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Tax. Last Saturday the 30th of November, the topic of “tax” turned out to be rather interesting, and in fact the entire evening was most enjoyable.
In a conference hosted at the Casa de Campo villa of Phyllis Berney, in the beautiful Barranca Este neighborhood, law firms Cantor & Webb P.A. (based in the United States) and Guzmán Ariza (based across the Dominican Republic, including La Romana), presented a conference on “Developments in U.S. and DR Tax, Estate Planning and Reporting Requirements”.
Arriving to Phyllis’ gorgeous villa, guests took their seats, and the conference got started a little after 5pm. Welcomed to the event by myself, Rebecca Hughes of SILGON, a modern media company, who helped organize the event, the first speaker was Steven L. Cantor, Managing Partner of Cantor & Webb P.A. a Miami, Florida based law firm.
The conference took place in the Casa de Campo villa of Phyllis Berney
An expert on international tax planning and compliance as well as global estate planning, Steven spoke about everything US citizens who either live outside the US and/or who own property outside the US need to know about managing their tax affairs and the increased enforcement efforts of the Internal Revenue Service concerning the reporting of foreign bank accounts operated by US taxpayers.
Our second speaker was Fabio Guzmán-Ariza, the president of Guzmán Ariza, a full service Dominican national law and business consulting firm, founded in 1927. With offices based across the Dominican Republic, they specialize in servicing the needs of international investors, and specifically of relevance to us Casa residents in the areas of Civil and Estate Law and Real Estate Law, essentially helping people like us who are investing in vacation homes in the Dominican Republic. Mr. Guzmán spoke of everything there is to know about the Dominican Republic’s rather peculiar inheritance and marriage community regime rules and how these affect your property or other assets in the Dominican Republic and abroad.
The third and final speaker was Dr. Christoph Sieger, senior partner of Guzman Ariza and manager of their Bávaro, Punta Cana office. As a foreigner himself (from Germany), Dr. Christoph Sieger is uniquely equipped to understand the needs, expectations and concerns of a foreign investor in the Dominican Republic. Dr. Sieger, an international taxation expert, provided a brief summary of the Dominican Republic’s taxation system and explained the different options investors have available to invest in the DR.
Also in attendance was also Guzmán Ariza partners; Alfredo Guzmán, head of the firm’s La Romana office, as well as Fabio Guzman-Saladín and Alberto Reyes, from the firm’s Santo Domingo office.
““Any US or international investors planning on making an investment or purchasing real estate in the Dominican Republic should first consult both a Dominican lawyer and a lawyer or tax consultant in the US or in their country of origin, in order to be able to better understand local and US or their country of origin’s Estate and Tax rules and how these may affect them and their foreign investment or property.”
— Alfredo Guzmán
At the end of the evening guests enjoyed a delicious cocktail with picaderas prepared by Chef Mery Peguero.
Throughout the evening, so much useful information was imparted, that both Steven Cantor of Cantor & Webb P.A. and Guzmán Ariza partners Fabio Guzmán-Ariza, Dr. Christoph Sieger and Alfredo Guzmán have agreed to prepare follow up articles for Casa de Campo Living. These articles will be published as soon as possible, and will deal with:
“Beware: Increased Need for Tax Planning by United States Citizens Living in the Dominican Republic” by Steven Cantor
“Buying, Holding and Selling Real Estate in the Dominican Republic” by Guzmán Ariza, which will address the key-topics of:
a. Individual Ownership vs. Corporate Holdings
b. Local Holdings vs. Offshore Holdings
c. Dominican Marriage Community regime and Inheritance Rules applicable to investors
The following collection of photos were taken during the conference with Guzman-Ariza & Cantor Webb at the Casa de Campo villa of Phyllis Berney on Saturday the 30th of December 2013: