Auditor In Uruguay: Why Do You Need An Auditor For Your Company?

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Uruguay has become an increasingly popular destination for foreign companies looking to expand their operations due to its stable economy, favorable business environment, and strategic location in South America.
Uruguay Corporate/Commercial Law
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Uruguay has become an increasingly popular destination for foreign companies looking to expand their operations due to its stable economy, favorable business environment, and strategic location in South America.

With a highly skilled workforce, modern infrastructure, and a government committed to attracting foreign investment, Uruguay offers a range of opportunities for businesses in a variety of sectors.

Whether you're looking to set up a new venture or expand an existing one, Uruguay provides an attractive and welcoming environment for foreign companies.

To ensure a successful launch or relocation of your business in Uruguay, it is essential to have a thorough understanding of the local tax and accounting regulations.

This article will delve into the importance of having an auditor in Uruguay and why its crucial for business formation in Uruguay.

An auditor in Uruguay can ensure compliance with local laws and regulations.

Why does a company need an auditor in Uruguay?

Navigating the complexities of doing business in a new country requires local expertise, especially for foreign investors. Uruguay's financial regulations, for instance, can be intricate, often requiring several months or even years to comprehend fully.

As a precautionary measure, it is highly recommended to leverage the services of local specialists to mitigate potential issues.

In recent years, Uruguay has made significant efforts to enhance its accounting and auditing environment and align with International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS).

Here are the most common legal entity (company) structures in Uruguay:

  1. The Corporation/Joint Stock Company (Sociedad Anónima – S.A) which there are two types:
  • Open Corporation: companies that use public savings or have shares listed on the Montevideo Stock Exchange (BVM).
  • Closed Corporation: have a limited number of shareholders and stocks are not traded publicly on the BVM.
  1. The Limited Liability Company (Sociedad de Responsabilidad Limitada – S.R.L)

The S.A. is the most common legal entity structure in Uruguay.

What is the role of an auditor in Uruguay?

To comply with Uruguay's financial regulations, it is crucial to have the assistance of an experienced auditor for your company.

Uruguay mainly follows the source principle when it comes to taxes, which means that taxes are only imposed on assets, activities, and rights used within the country, regardless of the nationality or residence of the parties involved.

This means that those activities or assets performed/located outside of Uruguayan territory may not be subject to taxes in Uruguay (although there are some exceptions).

Foreign investment in Uruguay is not subject to any restrictions, except for some control under competition law. However, if the transaction meets the gross income requirements of the participants, it may not require approval by the Competition Office.

For example, if a foreign entity acquires shares of a single Uruguayan entity, and if the foreign entity does not have any assets or shares in Uruguay yet. Otherwise, it will be necessary to obtain prior approval from the Competition Office.

Corporations, agriculture companies, trusts, and investment funds not regulated by the Central Bank of Uruguay must register their financial statements with Auditoría Interna de la Nación accompanied by an audit, review, or compilation report issued by an Uruguayan certified public accountant.

An experienced local auditor in Uruguay can assist your business in resolving any tax disputes before they become legal matters.

4 tips for selecting an auditor in Uruguay:

  • Relevant experience
  • Good reputation
  • Language skills
  • Effective communication

When looking for an auditor in Uruguay, there are certain factors to keep in mind, including:

1 – Relevant experience: Look for an auditor that has experience working with foreign investors and in your industry.

2 – Good reputation: Check online reviews and feedback to assess the quality of service you can expect.

3 – Language skills: Ensure that the auditor you work with is fluent in a language you are comfortable communicating in.

4 – Effective communication: If you will be spending extended periods outside of Ecuador, choose a lawyer or firm that is proficient in using online tools for easy management and reporting.

5 Things to Consider When Starting a Business in Uruguay:

  • Select the right company type
  • Choose a trustworthy legal representative
  • Register with tax authorities
  • Adhere to labor regulations
  • Safeguard your intellectual property

If you are contemplating starting a business in Uruguay, it is critical to take the following considerations into account:

1 – Select the right company type: Before establishing your business in Uruguay, it is important to determine which company type is most suitable for your needs. There are various types of companies in Uruguay, including joint-stock companies (Sociedad Anónima), and limited liability companies (Sociedad de Responsabilidad Limitada).

2Choose a trustworthy legal representative: It is necessary to appoint a legal representative in Uruguay who will act as the company's representative and sign legal documents pertaining to labor and civil matters.

3 – Register with tax authorities: All companies operating in Uruguay must register with the National Tax Administration (DGI) and obtain a taxpayer's number (RUT.) Therefore, it is essential to seek guidance from a reliable local advisor when initiating a business in Uruguay to ensure compliance with tax authorities. Another reason to hire an auditor in Uruguay.

4 – Adhere to labor regulations: It is crucial to understand the monthly and yearly obligations that an employer must fulfill for their employees, such as paying social security per employee, providing mid-year and year-end bonuses, granting vacations, maternity leave, disability, and severance payments.

5 – Safeguard your intellectual property: To mitigate the risk of competitors copying your company name and logo, it is advisable to explore the options available for protecting them.

An auditor in Uruguay is vital to staying compliant with taxes, as well as finding areas of optimization for the company.

Originally published 17 May 2023

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.

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