locate an office

offices near you

office near you

Trusts & Estates

Four challenges wealthy families can face when moving country

Aug 17, 2023

Fail to take the right precautions and your asset ownership might be upended; your tax bills, unexpectedly high; your portfolio, disrupted; and your familial relationships, disregarded by local law.

Are you among the wealthy families on the move? After a slowdown in migration during the pandemic, it’s estimated that 125,000 millionaires will move to a new country in 2023, the highest-ever level of high-net-worth migration.1

The top five destinations are projected to be Australia, Singapore, Switzerland, the UAE and the USA. The greatest exodus are expected from Brazil, China, India, Russia and the UK.2

Wherever you and yours might relocate, you’re likely to encounter not only new opportunities but also key legal, tax, financial and regulatory challenges. Often, there is no simple way for a family’s finances and wealth plans to work seamlessly across borders. When family members don’t all move to the same place at the same time, there can be additional hurdles to scale.

It is important to be aware of the potential problems—and then do the right planning with a team who can provide a global perspective and access to local implementation. The following four difficulties are some of the most common that global families need to avoid, or at least soften.

Many wealthy families have set up legal structures to hold their assets and provide for transfers to next generations. However, what works in one country might not work in another.

Indeed, when you move to a new country, it can suddenly become unclear who, exactly, owns your assets and owes taxes on them. For example, say you live in a common law country such as the U.S. You have your wealth plan buttoned up with well drafted and administered trusts, structured such that the trusts legally own the assets and pay taxes on the income they generate. Then you move to France, a civil law country whose laws don’t easily recognize your trusts. 

Even if you haven’t set up structures or written a will, different countries’ laws can rewrite your plans for transferring wealth. You might not worry about estate planning in New York if that state’s intestacy rules would distribute your money as you want. But if you move to another country its forced heirship rules and the automatic disposition of your wealth could be quite different.

If you move without consulting with your advisors and taking precautions, your will and promises to loved ones could be unrecognized under local law.

Taxes can add another layer of complexity. One of the most easily overlooked and common complications occurs when the children of non-U.S. parents move to the United States: perhaps to attend college and start a career; perhaps intending to return home; possibly never returning to their home country.

Typically, parents of global families might gift assets to their U.S. resident or U.S. citizen children with no immediate U.S. gift tax consequences. But then those gifted assets could be trapped forever in the U.S. tax regime. That’s because the income generated from those assets could be subject to U.S. income tax.

Also, if your now-U.S. child later gifts or bequeaths those assets, they could be subject to U.S. gift or estate tax at a 40% rate (plus additional potential state taxes)3. Indeed, you could have your now U.S. grand and great grandchildren pay an effective U.S. estate tax rate of 64% on wealth you built in your homeland.4 Even if those sons, daughters, grand or great grandchildren come back to live in your native country, unless they relinquish their U.S. citizenship, they could continue to owe taxes on that wealth to the U.S. government.

There are ways to avoid this fate. Among the options worth discussing with your advisors: a U.S. legal construct that’s referred to as the “foreign grantor trust.”

The ever-changing banking and regulatory landscape can alter the investments allowed depending on where you reside or your legal structure is sited. It’s easy for your assets to be subject to tax in one country even while they’re subject to another country’s banking regulatory regime. Translated: you might be allowed to engage in some investments but those investments may no longer offer you the tax characteristics they did before you moved. 

For example: Say you’re living outside the U.S and buy a non-U.S. mutual fund. Then you move to the U.S. and sell it. Your U.S. tax rate on the gain could be significantly higher than it would be if you had had an equivalent U.S. mutual fund with essentially the same underlying investments.

Foreign currency fluctuations could further increase your U.S. tax on the sale. For example, you might acquire a Luxembourg mutual fund for €100 and later sell it for €100 after moving to the U.S. Although you had no gain in terms of Euros, you could still have a taxable gain if Euros appreciated over U.S. dollars during your period of ownership. Reviewing opportunities to “rebase” your investments before changing tax residence could be an important step to save tax.

In general, though, it’s probably wise to ask your advisors to comb through your entire portfolio to make sure your investments and country of residence work to provide the best results.

Even your family’s legal relationships could be altered when you cross borders.

Let’s say you reside in a country where common law marriages allow partners to be treated as legal spouses so they qualify for tax, state benefits, medical and property law purposes. However, all such assumptions, and your plans, could be thwarted if you move to a country that requires ceremonial marriage. 

Same-sex marriages and adoptions by same-sex couples could face even more challenges. Same-sex marriage is recognized in 34 countries.5 Suppose a couple marry and adopt a child in one of those countries but then move to a place that has no such law. Guardianship of the child as well as property rights could be in jeopardy.

