Lennox Paton

Nassau

Lennox Paton, established in 1971, is a leading commercial law firm in Nassau, Bahamas. We are widely recognized for our expertise and professionalism. Our knowledge of the business and legal environment enables us to attend adroitly and effectively to our clients' affairs.

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Updates

Insolvency & Restructuring

Privy Council determines extraterritorial reach of clawback claims in insolvency proceedings
Bahamas | 23 August 2019

The Privy Council has determined that, notwithstanding the absence of express statutory provisions permitting service out of the jurisdiction of fraudulent preference claims, such claims are to have extraterritorial effect. This decision clarifies the law as it relates to the extraterritorial effect of fraudulent preference claims; however, it also creates difficulties for subscribers to mutual funds that may be held liable for investments made on behalf of third-party beneficiaries that are the ultimate recipients of payments.

Litigation

Supreme Court evaluates scope of trustees' protection in contentious trust litigation
Bahamas | 07 August 2018

The Supreme Court recently assessed the protection afforded to trustees by virtue of Section 83 of the Trustee Act 1998, which provides that a trustee cannot be bound or compelled by way of discovery to disclose information and documents about a trust. In Dawson-Damer, a trustee had used Section 83(8) as a basis to refuse a disclosure request. The applicant's case was built primarily on the allegation of a breach of duty (ie, the trustee had failed to consider the applicant's needs).

Private Client & Offshore Services

Supreme Court identifies its jurisdictional limits to assist in trust arbitration proceedings
Bahamas | 29 August 2019

The Supreme Court recently clarified its jurisdictional limits to assist in trust-related arbitrations, ruling that it has no such jurisdiction to allow service outside an action's jurisdiction. Given this ruling, parties to trust arbitration agreements must be cognisant that, notwithstanding whether their trust deeds provide for the seat of any arbitration to be The Bahamas, the court can provide only limited assistance where the arbitration is not held and the parties or assets are not in The Bahamas.

Privy Council determines extraterritorial reach of clawback claims in insolvency proceedings
Bahamas | 22 August 2019

The Privy Council has determined that, notwithstanding the absence of express statutory provisions permitting service out of the jurisdiction of fraudulent preference claims, such claims are to have extraterritorial effect. This decision clarifies the law as it relates to the extraterritorial effect of fraudulent preference claims; however, it also creates difficulties for subscribers to mutual funds that may be held liable for investments made on behalf of third-party beneficiaries that are the ultimate recipients of payments.

New tax reforms in effect
Bahamas | 18 July 2019

In the 2019/2020 Budget Communication the government announced various tax reforms which came into effect on 1 July 2019. Among other things, the cap on owner-occupied property has increased from B$50,000 to B$60,000 per year and stamp duty on real property has been replaced by value added tax (VAT) at the same rates. Further, any party that is required to become a VAT registrant must have a business licence.

Extinguishment of purchasers' rights – importance of priority in unregistered land systems
Bahamas | 20 June 2019

The Bahamas has an unregistered land system that is based on the conveyancing laws of England and Wales issued before 1925. Therefore, deeds and documents should be recorded in the Registry of Records in The Bahamas as soon as possible. Priority becomes particularly important in high-net-worth commercial and condominium development transactions.

Register of Beneficial Ownership Act: a new day for beneficial owners
Bahamas | 09 May 2019

Since 2001 international organisations such as the Financial Action Task Force have pressured offshore financial centres to pass legislation in order to increase transparency within their financial services sectors. As such, the Register of Beneficial Ownership Act recently came into effect in The Bahamas. The act seeks to create a private search registry containing details of beneficial owners of domestic and international companies in The Bahamas.

Bahamian insolvency regime continues to promote judicial efficiency
Bahamas | 28 February 2019

The Bahamian legislature continues to examine its existing legislation for ways to promote judicial efficiency by amending and implementing new procedures in its insolvency regime. As the global economy continues to grow and foreign companies and investors increasingly face obstacles arising from the use of offshore structures, the need for cross-border insolvency proceedings and the use of protection afforded to investors will likely continue to increase.

Buying real estate – when to engage an attorney?
Bahamas | 21 February 2019

After finding the ideal property to purchase, what is the next step? Engage an attorney. An attorney can help to connect real estate buyers with key service providers in order to arrange, among other things, home inspections or insurance. Involving an attorney will make the difference between a smooth transaction that meets the expectations of the buyer versus one that is fraught with issues, unrealistic expectations and other obstacles which could have been avoided with the benefit of early advice and proper planning.

