CANADA: Did Accounting Firm KPMG Help Spouses Hide Cash in the Isle of Man?

A recent article suggests that accounting firm KPMG discussed avoiding canadian laws in family disputes by offering clients a service which essentially allegedly amounted to dodging Canadian Family Law with a secret offshore scheme in the Isle of Man. Read the excepert:

Embattled accounting firm KPMG promoted its offshore Isle of Man tax avoidance scheme as a vehicle for stashing money away from ex­-spouses in divorce proceedings, documents handed over to a parliamentary probe reveal.
Those revelations are contained in several “private and confidential” emails between KPMG tax executives and an outside law firm, as well as in a talking point “script” for accounting sales reps to promote the Isle of Man tax dodge to their affluent clients.
The discovery that KPMG discussed avoiding Canadian laws in family disputes is the latest development in a growing scandal in which one of Canada’s largest accounting firms ran a secret offshore scheme for more than a decade that the Canada Revenue Agency alleges “intended to deceive” authorities.

The accounting firm apparently also got legal advice on the scheme from a big firm lawyer at the well regarded firm, Dentons:

The idea of using the Isle of Man tax dodge as a vehicle for keeping money away from ex-spouses is also raised in a legal opinion to KPMG from prominent law firm Fraser Milner Casgrain, now Dentons.

Joel Nitikman, a prominent tax lawyer of Dentons Canada LLP, gave a legal opinion about ‘the Divorce Act and other similar provincial legislation’ in a letter to KPMG. (Dentons)

Lawyer Joel Nitikman, who was asked for legal advice on KPMG’s proposed offshore tax plan, wrote about the “possibility of avoiding the Divorce Act (Canada) and similar provincial legislation” if clients were to buy into the scheme.

Read more here.