Important deadlines for BVI trade licence renewals and property tax interest payments

Trade licence renewals

All individuals or companies conducting business in the British Virgin Islands are required to obtain a trade licence from the Department of Trade, authorising the particular business operations. Any trade licence issued is valid until 31 December of any given year. Trade licences obtained during the second half of a calendar year (July – December), will be prorated at 50 per cent of the annual fee. Any applications submitted prior to July in each year will be charged the full rate. As regards renewal of trade licences, applications may be submitted as early as October of any particular year. All trade licence holders have until 31 January of the following year to obtain their renewed licences before penalties are imposed by the Department of Trade. Penalties are also assessed for late payment. Please act urgently to renew trade licences by 31 January 2020 to avoid unnecessary business disruption and unnecessary penalties.

Property tax interest payments

The government of the British Virgin Islands recently announced a policy to allow a 75 per cent reduction on property tax interest accrued up to and including the 2018 tax year. The period of relief in which a property owner can take advantage of the reduction extends to 31 January 2020. Property owners are therefore urged to act quickly to take advantage of this opportunity to bring their property tax liability up to date by the 31 January 2020 deadline.

About the Private Wealth team

Harneys’ depth of knowledge and expertise of the legal environment in the BVI is unmatched; we provide guidance and pragmatic advice to clients who rely on our ability to navigate inward investment into the BVI. Harneys has an experienced Private Wealth team, ready to help businesses to establish and develop in the BVI and are well placed to assist with all aspects of the process. The BVI Private Wealth team provides advice on a wide range of BVI business matters including local regulatory law, trade licences, non-belonger landholding licences, employment and labour law, real estate finance, acquisition and development, bank financing and shipping. In addition, the team regularly handles the creation, administration and termination of trusts and wills and estates.

Please contact Ayana Hull or Mishka Jacobs in our Private Wealth team if you have any questions.