Foreign direct investment in real estate market
Bahamas | 14 February 2019

Foreign direct investment (FDI) remains one of the key catalysts to the Bahamian economy's growth and sustainability. The Bahamas National Investment Policy seeks to boost the economy through investments and provide favourable returns for investors. To this end, it encourages FDI in key areas in the real estate market, including tourist resorts, upscale condominiums, timeshares and second-homes and marinas.

Supreme Court evaluates scope of trustees' protection in contentious trust litigation
Bahamas | 09 August 2018

The Supreme Court recently assessed the protection afforded to trustees by virtue of Section 83 of the Trustee Act 1998, which provides that a trustee cannot be bound or compelled by way of discovery to disclose information and documents about a trust. In Dawson-Damer, a trustee had used Section 83(8) as a basis to refuse a disclosure request. The applicant's case was built primarily on the allegation of a breach of duty (ie, the trustee had failed to consider the applicant's needs).

Payment of preferential debts out of assets subject to floating charge not permitted
Bahamas | 26 October 2017

The Supreme Court recently considered whether preferential creditors have any claim against the moneys received by receiver-managers for the sale of assets subject to a charge. The court determined that a floating charge which crystallised before the making of a winding-up order takes priority over other creditors.

Privy Council clarifies Bahamian law on appealing interlocutory judgments
Bahamas | 15 June 2017

There has been some debate over the lack of clarity regarding the concurrent jurisdiction of the Supreme Court and the Court of Appeal as to where and when applications for leave to appeal and stays should be made. A recent Judicial Committee of the Privy Council ruling has clarified this area of the law and given attorneys clear guidance regarding the proper procedure for appealing interlocutory judgments and applying for a stay pending appeal in the Bahamas.

Remittal of assets in cross-border insolvency proceedings
Bahamas | 20 April 2017

The Bahamas Supreme Court recently considered the relationship between the statutory provisions in recognition proceedings which permit the turnover of property to a debtor (a foreign corporation or other foreign legal entity subject to a foreign proceeding in the country in which it is incorporated or established) and the common law power to direct remittal of assets to the foreign main proceedings where an ancillary liquidation is underway.

Hastings-Bass rule enshrined in law
Bahamas | 13 April 2017

The recently enacted Trustee (Amendment) Act has clarified the law relating to trustee indemnities and given statutory effect to the rule in Re Hastings-Bass. With the passing of the act, the Bahamas has fortified its position as a leading offshore financial centre. It is expected that the codification of the rule will benefit trustees, protectors, beneficiaries and other persons who can apply to the court to unwind any perceived hard consequences flowing from an exercise of a fiduciary power.

Receiver-managers obtain court's blessing: self-dealing and fair-dealing rules not violated
Bahamas | 15 December 2016

The joint receiver-managers of the assets of Baha Mar applied to the Supreme Court for a direction that the intended sale of Baha Mar's secured assets to a special purpose vehicle (SPV) would not amount to self-dealing or infringe the fair-dealing rule. The court was satisfied that the sale to the SPV was pursued by the joint receiver-managers in good faith and achieved after adequate precautions were taken to achieve the best price reasonably obtainable at the time.

Bahamian law on disclosure of trust information
Bahamas | 08 December 2016

The case of Dawson Damer v Taylor Wessing arose out of a dispute between a beneficiary of trusts governed by Bahamian law and a Bahamian trustee. The beneficiary made subject access requests under the UK Data Protection Act 1998 to the trustee's London solicitors who refused to provide the information. This resulted in the beneficiary applying to the court for an order requiring the law firm to comply with the subject access requests.

Legal proceedings stayed in favour of mediation in accordance with Arbitration Act
Bahamas | 15 September 2016

The Supreme Court recently determined that legal proceedings should be stayed based on the construction of the dispute clause in an arbitration agreement. The court held that there is persuasive authority even where an arbitration clause is discretionary, and that a party retains the option of invoking this authority. It was therefore reasonable for the court to conclude that referral to mediation was contemplated before arbitration proceedings could be pursued.

Supreme Court exercises statutory jurisdiction to wind up foreign company
Bahamas | 23 June 2016

The Supreme Court of the Commonwealth of the Bahamas has acceded to the petition for Caledonian Bank Limited to be wound up as a foreign company pursuant to the Companies Winding-up Amendment Act, thereby exercising its jurisdiction for ancillary winding-up proceedings to be entered into. A petition was filed to wind up the insolvent company in the Bahamas so that the company's liquidators could access property in this jurisdiction.

