Tax Insurance is used in a multitude of ways by funds, corporates, trustees, individual sellers, insolvency practitioners and has developed enormously in the past five years.
W&I Tax Plus
We are a market-leading team of highly experienced tax professionals with an excellent underwriting track record who understand the challenges posed by tax issues in M&A deals. We have the largest tax underwriting team in Europe and probably, globally.
can enable transactions to proceed which would otherwise falter
protects a seller’s sales proceeds against price reductions
can replace indemnities
avoids lengthy escrow arrangements
breaks deadlock between parties
protects individuals (and their estates) against personal liability
provides economic recourse to highly-rated insurance institutions with excellent claims records
Size of risk
We insure tax risks with liabilities from £500,000 to £100,000,000 per tax issue. Every policy is bespoke for the deal and the tax issue at stake: we work with clients and their advisors to be a pragmatic, innovative partner in their transaction.
We are approached by brokers (most of whom have their own tax specialist broker) with a summary of the issue and the advisor’s view on the level of risk.
We analyse the risk in-house and seek external soundings if necessary on the nature of the issue. We usually produce our indicative pricing and terms (a “Non Binding Indication or NBI” within 48 hours).
We are usually provided with an expense agreement to then proceed to full underwriting. Due to our own expertise and network of external tax advisors in multiple jurisdictions we produce a set of underwriting questions promptly in order to enable us to better understand the risk.
We also produce a bespoke policy wording, which specifically insures the identified risk; this is usually by reference to the applicable tax legislation.
The policy is usually seen as a “complete solution” in respect of the tax risk as the policy covers:
the tax liability
gross-up in the event the insurance proceeds were to be subject to tax.
Pricing of risk is determined by a multitude of factors including jurisdiction, nature of the issue, the perceived strength of the technical position and practical ability to defend it.
We do not insure tax avoidance schemes or aggressive tax planning.
Examples of the varied tax risks we write are available here.
We are a reliable and responsive partner when claims arise – please see Claims for further information on the claims process.
For further information about tax insurance, here is an article by Dawn Bhoma for the Thompson Reuters' publication, Practical Law for Companies.