Brexit has the potential to impact upon personal clients and their tax and succession issues in the following ways:-

      1       If you own a home in a European country you have been able to stay at that holiday home in the EU whenever and for however long you like. That is now no longer the case for UK nationals who are not citizens of the EU. You will only be able to spend 90 days in any 180 day period at your holiday home in the EU. If you wish to stay longer then you would need advice in the European jurisdiction about how that could be done and any impact upon your tax position in that foreign jurisdiction.

      2      If you own a house in the EU then you should take advice about your will. Specialist wording may be required.

      Scots law determines to whom that house passes on your death. Scots law then, in turn, applies the law of the EU country in which the home is located. Many EU countries have rules which, for example, prevent you leaving the whole of that property to your spouse. The EU has a regulation which says that if a home is in the EU then the law of their nationality if that is elected by the owner in their will, decides. Scots law can therefore apply, and that law does not have any rules about to whom homes can be left, and you can leave them to whomever you like. A Scottish will with the election declared in it can do this. In addition, some EU states prefer to also see a will written there to cover assets in that country for ease of administration there after a death.

      3      If you are a busines owner then your business may be affected, for example those businesses in food production, exports and imports, haulage, or public procurement; those with EU workers; and those which receive state aid/subsidies.

      4      European citizens who have chosen to settle in the UK may of course be subject to UK taxes but that was already the case.

      5      Although many of the compliance obligations which have been introduced in recent years - such as registering trusts with HMRC and countries exchanging information about trusts with non-UK connections - have been required by EU law, compliance obligations have also been part of a global drive for transparency.

      Please do speak with me or your usual Brodies LLP contact about any of this if that would be helpful.


      Leigh Gould