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Harbottle & Lewis





Tax & Trust Advisers

Tax & Trust Lawyers


London, United Kingdom

Advice type

Estate planning



Client types




Sector focus


Business and Consumer Services


Jonathan Burt


‘We are seeing a big adjustment as a result of the pandemic,’ says Jonathan Burt, a partner in the private client and tax department of Harbottle & Lewis since 2018. ‘People are recognising that global mobility is impaired – it is easy to get stuck somewhere and thus become resident in the wrong place – and they are placing a premium on the preservation and careful application of their capital.’

Burt has 25 years of experience in the business, having worked as a partner at Baker & McKenzie, and later as managing director at Barclays between 2008 and 2012 as well as a partner at Harcus Sinclair from 2012 to 2018. He specialises in advising internationally mobile entrepreneurs and wealth owners on their legal affairs, and although his work always has a cross-border element, most clients will have some nexus with the UK through tax residency or domicile or investment in business or real estate.

‘My clients are looking for pragmatic and practical solutions to the efficient structuring of their investments. They have a view to maximise and protect the value for the long-term benefit of their families and charitable interests,’ explains Burt, who relishes outlining practical solutions to clients. The financial crisis, the erosion of banking secrecy and the increase in global transparency have reshaped the wealth management industry over the past decade, and his clients have had to adapt. ‘The environment for wealthy people is being shaped by transparency and the automatic exchange of information programmes and beneficial ownership registers,’ he explains. ‘People understand that the world has changed and it is important to be structured compliantly. As confidentiality has been eroded, it is important that whatever structure is put in place has substance, is compliant and can withstand scrutiny.’

Since joining the firm in 2018, Burt has been involved in several significant, ‘highly technical’ cases surrounding the application of the transfer of assets abroad regime. ‘These cases involved considering the changes to the transfer of assets abroad regime as a result of the changes to the taxation of resident non-domiciliaries, with a particular reference to the use of trust structures by persons who became deemed domiciled in the UK under the new rules,’ Burt says.

He notes a shift in attitude among the younger generation. ‘This is starting to drive behaviour as to how families deal with tax obligations. Many families recognise the social value of paying tax. Tax has become a reputational issue, and they are well aware of that.’

Rank: Top Recommended

Top Recommended 2020, Tax & Trust Lawyers



020 7667 5000

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