The New Congressional Attack on Offshore Rabbi Trusts

Beckett G. Cantley, The New Congressional Attack on Offshore Rabbi Trusts, 5 Or. Rev. Int’l L 5 (2003).

Summary.  This article discussed certain tax provisions that were contained in the draft National Employee Savings and Trust Equity Guarantee Act (“NESTEG Act”).  These provisions would have made funds held in offshore rabbi trusts immediately subject to US income tax to the beneficiary of the offshore rabbi trust.  The estimated result to the US Treasury Department would have been a significant increase in tax collection.  Offshore rabbi trusts have become common vehicles for US persons employed abroad by foreign companies to set aside retirement funds.  In addition, many offshore hedge fund managers have used offshore rabbi trusts as a means to defer income from current taxation.  This article discussed the previously proposed legislation, the likelihood of such legislation’s passage in the next Congress and the legal doctrines and tax policy implications involved in making such a change in tax policy.