One solution might be a trust. You could transfer assets to a trust for the benefit of your same-sex spouse or adopted child. The trust agreement would then govern those asset’s disposition, not local law.

If your family crosses international borders, your best move could be to engage a team with global experience and resources to help you identify the challenges you might face. Speak with your J.P. Morgan team to explore your options.

1Henley Private Wealth Migration Report 2023

2Ibid.

3https://www.cbo.gov/system/files/2021-06/57129-Estate-and-Gift-Tax.pdf.

4Assume G1 has $100 and it’s taxed at 40%, that leaves $60 for G2. If that $60 is taxed at 40% on G2’s death the tax on $60 will be $24. Thus the total tax will be $40 plus $24, so effective 64% rate.

5https://www.hrc.org/resources/marriage-equality-around-the-world

Contact us to discuss how we can help you experience the full possibility of your wealth.

Please tell us about yourself, and our team will contact you. 

*Required Fields

Contact us to discuss how we can help you experience the full possibility of your wealth.

Please tell us about yourself, and our team will contact you. 

Enter your First Name

> or < are not allowed

Only 40 characters allowed

Enter your Last Name

> or < are not allowed

Only 40 characters allowed

Select your country of residence

Enter valid street address

> or < are not allowed

Only 150 characters allowed

Enter your city

> or < are not allowed

Only 35 characters allowed

Select your state

> or < are not allowed

Enter your ZIP code

Please Enter a valid Zip Code

> or < are not allowed

Only 10 characters allowed

Enter your postal code

Please Enter a valid Zip Code

> or < are not allowed

Only 10 characters allowed

Enter your country code

Enter your country code

> or < are not allowed

Enter your phone number

Phone number must consist of 10 numbers

Please enter a valid phone number

> or < are not allowed

Only 15 characters allowed

Enter your phone number

Please enter a valid phone number

> or < are not allowed

Only 15 characters allowed

Tell Us More About You

0/1000

Only 1000 characters allowed

> or < are not allowed

Checkbox is not selected

Your Recent History

Important Information

This material is distributed with the understanding that it is not rendering accounting, legal or tax advice. Consult your legal or tax advisor concerning such matters. For a complete discussion of risks associated with any investment, please review offering memorandum and speak with your J.P. Morgan Advisor. JPMorgan Chase & Co. and its subsidiaries do not render accounting, legal or tax advice.

Key Risks

This material is for information purposes only, and may inform you of certain products and services offered by private banking businesses, part of JPMorgan Chase & Co. (“JPM”). Products and services described, as well as associated fees, charges and interest rates, are subject to change in accordance with the applicable account agreements and may differ among geographic locations. Not all products and services are offered at all locations. If you are a person with a disability and need additional support accessing this material, please contact your J.P. Morgan team or email us at accessibility.support@jpmorgan.com for assistance. Please read all Important Information.

General Risks & Considerations

Any views, strategies or products discussed in this material may not be appropriate for all individuals and are subject to risks. Investors may get back less than they invested, and past performance is not a reliable indicator of future results. Asset allocation/diversification does not guarantee a profit or protect against loss. Nothing in this material should be relied upon in isolation for the purpose of making an investment decision. You are urged to consider carefully whether the services, products, asset classes (e.g. equities, fixed income, alternative investments, commodities, etc.) or strategies discussed are suitable to your needs. You must also consider the objectives, risks, charges, and expenses associated with an investment service, product or strategy prior to making an investment decision. For this and more complete information, including discussion of your goals/situation, contact your J.P. Morgan team.

Non-Reliance

Certain information contained in this material is believed to be reliable; however, JPM does not represent or warrant its accuracy, reliability or completeness, or accept any liability for any loss or damage (whether direct or indirect) arising out of the use of all or any part of this material. No representation or warranty should be made with regard to any computations, graphs, tables, diagrams or commentary in this material, which are provided for illustration/ reference purposes only. The views, opinions, estimates and strategies expressed in this material constitute our judgment based on current market conditions and are subject to change without notice. JPM assumes no duty to update any information in this material in the event that such information changes. Views, opinions, estimates and strategies expressed herein may differ from those expressed by other areas of JPM, views expressed for other purposes or in other contexts, and this material should not be regarded as a research report. Any projected results and risks are based solely on hypothetical examples cited, and actual results and risks will vary depending on specific circumstances. Forward-looking statements should not be considered as guarantees or predictions of future events.

