Services to Irish-based Companies

Tax Tips January 2018

Register of Beneficial Owners

The Department of Finance has advised that a Statutory Instrument is expected to be made in the coming months assigning separate legal responsibility to the Registrar of Companies for the establishment and maintenance of the central register of beneficial ownership of companies and industrial and provident societies (I&Ps).

The Companies Registration Office has confirmed that the legal and technical work to launch this register as required by the 4th Anti-Money Laundering Directive is at an advanced stage. The Department of Finance has indicated that it is currently on track to have the beneficial ownership elements of the 4th Directive transposed by Q1 2018.

The purpose behind creating a central register of beneficial ownership information is, at a minimum, to make the information available to financial institutions in conducting their customer due diligence procedures for anti-money laundering purposes, to certain authorities such as police forces and to other persons or organisations who can demonstrate a legitimate interest in the information. The Irish central register will be held by the Companies Registration Office.

What information will be held on the beneficial ownership register?

The information to be held on the Register of Beneficial Ownership in respect of each beneficial owner will include the following:

  • Name
  • Date of birth
  • Nationality
  • Residential address
  • A statement of the nature and extent of the interest held by the beneficial owner e.g. 30% of the ordinary shares of the company.
  • The register must also include details of the date on which the individual was first added onto the register as a beneficial owner and the date on which the individual ceased to be a beneficial owner.
  • Details of the presenter making the entry in the Register of Beneficial Ownership

Companies should take advice from their professional advisors on this matter.