infobank>offshore company registration> bahamas company registration
The Bahamas are a group of around 700 islands located off the south east coast of the state of Florida, USA and have been an independent member of the British Commonwealth since 1973. The Bahamas have one of the oldest parliamentary democracies in the western hemisphere and the islands have a political and legal system which closely follows the UK system and British common law applies.
The population is approximately 255,000 centred principally on the capital city of Nassau on the island of New Providence. The Islands boast excellent communications with a state of the art telephone system and convenient flight links to most major international air routes.
The Bahamas have an excellent range of international banks based in the islands with currently 396 banks holdings licences under the Banks and Trust Companies Regulations Act 1965. Confidentiality is excellent with the English common law duty of confidentiality being preserved and expanded upon by statute imposing penalties upon banks, attorneys, auditors and government officials who are privy to private information. Additionally, the Bahamas have no tax treaties or agreements for the exchange of information with any other state except agreements covering mutual assistance in cases of drug trafficking.
Characteristics of Offshore Company
IBCs pay no taxes in Bahamas
A minimum of two shareholders are required and only registered shares may be issued. No details of the shareholders appear on the public file but a register of shareholders must be kept at the registered office address of the company in the Bahamas.
A minimum of two directors are required and corporate directors are permitted. Details of directors are filed with the Companies Registry and therefore appear on public record.
No annual return or accounts need be filed. It should be noted that penalty fees of up to 50% of the annual licence fee will be incurred if the licence fee is not paid when due.
Incorporation can be achieved within 48 hours but takes approximately 1 week for documents to arrive from Bahamas. We do, however, keep ready-made companies in stock available for immediate purchase.
Restrictions on Name and Activity
Names must end with one of the following words, or abbreviations thereof - Limited, Corporation, Incorporated, Societe Anonyme or Sociedad Anonima. The following words, and their associated activities, cannot be used: Assurance, Bank, Building Society, Chamber of Commerce, Chartered, Cooperative, Imperial, Insurance, Municipal and Royal.
As a matter of local company law the company MUST maintain a registered office address withi the Bahamas and must also appoint a Bahamas resident as registered agent. We would generally provide these services as part of the domiciliary fee.
There are no specific statutory provisions governing secrecy in relation to companies but English Law, which applies within the jurisdiction, does impose a common law duty on professionals to keep the affairs of their clients confidential.
Our registration fee for a comapny with a share capital less than US$50,000 is US$998. The fee covers first year licence fee, first year registered agent fee and first year registered office fee.
Annual maintenance cost for second year onward is US$750.