On 1 January 2018, Act No. 368/2016 Coll. (the "Amendment"), which amends Act No. 253/2008 Coll., on the measures for preventing the legalisation of income from criminal activities and the financing of terrorism (as amended) and implementing the relevant provisions regarding the disclosure of beneficial ownership information of Directive 2015/849/EU became fully effective in the Czech Republic. The Amendment establishes the register of ultimate beneficial owners of all entities registered in the Czech Republic and introduces new duties for their statutory bodies.
The newly introduced ultimate beneficial owners register is an electronic database maintained by the regional courts administering the public registers in the Czech Republic. The information contained in the database is generally not publicly available. The legal entities registered in the Czech commercial register are responsible for providing the respective registry court maintaining their file with information regarding their beneficial owner(s) by 1 January 2019. Entities registered in other public registers must provide the same information by 1 January 2021. Any changes to the then registered beneficial ownership information must also be filed with the register without undue delay.
The legal entities are also obliged to keep internal records of their current beneficial owner(s), including their identification and the reason(s) for determining his/her status as beneficial owner.
The internal identification process shall be conducted by the respective legal entity itself. The registration duty, however, is a responsibility of the entities’ statutory bodies.
Filing of the beneficial owners’ information must be made by a prescribed form and is exempt from the court registration fee if filed within the above statutory time limits.