Bahamas designates list of relevant foreign countries
Bahamas | 19 May 2016

The Liquidation Rules Committee has published the Foreign Proceedings (International Cooperation) (Relevant Foreign Countries) Liquidation Rules 2016. The most recent statutory enactment in relation to corporate insolvency in the Bahamas is the designation of a list of relevant foreign countries to which the Bahamian court will extend international cooperation in insolvency proceedings.

Cayman Bank liquidators denied common law and statutory recognition in the Bahamas
Bahamas | 31 March 2016

In a "jurisprudentially unattractive" decision, the Supreme Court of the Commonwealth of the Bahamas has refused the liquidators of Caledonian Bank recognition in the Bahamas, where assets in the region of $16 million are held. By refusing recognition to the liquidators, the court has declined to grant assistance to liquidators which are meant to protect the interests of creditors, not the debtors' estate.

Billionaire adjudicated bankrupt under 1869 statute
Bahamas | 21 January 2016

The Bahamian Supreme Court recently declined to register a composition with creditors sought by Irish billionaire Sir Anthony O'Reilly. The court took the alternative route of adjudicating him bankrupt instead. The decision was based on legal difficulties with the proposed composition under Section 97 of the Bankruptcy Act of 1869.

Supreme Court declines recognition of Chapter 11 proceedings
Bahamas | 01 October 2015

The Supreme Court of the Bahamas recently dismissed an application seeking various orders in aid of bankruptcy proceedings commenced in the United States concerning various Bahamian companies placed into Chapter 11. There is no equivalent to Chapter 11 under Bahamian law by which breathing space can be created or new capital can be injected on terms acceptable to any reasonable lender.

Insolvency and restructuring – challenges facing companies and individuals
Bahamas | 19 March 2015

Legislative changes to the insolvency regime in the Bahamas provide for greater international cooperation and increased mechanisms for liquidators to pursue relief against debtors. The amendments provide a more comprehensive legal framework for improved administration of liquidations in order to seek the necessary relief in areas where the statute previously failed to provide any recourse.

Investment funds explained
Bahamas | 22 January 2015

The Investment Funds Act provides legislation flexible enough to accommodate the needs and growing demands of the financial sector. To be a Bahamas-based investment fund, a nexus to the Bahamas must be established. An investment fund does not include a unit trust, company or partnership where the holder of equity interests cannot redeem its equity interests or require the issuer to repurchase its equity interests.

Government launches 'revolutionary' ICON investment fund
Bahamas | 30 October 2014

The fund structuring vehicle known as the investment condominium (ICON) is the latest investment product offering from the Bahamian financial services industry. Governed pursuant to the Investment Condominium Act, the ICON is a contractual relationship subsisting between investors, under which the investors agree to pool assets for the purposes of investing those assets as a collective.

Establishment of trusts in the Bahamas
Bahamas | 22 May 2014

As a common law country Bahamian courts recognise trusts and the relationships that they create. The Bahamas is not a signatory of the Hague Convention on the law applicable to trusts and their recognition, and it is not anticipated that it will be. The assets of a trust are vested in trustees for the benefit of the beneficiaries. Assets may be held directly by the trustees or indirectly through holding companies.

Court sets aside order granting leave to serve summons outside jurisdiction
Bahamas | 12 December 2013

The Supreme Court of the Commonwealth of the Bahamas has set aside an order granting a liquidator leave to serve a summons outside the jurisdiction on a company incorporated in Bermuda, which sought the recovery of a payment as a fraudulent preference. The liquidator sought a declaration that a payment made to the foreign company before the liquidation amounted to a fraudulent preference payment.

Captive insurance in the Bahamas
Bahamas | 12 September 2013

The recent insurance industry briefing on the regulatory regime for captives has highlighted a renewed interest in the Bahamas as a jurisdiction of choice for captive companies. The Bahamas enjoys numerous advantages, including accessibility from the United States, an established financial structure and a tax-neutral environment for business. Captive companies are registered as a restricted external insurer under the External Insurance Act.

New real property tax incentives
Bahamas | 16 May 2013

In an effort to provide tax relief and to update the real property tax register, the Bahamian government has implemented real property tax incentives. Among other things, owners of residential properties who remain current with their payments over the next three years will receive a 5% rebate of their annual real property tax assessment.

