Jersey redesigns its beneficial ownership register

Jersey government is now reviewing a draft Bill (Financial Services, Disclosure and Provision of Information, Jersey Law 2020) regarding the establishment of a new central register of beneficial owners, controllers and significant persons. This was deemed necessary after the Jersey Financial Services Commission recommended the jurisdiction to enact new company registry legislation in order to better align with the Fifth Anti-Money Laundering Directive.

The new register will address this issue and will focus on the development of a fully digital companies register, a part of which will be open for public consultation.  The parliament is now reviewing the principles on which the draft is based together with professional associations and law firms. From this draft it appears that companies, foundations, LLCs, LLPs, and incorporated and separate limited partnerships will be in the law’s scope, while limited partnerships will not. The information to be disclosed to the authorities will be extended to all ‘significant persons’ including nominee shareholders and company directors, although individuals might be able to apply for their details to be protected. Beneficial ownership information is expected to stay private until agreements is reached on the level and type of information to be disclosed. It is predicted that the new law will come into force by the end of 2020