Watch Friday’s segment of Nightly Business Report. Tax havens are not just overseas. Nevada and Wyoming are the biggest states that are U.S. tax havens. And those two states have direct ties to the Monsack and Fonseca firm that is involved in the Panama papers tax haven scandal. Reuters did an expose in June 2011 on how lax US incorporation practices. From Global Financial Integrity website:
CHEYENNE/ATLANTA – An investigative piece published by Reuters today, “A little house of secrets on the Great Plains” looks at the lax incorporation requirements of US states with a focus on Wyoming Corporate Services, “a business-incorporation specialist that establishes firms which can be used as ‘shell’ companies, paper entities able to hide assets.” The “little house” in this case, is a 1,700-square-foot brick house in holds more than 2,000 registered companies.
No states license mass incorporators, and only a few require them to formally register with state authorities. None collect the names and addresses of “beneficial owners,” the individuals with a controlling interest in corporations, according to a 2009 report by the National Association of Secretaries of State, a group for state officials overseeing incorporation. Wyoming and Nevada allow the real owners of corporations to hide behind “nominee” officers and directors with no direct role in the business, often executives of the mass incorporator.