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The Role Of The Tax Advisor In Our Evolving Society

The Role Of The Tax Advisor In Our Evolving Society
29 Apr 2013

First published in PaperJam, 30 April 2013

Over the last months, we have seen increased pressure on tax planning and tax evasion in politics and in the press. The two concepts are frequently confused by the media and politicians, sometimes for political ends.

There is a clear and obvious distinction between on the one hand, legitimate planning of tax affairs, which any business needs to do if it wishes to stay in business, and on the other hand, illegally evading taxes by fraud and/or concealment.

At various stages in the tax debate, it has been argued that tax planning, ie arranging a taxpayer's affairs in order to reduce taxes is in some way objectionable. It is also argued that if the tax law was sufficiently simple, then there would no need for tax advisors and no scope for tax planning that gives "unfair" results.

In the same way a business needs an advisor to help them negotiate a complex contract with a customer or supplier in order to get the right business answer, they need the right tax advisor to navigate the complex tax systems relevant to their company.

Keith O'Donnell, Taxand Luxembourg

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Taxand's Take

"Our responsibility as a tax firm is to act as advisor in a fascinating and complex set of rules stemming from local and international social policy. This is an important responsibility and we should always do it with pride, to the best of our ability and in our client's best interests."

Taxand's Take Author

Keith O'Donnell
Taxand Board member & Taxand global real estate tax service line leader