Tax-Exile Hell

Wednesday, July 25th, 2012

You know, it can be a tough life when you happen to have a lot of money at your disposal. Just ask Mitt Romney. Or nose around a bit in Geneva:

#Economie – Des fortunes de France vivraient l’enfer à Genève: Un reportage sur les exilés fiscaux français clou…


News Suisse

A little background: The new French Socialist government of François Hollande (dominating both the executive and the legislature) made it clear both pre- and post-election that it intends to substantially raise taxes on the rich. As a result, many of those rich are upping stakes and leaving, often just across the border to more tax-friendly but still francophone climes in Belgium or Switzerland, where they can escape French taxes if they live there for at least 183 days in the year.

Trouble is, it’s not that simple, at least when it comes to Geneva, where for all their money these tax-exiles have to deal with substantial culture-shock. That @news_suisse tweet links to a piece in Geneva’s own Tribune de Genève by Dino Auciello, about how his own venerable hometown is somehow just so uncomfortable and, well, boring for these wealthy wanderers. It’s not difficult to detect Auciello’s thick irony just below the surface, as in his lede:

Poor French fiscal exiles! Those who flee from ever more oppressive fiscal authorities, now the promised land of Geneva reveals itself to them as a veritable hell.

Things are so humdrum there, he reports, that “aside from golf and adultery, distractions are rare.” (more…)

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