Public register of trusts, established in December 2013 by a law on action against tax fraud and serious economic and financial crime, will be accessible to everyone online as of June 30, 2016.
This register will contain the identification of the trust reported in the French filing obligations, the identification of the trustees, the settlor and the beneficiaries as well as the date of setting up of the trust.
Currently, according to the French tax authorities, 16,000 entities have been identified and registered as trusts.
Information sources – reporting obligations
The access to the register of trusts has been defined by a decree published on May 11, 2016.
The information contained in the register is provided from the trustee French filing obligations.
Indeed, trustees are subject to annual and event-based reporting requirements when there is a connection with France (i.e. if either the trustee, the settlor or one of the beneficiaries are French tax residents, or if any of the trust assets are located in France).
These filing requirements are the following:
- Event-based reporting: the trustee must disclose to the French tax authorities the set-up, modification or termination of any trusts with French connections and a description of the terms of the trusts
- Annual reporting: the trustee must disclose the market value of the trust assets as of January 1 each year
The content of the register
The information which can be obtained through this register will be:
- Identification of the trust and address
- Date of setting-up and, if applicable, date of termination of the trust
- Dates and nature (annual and/or event-based reporting) of the filings made by the trustee
- Identification of the settlors, beneficiaries and trustees
Please note that no information related to the market value of the trust assets are contained in the register although this information is disclose through the annual report.
All of the above information will be archived for a period of 10 years after the termination of each trust.
The register will be open to the public via Internet. It will be searchable using one of the following criteria:
- The identification of the trust;
- The identification of the settlors, beneficiaries or trustee.
The username and IP address of the persons consulting the register as well as the date and hour of the register’s consultation will be archived for a period of one year.
This measure is an illustration of the fight conducted by France for the transparency of the foreign trusts.
Our team remains at your disposal should you need further clarification.