We inform you on implementation of the Law on Central Register of Ultimate Beneficial Owners (the “Law”), for which, the Central registry on the records of ultimate beneficial owners before the Serbian Business Registers Agency (“Central Registry“) was established 31 December 2018 as well as the procedure for evidencing the ultimate beneficial owners in the Central Registry has been set.
Currently, we have certain dilemmas that, due to the limited period of application, we are unable still to identify e.g. the determining criteria set under the bylaw, the scope and precision of the instructions through the guidelines, as well as guidelines for determining the ultimate beneficial owners, etc.
What is an ultimate beneficial owner is prescribed under Article 3 paragraph 1, item 3 of the Law and records in the Central Registry.
Please note that the Serbian Business Registries Agency (the “BRA“) has issued guidelines that are available at official website , and we do particularly draw your attention that all entities to which the Law applies and being established prior 31 December 2018 are obliged to register the ultimate beneficial owners, not later than 31 January 2019.
Under entities we do mean the companies, except the public joint stock companies, as well as branches of foreign legal entities/ foreign associations/ foundations and endowments that are registered with the BRA and doing business in Serbia. The Entities that are established or where changes in ownership structure occur from 1 January 2019 onwards are obliged to register within 15 days of the establishment/ change putting them in an unfavourable position in relation to entities established by the end of 2018.
For any questions and dilemmas, you can contact us or ask a question on the official electronic address of Central Registry: firstname.lastname@example.org
It ought to be noted that the registration i.e. evidencing of ultimate beneficial owners is to be carried out by the statutory representatives of entities- electronically, through the mandatory qualified certificate for electronic signature.
Once again we remind you that the Law provides high penalties (up to 2,000,000 RSD for legal entities and up to 150,000 RSD for responsible persons) for failing to respect obligations imposed by the Law. Further, the Law envisages criminal liability for legal entities and responsible persons who “fail to register or register untrue data in the Central Registry with an intention to conceal a beneficial owner”.
We remain at your disposal for all questions and clarifications if needed, as well as for any assistance that you might need in order to comply with the Law in due time and avoid misdemeanours and fines.