Tag archives for Lex Life and Pensions

San Roque Court Dismisses Criminal Complaint in a Bizarre Ruling

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San Roque Court has dismissed the criminal complaint brought by no less than 80 claimants against Landsbanki & others. The disappointing ruling lacks legal depth and factual understanding, mistakenly inserting copy-pasted excerpts of other rulings (which refer to a complaint over an unfinished car paint job) and ignoring Tax Office binding opinion.

ERVA lawyers, who’ve had access to the content of the ruling, have been left baffled as to the level of comprehension of the essence of the dispute¬†by the presiding Judge after years of alleged “investigations”.

For instance, the Judge still today believes (September 2016) that it is legal to use a mortgage to reduce the value of a property for Tax reasons, notwithstanding several writs submitted by this party pointing to¬†a binding tax ruling¬†from the Spanish “Hacienda” that states that is actually tax fraud (not even current Landsbanki lawyer’s believe in this scam any longer).

In 2013, following an extensive press release by firm Lawbird Legal Services, Sur in English published this article.

A year later, 2014, The Olive Press ran a similar article.

On a positive note, the ruling confirms that the ultimate aim of the Landsbanki Equity Release publicity (as confirmed by their lawyers -subsequently sacked) was the reduction of the IHT element

According to the ruling:

the ultimate aim of the marketed product was the reduction of the tax burden that inheritors would eventually have to face, when they received the property after the demise of the subscribers.

And throughout these years, what was the Judge doing? Several options come to mind:¬†Cloud Cuckoo Land, kitesurfing in Tarifa, learning Korean language, studying hard for his copy-pasting exams…which he clearly failed.

On¬†reflection, we should ask ourselves a crucial question:¬†how many of the copious claimants’ ¬†lawyers writs -submitted between 2009 and 2016- did the Judge examine when, as has been revealed, he would not¬†even bother proof-read his own 16-page ruling?

Lawyers for claimants have already announced they will be appealing this preposterous ruling.

Landsbanki’s Head Lawyer Negotiates with Tax Office to Avoid Prison

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Emilio Cuatrecasas, en una foto de archivo

Emilio Cuatrecasas, founder of Cuatrecasas firm, has entered negotiations with the Spanish Prosecution Service and the Tax Office to avoid landing a lengthy prision sentence as part of a plea bargain, according to the web EconomiaDigital.

The case relates to Mr. Cuatrecasas’¬†tax-creative antics¬†when trying to put personal¬†expenditure (luxury yacht,¬†properties, furniture etc.) as deductible corporate expenses.

Cuatrecasas currently advises tax-evading Landsbanki in Spain.

http://www.economiadigital.es/es/notices/2015/01/cuatrecasas-negocia-con-hacienda-para-evitar-la-carcel-65556.php

 

Second Spanish Law Firm Confirms Lex Life Misled the Public

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Cuatrecasas, Goncalves Pereira law firm, second by turnover in Spain, has confirmed to lawyers acting for Landsbanki victims that Lex Life and Pensions SA used their name illegally when promoting the Lex Life Capital Assurance in Spain.

According to the deceptive publicity of the ignominious Luxembourg-based company, the named firm had been involved in preparing the sham Equity Release product.

This is the paragraph in question:

Our product, Lex Life Capital Assurance-Spain, has been developed in cooporation (sic) with the law firm CUATRECASAS (www.cuatrecasas.com), “Best Spanish Firm of the Year 2005, International Law Office”.

The advertising also attributed this product the following advantages:

Spanish IHT has a ceiling of 34%, but depending on personal circumstances, the amount can go up by 2.4 times.

The Lex Life Capital Assurance-Spain is an excellent, tax compliant way of mitigating tax exposure and safeguarding inheritance tax.

Cuatrecasas strongly denies any involvement with the above and has confirmed to lawyers acting for the victims that they are considering legal action against the company, or their successors.

Landsbanki Misleading Advertising Case Due to be Filed

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Lawyers acting for Landsbanki victims are due to file a misleading publicity case against Landsbanki Luxembourg S.A., Lex Life and Pensions S.A. and Offshore Money Managers Correduría de Seguros S.L.

The case is based on the extensive fraudulent publicity that all three entities issued when offering the product known as ‘SITRA’ (Spanish Inheritance Tax Reduction Scheme), ‘Capital Insurance’ or ‘Equity Release‘.

According to the documentation that lawyers hold, the following has been established:

  • The product was devised as a means to reduce, or eliminate completetely, Spanish IHT. We now know this is not only untrue, as it proposes customers to defraud the Spanish Tax Office.
  • The product was also designed to potentially produce an income, it being the difference between the return on the invested asset, minus charges and expenses, and the cost of servicing the loan. This was just one possibility, the other more likely one being total loss.
  • The advertising stresses prominently the benefits of the product but omits the risks involved -or if at all features these in small print- namely the loss of the property and further.¬†

Landsbanki was extremely successful in attracting new customers by using its main feature: reduction of Spanish Inheritance Tax. Lex Life & Pensions did too.

And Lex Life & Pensions used the name top Spanish firm Cuatrecasas to push sales, by admitting the following:

this product has been ellaborated in conjunction with top law firm Cuatrecasas

Lawyers are awaiting a formal response to a letter sent to Cuatrecasas but we can anticipate the response: “we deny any involvement and do not want to know anything about this product”

The case is to be filed with Courts in Malaga and will focus on the defendants’ advertising.

As for the role of OMM, its responsibility is two-fold:

  • Active participation in the promotion and marketing of the product, generously remunerated with an introduction commission and further, by receiving regular trail commissions (as is the case with Jyske bank too).
  • Attribution of joint responsibility to any media outlet used to promote and market a particular product or service¬†(rulings by Madrid Appeal Court rulings 17/6/2008 and 30/9/2009).

A case for misleading publicity narrows down the scope of the dispute as it confines the Judge to rule on whether the advertising is/isn’t misleading, without giving any room for further interpretation (i.e. namely misselling: whether customers could and should have sought further advice, whether they were savvy investors or suitable for the product, whether it was a high risk speculative product known to the public etc.).

OMM has declined to come forward to assist claimants, ignoring letters from lawyers inviting them to participate in this case as witnesses, and yet their fraudulent advertising is still today available to the public.

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