Under new UK law, you need to register information about this overseas entity and any beneficial owners. According to land registry data, you may own or lease property or land in the UK as an overseas entity. The Register of Overseas Entities has come into force in the UK through the new Economic Crime (Transparency and Enforcement) Act 2022. It means you must register the overseas entity with Companies House and tell us who your beneficial owners are.
After registering with Companies House, the details of the overseas entity and its beneficial owners will be available to the public on the online register. Although most overseas entities who own land in the UK are not breaking the law, greater transparency will allow law enforcement agencies to investigate suspicious wealth more effectively. Companies House is an executive agency of the UK government and the UK’s registry of company information. The data on our registers informs business decisions, supports growth and combats economic crime. Why it’s important to register Once registered, you’ll get a unique overseas entity ID. When you buy, sell, transfer, lease or charge property or land in the UK, you’ll need to give this to: • HM Land Registry – for property or land in England and Wales • Land Registers Northern Ireland – for property or land in Northern Ireland • Registers of Scotland – for property or land in Scotland If your property or land is in Scotland, you still need to register on the Scottish Register of Persons Holding a Controlled Interest in Land (RCI) if you meet the necessary conditions – in addition to registering on the Register of Overseas Entities. For more information on the RCI, visit: ros.gov.uk/register-of-overseas-entities If you do not comply with the Act—you could be fined up to £2,500 per day or get a prison sentence of up to 5 years. You’ll also face restrictions when buying, selling, transferring, leasing or charging property or land in the UK.
How to register an overseas entity and its beneficial owners It’s quicker and easier to ask a UK-regulated agent to register and file the information for you. UK-regulated agents include accountants and legal professionals supervised under the Money Laundering, Terrorist Financing and Transfer of Funds Regulations 2017. Before registering, an agent will also need to check and confirm your identity—even if you decide to file the information yourself.
You or your agent must register online by 31 January 2023. To register and for more information, visit: gov.uk/guidance/register-an-overseas-entity
You or your agent will need to: • sign in to or create a Companies House account • give a name and email address of someone we can contact about the application • give information about the overseas entity and its beneficial owners or managing officers • give the assurance code of the agent who checked your identity • pay the £100 registration fee with a credit or debit card If there are no beneficial owners, you’ll need to provide information about the overseas entity’s managing officers. A managing officer is a director, manager, or company secretary of the overseas entity. We cannot give technical advice or help with identifying your beneficial owners or managing officers. You’ll need to seek independent advice. Trusts and trustees If any trustees of a trust are registrable beneficial owners, you’ll also need to give information about that trust. This includes details about the beneficiaries, current or past beneficial owners, settlors, grantors, and interested persons. Trust information is only shared with law enforcement and other public authorities such as HM Revenue & Customs. It will not be available to the public.
For guidance, visit: gov.uk/guidance/register-an-overseas-entity