Since the publication of the draft 2015 Amendment Bill in late December, the Bill passed into legislation with no changes to the substantive provisions proposed in the Bill: however, in order to remove the confusion that might arise if the provisions requiring the registration of all registers of directors and officers to be filed with the Registrar of Companies, the effective date for the introduction of s 64A of the Companies Act will be 1 April 2016. All other provisions are effective immediately.
The proposed amendments to the Proceeds of Crime Act 1997 (POCA) (and related legislation) under the Proceeds of Crime Amendment Bill 2015 require careful reading. The amendments proposed in this Bill introduce several important amendments in a piece meal fashion in relation to several distinct statutory régimes. The form and content of the amendments are difficult to follow because you have to read them alongside the existing legislation, and the amendments are not readily comprehensible in the wider context of the existing provisions. Eventually the various Acts which are to be amended by this Bill will be published in a revised form that includes the amendments and deletes the sections that are to be repealed and replaced. Until then, make sure you have all relevant legislation open in front of you when you read the Bill.
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Changes in Bermuda’s Anti-Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing (“AML/ATF”) Legislation will be addressed in Parliament in order to bring the technical components into compliance with the 2012 Revised Financial Action Task Force (“FATF”) 40 recommendations (the “Recommendations”).
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It has been widely reported that the Prime Minister of the UK, David Cameron, will call upon the British Overseas Territories (BOTs) which are regarded as low tax jurisdictions to “get their houses in order” (The Daily Mail, 5 June 2013) and that offshore financial centres such as Bermuda, Cayman, BVI, Jersey and Guernsey will be urged to “sign up to greater tax transparency” (Royal Gazette, 6 June 2013).
Bermuda has always defended its status as a low tax jurisdiction, and has always made it clear that it is not a tax haven, nor a place where the fruits of tax evasion can be harboured. It is relevant to recall the efforts that Bermuda has made over the last 30 years to justify its claim to being a leading offshore financial centre, not a tax haven. Read More »
Bermuda now boasts a new licensing and supervisory regime for professional corporate service providers designed to enhance the efficiency of incorporations in Bermuda. The changes, which came into effect at the start of the year, are regarded as good news for Bermuda as they will eliminate double vetting, decrease the need for due diligence on shareholders with voting rights of less than 10 percent and improve the efficiency of registration by using an electronic system that gives immediate results.
In the ideal case a company could now be formed and registered within an hour.
The new regime was established under the Bermuda Corporate Service Provider Business Act (“the CSP Act 2012”) which came into effect on January 1st, 2013. Read More »