Baker & McKenzie Briefs Clients on Community Property and Related Issues for Multi-Jurisdictional Families and Assets
15 May 2012
Global, May 15, 2012 - Within the framework of the regular business briefings organized by the Wealth Management Team of Baker & McKenzie Zurich, Anne Gibson and Lyubomir Georgiev of the office spoke on the importance of the marital property regime of community property and how this can affect wealth planning.
A key determination in wealth planning is to know how the clients’ property is owned.
“Determining the marital property regime is often not easy in our highly mobile world, particularly when a couple married in one jurisdiction subsequently moved their residence/domicile a few times and own property in several jurisdictions,” said Mr. Georgiev.
The different types of marital regimes were presented, as were the factors that different jurisdictions use to determine which marital regime should apply. The presentation highlighted the importance of obtaining a full history of the clients’ marriage: where and when were they married; what were their nationalities at the time of the marriage and over the years, if there have been any changes; whether they have any marital contracts and when these were entered into; and where the couple has resided. Some of these questions are sensitive for clients and should be approached with delicacy.
Ms. Gibson stated: “If an applicable community property regime is not taken into account, it can be a disaster. Such issues include unanticipated consequences such as ownership of trusts or companies, taxes on earnings generated by community property assets, or gifts of community property. Some beneficial side effects can be a reduced net worth for one spouse and equalized donation or inheritance taxes.”
Mr. Georgiev highlighted: “The lesson of the day was the importance of understanding the full nature of any applicable community property regime in giving effective advice and providing wealth management services.”
For any questions about this press release, please contact:
Stephanie Jarrett (
+41 22 707 9821)
Marnin Michaels (
+41 44 384 1208)
Lyubomir Georgieve (
+41 44 384 1490)
Anne Gibson (
+41 44 384 1336)