Guernsey has caught up with the two other crown dependencies on foundation law, following the island registry’s announcement that it is ready to accept registration of its first foundations from tomorrow.
In pushing ahead with the Foundations (Guernsey) Law, 2012, Guernsey is following Jersey, where a foundations law went live on 17 July 2009, and the Isle of Man’s entry on 1 January 2012.
Members of the States of Guernsey assembly agreed in July last year o implement legislation aimed at enabling trust advisers to offer foundations to their clients.
Foundations are seen as appealing to investors from countries with a civil law tradition, who are often unfamiliar with trusts and in particular, their concept of the separation of legal and beneficial ownership. Foundations are said to appeal to Middle Eastern investors in particular.
In format, they are typically described as being more similar to a company than a trust. However, unlike a company, foundations have no shareholders, and their powers are exercised by a council