The following Tax practice note Produced in partnership with Camilla Spielman provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:
An authorised investment fund (AIF) is a variety of collective investment scheme (CIS). It is important to understand what a CIS is before considering authorised investment funds in greater detail.
Note that the term ‘authorised investment fund’ (AIF) is a tax one—it appears in the tax regulations which set out most of the key rules applicable to the taxation of these forms of CIS.
A CIS is defined in the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 (FSMA 2000) as:
'any arrangements with respect to property of any description, including money, the purpose or effect of which is to enable persons taking part in the arrangements (whether by becoming owners of the property or any part of it or otherwise) to participate in or receive profits or income arising from the acquisition, holding, management or disposal of the property or sums paid out of such profits or income.'
Based on this definition (which is expanded further in FSMA 2000 and in supplementary regulations), the fundamental characteristics of a CIS are:
pooled investment—ie the contributions of the participants, and the profits or income out of which payments are made to them, are pooled
professional management—ie participants in the scheme do not have day-to-day control over the management of the property held by the fund, and
spreading of investment risk—ie the range of investments held by the scheme
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