A trust or a foundation is maybe the ultimate asset protection tool. No matter how much wealth you made, how many companies or bank accounts you have, it can all be gone in one day. The separation of ownership is a concept that was originated in common law, specifically in the crusades. In those times, knights used to leave their estate to a trusted servant who was then obliged to give it back upon his return. If the knight died, then the servant was supposed to distribute the assets among the family members.
In a simple way, this is what a trust is. The asset protection power lies in the fact that assets are no longer owned by the settlor. He or she transfers legal ownership to a third party (trustee) for the benefit of a person or groups of persons called the beneficiaries.
Antigua and Barbuda also offers excellent trust options. The assets are so protected that, if owned by an Antiguan trust, they cannot be seized even in the case of bankruptcy. The law stipulates that, even if the settlor shall face bankruptcy, insolvency, or liquidation, the trust remains untouched.
In 2020, most IBC registrations in the country were related to shipping activities. But there was also a clear interest in private investments and asset protection structures like the international trust.
Regulated by the Corporate Management and Trust Service Providers Act of 2008, the Antigua and Barbuda international trust offers many benefits to non-residents. Foreign investors can enjoy a solid regulating framework, a stable political environment, and immense wealth management opportunities.
This section is about the requirements, conditions, and benefits pertaining to the Antiguan trust.
First of all, it’s worth noting that international trusts are designed for non-residents. If you decide to acquire citizenship by investment in Antigua and Barbuda, or tax residency in this country, then you won’t enjoy the benefits of an Antigua and Barbuda trust. In this case, you need a different combination. If you are interested in Antigua and Barbuda as a place of residency and citizenship, then we can gladly recommend a different trust/foundation jurisdiction. Nevis and Panama are excellent options.
If, after reading this section, you decide that the Antigua and Barbuda trust is the right structure for you, the Mundo team can help you acquire citizenship and tax residency in one of our many jurisdictions. We offer immigration services in the Caribbean, Vanuatu, Cyprus, Montenegro, Malta, Panama, and many more jurisdictions.
In the next section, we describe the advantages of a trust in this amazing Caribbean country.
Advantages of an Antigua and Barbuda trust
1- Supreme protection: When choosing a trust jurisdiction, you want to find a place with political stability and a safe regulatory environment. Since a trust is a long-term deal, we recommend staying out of countries with a history of social turmoil, political unrest, currency fluctuation, and socialist tendencies. In this regard, Antigua and Barbuda ticks all the boxes.
With an Antiguan trust, you can not only protect your assets today but also for future generations. It helps to protect your legacy and plan your inheritance. The ITA has many protective provisions in this regard. From the trust deed itself, the trust assets are protected from third parties or external forces. No creditor of a trustee, nor a family member not included in the trust, has any rights over the trust’s property.
2- Top-class confidentiality: The ITA does not require public filing and the trust register is not available for anyone other than the trust parties. This makes the Antigua and Barbuda trust a highly confidential structure. Although beneficial owners are subject to filing obligations, the trust deed doesn’t have to be filed with the Commission. If you want an extra layer of secrecy, you can stipulate disclosure requirements in the trust deed.
An Antigua and Barbuda trust is the perfect option for those who want to manage their financial affairs while protecting their privacy.
3-Unique flexibility: This jurisdiction is very flexible regarding the trust structure and purpose. A settlor can establish a trust for different purposes like charity, inheritance planning, or asset holding. Thus, families can create their trusts according to the objective that best suits their asset protection strategy.
4-Tax optimization: Antiguan international trusts are a top-class tax optimizations structure. It’s exempt from capital gains, income, estate, and inheritance tax. There is no stamp duty on the trust’s property.
Trust structures available in Antigua and Barbuda
Discretionary trust: With this structure, the settlor establishes the criteria concerning assets and investments under the trust. They can outline these instructions in the trust deed or in a separate document called ‘Letter of wishes’.
Fixed trusts: In this case, the distribution of assets among beneficiaries is done under certain conditions. This may be when someone finishes college, gets married, or reaches a certain age.
