EU companies that are required to prepare and maintain a People with Significant Control (PSC) register will face further obligations from the end of this month (June 2017).
The EU Fourth Anti-Money Laundering Directive introduced the PSC regime last year, and required qualifying companies to take all reasonable steps to hold “adequate, accurate and current information” about their ultimate beneficial owners on an internal beneficial ownership register.
From 26 June 2017, legal entities will have to file their internal registers with a central beneficial ownership register. The information can be filed online and will include information on each beneficial owner contained on the company’s internal beneficial ownership register. Details of the person making the entry on the central register will also need to be included.
The central register will accessible to “competent authorities”; entities required to carry out customer due diligence (eg., accountants, tax advisors, and solicitors); and others with a legitimate interest in enforcing anti-money laundering legislation.
If the Fifth Anti-Money Laundering Directive is implemented as planned, the general public may also be allowed to access certain information held in the Central Register.
Corporate entities that fail to comply with its registration obligations will be guilty of a criminal offence and will face a fine.