Tax & Revenue

Recognition

Our tax group has been recognised for many years as a leader in tax practice by major publications such as Asia Pacific Legal 500, AsiaLaw Profiles, Tax Directors Handbook and Chambers Asia Pacific.

Services

Our tax practice meets the demand for specialist and comprehensive tax advice and representation. We have a dedicated team of tax lawyers, led by 3 partners, who handle both advisory and contentious tax work. We provide advice and representation on all Malaysian taxes including income tax, real property gains tax, customs duties, sales & service tax, entertainments duty and stamp duty. 

Specific areas on which we often advise are:

Investigations and Audits

In the event of an investigation or tax audit, we hold our client’s hand and ensure that the right steps are taken. Our knowledge of tax law and experience in tax litigation can help resolve disputes or achieve a workable solution thereby avoiding the need to go to court.  Where necessary, we represent clients in their meetings with the tax authorities.

Tax litigation

This is one of the fastest growing areas in our tax practice. We appear regularly before the Customs Appeal Tribunal, Special Commissioners of Income Tax, the High Court and the Court of Appeal. Our success on issues has prompted legislative changes to the Income Tax Act, 1967. We have tax litigation experience in all forms of taxation law.

In a recent case, we secured victories for the client all the way from the Special Commissioners of Income Tax to the High Court and finally in the Court of Appeal, obtaining the binding decision that expenses paid by a taxpayer to its parent company in return for the grant of share options to the taxpayer’s employees are tax-deductible. As this type of expenditure would be incurred in almost every case where there is an employee share option scheme in place, the decision has a wide-reaching effect.

Tax incentives

Clients can rely on our knowledge of the labyrinth of available tax incentives. In addition to standard incentives, for larger investments, we have experience in assisting in making applications for tailor-made incentive packages and negotiations with government authorities, having handled such applications for some of the largest investors in Malaysia.

Customs Duties and Sales & Service Tax

We provide Customs Duties advice as a mainstay of our tax practice including to some of the most crucially impacted sectors such as the oil & gas, tobacco and brewery sectors. The abolition of the Goods & Services Tax and the reinstatement of the Sales & Service Tax have made the Malaysian tax compliance landscape a little more complicated for taxpayers. We have been busy providing advice on issues arising from the transition from GST to SST.

Pre-transaction tax sensitivity analyses and reports

In most cases, tax issues need to be identified and resolved early. We are able to render pre-transaction advice to mitigate future tax risks. Where necessary, we will work with other professionals including tax consultants to prepare reports and opinions to facilitate a stand being taken on tax positions.

Tax issues in M&A transactions

Complex tax issues often arise in M&A transactions. Working with other colleagues in the firm, we help clients deal with them prior to the closing of the transaction.

Tax issues in corporate finance instruments

The tax implications of ever evolving corporate finance instruments are increasingly complex. We can help simplify complicated tax problems and give clients clear solutions.

Cross border tax issues and offshore regimes

With our knowledge of double tax treaties and offshore regimes, we work with foreign experts to provide advice on complex cross border issues. Worldwide Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS) initiatives are bringing about dynamic changes in this area and we are well placed to help clients negotiate through a maze of frequently-changing tax legislation and requirements.

Transfer Pricing

Together with financial consultants, we review transfer pricing positions and provide advice on positions and steps that need to be taken to ensure that clients are fully prepared for any potential dispute with the tax authorities.

Pre-Tax Filing opinions

With an increasingly aggressive tax administration, the filing of income tax returns can now be a major and complex exercise. Any errors in tax returns can attract penalties that can go up to 300% or even attract criminal prosecution. We regularly support taxpayers in rendering opinions on positions to be taken for tax filing purposes. The courts have held that seeking legal advice before adopting a tax position is a mitigating factor in the imposition of penalties.

Clients

We have provided tax advice to clients from a wide range of industries including banking, insurance, manufacturing, trading, shipping, aviation, construction, property development, hospitality, engineering, plantation, brewery, tobacco, oil & gas, ICT, automotive, highway concession and healthcare as well as to high net-worth individuals. We also advise statutory corporations.  From this, we are able to say with confidence that we understand the specific tax issues faced by clients in each industry.

Contact

Partner – Tax & Revenue
+603-2632 9905

williamwong@rdl.com.my

Partner – Tax & Revenue
+603-2632 9868

mkvijey@rdl.com.my

Partner – Tax & Revenue
+603-2632 9911

eeleen.chang@rdl.com.my

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