Ocorian, the diversified financial services group, is urging overseas companies and individuals owning land or property in the UK as well as agents and advisers supporting them to focus on best practice when signing up to the UK Government's new Register of Overseas Entities (ROE).
The ROE, which is part of the UK Government's strategy to combat economic crime under the Economic Crime (Transparency and Enforcement) Act, went live on August 1st with a deadline of January 31st, 2023, for all entities to join. Failure to register in time risks fines of up to £2,500 or up to five years in jail as well as potential restrictions on use of their land or property.
Non-UK entities which own or hold UK land or property will have to submit information on their beneficial owners or controllers. The accuracy of all information entered into the register will have to be verified with the risk that mistakes can lead to fines or legal action for professional negligence, Ocorian warns.
The financial services group and leading provider of private client, fund, corporate, capital markets, and regulatory and compliance services, says information has to be checked either through submission of documentation directly to Companies House, or by using an Assured Agent appropriately regulated in the UK and supervised under the Money Laundering, Terrorist Financing and Transfer of Funds Regulations 2017.
Ocorian, which has been approved as an Assured Agent, is currently contacting clients in order to confirm the process and is also able to support other overseas organisation or individuals.
Nick Terry, Executive Director, Alternative Investments at Ocorian said: "Ocorian is regulated and has been accepted and approved by Companies House as an Assured Agent and is therefore able to act as verification agent in accordance with the Act. Ocorian has undertaken some registrations already and therefore is well positioned to assist non-UK holders of UK land and property in their registration process. Ocorian will be reaching out to clients shortly in order to confirm the process and help prioritise entities."