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What is an offshore company?

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Offshores are companies or bank accounts opened in countries other than where the owner resides. These locations offer tax advantages and differentiated privacy policies to investors.

Any entity, of a physical or legal nature, which fits within the laws of the jurisdiction in which it plans to operate, is able to open offshore accounts, as this structure does not impose restrictions.

Here are some of the main types of offshore structure:

Limited Liability Company (LLC)

LLC companies work as a kind of limited partnership with shareholding. The revenues obtained in this type of structure are treated as goods coming directly from the owner, that is, there is no incidence of taxes on dividends and double taxation.

International Business Company (IBC)

International company with limited liability. This is a very common structure in offshores, as it has advantages such as tax exemption and anonymity for owners and shareholders.

Trust

This is a foreign legal relationship in which the settlor (creator of the trust) outsources the management of its assets to a trustee (administrator of the trust) for the benefit of third parties (beneficiaries of the trust). In this type of contract, the beneficiaries have special legal protection.

Where are these companies located?

Offshore companies are located in so-called tax havens. These countries offer some advantages such as: lower tax burdens, privacy, freedom of exchange, less bureaucracy in opening bank accounts, among others. 

The Bahamas, Panama, the Cayman Islands and the British Virgin Islands are some of the most popular tax havens. The state of Delaware, in the United States, also offers special incentives to investors, such as affordable fees and speed in opening a partnership, in addition to protecting the identity of owners.

Is the offshore structure legal?

Yes, an offshore company is a legal structure.

In Brazil, this type of company must be declared to the Internal Revenue Service of Brazil and to Banco do Brasil when its value is greater than USD 100,000.

Many investors look to offshore companies to use the benefit of anonymity, but as long as the resources involved for capitalization of the structure are informed in the income tax return, there will be no problems with the law.

How to open an offshore company?

For the opening of an offshore company to be carried out, the most recommended thing is that the investor seeks specialized legal and tax assistance. Professionals will help you with tax planning and identify the most suitable structure for the case in question.

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