IT MAY HAVE BEEN A DRAW BUT US WIN THE TAX WAR

London based tax expert Alistair Bambridge explains how the two countries compare in terms of their tax compliance system

Under the sweltering Amazonian heat at Manaus, both teams showed incredible stamina, stopping just before half time for a drinks break. Things looked hairy as Nani scored Portugal’s first goal in the opening five minutes but the US showed intense strength and stamina in the latter part of the game as first Jones and then Dempsey romped two classic goals past Beto’s goal defence. In the last 30 seconds of the extended game, Varela pushed through an equalising goal.

However, the US trump Portugal in tax compliance. Just as the US almost managed to outwit Ronaldo’s reds last night in another exciting game in this year’s rollercoaster World Cup; Alistair Bambridge, CEO of Bambridge Accountants is an expert in US tax returns and he said, “Portugal have trumped the US in many ways relating to their tax system, since the overall percentage is less at just 42.3%” Evaluating the report conducted by the PwC, Mr. Bambridge commented that just as they were at some stages on the field last night, the US are quicker than Portugal in terms of hours spent. However, overall the US ranks as number 64 in the World Cup of ease of tax compliance, whilst Portugal slip down to 81.

Mr. Bambridge provides accountancy services for UK based US citizens and as such is familiar with the complicated US tax procedures. Despite what many of us may believe, the UK ranked as 14th in the world for ease of tax compliance, whilst our American cousins came  64th. Of course, the UK tax return can cause justified anxiety for some. They are labour intensive and require dedication. Mr. Bambridge noted “The US ranked as 64th out of 189 economies analysed worldwide. Many expats living in the UK seek assistance with their US Tax returns.”

Those visiting Portugal’s most famous colony; Brazil during the World Cup may or may not realise that the tax complexity of this rising economy is the most complicated in the world! Perhaps because the nation has developed so quickly; there are contradictory rules from one part to another and uniformity is still something for which the economy desires. As followers of the World Cup will have seen, the country stretches from the dense jungles near Manaus to the southerly beaches of Sao Paolo and Rio. With new jobs and industries being created daily, there is a spectacular array of new tax codes. The study suggests that overall experts spent 2,600 hours complying with the tax coding system in Brazil! Of course, a professional will consider the minutiae of detail, but regardless this means around a third of the year is spent on accounting! Alistair also said, “Expanding economies, such as places like Brazil have complex rules where taxes are concerned”.

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