Richard Gelski Partner

Meet Richard

A University medallist in law from Sydney University and a Masters graduate from The University of London, Richard has over 40 years’ experience in the areas of taxation, corporate and commercial law.

He has advised Australian & foreign companies throughout his professional career. He has advised multinational companies in negotiations for Advance Pricing Agreements, he has advised on preparations for Senate Committee hearings and he has acted on transfer pricing reviews and audits. He has particular experience in corporate structuring, cross border investment, mergers and acquisitions and property trust structures. Richard has also advised on a wide variety of capital raisings by groups in the tourism industry, banking industry, retail and manufacturing.

Experience

Tax and Revenue

Negotiations

Engaged by a listed Canadian company to negotiate a unilateral Advance Pricing Agreement (APA) with the tax office. Successfully negotiated product and private binding rulings for: long-term leases; financial products, film products; confirmation of carry forward losses; residency status for companies and individuals; capital gains tax issues; taxation consequences of a wide variety of commercial transactions.

Litigation

Conducted successful litigation that the Australian Taxation Office had wrongly exercised discretion regarding share option elections.

Audits

Managed some of the most complex and wide ranging taxation audits conducted by the Australian Taxation Office, including Wickenby related audits.

Private charitable foundations

Created and acts for a number of public and private charitable foundations and sits on the board of directors of a number of funds.

Advisory

Multinational companies

Advised on preparation for Advance Pricing Agreements and for appearances at Senate Committee Hearings, and advised on transfer pricing reviews and audits of multinational companies.

Australian franchises

Advising on structure of Australia-wide franchise arrangements.

PepsiCo

Acted on successful payroll tax appeal for Pepsico.

Australian and international corporations

Advised on payroll tax audits for Australia-wide operations of Australian corporations, and corporate restructures by Australian and international corporations.

An international financial services group

Advised this group and its European headquarters in relation to restructuring proposals.

An international IT group

Provided advice in relation to restructuring proposals.

An Australian public company

Advised on cancellation of international shareholder earn out proposals.

Energy & resources company

Provided advice on the potential implications of the Resources Super Profits Tax.

IP agreements

Advised on tax consequences on a range of intellectual property agreements including availability of depreciation of such intangible assets.

Corporate Advice

Tourism group

Acted on all matters in the operation of a diversified listed tourism group which merged with a listed hotel owning group, including structuring and disposals of significant property projects.

Hotel group

Advised on the restructuring and proposed public listing of an Asian-owned hotel group.

Major corporations

Advised on restructuring and preparation for public listing of major corporations.

Hotel property acquisitions

Advised on a wide range of major hotel property acquisitions as well as business and asset purchases and disposals.

International resources funds

Advised on structures for and ongoing operation of international resources funds.

Start-up ventures

Advised “incubator” entities in relation to start-up ventures.

Foreign investment

Advised foreign hedge funds on proposals to create funds to invest in Australia.

Recognition

Career & qualifications

Qualifications

  • Bachelor of Arts, Sydney University
  • Bachelor of Laws (Honours), Sydney University
  • Master of Law, London University

Memberships

  • Co-Chair, Australian Chapter, International Section, New York State Bar Association
  • Member, International Fiscal Association
  • Member, Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners
  • Past member of Board of Governors, Australian Tax Research Foundation
  • Past President and Life Member, Taxation Institute of Australia
  • Past Member, CFC Liaison Committee of Treasury and ATO