Supreme Court rules on liquidators' powers of examination
Bahamas | 01 November 2012

In a recent landmark insolvency decision, the Supreme Court applied the modern approach to the determination of an application by joint liquidators for the production of documents and the oral examination of the named partners of former auditors of a company in voluntary liquidation. The court held that the liquidators had been unreasonable and that their application was oppressive.

Wills and trusts: rule against perpetuities is abolished
Bahamas | 27 September 2012

The Rule Against Perpetuities (Abolition) Act 2011 has abolished the rule against perpetuities in relation to wills and trusts. With the abolition of the rule against perpetuities, settlors and testators now have greater flexibility in relation to estate planning. Furthermore, trustees will be in a position to accumulate trust income for such period as they think appropriate given the particular needs of a trust.

Executive Entities Act
Bahamas | 07 June 2012

With the Executive Entities Act 2011 the Bahamas has added an innovative product to its portfolio of financial services legislation, by encapsulating services currently offered in the realm of wealth management within a legal entity. Section 3 of the act provides for an executive entity which can act as an effective governance tool to carry out executive functions while protecting confidentiality in wealth preservation structures.

Supreme Court clarifies International Business Companies Act
Bahamas | 19 April 2012

In a recent decision the Supreme Court clarified amendments made by the International Business Companies (Amendment) Act 2010. The court held that there is no statutory bar preventing the applicant applying for the restoration of an international business company, even if the company was struck off before the commencement of the International Business Companies Act of 2000.

A new direction for the Trustee Act
Bahamas | 16 February 2012

The Trustee (Amendment) Act 2011 has strengthened the law relating to trusts and their administration by clarifying and expanding sections of the principal act and by making substantive amendments that have introduced new provisions. These innovative provisions show the Bahamas' continued commitment to provide for clients and reinforce its position as a leader in the area of private wealth management.

Permanent residency in the Bahamas: a new policy
Bahamas | 20 October 2011

The government has amended the National Investment Policy to provide for accelerated consideration of permanent residency applications for persons purchasing a residence worth $1.5 million or more. Under the new scheme, provided that applicants have all the required documentation, they can expect to receive a response within 21 days of their completed application being delivered to the Department of Immigration.

Judicial and Legal Services Commission: obligation to consider applications
Bahamas | 29 September 2011

In early 2011 Cheryl Grant-Bethel, the former Deputy Directory of Public Prosecutions, brought a case against John Delaney QC in relation to the Judicial and Legal Services Commission's failure to consider her application to be appointed director of public prosecutions. The case raised a number of important and novel issues relating to the obligations of the commission to consider applications for legal positions in the civil service.

Court of Appeal confirms 'no leave to appeal' ruling
Bahamas | 04 August 2011

Crawford International recently appealed a judgment relating to the determination of a preliminary issue concerning the scope of a management contract. A preliminary objection was taken to the appeal on the basis that the judgment was interlocutory and no leave to appeal had been obtained. However, the appeal court determined that the judgment on the preliminary issue was final rather than interlocutory, and as such no leave was required.

Owner-occupied rental homes
Bahamas | 09 June 2011

All homeowners which are renting one or more bedrooms in an owner-occupied home are required to apply to the Hotel Licensing Authority (a division of the Ministry of Tourism) for a hotel licence, which must be renewed annually. In addition, a rental tax at the rate of 10% of the rental income is payable on all owner-occupied homes which are rented.

Business Licence Act 2010 takes effect
Bahamas | 02 June 2011

The Business Licence Act 2010 came into force on January 1 2011. It has introduced new licensing and taxation requirements to operate a business in the Bahamas. Licence fees have now changed and will be based on turnover. Existing businesses will be deemed licensed for a period of 90 days from the commencement date of the act.

Yacht Registry introduced
Bahamas | 20 January 2011

The Bahamas Maritime Authority has announced the eagerly awaited launch of the Yacht Registry. The expansion of the authority, and of the yacht sector itself, resulted in the need for a more focused and autonomous infrastructure dedicated to this area. The addition of the registry adds a new dynamic and quality component to an already well-rounded, well-developed and expansive ship registry system.

New arbitration legislation passed
Bahamas | 08 July 2010

The Arbitration Act and the Arbitration (Foreign Arbitral Awards) Act have entered into force. Both acts are the result of The Bahamas' commitment to adhere to the recommendations of the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law in order to develop uniformity and harmonization in the law relating to arbitral procedures on a domestic level, as well as the specific needs of international commercial arbitration practice.

