What is the UBO register?
European directives resulted in an UBO register being implemented in Belgium in 2018. All entities active in Belgium must record their ultimate beneficial owners in this register. This obligation applies to both classic corporations and those that are not legal entities.
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Mandatory burden of proof from 11 October 2020
When the portal launched, the requirement to substantiate submitted input proved a point of debate. FPS Finances was forced to back down and permit the unsubstantiated registration of ultimate beneficial owners.
Since 11 October 2020, however, it is legally mandatory to demonstrate that registered information regarding ultimate beneficial owners is sufficient, accurate and current. The reporting agent is free to choose what documents to include as substantiation. This could be a copy of the company’s share register, shareholder agreement, notarial deed, articles of association, trust or other similar legal arrangement or documentation. Documents from other countries must be legalised.
The supporting documents are not publicly accessible. They may only be consulted by the competent authorities.
Corporations, (international) non-profit organisations and foundations that already submitted UBO registration information before 11 October 2020 will have until 30 April 2021 to add the requested documents.
We base our advice on current legislation, interpretations and legal doctrine. This does not prevent the administration from being able to challenge it or to change existing interpretations.