Bare trusts: With this structure, a settlor can also be a beneficiary and even the sole beneficiary of a trust. Bare trusts are specifically useful for settlors and beneficiaries who want to have access to the trust assets. The rights are outlined in the trust deed. This applies to all parties involved: settlors, trustees, and beneficiaries. Antiguan trusts can also include protectors, whose main responsibility is to supervise that the settlor’s instructions are carried out as established in the trust deed. This structure can own different types of assets like real estate, securities, cash, and businesses. This makes it the ideal trust option for the Forever Free strategy.
Requirements for an Antigua and Barbuda trust
License: The typical trustee license in Antigua and Barbuda is a Class C license. Yet, for protectors, the type of license required is Class B.
Registration requirements: The first step to register a trust is to submit an approval request for the trust’s name. The proposed names are reviewed by the Regulator at no cost and have to comply with the law. Once this is approved, the applicant needs to follow this procedure:
-Submit an application to register an international trust
-The application must be submitted with a certificate of the Antigua and Barbuda trustee. This document confirms that at least one of the trustees is domiciled in Antigua and Barbuda. The trust can have a maximum of four trustees and at least one of them must be a resident of Antigua and Barbuda.
Address requirements: The ITA stipulates that none of the beneficiaries or settlors of an international trust can be residents of Antigua and Barbuda. The trust’s registered office must be the address of the trustee domiciled in the country. This will be the official address where the trust will receive documents and notifications.
Time frame requirements: The application to register a trust must be made within 45 days after the trust deed execution.
Trust certificate: Once the registration is successful, the regulator will issue a Certificate of Registration. This document constitutes proof that the trust is properly established and legal. It’s valid for 1 year after which it can be renewed upon the ITA’s approval.
Mundo Tips for Registering an Antiguan trust
Virtual examinations: Although the Covid-19 restrictions are gradually being lifted, applications can be examined virtually to prevent unnecessary travel and movements. This can change depending on how successful the fight against the pandemic is.
Defective notices: The submission of inaccurate or incomplete forms or documentation may result in a registration delay. Mundo encourages clients to try their best when gathering the documentation and filling the forms. To prevent this, Antigua reintroduced the Defective Notices in April 2021.
Annual returns: All returns must be filed within three months after the financial year ends or by March 31st. Returns must be fully completed and submitted with signed confirmation.
Beneficial control and ownership: Statements of beneficial ownership and control must also be filed by March 31st each year. Documents must be completed and accompanied by a confirmation note.
Compliance requirements: Unfortunately, many business owners see compliance costs as unnecessary expenses. But this is far from the truth. Mundo recommends dedicating the maximum care and attention to the due diligence and compliance processes, even if this means incurring extra expenses.
Being on the safe side of the compliance machine brings long-term benefits. A small effort today can save you from huge trouble in the future.
Keeping your compliance up to date brings many benefits for your trust or company:
-It protects the structure from fines and other sanctions.
-A strong compliance structure is an excellent risk management strategy. It prevents you from becoming susceptible to fraud and illegal activities.
-Protect your business reputation by making sure that you work only with reputable clients and partners.
-Unlawful clients are most likely to fall into bankruptcy, face high fines or even go to jail. By having a client base of legit clients, you ensure long-term relationships to develop your business.
Who we are and what we can do for you
Mundo is an online portal that’s committed to the nomad capitalist philosophy. Based on Ayn Rand and her libertarian ideas, Mundo believes in a world where free market and fair competition is the rule.
We have partnered with numerous professionals from all over the world, and we can provide an array of financial services and combined structures for individual entrepreneurs and family offices.
We offer bank accounts, investment immigration services, access to unique investment deals and distressed assets, innovative investment platforms, tax residency, and real estate developments in many countries.
Just imagine what you could accomplish by combining these elements. Our tax experts can also help you outline your structure for maximum financial optimization.
NTL, on the other hand, is Mundo’s main sponsor and parent company. Founded in 1994, NTL has specialized in trust services and citizenship by investment especially in Vanuatu and the Caribbean. First established in Nevis, now NTL has offices all over the world including Panama, St Kitts and Nevis, Latvia, and Vanuatu.
Because it has been one of the main organizers and sponsors of the Caribbean citizenship by investment summit for many years, NTL has business connections in the Caribbean and especially in Antigua and Barbuda.
With Mundo and NTL combined, our experts can get you the best deals in Antigua and Barbuda and help you establish an international trust in this country. This is one of the best and most confidential asset protection structures in the world.
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