Bahamas elevated to OECD White List
Bahamas | 22 April 2010

The minister of state for finance has announced that The Bahamas has signed tax information exchange agreements with each of the Nordic countries, taking to 18 the number of such agreements to which it is a signatory. Thus, The Bahamas has now exceeded the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) required minimum of 12 agreements and is fully compliant with the OECD standard.

New Insurance Act furthers international harmonization
Bahamas | 18 February 2010

The Insurance Act 2005 introduced a new system for licensing and regulating domestic insurers based on the international standards prescribed by the Financial Action Task Force and the principles of the International Association of Insurance Supervisors. Additionally, the act and accompanying regulations introduce a degree of harmonization with the insurance legislation of a number of other jurisdictions in the region.

Government Introduces New External Insurance Act
Bahamas | 24 September 2009

In light of the increasingly restrictive regulation in many onshore jurisdictions and the escalating costs of conducting insurance business in both onshore and in some offshore insurance centres, the Bahamas has introduced the External Insurance Act 2009, incorporating several innovative features which are unique to the jurisdiction.

Public Policy and the Evidence (Proceedings in Other Jurisdictions) Act 2000
Bahamas | 23 July 2009

Since the Evidence (Proceedings in Other Jurisdictions) Act was implemented, the Bahamian courts have often been found to use a narrower interpretation of the act in order to prevent foreign courts from delving into the private affairs of individuals and companies (specifically their bank accounts), unless there is a strong argument otherwise.

Application of Evidence (Proceedings in Other Jurisdictions) Act 2000
Bahamas | 16 July 2009

In response to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development's blacklisting of the Bahamas as an offshore investment jurisdiction due to a lack of transparency in the international arena and the existence of various obstacles to mutual legal assistance, the Bahamian legislature has implemented various acts, including the Evidence (Proceedings in other Jurisdictions) Act.

A Guide to Foundations
Bahamas | 07 May 2009

Foundations are now recognized and accepted in most civil law jurisdictions. They are widely used in Europe and Latin America where trusts are less well known, frequently misunderstood and not always accepted. With the introduction of the Foundations Act in 2004, The Bahamas became one of the first common law countries to make the private foundation available.

Revisiting the Data Protection Act
Bahamas | 20 November 2008

The Data Protection Act 2003 provides a way for individuals to exert a degree of control over personal information held by others, including the manner in which that data is collected, processed, stored, used and disclosed. The grace period for putting compliance procedures in place has now expired. This update revisits the implications of the act and provides an overview of its principal provisions.

Foreign Investment and Bahamian Mergers and Acquisitions
Bahamas | 17 January 2008

All significant acquisitions in The Bahamas have involved foreign capital, which creates certain legal issues highlighted in this update. Most relevant to mergers and acquisitions is the requirement for a foreign equity investor to obtain the prior approval of the Investments Board before it can purchase the shares of, or a beneficial interest in, a Bahamian resident company.

Development of an E-business Centre
Bahamas | 13 December 2007

The development of the Bahamas into an international e-commerce and e-business centre has been spectacular. From the creation of the Public Utilities Commission in 2000 to the appointment of a data protection commissioner in 2007, the aim of every administration has been to make the Bahamas a global leader in e-commerce.

New Prime Minister Promises to Strengthen Financial Services Sector
Bahamas | 17 May 2007

In the recent general election the Free National Movement beat the incumbent Progressive Liberal Party by the second narrowest victory in the history of The Bahamas. New Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham has named himself minister for finance and has promised a raft of measures aimed at ensuring "that the financial services sector remains attractive, internationally competitive and adequately regulated".

New Private Trust Company Legislation for Bahamas
Bahamas | 01 February 2007

In order to accommodate a wider market and improve efficiency in the local wealth management industry, the Bahamian Parliament has approved comprehensive new private trust legislation. The private trust company legislation is the product of collaboration between a multi-disciplinary working group established in 2005, the Central Bank and the government.

The Foundations Act 2004: An Overview
Bahamas | 20 July 2006

A Bahamian foundation is a legal entity resident and domiciled in the Bahamas. Any assets properly transferred to a Bahamian foundation shall be the legal and beneficial property of the foundation and shall cease to be the property of the transferor. The property of a foundation shall not become the property of a beneficiary unless and until it is properly distributed to such by the foundation.

Exchange Control Restrictions Relaxed on Capital Account Transactions
Bahamas | 13 April 2006

Delivering on a longstanding promise to its financial services and capital markets industry stakeholders and investors, the Central Bank of the Bahamas has implemented sweeping adjustments intended to relax the country's capital account exchange control regime. The adjustments take the country many steps closer to full convertibility between the Bahamian dollar and the US dollar.