Nothing in this document shall be construed as giving rise to any duty of care owed to, or advisory relationship with, you or any third party. Nothing in this document shall be regarded as an offer, solicitation, recommendation or advice (whether financial, accounting, legal, tax or other) given by J.P. Morgan and/or its officers or employees, irrespective of whether or not such communication was given at your request. J.P. Morgan and its affiliates and employees do not provide tax, legal or accounting advice. You should consult your own tax, legal and accounting advisors before engaging in any financial transactions.

Your Investments and Potential Conflicts of Interest

Conflicts of interest will arise whenever JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A. or any of its affiliates (together, “J.P. Morgan”) have an actual or perceived economic or other incentive in its management of our clients’ portfolios to act in a way that benefits J.P. Morgan. Conflicts will result, for example (to the extent the following activities are permitted in your account): (1) when J.P. Morgan invests in an investment product, such as a mutual fund, structured product, separately managed account or hedge fund issued or managed by JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A. or an affiliate, such as J.P. Morgan Investment Management Inc.; (2) when a J.P. Morgan entity obtains services, including trade execution and trade clearing, from an affiliate; (3) when J.P. Morgan receives payment as a result of purchasing an investment product for a client’s account; or (4) when J.P. Morgan receives payment for providing services (including shareholder servicing, recordkeeping or custody) with respect to investment products purchased for a client’s portfolio. Other conflicts will result because of relationships that J.P. Morgan has with other clients or when J.P. Morgan acts for its own account.

Investment strategies are selected from both J.P. Morgan and third-party asset managers and are subject to a review process by our manager research teams. From this pool of strategies, our portfolio construction teams select those strategies we believe fit our asset allocation goals and forward-looking views in order to meet the portfolio's investment objective.

As a general matter, we prefer J.P. Morgan managed strategies. We expect the proportion of J.P. Morgan managed strategies will be high (in fact, up to 100 percent) in strategies such as, for example, cash and high-quality fixed income, subject to applicable law and any account-specific considerations.

While our internally managed strategies generally align well with our forward-looking views, and we are familiar with the investment processes as well as the risk and compliance philosophy of the firm, it is important to note that J.P. Morgan receives more overall fees when internally managed strategies are included. We offer the option of choosing to exclude J.P. Morgan managed strategies (other than cash and liquidity products) in certain portfolios.

Legal Entity, Brand & Regulatory Information

In the United States, bank deposit accounts and related services, such as checking, savings and bank lending, are offered by JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A. Member FDIC.

JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A. and its affiliates (collectively “JPMCB”) offer investment products, which may include bank managed investment accounts and custody, as part of its trust and fiduciary services. Other investment products and services, such as brokerage and advisory accounts, are offered through J.P. Morgan Securities LLC (“JPMS”), a member of FINRA and SIPC. Insurance products are made available through Chase Insurance Agency, Inc. (CIA), a licensed insurance agency, doing business as Chase Insurance Agency Services, Inc. in Florida. JPMCB, JPMS and CIA are affiliated companies under the common control of JPM. Products not available in all states.

