Registration is with the States of Guernsey Greffe, the public records office. Incorporation requires the services of local advocates often with assistance from a firm of accountants. The professional advisers will first check the availability of the name with which the company is to be incorporated. If the name is sufficiently dissimilar from existing registered names it can be reserved several months before incorporation. The Memorandum and Articles are then drawn up and the signatures of the subscribers to the Memorandum obtained.

An application form for registration is completed by the advocate and submitted to HM Procureur (also known as HM Attorney-General) who reviews the application with the Director General of the Financial Services Commission. The application form requires the disclosure of certain information including:

  • The name, date and place of birth of the beneficial owners of the company and their countries of residence.
  • The reasons for incorporating in Guernsey.
  • Whether any issue of shares to the public is contemplated.
  • Details of the authorised and issued capital including the nominal value of shares.
  • Details of the tax status of the company.
  • Whether the shares will be held in any fiduciary capacity and if so the details of the ultimate beneficiary.

HM Procureur signifies his approval of the formation by the grant of a "visa". When permission has been given, the company will then be registered by the Greffe. The company comes into existence when the Memorandum and Articles of Association have been approved by the Royal Court and registered. The subscribers nominate the first directors who may then hold their first meeting and commence the business of the company.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.