The Trinidad and Tobago Parliament brought Companies (Amendment) Act, 2019 into force on April 4th, 2019. The main objective of enacting the amendments is to address the pitfalls in the Companies Act which does not have checks to control misuse of corporate vehicles, tax evasion, terrorist financing or money laundering.

The amendment introduced "beneficial ownership concept" in the tax jurisprudence of the country but in recent times word "substance" is a key word and tax authorities worldwide plus the international financial guards have forced the governments to enter into international obligations with respect to check on tax evasion and financial arbitrage through illegal financial circulation. Hence, it is that such changes would definitely impact tax administration and corporate compliance.

Second, is the concept of "corporate amnesty" introduced by the amendments 2019, that provides the companies with a chance to comply with new law. The companies are given deadline till August 31st, 2019 to file update as per the latest amendment until corporate amnesty lasts under Section 10A of the new Companies Amendment Law, 2019.

With this amendment there shall be enhancement in record keeping, information relaying and handover requirements and other compliances; the companies must familiarize with corporate governance and compliances system. But it is also worth mentioning that the company forms to be used for corporate compliance and governance as per the new Companies Amendment Act, 2019 are under the process of designing and be launched to ensure adherence to Companies Amendment Act, 2019.

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.