In Germany, this material is issued by J.P. Morgan SE, with its registered office at Taunustor 1 (TaunusTurm), 60310 Frankfurt am Main, Germany, authorized by the Bundesanstalt für Finanzdienstleistungsaufsicht (BaFin) and jointly supervised by the BaFin, the German Central Bank (Deutsche Bundesbank) and the European Central Bank (ECB). In Luxembourg, this material is issued by J.P. Morgan SE – Luxembourg Branch, with registered office at European Bank and Business Centre, 6 route de Treves, L-2633, Senningerberg, Luxembourg, authorized by the Bundesanstalt für Finanzdienstleistungsaufsicht (BaFin) and jointly supervised by the BaFin, the German Central Bank (Deutsche Bundesbank) and the European Central Bank (ECB); J.P. Morgan SE – Luxembourg Branch is also supervised by the Commission de Surveillance du Secteur Financier (CSSF); registered under R.C.S Luxembourg B255938. In the United Kingdom, this material is issued by J.P. Morgan SE – London Branch, registered office at 25 Bank Street, Canary Wharf, London E14 5JP, authorized by the Bundesanstalt für Finanzdienstleistungsaufsicht (BaFin) and jointly supervised by the BaFin, the German Central Bank (Deutsche Bundesbank) and the European Central Bank (ECB); J.P. Morgan SE – London Branch is also supervised by the Financial Conduct Authority and Prudential Regulation Authority. In Spain, this material is distributed by J.P. Morgan SE, Sucursal en España, with registered office at Paseo de la Castellana, 31, 28046 Madrid, Spain, authorized by the Bundesanstalt für Finanzdienstleistungsaufsicht (BaFin) and jointly supervised by the BaFin, the German Central Bank (Deutsche Bundesbank) and the European Central Bank (ECB); J.P. Morgan SE, Sucursal en España is also supervised by the Spanish Securities Market Commission (CNMV); registered with Bank of Spain as a branch of J.P. Morgan SE under code 1567. In Italy, this material is distributed by J.P. Morgan SE – Milan Branch, with its registered office at Via Cordusio, n.3, Milan 20123, Italy, authorized by the Bundesanstalt für Finanzdienstleistungsaufsicht (BaFin) and jointly supervised by the BaFin, the German Central Bank (Deutsche Bundesbank) and the European Central Bank (ECB); J.P. Morgan SE – Milan Branch is also supervised by Bank of Italy and the Commissione Nazionale per le Società e la Borsa (CONSOB); registered with Bank of Italy as a branch of J.P. Morgan SE under code 8076; Milan Chamber of Commerce Registered Number: REA MI 2536325. In the Netherlands, this material is distributed by J.P. Morgan SE – Amsterdam Branch, with registered office at World Trade Centre, Tower B, Strawinskylaan 1135, 1077 XX, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, authorized by the Bundesanstalt für Finanzdienstleistungsaufsicht (BaFin) and jointly supervised by the BaFin, the German Central Bank (Deutsche Bundesbank) and the European Central Bank (ECB); J.P. Morgan SE – Amsterdam Branch is also supervised by De Nederlandsche Bank (DNB) and the Autoriteit Financiële Markten (AFM) in the Netherlands. Registered with the Kamer van Koophandel as a branch of J.P. Morgan SE under registration number 72610220. In Denmark, this material is distributed by J.P. Morgan SE – Copenhagen Branch, filial af J.P. Morgan SE, Tyskland, with registered office at Kalvebod Brygge 39-41, 1560 København V, Denmark, authorized by the Bundesanstalt für Finanzdienstleistungsaufsicht (BaFin) and jointly supervised by the BaFin, the German Central Bank (Deutsche Bundesbank) and the European Central Bank (ECB); J.P. Morgan SE – Copenhagen Branch, filial af J.P. Morgan SE, Tyskland is also supervised by Finanstilsynet (Danish FSA) and is registered with Finanstilsynet as a branch of J.P. Morgan SE under code 29010. In Sweden, this material is distributed by J.P. Morgan SE – Stockholm Bankfilial, with registered office at Hamngatan 15, Stockholm, 11147, Sweden, authorized by the Bundesanstalt für Finanzdienstleistungsaufsicht (BaFin) and jointly supervised by the BaFin, the German Central Bank (Deutsche Bundesbank) and the European Central Bank (ECB); J.P. Morgan SE – Stockholm Bankfilial is also supervised by Finansinspektionen (Swedish FSA); registered with Finansinspektionen as a branch of J.P. Morgan SE. In France, this material is distributed by JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A.–Paris Branch, registered office at 14,Place Vendome, Paris 75001, France, registered at the Registry of the Commercial Court of Paris under number 712 041 334 and licensed by the Autorité de contrôle prudentiel et de resolution (ACPR) and supervised by the ACPR and the Autorité des Marchés Financiers. In Switzerland, this material is distributed by J.P. Morgan (Suisse) SA, with registered address at rue du Rhône, 35, 1204, Geneva, Switzerland, which is authorised and supervised by the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA) as a bank and a securities dealer in Switzerland.

In Hong Kong, this material is distributed by JPMCB, Hong Kong branch. JPMCB, Hong Kong branch is regulated by the Hong Kong Monetary Authority and the Securities and Futures Commission of Hong Kong. In Hong Kong, we will cease to use your personal data for our marketing purposes without charge if you so request. In Singapore, this material is distributed by JPMCB, Singapore branch. JPMCB, Singapore branch is regulated by the Monetary Authority of Singapore. Dealing and advisory services and discretionary investment management services are provided to you by JPMCB, Hong Kong/Singapore branch (as notified to you). Banking and custody services are provided to you by JPMCB Singapore Branch. The contents of this document have not been reviewed by any regulatory authority in Hong Kong, Singapore or any other jurisdictions. You are advised to exercise caution in relation to this document. If you are in any doubt about any of the contents of this document, you should obtain independent professional advice. For materials which constitute product advertisement under the Securities and Futures Act and the Financial Advisers Act, this advertisement has not been reviewed by the Monetary Authority of Singapore. JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A., a national banking association chartered under the laws of the United States, and as a body corporate, its shareholder’s liability is limited.

