With wealth accumulating at record speeds in China there is a
real need for high net worth individuals and entrepreneurs to give
consideration to their wealth management requirements. In Jersey we
are well placed to assist with this. Not only do we have a
sophisticated private client wealth management industry, which is
cutting edge in terms of the structures that it can offer, we also
have a substantial body of trust and legal professionals, an
enviable regulatory regime and a leading court system.
Trusts, companies, limited partnerships and foundations are just
some of the varied structures that Jersey can offer, along with the
establishment of private trust companies (PTC) and family offices
for ultra high net worth families. Jersey law trusts continue to
hold a number of attractions. They are the tried and tested option
and, thanks to ongoing amendments to the Trusts (Jersey) Law 1984,
remain responsive to the needs of modern day settlors and
beneficiaries. A Jersey law foundation can be distinguished from a
trust by its incorporated status and separate legal personality.
These characteristics make a foundation more likely to be upheld
and recognised in civil law jurisdictions that are not familiar
with the trust concept and therefore they are of considerable
interest to clients from civil law jurisdictions including China,
Russia and most of continental Europe.
What is particularly attractive about foundations is that whilst
they encompass many of the classic features of a company, they also
retain the flexibility of a Jersey law trust.
Whether you select a trust or a foundation, a PTC or an
independent trust company, for a truly successful wealth management
structure to be established, it is important that the trustee and
the settlor of the trust share common values and understand the
objectives for which the structure has been established.
Consequently, wealth managers, lawyers and accountants in/from
Jersey have, in recent years, invested considerable time and money
by visiting China and seeking to understand the needs of the
Chinese market. One theme that has emerged from these visits is
that Chinese investors are particularly concerned to ensure that
their money is managed in a well regulated jurisdiction, where
there is a strong corporate governance ethic and a robust
regulatory regime. Transparency is also key for Chinese clients, as
is the quality of the legal and court system should this be called
upon to resolve any issues that arise in future years. In these
areas Jersey has led the way amongst the offshore jurisdictions and
has received the highest praise and endorsements from organisations
including the International Monetary Fund and the Society of Trust
and Estate Practitioners.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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