Tax Havens and International Human rights

Paul Beckett

£115, Routledge

Paul Beckett has set himself the unthinkable task of linking what would appear to be incompatible themes, namely tax havens and human rights. Through his experience in practice, his research capabilities and detailed academic knowledge, he has managed successfully to amalgamate those two themes in a skilful manner.

Following an introduction, the book is divided into seven coherent chapters. Chapter 1 looks at the evolution of tax havens and contains a general overview of tax havens and international finance centres. Common offshore structures, such as companies and trusts adapted by tax havens, are covered in chapter 2.

The book goes on to look at the global phenomenon of creating ‘orphaned’ structures owned by, and accountable to, no one, which spell beneficial ownership avoidance. And there is a chapter evaluating the concepts of tax avoidance and tax evasion.

Beckett, who has carried out comprehensive research, then focuses on tax havens such as the Isle of Man and Switzerland. He finishes by highlighting areas of concern mentioned in the previous chapters.

At the end of each chapter, the reader will find appendices (where appropriate) and a comprehensive bibliography, consisting of legislation, cases, international treaties and documents, as well as secondary sources comprising carefully selected scholarly works, government reports, international reports, EU directives and much more.

The content is written in a lucid, clear and concise manner. This up-to-date and thought-provoking book is recommended to: tax practitioners in law, financial advisers and accountancy firms, ombudsmen, human rights specialists, university students taking courses on taxation and human rights, and the people who are interested in novel and perceptive thinking.

Professor Joseph Carby-Hall is director of international legal research at the Centre for Legislative Studies, University of Hull