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Vampire Finance and Accountants

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  • Vampire Finance and Accountants

    I'm trying to work up a financial background for the local vampire city that my player's characters are interacting with. It's a small city with only ten vamps but at least half of them are well entrenched.

    How do vampires deal with looking after their interests considering that they generally have no legal ID? Do they have their ghouls own the companies? Do they have trusted accountancy firms who are used to handling odd customers? Do they use the methods of organised crime and have book keepers and fraudulent accounts?

    Any ideas or thoughts about typical setups?

  • #2
    All of the above.

    In my games, most vampires (who live as part of human society that is, which some, especially Gangrel and Nosferatu, do not) operate in a manner similar to organized crime, and often _using_ gangs and syndicates as pawns. Some rely on ghouls; this tends to be either those who are very young and handle things rather ad hoc, getting their friends, family or Herd to act on their behalf or those who are very well established and control revenant families or the like. And some Masquerade as eccentric humans, these tend to be Toreador, Ventue and others who have both the social skills to keep up appearances and the Disciplines to smooth over cracks in the facade.

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    • #3
      Having cutouts own stuff like stores, cars and skyscrapers is awesome. Who cares if you don't "own it" directly, when your blood bound minion does? Owning shares of stock (actual stock certificates, not your charles schwab account). Open a drawer and there are some nice property deeds also!

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      • #4
        And Kindred can and do maintain 'real' identities that own real property. It is incredibly easy for Kindred to change records, so birth records, school records, and death records can be created as needed. If people start asking questions, Kindred fake their deaths and become another 'real' person.

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        • #5
          >It is incredibly easy for Kindred to change records, so birth records, school records, and death records can be created as needed.
          Really? How do they easily get all those forms sorted then?

          I could understand that maybe a Dominate vampire could get into the local registrar office before the end of the working day in winter and mess with the minds of the staff there to falsify the paperwork but how would a Nosferatu manage that?

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          • #6
            Using Obfuscate, they could slip through the door undetected and replace documents as needed (though Nosferatu are probably going to be doing it for someone else, as they cannot exactly pretend to be 'normal' human). They could also blood bond a human who works there, direct rats to destroy the original document and make sure that the 'replacement' is a forgery, or just tunnel from underneath and take their time replacing documents at night.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Aya Tari View Post
              Using Obfuscate, they could slip through the door undetected and replace documents as needed (though Nosferatu are probably going to be doing it for someone else, as they cannot exactly pretend to be 'normal' human). They could also blood bond a human who works there, direct rats to destroy the original document and make sure that the 'replacement' is a forgery, or just tunnel from underneath and take their time replacing documents at night.
              Obfuscate isn't going to work if the entire place is locked up for the night. Rats very well might not have the capacity to do it since they are probably locked in huge metal filing cabinets. Not to mention a rat having the mental ability to recognize the right document. Also having to pay someone to make an accurate forgery in the first place. And as far as tunneling under a building, that's your idea of 'incredibly easy'? Ghouling someone there is honestly the easiest way. But at the end of the day, realistically one Cainite will control the place, which can either make it really easy or really hard to deal with.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Dogstar View Post
                >It is incredibly easy for Kindred to change records, so birth records, school records, and death records can be created as needed.
                Really? How do they easily get all those forms sorted then?

                I could understand that maybe a Dominate vampire could get into the local registrar office before the end of the working day in winter and mess with the minds of the staff there to falsify the paperwork but how would a Nosferatu manage that?
                Harder, but not impossible, one could have taken the time to learn it (you said yourself a number of kindred are old and entrenched), Dominate 3 already covers most bases pretty handily.

                Also, the Nos - or Gangrel, that are about as bad when it comes to mental f***ery, Brujah & Toreador are debatably better with Presence, though it ain't quite as reliable as Dominate for that kind of stuff - could simply do someone better at Dominate, like a Tremere, Ventrue or (if feeling lucky) Malkavian a favor in exchange for doing it for them.

