Company registration in Liechtenstein – Private Financial Services is a Licensed Service Provider Since 1997
Liechtenstein is a small country positioned between Austria and Switzerland renowned for its capital, Vaduz, which is an international financial hub with worldwide connections to other prominent cities. Liechtenstein has much to offer foreign businessmen considering investing there or company registration in Lichtenstein. It has a highly advanced financial sector, investment funds, a thriving business insurance branch, and an active and successful asset management sector.
Now, the process of company incorporation in Lichtenstein won’t take longer than a few weeks, which really isn’t long at all, providing all the necessary documents are correctly submitted. It is up to the foreign business magnates to select the perfect company to found here by taking into account the many diverse details such as company goals, how much share capital is involved, and precisely how many shareholders there are.
Specificity of the registering a company in Liechtenstein
The essential things a businessman needs to do in Liechtenstein before he is able to undertake commercial activities are: Having the business’s articles of association notarized, opening a bank account and depositing the minimum share capital, checking to see if the company’s name is available at the Public Register and placing the above mentioned items with the Liechtenstein Public Registry. If it turns out that the company has an annual turnover that is higher than EUR 100,000, then it needs to also register for VAT. Furthermore, should the company be hiring personnel, Social Services must be informed. This entire process shouldn’t take more than a week, and then the new company will be successfully established.
Documentation package required to form a Company in Liechtenstein
It is required that foreign businessmen/investors desiring to open new companies in Liechtenstein submit a set of certain documents with the Trade Register. These would include in case of corporate shareholder – Constitutional documents, in case of individual – passport. Proof of a registered address in Liechtenstein, under the form or a rental or lease contract. Company’s memorandum and articles of association drafts. Whatever information concerning the business’s manager or managers that is required, for example, their qualifications and identification papers.
Confirmation from the bank that the share capital was placed in the Liechtenstein. It requires stating that any company registered in Liechtenstein must appoint a resident director. This director should have no criminal record, and an extract from the police department will be necessary. Along with proof of the director’s qualifications, the extract must be filed with the Trade Registry in Liechtenstein.
Types of companies
The primary types of businesses that can be established by an investor who decides they believe it’s a good idea to open a company in Liechtenstein are Limited Liability Companies. These are often referred to as GmbH, which are the most frequently established companies.
This is a way of doing business directed specifically at the small and medium businesses. This type of company requires a minimum capital share of EUR 30,000 before it can be founded, and can be for both commercial and non-commercial purposes. It must have a board of directors and a local registration office. Should you find yourself requiring a virtual office for your business, our company formation specialists here in Liechtenstein can provide a registered address for you where you will find all that you need.
Companies Limited by Shares another type of company formation. These are called Aktiengesellschaft or AG, which are the same as publicly owned companies in other countries. You must have a minimum share capital of EUR 50,000 if you want to be permitted to open this type of company. Both this type of company and an LLC are similarly created, with the essential difference between the two being that the transferability of shares is greater for the private limited company and its capital larger. Both companies pay the same amount of corporate tax – 12.5% – are required to have a registered office and at least one shareholder.
It is also plainly stated that the established company cannot participate in international commercial trading, but is permitted to be used as a holding company or an investment holding company. No board of directors or shareholders are required and the minimum share capital is EUR 30,000. Along with the corporate tax a 2.5% net assets tax and is required to have a registered office.
Furthermore, the company is permitted to be used for commercial activities, or as a holding or investment company, and is required to have a minimum share capital of EUR 30,000.
Foundation (Stiftung) is a very desirable classification because there are a great many tax benefits that it provides. Establishment (Anstalt) is a special business form designed in Liechtenstein. Trust Enterprise is also a special business form designed in Liechtenstein. It is permissible for the trust corporation to act as a holding company with a minimum share capital of EUR 30,000.
