The entry into force of Legal Notice 247 of June 2020 brought about changes to the Companies Act (Register of Beneficial Owners) Regulations, 2017.
Upon each anniversary of a company’s registration, Maltese companies are obliged to file a return in the form set out in the First Schedule of the Regulations. This is either to show any change in the BO’s details e.g. name, country of residence or official identification document number or else to confirm that no change in details took place. It must be signed by a company director/secretary and is to be filed within 42 days after the date to which it is made up.
In the event of a change in the senior managing officials of a company, a notice in the form set out in the First Schedule of the Regulations must be filed within 14 days after the date on which the change is recorded with the company.
When there occurs at any time, any change in details on beneficial owners (such as name, country of residence or official identification document number), a return in the form set out in the First Schedule of the Regulations must be filed. When the change involves a change in name/ official identification document number, a certified true copy of the BO’s identification document must be submitted.
Failure to submit the relevant forms within the allotted timeframes in accordance to the requests of the Registrar carries significant penalt
A certified true copy of the official identification document for every beneficial owner needs to be submitted to the Registrar together with the appropriate forms in the following cases:
- when submitting a declaration containing information on the beneficial owners of a company and;
- when submitting a notice of change in the beneficial ownership of a company (apart from this notice being duly completed and signed by a company director/secretary).
The Registrar has been given many powers such as refusing to register any document of a company if the beneficial ownership information was not submitted, restricting new incorporations for directors involved in other Maltese registered companies that failed to submit information on beneficial owners, making on-site visits in order to ensure accurate and current information, etc. Before registering a new company or return, the Registrar may require information to ascertain the veracity of the beneficial information submitted.