On the 4th of December, Paul Marmor, Jean-Paul da Costa, Laurel Zhang, Greg Pooler, and Aleksandra Rychlewska all met with leading tax specialists to showcase Sherrards’ international strength, and highlight legal expertise in relation to tax.

The event was organised by Laurel Zhang, Head of China & Southeast Asia Group, and her connections with the Chinese Tax Specialists. Laurel is part of the Corporate & Commercial team, based in London and she speaks fluent Mandarin and English. She commented, “We provide a lot of support to companies looking to do business in the UK coming in from China, Hong Kong and across Asia and one of the key benefits we can provide is cultural and language support as well as plenty of experience operating in the region and discuss our experience with the delegation.”

The event began with an introduction from Paul Marmor, Head of International and Dispute Resolution, who introduced Sherrards, its history and each spokesperson from Sherrards for the morning. Paul then discussed the amazing history and importance of ‘The Honourable Society of the Middle Temple’ and how legal practitioners are split into Solicitors & Barristers within the UK. He informed the audience of how Sherrards is a member of the American Bar Association (ABA), the International Bar Association (IBA) and the Alliott Global Alliance (AGA) with Sherrards having individual desks for Germany, China, France, USA, and eastern-Europe. A truly global law Firm.

Jean-Paul da Costa, head of Corporate and Commercial, was the first to present to the group. He discussed the ways the Government use incentives like tax to influence the UK’s economy and how the government have several tax incentive schemes to influence investors such as the Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme (SEIS), the Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS) and the Venture Capital Trusts Scheme (VCT). Jean-Paul also covered Tax breaks a tool to influence UK business activity. This included the Entrepreneurs Relief (Business Asset Disposal Relief) scheme, small businesses not being charged for VAT for the first £85,000, and the Corporate Venturing Scheme (CVS). He then discussed the methods the Government use to boost the economic activity of employees such as the Enterprise Management Incentives (EMI), Share Incentive Plans (SIPs) and the Employee Ownership Trusts (EOT) programs. The final area Jean-Paul spoke about was presenting a global perspective to show in what ways that UK economy is unique worldwide. He commented, “Much of Sherrards’ work is related to FDI (Foreign direct investment) to the UK with specialist teams focussing on IP (Intellectual Property), corporate & property (real estate) structures as well as litigation and we were only too happy to share our knowledge with the delegation”.

Aleksandra Rychlewska, Legal Assistant in the Litigation department, then gave a thorough explanation of the UK’s Legal System, informing the delegation of the four factors that make the UK legal system an attractive choice for international parties to resolve their commercial disputes. These included the expertise, specialisation, and independent judiciary that the UK possess, the tradition of the Common Law, the Enforceability of Judgements across jurisdictions and alternative dispute resolution options.

Guy Morgan, Partner in our Commercial Property department then gave a detailed description of the Commercial Property market in England with a summary of concepts in English Property law and the challenges that the UK economy face post-pandemic and with the economic and political climate, including issues like climate change & technological change. Guy then gave an overview of key property taxes such as the Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) and Value Added Tax (VAT) to inform the audience on the UK’s tax system. Guy concluded his presentation with a ‘glimpse into the future’, which addressed the possible changes that 2024’s General election will bring to the UK.

The final spokesperson from Sherrards was Greg Pooler who gave a presentation on Disclosure and cross-border data transfers. He explained what disclosure is and its importance in law, along-side the Civil Procedure Rules (CPR) and how it influences legal practice in the UK. This was followed by examples of Sherrards past experiences with disclosure across jurisdictions including how Sherrards were advised on the Chinese regime and it’s three pillars – Data Security Law, The Personal Information Protection Law, and State Secrets Law. Greg then listed key UK laws and their influence; Data Security Law (Article 36), Personal Information Protection Law (Article 41) and the Securities Law (Article 25).

The event finished with a visit to the “Great Hall” and networking.