Offshore incorporation is becoming more common as the years go by as many people better understand the benefits of going offshore. Offshore incorporation is done in countries which are called offshore jurisdictions. There are many offshore jurisdictions in the world some well known others not but they all provide offshore services. Offshore incorporation can be carried for International Business Companies or offshore corporations, Offshore Limited liability companies, offshore trusts, offshore foundations, offshore partnerships among others. Offshore jurisdictions which offer the services of offshore company formation are the Bahamas, Belize, Dominica, Nevis, St Kitts, British Virgin Islands, Anguilla, Gibraltar, Seychelles, Singapore, Hong Kong Dubai and Panama among others.
Offshore company formation is done for many reasons. The offshore companies once registered are all legal entities and can do business anywhere in the world. Many jurisdictions do not allow offshore companies registered in their jurisdiction to do business with residents or from within the jurisdiction but there are exceptions. Panama for example allows companies to do business in and out of the offshore jurisdiction under the condition that the profits earned from doing business in Panama will be subjected to local Panama taxation. Offshore corporations make good trading companies and investment companies.
Asset protection is one of the many reasons why many persons choose offshore incorporation. Asset protection is provided for offshore companies in all offshore jurisdictions. This means that all assets listed as part of the offshore company upon offshore incorporation will be protected by legislation in the offshore jurisdiction of choice. Offshore company legislation ion many offshore jurisdictions protects assets placed in offshore companies from the court rulings of other countries and beneficiaries of offshore trusts and offshore foundations are protected from forced heir ships.
Most offshore jurisdictions are tax haven and these are known to provide privacy and secrecy for offshore company shareholders and beneficiaries to offshore entities. Offshore regulations in the offshore jurisdictions do not make information filed during offshore incorporation public knowledge providing privacy for the offshore companies.
Offshore incorporation means that offshore companies do not have to file annual financial statements with the local tax authorities in the various tax havens but this information is kept for the company’s use and can be kept at any location the shareholders decide on. There are offshore jurisdictions which provide further privacy for the offshore company shareholders by allowing then to use nominee directors and nominee shareholders for offshore incorporation. Offshore jurisdictions such as Nevis and Dominica have laws in place which will penalize persons who divulge information about offshore companies without consent of the offshore company holders and the right authorities.
Offshore incorporation is best for persons who are considering tax planning or decreasing tax liabilities. The offshore jurisdictions which are tax haven have special tax schemes in place for offshore companies and offshore entities incorporated in the jurisdictions. Most offshore tax havens have zero taxes in place for offshore corporations whilst others have low rates between 1 and 20% on annual profits. The zero tax jurisdictions guarantees that upon offshore incorporation an offshore company will pay no local taxes (income tax, corporate tax, capital gains tax etc.) on incomes which has been gained by the company outside of the jurisdiction. These companies pay an annual license renewal fee as well as a registration fee.
Offshore incorporation is a straightforward process with many benefits. Offshore companies have been used for many years now and are becoming more popular with thousands being incorporated each year in the jurisdictions. Offshore company formation results in a business company which has a very flexible structure and management of this company is very easy. Most offshore jurisdictions only require one shareholder and one director for offshore company registration and most state that the shareholder and director can be the same individual, of course there are offshore jurisdictions such as Panama which have a minimum three company director requirement.