What are the benefits of an Isle of Man Offshore Company?
Having been in the industry for many years and serviced over 200 clients I get asked all the time ‘’what is the best jurisdiction?’’
This is an extremely difficult question to answer when advising clients on offshore company formation and the correct jurisdiction to incorporate in. For example, people think that the term ‘offshore company and bank account’ relate to the infamous regions of The Cayman Islands, Belize, BVI, Seychelles and so on and so forth. These jurisdictions may have a legal obligation to keep their Company Registry private and, in some cases, make it illegal to disclose the actual Company owners. Gone are the days of ultimate privacy and the term ‘hiding money offshore’. This was once done using bearer shares which are almost extinct in the industry. You certainly cannot get an offshore company bank account with a company structure set up with bearer shares. Bearer shares means what it says on the tin – the ‘bearer’ of the share certificate owns the shares and controls the company. This type of shareholding allows the bearer of the share certificate to remain 100% private meaning the Ultimate beneficial owner of the Company cannot be found.
This does not mean that creating an offshore company is all bad and the stigma around it can cause confusion. It can be prudent and sensible to take advantage of certain benefits when choosing to hold one’s assets, or trade through an offshore company.
Take our very own Isle of Man for example. A tax haven belonging to Britain where we can take advantage of the Islands very own unique governing laws. Structured legally and correctly, clients can set up offshore trusts, and companies with the knowledge that their money is always held in a secure jurisdiction. For example, a client wishes to purchase a £1m commercial property in the UK through an offshore company. This is perfectly legal and normal and happens daily in our industry. Try and think forward to when the client employs the services of a conveyancing lawyer. The lawyer is more likely to be able to provide his or her service in a jurisdiction where the Company documents are in English and falls within the UK law. Some lawyers might not feel comfortable when dealing with Offshore jurisdictions that are currently on the EU blacklist or grey list. Banks are also reputable in the Isle of Man and the major players such as Barclays and Lloyds are on the high street in the Islands Capital, Douglas.
I will continue to post future posts about why the Isle of Man is a fantastic island to form your Offshore Company, Trust and operate your offshore bank account.