Thursday, 20 January 2011

Treasure Islands and the Avoidance of Tax

I have been reading this fascinating book with increased distaste for the concept that one should spend much time and money minimising one's exposure to tax. I have always felt sorry for those who thought that they had to organise their affairs - and even domicile - so as to pay less tax - such as the father of a friend who has to live half his life outside the country, with the result that his family only see him periodically; to those who have moved to Jersey and seem uniformly miserable. And we would no doubt be much wealthier today had my step-grandfather not taken the conscious decision not to shield his wealth from death duties on the grounds that all taxes were properly due to society and the country in which one lived. Should such noble sentiments return (particularly in corporations) we would no doubt be able to reduce the taxes that we do actually pay and care better for our society.

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