UK Companies House maintains a register of non-UK entities which own UK real estate. Parts of the Register may be viewed online, including information about the registered entity and its beneficial owners or managing officers.
The registration process requires the entity to collect the registrable information and to have it verified by a UK-regulated agent.
An unusual feature of the Register is that a change to the registered information, e.g. a change in the ownership or control of the entity, does not immediately trigger an obligation to update the Register.
Instead, at least once a year, the registered information must be reviewed and either updated or, if nothing has changed, confirmed to be correct.
Whether or not the information has changed, a fee of £120 is payable to Companies House when the update is filed.
A failure to update, or to confirm, the registered information within 14 days after the anniversary of first registration or of the last updating is a criminal offence.
Furthermore, the failure is noted on the open Register and the entity’s registration number ceases to be valid, effectively preventing it from dealing with its UK property.
For the majority of registered entities the updating can be carried out, and the fee paid, online unless any trusts are involved in the ownership or control of the entity.
An update confirming that nothing has changed may be filed by a UK-regulated agent or by the entity itself but if changes are required the information must be verified by a UK-regulated agent before the Register can be updated.
Druces LLP is a “UK-regulated agent” registered with Companies House for the purposes of registering overseas entities and updating registrations.
For information please contact Paul White (firstname.lastname@example.org).