The Purpose Trusts Act 2004
Bahamas | 14 July 2005

The Purpose Trusts Act represents a significant variation from the accepted principles of trust law that a trust requires a settlor, a trustee and beneficiaries, and is invalid to the extent that it has no ascertainable beneficiaries or charitable objects. It allows a valid trust to be established for specific purposes notwithstanding that the trust does not have charitable objects or ascertainable beneficiaries.

A Guide to Investment Funds
Bahamas | 05 August 2004

The new Investment Funds Act aims to provide legislation that is sufficiently flexible to accommodate the needs and growing demands of the financial sector. The act provides for four classes of investment fund: the standard fund; the professional fund; the specific mandate alternative regulatory test (SMART) fund; and the recognized foreign fund.

Investment Funds Act and Regulations Come into Force
Bahamas | 25 March 2004

The new Investment Funds Act aims to accommodate the needs and growing demands of the financial sector. It provides a strong backbone for the fund industry in The Bahamas, and many of the amendments it introduces should have widespread implications for the financial services industry in its attempt to remain one of the world's leading international financial centres.

Developing Timeshare in The Bahamas
Bahamas | 16 October 2003

Despite some drawbacks, The Bahamas appears to offer the necessary elements for timeshare development. The government's willingness to waive certain requirements of the Vacation Plan and Time-sharing Act in some cases is encouraging, and if it also makes appropriate amendments to the act to assist the industry, developing owners may find the jurisdiction even more attractive.

Investment Funds Act Tabled Before House of Assembly
Bahamas | 22 May 2003

The new Investment Funds Act is intended to replace the Mutual Funds Act 1995 and its accompanying regulations, and provide the Securities Commission of The Bahamas with the ability to oversee the 'exempt fund' market. Among other things, it aims to ensure full disclosure and promote the future growth of this sector.

New Financial Services Consultative Forum is Created
Bahamas | 09 January 2003

The government of The Bahamas has created a Financial Services Consultative Forum, which is charged with the responsibility of advising the Ministry of Financial Services and Investments on policy matters pertaining to or affecting the economy, and specifically the financial sector.

New Government Pledges to Reinvigorate Financial Services Industry
Bahamas | 27 June 2002

The new prime minister has appointed a minister of financial services and investments who will work to promote the development of the Bahamian financial services industry. The government will continue to support international best practice standards, although it is also aware of the need to address the concerns and expectations of a frustrated industry.

Selecting the Domicile of an Offshore Special Purpose Vehicle
Bahamas | 27 June 2002

In order to be a viable jurisdiction for the domiciliation of a special purpose vehicle which will be the issuer of securities in connection with a securitization transaction, a jurisdiction must meet all the requirements of the sponsoring institution, the rating agencies and investors. This update examines the key issues.

Government Moves to Support War Against Terrorism
Bahamas | 01 November 2001

The government of The Bahamas has passed legislation to assist the international efforts to seize the assets of terrorist organizations affiliated or linked with the Taliban and Usama bin Laden. It prohibits Bahamians, both at home and abroad, from assisting these entities in any way.

Supervision of Financial Accounts is Stepped Up
Bahamas | 14 June 2001

A new act obliges financial institutions to verify the identity of the beneficial owners of all accounts provided, and to report any suspicious transactions to the authorities. One of the most important of these is the Financial Intelligence Unit, which was established to target offences involving the proceeds of crime.

Regulatory Framework for Financial Service Providers Updated
Bahamas | 31 May 2001

Recent legislation provides for the licensing and regulation of certain financial and corporate services in The Bahamas. It specifies which parties are authorized to provide these services, and sets out the criteria for obtaining a licence and the duties of licensees.

Banking Laws Updated
Bahamas | 03 May 2001

New legislation has given the Central Bank of the Bahamas the power to assist and cooperate with overseas regulatory authorities, in order to help international financial service regulators to exercise their functions. Meanwhile, a second law introduces stricter regulation of banks and trust companies.

International Companies Act Revamped
Bahamas | 12 April 2001

The International Business Companies Act 2000 has repealed the International Business Companies Act 1989. There is a 180-day transition period for all existing Bahamian international business companies to comply with the act.

Creating a New Landscape for Financial Services
Bahamas | 30 November 2000

New Securities Industry Regulations were promulgated in July and have proved to be of interest to international securities firms that market their securities and proprietary systems to private clients and institutional investors in the Bahamas. For the first time in Bahamian legal history, restrictions have been placed on their activities.