🔗 The legal links in the Pandora Papers 

What’s going on with the Pandora Papers? And what might be the legal repercussions? Here’s a quick guide.

  • The gist of the Pandora Papers: Released last week, the Pandora Papers show hundreds of corporations and politicians engaging in offshore tax havens and shell companies, according to the WSJ. Those things generally aren’t illegal, but the report notes “these affairs often amount to shifting profits from high-tax countries, where they are earned, to companies that exist only on paper in low-tax jurisdictions.” The maneuvering means companies get added secrecy, and the public loses out on their tax contributions. 

  • The legal questions at hand: As mentioned, using tax shelters and making shell companies usually isn’t illegal on its face. But several countries have already announced they will initiate investigations of key figures. As for Baker McKenzie, law professor Richard Painter told the ICIJ, “Not being illegal doesn’t make it right.”