To set up an offshore company or relocate your existing business overseas is a crucial step toward internationalizing yourself and your assets. Search for “offshore company” and you’ll find thousands of websites promising a quick company formation in Panama or the British Virgin Islands, with a range of other “benefits” for the jurisdiction in question.
This is a question we receive often. With the implementation and enforcement of FATCA (Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act), the United States is increasing enforcement priority of noncompliant US account holders.
Offshore banking is often associated with a high level of financial sophistication and, sometimes, chicanery. However, the reality is that the average person can open an offshore bank account with just a few hours of work. Each offshore bank and foreign jurisdiction has its own requirements, so you'll have to do some research to find the specifics relevant to your situation. The following is an overview of what you can expect, based on common offshore banking centers such as Switzerland, the Cayman Islands, and the Channel Islands.