Spectator killed as car leaves road in La Laguna rally

Spectator killed as car leaves road in La Laguna rally

An elderly man was killed this afternoon when a car participating in the La Laguna rally left the road between Aguantaría and La Esperanza, ploughing into a group of spectators. Several were injured but the tragedy resulted in the 72-year-old losing his life; some saying he acted heroically, saving others’ lives by pushing them out of the way of the vehicle. La Laguna Ayuntamiento has expressed its sadness and condolences to those affected, while organizers have now suspended the event.

Source: Janet Anscombe 

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Police and hospital staff call for attacks on medical personnel to stop as yet another assault takes place in HUC’s A&E

Police and hospital staff call for attacks on medical personnel to stop as yet another assault takes place in HUC’s A&E

Police say that attacks on medical staff must stop as yet another assault has ocurred in the A&E department of HUC, when a man started insulting and then threatening staff, finally attacking them with an “electric weapon”. Hospital staff say these attacks are on the increase as underfunding and understaffing results in frustration and long waits for patients. They call for active security on duty specifically in A&E as well as in the rest of the hospital since assaults on medical staff here now measure in the hundreds every year.

Medical staff say that they deserve respect for their professionalism, and that security will simply have to be stepped up for their own protection, while the police ask the public to understand they are dealing with qualified medical staff when they attend a hospital, and that these deserve to be treated with the same consideration as professionals in any other field … and that apart from these human considerations, such aggravated assaults are not just uncivilized but actually criminal.

The latest assault on medical staff took place around half past ten on Thursday evening with the man frustrated at his wait taking out what appears to be a kind of taser (a “dispositivo de descargas eléctricas”). Thankfully no injuries have been reported, and security personnel, summoned by a panic button, picked the man up as he was trying to leave the hospital. He was dealt with by the Policía Nacional. 

Source: Janet Anscombe 

One dead and two seriously injured as lorry overturns and breaks through central reservation of TF1 at Fañabe

One dead and two seriously injured as lorry overturns and breaks through central reservation of TF1 at Fañabe

Photo: Tenerife Vial.

Photo: Carreteras

Updated 2.30pm: It is now sadly confirmed that a woman has died and her daughter and a motorcyclist were seriously injured in this accident. Emergency services say that the lorry was heading north towards Santa Cruz but crossed the central reservation after the driver lost control, colliding with a car heading south. The car’s driver was killed in the incident and had to be freed by Bomberos: her 12-year-old daughter has been taken to Hospiten Sur with serious leg injuries. A 30-year-old motorcyclist also suffered severe leg injuries in the incident and he has been transferred to Hospital Quirón Costa Adeje. 

Original post 17 July, 1.30pm: Yet again road safety experts are questioning the central reservation barriers on Tenerife’s motorways. Only last month a bus went straight through the central reservation at Guaza and this lunchtime, the TF1 at Fañabe is at a complete standstill after a lorry overturned and went through safety retention blocks. The accident happened around 12 noon on the south-bound (towards Adeje) carriageway, though Carreteras says that the north-bound carriageway is also affected by rubbernecking drivers. There are reports that at least one other vehicle is involved somehow in the incident, and several local claims of casualties and even fatalities though this is still awaiting official confirmation.  

 

Source: Janet Anscombe

Loro Parque support sees 14 of the most trafficked tropical bird in the world, the Great Green Macaw, released back into wild in protected Ecuador reserve

Loro Parque support sees 14 of the most trafficked tropical bird in the world, the Great Green Macaw, released back into wild in protected Ecuador reserve

Their conservation and environmental work with endangered bird species is world-renowned, and Loro Parque has again announced a marvellous operation they’ve collaborated in with the Jocotoco Foundation, an Ecuador organization formed twenty years ago to protect land of critical importance to the country’s endangered birds. In that period, the Foundation has established eleven reserves protecting over 40,000 acres which also serve to provide a protected habitat for many associated plants and animals as well as the 800 species of birds themselves, of which 50 are globally threatened.

