The International Wealth Management Newsletter - Spring 2015
French Social contributions to non-French residents owning Properties in France.
Since 2012, non-French residents are subject to French social contributions (at the rate of 15.5%) on their French source rental income and their French capital gains.
On February 26th, the European Court of Justice has confirmed that this application of Social Contributions on income or gain linked to French Properties held by Non-French Resident is against the European Regulation.
We are now to wait for the French reaction to this judgement, as it should in theory put an end to these social charges for Non-French residents.
In the meantime, it is advisable to claim for a refund of these contributions.
The Insurance Wrapper offered by Luxembourg is one of the most powerful means currently available to optimise assets of mobile individuals
Luxembourg's fiscal neutrality
For non-resident subscribers, Luxembourg is tax neutral. In most European countries, the life insurance legal framework has numerous tax advantages for inheritance taxes, income and capital gains. However, life insurance legislation is not harmonised between countries.
Nomadic applicable law in Luxembourg legislation
The principle of the Insurance Wrapper also provides an evolving protection when clients change their tax residence. It is possible to subscribe a life insurance policy with a Luxembourg branch, which is, however, covered by the laws of another country. Thus, the subscriber of a Luxembourg policy can, as they change tax residence, change the applicable law of their insurance policy. Thus it is not necessary to cancel an insurance policy subscribed previously in another country where the subscriber was previously resident in order to benefit from the advantages linked to the length of the contract. The portability of Luxembourg life insurance policies has made Luxembourg the number one choice for people who have high geographic mobility.
A legal framework providing high protection of the assets
The assets of subscribers of Luxembourg life insurance policies are separated from the assets of the insurance company. The CAA (Commissariat luxembourgeois Aux Assurances - Luxembourg Insurance Commission) lays down that these assets be entrusted to an independent depositary bank, authorised by the CAA. This is how the subscriber's and the insurance company's assets are separated. The CAA is the insurance regulator in Luxembourg. Insurance companies are obliged to have a guarantee fund, large solvency margins and abide by strict investment rules. Thus investments held in Luxembourg life insurance policy are protected in the case of bankruptcy of the insurance company.
Luxembourg's expertise in life insurance and asset management
- A life insurance contract can be in any major currency (Euro, USD, Pound Sterling, Swiss Franc, Yen...) and can also comprise several sub-accounts in different currencies.
- On account of the open architecture of the policies, the policyholder can access all their investment funds with an ISIN (International Securities Identification) number.
- There is access to guaranteed Euro funds.
- Policy bonuses can be paid in cash or as a transfer of securities.
- The subscriptions can be broken up.
- There is total freedom to nominate the beneficiaries of your choice, for the proportions you choose, in the case of first and second death.
- Finally, for subscriptions higher than € 2.5 M it is possible to create dedicated funds. The dedicated funds can invest in all forms of investment vehicles, listed or non-listed, shares of SCIs (civil companies set up for property investments), holding companies, family holdings or family partnerships.