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Overseas property owners required to register and appoint regulated agent

Updated: Aug 14, 2022

The Register of Overseas Entities came into force in the UK on 1 August 2022 through the new Economic Crime (Transparency and Enforcement) Act 2022.

Overseas entities who want to buy, sell or transfer property or land in the UK, must register with Companies House and tell us who their registrable beneficial owners or managing officers are.

This will also apply retrospectively to overseas entities who bought property or land on or after:

  • 1 January 1999 in England and Wales

  • 8 December 2014 in Scotland

These overseas entities will need to register with Companies House and tell us who their registrable beneficial owners or managing officers are by 31 January 2023.

Overseas entities only need to register property or land bought in Northern Ireland on or after 1 August 2022.

Entities that disposed of property or land after 28 February 2022 will also need to register and give details of that disposal.

After registering, the overseas entity will get a unique Overseas Entity ID to give to the land registry when it buys, sells, transfers, leases or charges UK property or land.

This will lead to more transparency, which will allow law enforcement agencies to investigate suspicious wealth more effectively.

If you do not comply with the Act, you could be fined up to £2,500 per day or get a prison sentence of up to 5 years. You’ll also face restrictions when buying, selling, transferring, leasing or charging property or land in the UK.

What an overseas entity is:

This is a legal entity, such as a company or other organisation, that has legal personality and is governed by the law of a country or territory outside the UK. The Republic of Ireland is an overseas jurisdiction for the Register of Overseas Entities.

Chalfen is a regulated agent for this purpose.

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