新南威尔士州议会最近通过了State Revenue Legislation Further Amendments Bill 2020，其中明确了当涉及全权信托（Discretionary Trust）的情况下，如何征收仅外国人需要缴纳的印花税附加税和土地税附加税。同时，该草案亦作出修订并明确了豁免条件 。当信托契约明确表示外国人不能成为信托受益人时，全权信托受托人所持有的住宅用地是可以得到豁免或退还印花税附加税及土地附加税。 印花税附加税和土地税附加税 过去4年来，新南威尔士州政府一直对在新州置业的海外人士征收额外的印花税和土地税。如果住宅物业由“外国人”持有，在通常税率和土地税(如果有)的基础上，需要支付： 印花税附加税: 额外8%的印花税 （购买物业时缴纳）; 土地税附加税: 额外2%的土地税 （以每年12月31日为节点，需每年缴纳） 不同于土地税，土地税 附加税是没有免征额度的。这意味着，即使您不需要缴纳土地税，但是作为海外人士仍然需要支付附加税。譬如，物业的土地价值为$500,000, 原本不需要缴纳土地税，但是仍需支付$10,000的附加税。 家族信托可能会被征收附加税 在上述附加税的政策下，非澳洲公民或者没有永居签证的人士是需要缴纳额外的印花税和土地税。但令人意外的是，许多在澳洲建立的家族信托（全权信托的常见形式），也被视为“外国人”。这是因为，如果全权信托的任何一个潜在受益人(即使不是已定的受益人)是外国人，那该信托也会被视为外国人。当这样的情况出现时，即使受托人没有并且也没有向此类外国受益人进行利益分配的意向，或是没有列明可能的外国受益人，该信托仍会被视为“外国人”。 很多时候, 家族信托的受益人不仅包括家庭成员,而且会涵盖更多潜在的受益人(通常定义十分宽泛，可以包括父母、兄弟姐妹,叔叔和阿姨,侄女和侄子,孙子和孙女),以及公司或者信托受益人，甚至还有慈善机构(包括海外机构)受益人。为了表明这一政策影响范围之广，新南威尔士州地税局官网站给出了以下案例: 假设XYZ全权信托，其受益人包括A (作为已确定姓名的受益人之一)和A持有权益的公司或其他信托。A同时拥有着ABC Pty Ltd的1股股份，而ABC Pty Ltd的多数股权由一个外国人B持有。在这种情况下，XYZ全权信托将被视为一个外国人，因为ABC有限公司是XYZ全权信托的潜在受益人。如果XYZ全权委托信托购买新南威尔士州的不动产，则须支付购买物业的额外印花税和土地税，即使XYZ全权信托从未分配给ABC Pty Ltd，也从未打算这样做。 为了进一步举例说明，我所近期经手的一个家族信托，潜在受益人被指定为“澳大利亚境内或境外的学校、大学、学院和其他教育机构”，这同样导致该信托被认定为了“外国人”。 另外一种家族信托会被认定为 “外国人”的情形是，信托中的受益人包含延伸家庭成员并且他们没有在澳洲居住。 新的法案明确了附加税政策的广泛应用，其中引入的新章节规定：“就本章而言，全权信托的受托人应被视为外国受托人，除非该信托禁止外国人成为该信托的受益人。” 我们的咨询服务 如果您想通过家族信托购买(或已持有)物业, 该修正案允许家族信托通过修改信托契约，表明 ”禁止外国人成为该信托的受益人”， 从而避免被征收附加税费。 虽然距离修正案的正式生效（即2020年12月31日）仍有一段时间的缓冲期，但是我们建议尽快修改信托契约，尤其是现有家族信托契约有被认定为“外国人”的风险。 如果您不确定您的信托契约是否有“禁止外国人成为信托受益人”的条款，H & H Lawyers律师事务所可以协助您审查信托契约的内容，以确是否会受到新政策的影响。如果我们发现信托契约的条款会导致您的家庭信托被认定为“外国人”，我们可以进一步协助您对信托契约进行的必要修订。
03 Jul 2020
Thursday, 13 June 2019 – Rise of the boutique law firm Doing business with international partners – whether it be an entity operating on Australian soil or a local brand venturing offshore – can be fraught with difficulty. Between establishing a fresh customer base, navigating new laws, regulations and corporate governance, creating effective relationships and becoming nuanced with cultural mores (perhaps the trickiest of all), the business of doing business has the potential to bring an enterprise undone. For instance, exchanging a business card using one hand rather than two can be seen as a sign of disrespect in some cultures. Who would necessarily know? With Australians increasingly undertaking business across the world and with Asian powerhouses such as Japan, Korea and China, navigating the behind-the-scenes landscape, as well as providing direct services and advice, has become all important. Business owners and operators need to focus on what they do best, so employing people who specialise in troubleshooting make-or-break sensitive legal, technical and cultural matters is a vital and strategic move. Sydney’s H & H Lawyers offers this official and unofficial role in its capacity as a firm on the path to being Australia’s biggest ‘‘Asian’’ law firm. H & H Lawyers’ services include commercial and corporate advisory, acquisitions, dispute resolution, employment law, corporate migration and intellectual property. “Our bilingual lawyers have been inundated with work representing multinational corporations and government agencies from Japan, Korea and China that want to expand their businesses into Australia,” says Principal Ken Hong. “We have also been very busy acting for local clients with Japanese, Korean or Chinese backgrounds, or that have transactions with their counterparts in those three countries. “Demand for our services has escalated, so we are rapidly expanding to meet the demand.’’ Fellow Principal Yukio Hayashi says a vital aspect of the firm’s work includes “bridging fundamental cultural differences”. “This cross-cultural dexterity is not necessarily part of our brief, but it’s what we offer as well, as it is so essential,’’ he says. “Our team not only speaks the languages, but also intimately understands the cultural nuances of Asia. This saves our clients so much time in getting straight to the actual issues and resolutions. Without the right knowledge of culture, a lot of key messages can be lost in translation, particularly legal concepts, leading to a frustrating experience for all. “We had one situation recently in which there was an investment in an Australian business by a Japanese company. There were excellent managers and staff in situ, but the incoming management from Japan had their way of doing things that did not rest well with the Australian team, and vice versa.” “This friction was no one’s fault, but we made it our job to navigate the cultural minefield. We were able to get each side to see things from the other’s perspective and that made all the difference.” Hong and Hayashi say that by going this extra mile, the law firm can resolve difficulties and help international-facing businesses to thrive. “The importance of Australia’s trade relationships with Korea, China and Japan need no further explanation,’’ says Hong. “They are our top three trading partners. We look forward to continuing with our work and contributing to Australia’s successful trade relationships with those three countries.” Says Hayashi: “Our firm is well placed and equipped to help clients have a more fruitful, efficient and enjoyable experience in doing business.’’
13 Jun 2019
H & H Lawyers welcomes Tin-Lok Shea. Tin-Lok has over 8 years’ experience working in the tax practices of Big 4 professional services firms. Prior to joining H & H Lawyers, he was an Account Director in Deloitte Tax Services and assisted clients on the implications of various complex and high-profile transactions involving multi-nationals and governments (including a number of Japanese clients). His extensive experience and expertise in the tax field makes him especially well-equipped to advise and assist clients on all types of tax-related matters.
18 May 2017