With respect to countries in Latin America, the distribution of this material may be restricted in certain jurisdictions. We may offer and/or sell to you securities or other financial instruments which may not be registered under, and are not the subject of a public offering under, the securities or other financial regulatory laws of your home country. Such securities or instruments are offered and/or sold to you on a private basis only. Any communication by us to you regarding such securities or instruments, including without limitation the delivery of a prospectus, term sheet or other offering document, is not intended by us as an offer to sell or a solicitation of an offer to buy any securities or instruments in any jurisdiction in which such an offer or a solicitation is unlawful. Furthermore, such securities or instruments may be subject to certain regulatory and/or contractual restrictions on subsequent transfer by you, and you are solely responsible for ascertaining and complying with such restrictions. To the extent this content makes reference to a fund, the Fund may not be publicly offered in any Latin American country, without previous registration of such fund´s securities in compliance with the laws of the corresponding jurisdiction.

References to “J.P. Morgan” are to JPM, its subsidiaries and affiliates worldwide. “J.P. Morgan Private Bank” is the brand name for the private banking business conducted by JPM. This material is intended for your personal use and should not be circulated to or used by any other person, or duplicated for non-personal use, without our permission. If you have any questions or no longer wish to receive these communications, please contact your J.P. Morgan team.

JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A. (JPMCBNA) (ABN 43 074 112 011/AFS Licence No: 238367) is regulated by the Australian Securities and Investment Commission and the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority. Material provided by JPMCBNA in Australia is to “wholesale clients” only. For the purposes of this paragraph the term “wholesale client” has the meaning given in section 761G of the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth). Please inform us if you are not a Wholesale Client now or if you cease to be a Wholesale Client at any time in the future.

JPMS is a registered foreign company (overseas) (ARBN 109293610) incorporated in Delaware, U.S.A. Under Australian financial services licensing requirements, carrying on a financial services business in Australia requires a financial service provider, such as J.P. Morgan Securities LLC (JPMS), to hold an Australian Financial Services Licence (AFSL), unless an exemption applies. JPMS is exempt from the requirement to hold an AFSL under the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth) (Act) in respect of financial services it provides to you, and is regulated by the SEC, FINRA and CFTC under US laws, which differ from Australian laws. Material provided by JPMS in Australia is to “wholesale clients” only. The information provided in this material is not intended to be, and must not be, distributed or passed on, directly or indirectly, to any other class of persons in Australia. For the purposes of this paragraph the term “wholesale client” has the meaning given in section 761G of the Act. Please inform us immediately if you are not a Wholesale Client now or if you cease to be a Wholesale Client at any time in the future.

This material has not been prepared specifically for Australian investors. It:

  • may contain references to dollar amounts which are not Australian dollars;
  • may contain financial information which is not prepared in accordance with Australian law or practices;
  • may not address risks associated with investment in foreign currency denominated investments; and
  • does not address Australian tax issues.

© $$YEAR JPMorgan Chase & Co. All rights reserved.

LEARN MORE About Our Firm and Investment Professionals Through FINRA Brokercheck

To learn more about J.P. Morgan’s investment business, including our accounts, products and services, as well as our relationship with you, please review our J.P. Morgan Securities LLC Form CRS and Guide to Investment Services and Brokerage Products

 

JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A. and its affiliates (collectively "JPMCB") offer investment products, which may include bank-managed accounts and custody, as part of its trust and fiduciary services. Other investment products and services, such as brokerage and advisory accounts, are offered through J.P. Morgan Securities LLC ("JPMS"), a member of FINRA and SIPC. Insurance products are made available through Chase Insurance Agency, Inc. (CIA), a licensed insurance agency, doing business as Chase Insurance Agency Services, Inc. in Florida. JPMCB, JPMS and CIA are affiliated companies under the common control of JPMorgan Chase & Co. Products not available in all states. Please read the Legal Disclaimer in conjunction with these pages.

INVESTMENT AND INSURANCE PRODUCTS ARE: • NOT FDIC INSURED • NOT INSURED BY ANY FEDERAL GOVERNMENT AGENCY • NOT A DEPOSIT OR OTHER OBLIGATION OF, OR GUARANTEED BY, JPMORGAN CHASE BANK, N.A. OR ANY OF ITS AFFILIATES • SUBJECT TO INVESTMENT RISKS, INCLUDING POSSIBLE LOSS OF THE PRINCIPAL AMOUNT INVESTED

Bank deposit products, such as checking, savings and bank lending and related services are offered by JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A. Member FDIC. Not a commitment to lend. All extensions of credit are subject to credit approval.