                PS: mostly thinking of Camarilla clans here, a city with less usual undead natives can add additional bells & whistles to the equation, depending on who has Dominate (Giovanni, Lasombra, etc), Presence (Setites, etc) or neither (Assamites, Ravnos, vanilla Tzimisce, etc).
                Last edited by Baaldam; 02-20-2017, 09:52 AM.

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                • #9
                  This is where the Tremere, of all clans, operate par excellence. Not only do they get Dominate, but the host of Thaumaturgical rituals available to them to manipulate paperwork and records push them well past any Ventrue's or Nosferatu hacker's ability to enforce the Masquerade. A Technomancer Tremere has those benefits, and then some in the ability to apply their talents to documents and records in e-format. And, it's slapdash work that may under the right circumstances endanger the Masquerade in its own right, but even an employment of Lure of Flames through a scrying can deal with paperwork just fine.

                  Ventrue make them look like children when it comes to operating through pawns, but nobody can manipulate bureaucracy like the Tremere.

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                  • #10
                    This is where a Malkavian uses Restructure on a bureaucrat to make getting that form passed through the system his personal mission. It has happened.

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                    • #11
                      My principal vampire character does the periodic relocation/establish himself as his own descendant schtick. Society in general thinks he's a camera-shy radiator company heir with a penchant for buying up property in garment districts (and some whispered rumors about connections with the Odessa Mafia).

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                      • #12
                        If you are in the US a Vampire of any influence and smarts will have a decades (possibly century +) old Delaware Corporation (just a $2 shelf company) as a cover for their finances, the articles of incorporation will be so badly aged and water damaged as to be unreadable and the lawyers and accountants that drew them up will be decades in the ground. as long as the Bills & Taxes are paid no one will chase them provided the company doesn't have activities to end up on a Forbes list or on CNN for Illegal practices, a dozen of such companies all owned by the same kindred could effectively own a more local company (or group of companies) and make donations to local politicians without raising any red flags with the Election Board.

                        every couple of decades they drop off the local Mortal seen for a few years only to pop up with a fresh batch of corporate credit cards and lease on a company car possibly posing as some younger close relative of the identity that "Retired" to some place overseas years ago.

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                        • #13
                          When you also add in the complexity of Cayman Island shell companies, a single Kindred could control hundreds of shell companies, each owning 1% of hundreds of real companies. And since elder Kindred could have Attribute plus Ability combinations of 12+ dice, they can literally create business structures too complex for any human to penetrate.

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                          • #14
                            I've long wanted a "Blood Money" book about how vampires make and spend money, as well as just how the super wealthy live (or un-live) in the WoD.


                            What is tolerance? It is the consequence of humanity. We are all formed of frailty and error; let us pardon reciprocally each other's folly. That is the first law of nature.
                            Voltaire, "Tolerance" (1764)

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Clive Coursor View Post
                              If you are in the US a Vampire of any influence and smarts will have a decades (possibly century +) old Delaware Corporation (just a $2 shelf company) as a cover for their finances, the articles of incorporation will be so badly aged and water damaged as to be unreadable and the lawyers and accountants that drew them up will be decades in the ground. as long as the Bills & Taxes are paid no one will chase them provided the company doesn't have activities to end up on a Forbes list or on CNN for Illegal practices, a dozen of such companies all owned by the same kindred could effectively own a more local company (or group of companies) and make donations to local politicians without raising any red flags with the Election Board.

                              every couple of decades they drop off the local Mortal seen for a few years only to pop up with a fresh batch of corporate credit cards and lease on a company car possibly posing as some younger close relative of the identity that "Retired" to some place overseas years ago.
                              Well, I feel like any system rooted in an established mortal system can be used as an area to be attacked. And can be influenced by various actors. Reminds me of a player who had a backstory that he was in the IRS and discovered inconsistencies that led him to discover Cainites.

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