Tuesday, September 19, 2023

When is the right time** to get structuring of business assets right?

View Legal blog - When is the right time** to get structuring of business assets right? by Matthew Burgess

Last week, we had a client wanting to revisit their business structure, and in particular, the decision to run all aspects of the business via the one legal entity (in this instance a company).

The particular issue of focus was in relation to the risks that attach to certain items of plant and equipment that, in a worst case scenario, could cause serious injury (or death) to employees.

The same items of plant and equipment were owned by the entity that held the goodwill of the business as well as other real property assets.

While there were a myriad of issues that needed to be addressed, at a basic level, we explored the movement of the items of plant out of the existing company into a 'standalone' special purpose vehicle (‘SPV’) that would house the plant and equipment. The SPV would then lease the plant and equipment back to the operating entity - and thereby comply with the rules of ‘domino theory’ (as explored in previous View posts).

The work involved in achieving this part of the restructure was not significant and given that in the circumstances it could be done without any tax or stamp duty consequences, the customer saw it as a sensible step to implement immediately.

While the exact stamp duty and tax outcomes will depend on the circumstances, it is worth keeping this style of SPV solution in mind as an example that there can be relatively simple restructure ideas implemented without significant time delays or cost investment.

As usual, please contact me if you would like access to any of the content mentioned in this post.

** for the trainspotters, the title today is riffed from the Hoodoo Gurus song 'The Right Time'.

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