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Bircham Dyson Bell (BDB) LLP and Pitmans LLP merged on 1 December 2018 to become BDB Pitmans LLP. More details can be found here
25 September 2018

Horseracing and bloodstock

In every niche area it is essential for advisers to have a proper understanding of the underlying assets if satisfactory and effective tax and succession planning are to be achieved. This is nowhere more true than with horseracing and bloodstock.

The worlds of horseracing and bloodstock have their own specific language, seasons and challenges.

Racing and breeding racehorses involve wealth, in liquid form (bloodstock) and illiquid form (land). The seasonal nature of the bloodstock sales mean that those involved face particular cashflow issues each year which might be increased by family or business upheaval. There is always the underlying volatility of asset values to contend with, making planning particularly difficult but all the more imperative.

Our team is fortunate to have two members who have a significant interest in the area, providing legal advice directly to clients and sharing firmwide their knowledge of the sport and bloodstock industry.

Owen Byrne worked for eight years at The Jockey Club in a communications role before re-qualifying as a solicitor. He continues to attend race meetings (whether jumps or flat) and attends the bloodstock sales in Newmarket. He also stays in touch with the bloodstock industry news via his wife who works at one of the Arab-owned stud farms in Newmarket and his mother-in-law who breeds racehorses on her own stud farm.

Paddy Lynam has been involved in the world of horseracing all his life, having grown up in Hong Kong and Newmarket. His father previously worked for the Hong Kong Jockey Club and his mother owned a stud farm breeding several brood mares, as well as heading public relations at Tattersalls for 25 years.

The team’s recent work includes acquisitions and disposals of stud farms, advising on leasing and licence arrangements for stables in both a commercial and livery context, and probates of estates owning horses in and out of training, broodmares, stud farming partnerships, stables, training grounds and stud farms. Also key is advising stud farm owners on the use of trusts or other approaches to pass wealth held in bloodstock and land down to the next generation in a tax efficient manner.

Whether bloodstock and land are owned personally, or are held in companies, partnerships, or trusts (onshore or offshore), within the firm we have the expertise to advise on the wide range of issues that can arise including tax and trusts; succession planning; employment; property matters; litigation and intellectual property.


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