Branches and Subsidiary Companies in Liechtenstein
For foreign businesses desiring to open a company in Liechtenstein there are options: subsidiary (an independent entity), branch office (an offspring of the founding company). All foreign companies wishing to establish a business in Liechtenstein will select the structure that best matches their aims. The business forms which are used the most are the branch office, and the subsidiary, with the essential variations between them in degree of independence. The branch office is not an independent business form, while the subsidiary is. The branch office is limited to offering its services to complete the undertakings of the parent company on the Liechtenstein market, while the subsidiary can also provide other services.
In comparison to the branch office, the subsidiary will most often adopt the form of a limited liability company. As far as taxation goes, the subsidiary will pay taxes on its global income, while the branch office will only be taxed based on the income earned in Liechtenstein. Meanwhile, the Liechtenstein Representative Office can be in operation for a limited time and when that time is up, it can be converted into a branch office or a subsidiary. Our company registration consultants in Liechtenstein can use their experience to provide you with advice on all of these business forms.
Would you like to get more information about incorporation procedure or to form a company in Liechtenstein, please contact our specialists!
If a company in Liechtenstein does not meet you business needs, then you can consider to open a company in other European country.
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FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)
1. How long does it take to register a company in Liechtenstein?
The minimum time required to register a company is 2 weeks.
2. What type of company is most often used in Liechtenstein for incorporation?
Limited Liability Companies (GmbH) tend to be the most popular type of companies in Liechtenstein.
3. Can a foreigner be the owner and director of a Liechtenstein company?
The legislation of Liechtenstein allows both residents and citizens of other countries to open companies in the territory of this country. Shareholders of companies can be individuals and legal entities. Shareholders are people who have purchased shares in a company and will own it based on a percentage of other shareholders. Shareholders can increase or decrease their capital. However, such actions must be previously agreed with the Registrar of the Company.
A private company must have at least one shareholder. For a public company, this number increases to two shareholders. Liechtenstein law extends the nominee shareholder law to private companies as well.
4. What are the requirements for a limited liability company?
For the formation of a Public Limited Company (PLC., Corp.) in Liechtenstein, a minimum of 50,000 Swiss Francs or Euros or US. Dollars must be contributed to its capital at the time of formation. For every share issued, a minimum of 25% thereof requires to be paid in cash. The capital of a Public Limited Company (PLC., Corp.) in Liechtenstein may also be in the form of a non-cash contribution or of a combination of cash and non-cash.
5. What are the requirements for a person who wants to open a private limited company?
To create a limited liability company, at least one person is required who has a capital of at least 10,000 euros. Each shareholder must contribute at least 50 euros. The capital is divided into preference, registered, voting, and no-par-value and bearer shares.
At least one director is required to perform the daily management activities and can be an individual or a corporate. There is no need to appoint secretaries.
In this case, it is also necessary to submit annual financial statements. This type of firm is most often used to open small and medium-sized businesses.
6. What are Liechtenstein's requirements for companies in terms of minimum authorized capital?
The authorized capital can be indicated in different currencies, namely, Swiss francs, US dollars, and euros. At the same time, a mandatory minimum limit must be observed. Regardless of the chosen currency, the minimum capital is 50,000. The formation of a company can be done in two ways – cash equivalent, and natural equivalent. The minimum capital can be paid immediately or after the establishment of the company. The capital will be at the free disposal of the company after entering it into the trade register.
7. What are the annual costs for maintaining a company in Liechtenstein?
Regardless of the types of business activities that the company is involved in, it has to pay a minimum tax of 1,800 Swiss francs (CHF) per year. The standard profit tax rate is 12.5%.
8. Are there any restrictions in the area of the company's activities?
Yes. Selected business fields are under special regulations and will require additional permits and licenses. Regardless of their chosen business fields, companies in Liechtenstein must obtain a business permit before commencing their commercial activities.
Companies engaged in trading activities will need special permits and licenses and will need to be registered for EORI purposes for customs procedures.
9. How can I get more information?
Private Financial Services provides a full range of corporate services in Liechtenstein, including company registrations, bank accounts, license assistance, cryptocurrency and fintech projects, the gambling industry, and much more.
The Private Financial Services team will be happy to discuss matters in more detail.