Cross-border philanthropy—summary
Cross-border philanthropy—summary

The following Private Client practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Cross-border philanthropy—summary
  • UK as a centre for cross-border philanthropy
  • UK regulation of charities
  • UK taxation of charities
  • UK taxation of charitable donors
  • What are the UK tax implications of gifts to foreign charities?
  • Impact of legislation to tackle financial crime and terrorism
  • De-risking
  • Automatic exchange of information—Common Reporting Standard and Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act
  • Bribery Act 2010
  • More...

Philanthropy is a key element of the wealth plan of many ultra-high-net-worth individuals and their families (UHNWIs). The methods used to further an individual’s charitable goals can vary from cash donations to establishing and running their own charitable organisation. In many cases, such activities may take in more than one jurisdiction, facilitated in part by new payment technologies, crowdfunding and new transaction structures. This Practice Note outlines some of the issues faced by UHNWIs with a UK connection in engaging in cross-border charitable and philanthropic activities.

UK as a centre for cross-border philanthropy

The UK offers several advantages as a base for charities operating both within and outside its borders. These advantages include the UK’s tax and regulatory systems, as well as its long history of multiculturalism.

UK regulation of charities

English and Welsh charities operate within an established statutory and common-law framework, which offers stability and flexibility to change in accordance with societal demands. A key element of the system is a dedicated, independent regulator in the form of the Charity Commission for England and Wales (Charity Commission). A primary function of the Charity Commission is to identify and investigate apparent misconduct or mismanagement in the administration of charities, and to take remedial or protective action. This covers all charities in England and Wales, whether or not they are registered with the Charity Commission, and all money that

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