Central Register for the Beneficial Ownership of Trusts (CRBOT)

13/10/2021

The Probate, Administration & Trusts Committee have been asked to publish the following article from Mr Patrick M. O’Connor the Registrar of CRBOT.

beneficial ownership trusts

Obligation to register details

Trustees should be aware of their obligations to register details of the beneficial ownership of their trust with the Central Register of Beneficial Ownership of Trusts (CRBOT) on or before 23 October. That deadline is fast approaching and trustees should be reviewing their internal registers and preparing to register if they have not already done so.

The obligation to register with CRBOT was introduced under the 4th and 5th Anti-Money Laundering Directives which require each EU Member State to establish a Central Register of Beneficial Ownership of Trusts. Legislation was introduced on 23 April 2021 (Statutory Instrument 194 of 2021) to transpose those requirements into Irish law. The purpose of this legislation is to provide transparency both in Ireland and the EU around who ultimately owns and controls Irish trusts. This will help to identify and tackle circumstances where trusts are being used to fund criminal and terrorist organisations. The legislation also assigned the responsibility for CRBOT to the Office of the Revenue Commissioners.

Trustees (or their agents, advisors or employees) can register for the CRBOT through the ‘Trust Register’ portal on Revenues Online Service (ROS). For individual trustees who do not have ROS access, the ‘Trust Register’ is available on MyAccount.

Revenue.ie also contains a series of Frequently Asked Questions which should assist trusts and their agents, advisors or employees to determine whether they are obliged to register and how they can meet their obligations. Further information can be accessed from the Revenue website.

Any queries regarding the Central Register of Beneficial Ownership of Trusts (CRBOT) can be sent via MyEnquiries on ROS or MyAccount.

For direct contact to the CRBOT team please ensure the relevant titles below are selected for both drop down menus:

  • Select ‘Trust Register (Central Register of Beneficial Ownership of Trusts)’ from menu ‘Enquiry relates to’
  • Select ‘General Query’ from menu ‘More specifically’

Update from the Committee

Throughout the transposition of Ireland’s requirements as a member state to establish registers of beneficial owners of companies, certain financial vehicles and relevant trusts, the Society’s AML Task Force, Business Law Committee and Probate, Administration and Trusts Committee have engaged consistently and made many law reform submissions to the Department of Finance, the Department of Justice and other stakeholders.

 In recent weeks a Registrar of the Beneficial Owners of Trusts has been appointed and has established a Working Group on which the Probate, Administration and Trusts Committee is represented.  So far, we have been able to establish the following…

Not all wills need to be registered: only where there is an “express trust” on the face of a will where the testator has died, does the trust need to be registered.

The Committee has also been advised that all trusts of whatever size must be registered. There is no de minimis for the value of the trust.

The Committee attaches the following for members’ information  

The Committee is seeking clarification on the following point:  Where there is a will trust contained in a will that never comes into effect on the death of a testator, is there a requirement to register that trust?

Examples of the above would be:

(a)       a commorientes clause in a will providing all to spouse if the spouse survives for a defined period (usually one month) and a trust for minor children if the spouse does not survive where the wife survives and inherits the entire estate.

(b)       a clause giving the entire estate to adult children in equal shares and providing that if a child predeceases, the share of that child goes to the children of that child and if any of those children of a predeceased child is a minor, their share is held on trust. If all the children survive the testator, the “gift over” never comes into effect. The children inherit absolutely.

In both of those circumstances, the trust referred to in the will never comes into effect.

The Committee will post further updates as they arise.