On 26 April, the Netherlands formally announced the proposed establishment of a beneficial ownership register for trusts and comparable legal constructions in line with article 31 of the  Fifth Anti-Money Laundering Directive (5AMLD).

The register would apply to:

  • all national and foreign trusts for which a trustee is resident or established in the Netherlands; and
  • all trusts with non-Dutch trustees that either enter into a business relationship in the Netherlands or acquire real estate in the Netherlands.

The implementing law will require trustees to obtain and maintain certain information about the trusts and beneficial ownership thereof on a register administered by the Chamber of Commerce. Of course, the concept of beneficial ownership in the context of trusts (particularly discretionary trusts) is unusual. As such it is likely that all named beneficiaries will have to be disclosed in the register.

Originally published JUNE 2021.

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.