to enter into information sharing arrangements with tax authorities. As an explanatory example, it wouldn’t be advisable for any EU resident to open an offshore bank-account in the British Channel Islands or the Isle of Man. Agreements between banks and governments cover the entire EU area and are increasingly applicable to the original offshore banking countries such as for instance Switzerland, Austria, Andorra and Luxembourg.
There are large globally operating banks that will permit the opening of offshore accounts via the net with the provision of the appropriate documents and the absolute minimum deposit. Some also work in places that are not considered to be tax havens. Most major banks offer debit cards with offshore accounts. The preference must be for a Visa or MasterCard debit card. Although they are not credit cards and any use is charged immediately to the bank account they may be used for specific things like airline ticket purchase or hotel bookings. Another useful facility is that the accounts could be of a multi-currency nature. Access via the net for all transactions is essential.
The establishment of offshore corporate or trust structures will most likely require the way to obtain additional information and personal attendance at the bank are often necessary. Supporting documents will include an avowed (notarized) copy of a passport, proof of residency (a utility account or driving license will suffice), a letter of recommendation by the local branch of the offshore bank or from a current account holder or from any bank with which business is currently conducted, a personal or business reference and a completed signature card. Forms and supporting documents must usually be mailed to the bank and funds transferred. The opening deposit could be as low as $US2000.
These suggestions should enable a retiree to own access to financial assets with minimal possible risk. Offshore income could be paid to the offshore account and wire and credit card withdrawals will undoubtedly be available. Local banking for any local earnings, if allowed, could be handled with a local bank.