Today, Loro Parque has announced that with the support of its own Fundación, the Jocotoco Foundation has reintroduced 14 Great Green Macaws to their natural habitat in the Ayampe reserve. The species is considered to be the most trafficked tropical bird in the world, and two of the new arrivals are being tracked via satellite, while educational sessions have been offered throughout the country to raise environmental awareness.Loro Parque says that it is “a pleasure to share that all these efforts contribute to the protection of this species that is facing a danger of extinction in the wild.” The Parques own efforts of course, are a huge part of this conservation drive to save avian species from extinction, protect their gene pool, and get them released back into the wild in their natural habitats. 

 
Source: Janet Anscombe 
 

British nationals will not lose out on inheritance and gift tax after Brexit as Spain accepts regional discounts for non-EU nationals

British nationals will not lose out on inheritance and gift tax after Brexit as Spain accepts regional discounts for non-EU nationals

Updated 15 July 2019: I’m very grateful once more to Blevins Frank’s Paul Montague for the following … confirmation that after Brexit, inheritance (and gift) tax levied on British nationals will still benefit from discounted rates.

In Spain, inheritance tax (‘succession and gift tax’ or ‘SSGT’) is governed by both the state and the Autonomous Communities. Each of these 17 communities has the right to amend the state rules to make them more beneficial, as several have done over recent years, including here in the Canary Islands. There has been a general trend towards substantial reliefs and increased allowances, resulting in almost total exemption from inheritance and gift tax in certain cases.

Until 2015, your heirs could only benefit from the more beneficial regional rules if you were “habitually resident” in that region.  However, the European Court of Justice ruled that this treatment was discriminatory – it went against the EU principle of free movement of people and capital – and therefore Spain was forced to amend its legislation so that the regional SSGT rules could apply to anyone resident in the EU or EEA (European Economic Area).

While this was very welcome, heirs resident in say Australia or the US – or even the UK following Brexit – could pay much more tax than if they lived in the EU.

In February 2018 the Spanish Supreme Court published a judgement confirming that the Spanish succession and gift tax rules breach the free movement of capital established by the EU Treaty in relation to non-residents. Following this, the Spanish DGT (Dirección General de Tributos/General Directorate of Taxes) published some binding rulings in December confirming that the SSGT rules should be applicable to all non-residents – regardless of whether they reside in an EU/EEA member state or a third country.

Following these rulings, some taxpayers claimed for refunds for succession and gift tax paid under the discriminative rules. We have since heard that many of these claims (requested within the Spanish statute of limitations) have been successful and taxpayers have started to receive refunds from the tax office in Spain.

Although the tax law has still not been changed in this regard, it appears that the Spanish tax authority now officially accepts the application of the regional rules, instead of the less favourable state rules, where a third party (i.e. non-EU/EEA) is involved. The European Commission seems satisfied with this approach, and has therefore dismissed its official denouncement against the discriminatory rules previously filed by some Spanish lawyers.

In summary, if you now leave or gift assets to heirs who are not resident in the EU/EEA, they should be able to claim the application of the regional rules instead of the less favourable state ones.

This of course is particularly good news for UK nationals after Brexit.

Anyone who believes they have unfairly paid succession tax under the state rules should speak to their Spanish tax accountant about making a claim.

Please do not hesitate to contact me for more information about the regional Canary Islands succession and gift tax rules, or for advice on effective estate planning to reduce Spanish and UK inheritance taxes and achieve your wishes for your heirs.

Source: Janet Anscombe 

British man suffers facial injuries after being attacked in Playa de las Américas

British man suffers facial injuries after being attacked in Playa de las Américas

A 24-year-old British man was assaulted last night in Avda Arquitecto Gómez Cuesta in Playa de las Americas, the main road running past the sports stadium, the Green Hospital, the Zentral Centre, and down to the Golden Mile. Emergency services say that they were called out just after 4am with reports of the attack, and ambulance crew treated the man at the scene before transferring him to Hospiten Sur with facial injuries which are said not to be life-threatening. The Policía Nacional are investigating the incident.   

Source: Janet Anscombe 

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