How tighter AML legislation will affect the art world   

Dark arts: How tighter AML legislation will affect the art world

The EU's Fifth Money Laundering Directive will regulate all UK art market transactions above a threshold of €10,000 from January 2020, adding a further layer of compliance on top of sanctions legislation that already restricts dealing with certain entities. Helen Mulcahy, Francesca Titus and Vivien Davies consider the impact of the new rules and discuss how those trading in the art market can prepare for increased scrutiny.



The management of wealth is of vital importance for our private clients and often requires advice with an international perspective. The UK taxation of individuals and trustees has become increasingly complex and controversial. High net worth individuals domiciled or resident in the UK, or thinking of taking up residency or owning property in the UK, should take advice on how to structure their personal and financial arrangements during their lifetime and how to plan the succession of their estate on death in order to preserve wealth and control its destination.

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Notable deals / highlights


  • a media personality on financial settlements and confidentiality agreements.

  • a wealthy Indian businessman on £70m Indian trust interests, estate planning and citizenship arrangements taking account of his domicile status and cross border issues and co-ordinating advice with his Indian advisers.

  • a high profile former Government Minister on tax and estate planning in relation to his portfolio of UK properties.

  • an UHNWI in connection with a structure through which he arranged the refinancing, re-export and import (for VAT purposes) of two jet aircraft so as to ensure they remain in free circulation in the EU thereby qualifying for VAT zero rating.

  • a private Family Office and its underlying trust and corporate interests for over 30 years including provision of advice in 2012 on succession planning, a possible change of residence for the main trustee company and dealing with enquiries from Singapore, Australian and UK tax authorities regarding a financing arrangement.

  • a couple with tax resident status in Russia and Switzerland on structuring the purchase of a high value French property through a Societe Civile Immobilier including advice on tax, succession and matrimonial regimes in all relevant jurisdictions and co-coordinating arrangements for the purchase through a SCI.

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