GSL / Offshore and International Law / Offshore zones / North & South America / British Virgin Islands / Legislation of British Virgin Islands

Legislation of British Virgin Islands

Service packages Legislation Tax System Audit Services

List of laws and regulations

Act name
Scope of law
banks and trust companies
amendments to Companies Act
Financial Services Commission
financial and money services
insurance business
insurance business
Mutual Legal Assistance (Tax Matters) Order, 2011
https://www.bvifsc.vg/sites/default/files/mutual_legal_assistance_tax_matters_automatic_exchange_of_information_order_2011.pdf
segregated portfolio companies
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Tax treaties entered

UK (Switzerland
Japan)

Tax Exchange Information Agreement (TEIA)

Australia
United States
Canada
China
Czech Republic
Denmark
Faroes
Finland
France
Germany
Greenland
Guernsey
Iceland
India
Ireland
Japan
Netherlands Antilles
Netherlands
New Zealand
Norway
Poland
Sweden
United Kingdom

List of state regulatory authorities

Financial Services Commission – the regulator of the BVI companies’ activities
BVI Registry of Corporate Affairs (subdivision of FSC)
British Virgin Islands Government
British Virgin Islands International Finance Centre
British Virgin Islands Tourist Board
Caribbean Financial Action Task Force
Virgin Islands Official Gazette
Association of Registered Agents
BVI Association of Compliance Officers
BVI Financial Investigation Agency
BVI Branch of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP)
FSC Division for Banking and Fiduciary Services
FSC Division for Corporate Services
FSC Division for Insurance
FSC Division for Investment Business
Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court http://www.eccourts.org
Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS)

Corporate info

Legal system
based on English Common Law with local modifications and local statutes
Types of entity
Companies Limited by Shares; Companies Limited by Guarantee; Hybrid Companies: Companies Limited by Guarantee, authorised to issue shares; Unlimited Companies, authorised to issue shares; Unlimited Companies, not authorised to issue shares; Restricted Purpose Companies; Segregated Portfolio Companies
Shelf companies permitted
Yes
Incorporation timescale for a new company
1-5 days
Company suffix
"Limited", "Corporation" or "Incorporated"; "Societe Anonyme" or "Sociedad Anonima", "Gesellschaft mit beschrankter Haftung"; or - the abbreviation "Ltd", "Corp", "Inc" , "S.A." or "GmbH"; "Unlimited" or the abbreviation "Unltd".
Sensitive words
Assurance, Bank, Building Society, Chamber of Commerce, Chartered, Cooperative, Imperial, Insurance, Municipal, Trust, Royal, or any words of similar meaning, as well as any words that suggest patronage or the British Royalty, the Government of the BVI or the UK, or any government or its department
Cyrillic alphabet permitted in company name
No
Local registered office
Yes
Local registered agent
Yes
Information to be kept at the registered office
Register of Members, Register of Directors , Register of Charges, all Minutes and Resolutions
Seal required, type of seal
yes - kept with the client, imprint sent to Agent
Redomiciliation (to, from) permitted
permitted

Director and secretary

Minimum number of directors
1
Residency requirements for directors
No
Corporate directors permitted
Yes
Directors’ meetings/frequency/location
Yes / no requirements
Disclosure to local agent
Yes
Disclosure to public
No
Company secretary required
No
Residency requirements for a secretary
No
Qualified secretary required
No
Corporate secretary permitted
Yes

Shareholder and beneficiary

Minimum number of shareholders
1
Residency requirements for shareholders
No
Corporate shareholder permitted
Yes
Meetings/frequency/location
Yes / no requirements
Disclosure to local agent
No
Disclosure to public
No
Beneficiary info disclosure to
No

Shares and share capital

Minimum authorized share capital
No requirements
Minimum issued share capital
1 share
Minimum paid share capital
1 share
Authorized capital payment deadlines
No requirements
Issued capital payment deadlines
The deadline is set in the Memorandum or Articles of Association of the Company
Standard currency
USD
Standard authorized share capital
50.000
Standard par value of shares
1
Shares with no par value permitted
Yes
Bearer shares permitted
No

Taxes

Personal tax
Not charged unless the individual is an employee of a BVI company
Min. rate for corporate tax
No
Corporate tax (in detail)
No - for offshore companies
Capital gains tax
No
Capital gains tax. Details
VAT
No
VAT. Details
Withholding tax
No
Other taxes
Payroll tax for companies employing local employees, Real estate taxes
Exchange control
No
Government fee
350 USD
Stamp duty
on real estate transactions 12% (for non-residents), 4% (for residents)

Accounts

Requirement to prepare accounts
Yes
Requirement to file accounts
No
Publicly accessible accounts
No
Requirement to file Annual Return
No
Publicly accessible Annual Return
No
Audit required
No

General information shortly

Location
Caribbean, between the Caribbean Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean, east of Puerto Rico
Total area
151 sq. km
Population
105.000 (2019)
Capital
Road Town
National currency
US Dollar
Conditional reduction of currency
USD
Against USD
1
Climate, average max and min t°
subtropical; humid; temperatures moderated by trade winds; avg. maximum temperature (August) +29°; avg. minimum temperature (January) +22°
Time difference from Moscow
- 7 hours
Dialing code
+1-284
State language
English
Ethnic groups
Black 83.4%, white 7%, other 9.6% (includes Indian and mixed) (2004 Census)
Literacy rate
98%
History
First inhabited by Arawak and later by Carib Indians, the Virgin Islands were settled by the Dutch in 1648 and then annexed by the English in 1672. The islands were part of the British colony of the Leeward Islands from 1872-1960; they were granted autonomy in 1967. The economy is closely tied to the larger and more populous US Virgin Islands to the west; the US dollar is the legal currency.
Credit rating
Government type
British overseas territory
Executive branch
Executive Council
Legislative branch
unicameral Assembly
Judicial branch
East Carribean Supreme Court
Unemployment
2.8% (2014)
GDP per capita rank
177 (2018)
Corruption perceptions index rank

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Banks of BVI

Bank
The cost of opening an account, $
Global rating
Countrywide rating
GSL rating
3 030
N/A
N/A
2 750
N/A
N/A
1 820
N/A
N/A
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