In compliance with a new law introduced on the 29th November 2014, relating to the identification of the ultimate beneficiaries of legal entities and public figures, Ukrainian companies are now obliged to define, update, and maintain information relating to their ‘ultimate beneficiaries’. In an attempt to help combat money laundering they must now submit all the required information to the State Registrar upon the registration of their legal entities and in case of any changes to the ultimate beneficiaries. Further, all existing companies are required to provide the required information on their ultimate beneficiaries by the May 25, 2015.
Some examples of the types of information that companies are expected to submit are as follows:
- A full list of the founders (including shareholders) and the ultimate beneficiaries, including their name, residency (including their address), passport and citizenship details; and
- Details regarding the company’s ownership structure that sufficiently allow the authorities to ascertain who the entities beneficial owners are, which in some cases must trace right back to the founding shareholders.
Generally speaking, ultimate beneficiaries are defined by law as an individual(s) who can exert influence over the management or commercial activity of an entity, for example, these might be:
- Individuals having the opportunity, irrespective of the formal ownership, to influence, either directly or indirectly, the company’s management or commercial activity;
- Individuals who are able to conclude or influence agreements and transactions relating to the companies commercial activity; or
- Individuals having the opportunity to control the company by holding, either directly or indirectly, and individually or jointly with other related persons, 25% of the share capital or voting shares. A nominal holder or agent shall not be considered the ultimate beneficiary.
Please be aware that the directors of the company shall be responsible for submission of such information, and shall be held liable if they fail to comply with this duty. The penalty for failure to comply with the filing requirements can be up to $400 (USD).