This is from Planet Money and Adam Davidson has a related column. Notice that "It's all legal," so this is not about evasion. Really! It's about protecting your assets from a greedy spouse or undeserving creditors (or is it the other way around). Of course it's not about evasion. It's about the ability to say of your investments, "I don't manage them. I don't even know where they are."
From the story:
Right now, the team here at Planet Money are the proud owners of two companies. Unbelizable Inc., in Belize City, and Delawho?, right here in the United States. We have a packet of incorporation documents and a lot of questions about what exactly people do with these kind of companies. Our plan is to find out.Adam Davidson tries to pin the blame for offshore on overly complex regulations:
One often-overlooked lesson of the financial crisis is that shenanigans don’t happen in the absence of regulation; they happen when regulations are exceedingly complex and involve confusing, overlapping regulatory authorities.That is completely disingenuous. Cheating is not about not overly complex regulations. It is purely and simply about a desire and willingness to cheat plus an ability to get away with it. Once again, I have to quote Charlie Kingson: When a large corporation says it wants simplicity, it wants money." The Great American Jobs Act Caper, 58 Tax Law Rev. 327 (2005).
Tim W-thanks for the link.