Doctoral defense Evelyne Verstraelen

On 6 September 2017, at 17h Ms. Evelyne Verstraelen defended her doctoral thesis at the University of Antwerp.

The aim of this PhD is to analyse thoroughly the legal and tax legislation concerning regulated bodies for collective investment under Belgian law. These Belgian bodies will be examined in a European context. The analysis should lead to critical reflections and recommendations which can contribute to a more logical and consistent tax-legal framework for such bodies in Belgium.

The tax-legal analysis will be preceded by the development of a general theory on bodies for collective investment. This section examines these bodies' raison d'être and the national and international (including European) obligations that should be taken into account when determining their status. Moreover, the motives of certain countries to provide special tax-legal regimes for these bodies will be investigated in more detail. The researcher assesses whether these motives are justified and whether the existence of special regulations regarding these bodies can be deemed redundant or necessary. It will then be determined whether the applicable regulations for bodies for collective investment correspond to this general theory.

The legal aspect of the research is subordinate to the tax aspect of the analysis, and the researcher has therefore chosen to focus only on those legal aspects that are relevant to the tax analysis. Where necessary, comparisons will be made with the legal and fiscal legislation for bodies for collective investment in other countries, such as Luxembourg, France, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom. This is a functional comparative study of legislation.
The research also comprises an economic component, including research into the profiles of investors. Certain statistical data will be added to the tax-legal analysis. Where possible, the researcher will examine whether tax regulations or any changes thereof have had an impact on these statistics.