Jersey


General Introduction

The Bailiwick of Jersey is a British Crown Dependency off the coast of Normandy, France.

Jersey and the Bailiwick of Guernsey are often referred to as ‘the Channel Islands’ but they are not a constitutional or political unit. The three Crown Dependencies of Jersey, Guernsey and the Isle of Man each has a separate relationship to the British Crown. They are not part of the United Kingdom Jersey is not a part of the European Union but has a special relationship with it, being treated as part of the European Community for the purposes of free trade in goods.

LEGAL SYSTEM

Jersey law has been influenced by several different legal traditions, in particular Norman customary law, English common law and modern French civil law.

Jersey’s legal system is therefore described as ‘mixed’ or ‘pluralistic’, and sources of law are in French and English languages, although since the 1950s the main working language of the legal system is English.

ECONOMY

Thanks to specialisation in a few high-return sectors, at purchasing power parityJersey has high economic output per capita, substantially ahead of all of the world’s large developed economies.

The CIA World Factbook estimate of Jersey’s GDP per capita for 2005 is US$57,000, surpassed only by two other small states with similar economic characteristics, Bermuda andLuxembourg. However, this is not indicative of each individual resident’s purchasing power, and the actual standard of living in Jersey is comparable to that in theUnited Kingdom outside centralLondon .

Jersey’s economy is based on financial services, tourism, electronic commerce and agriculture; financial services contribute approximately 60 percent of the island’s economy.[76]

The island is recognised as one of the leading offshore financial centres. In June 2005 the States introduced the Competition (Jersey) Law 2005[78] to regulate competition and stimulate economic growth. This competition law was based on that of other jurisdictions.

TAXATION

Until the 20th century, the States relied on indirect taxation to finance the administration ofJersey.

Because VAT has not been levied in the island, luxury goods have often been cheaper than in theUK or inFrance, providing an incentive for tourism from neighbouring countries.

The absence of VAT has also led to the growth of the fulfilment industry, whereby low-value luxury items, such as videos, lingerie and contact lenses are exported, avoiding VAT on arrival and thus undercutting local prices on the same products. In 2005, the States of Jersey announced limits on licences granted to non-resident companies trading in this way.

Although Jerseydoes not have VAT, the States of Jersey introduced a goods and services tax (GST) on 6 May 2008, at a standard rate of 3%. The rate was amended to 5% on the 1st June 2011. Some supplies are taxed at 0% and others exempt. Although GST is at 5%, shopping in Jersey is still far more expensive than in theUK, food is also not exempt unlike with VAT.

Jersey is not subject to European Union fiscal legislation and its Zero-Ten legislation will be compliant with the Code of Conduct in business taxation as from the removal of the deemed distribution and attribution anti-avoidance legislation as of 31 December 2011, which was apparently criticised by certain unnamed members of the Code of Conduct Group. The Code of Conduct Group, at least in theory, keeps most of its documentation and discussion confidential. The European Commission has confirmed that the Code is not a legal instrument, and therefore is not legally binding, only becoming of limited “political” authority once a unanimous report has been adopted by the Group at the end of the Presidency concerned.

For incorporation queries in this jurisdiction, please complete and return to us our Company Formation Questionnaire.

For further information on our services provided in this jurisdiction, please Contact Us.

JURISDICTION INFORMATION CHART

Governing corporate legislation Companies (Jersey) Law 1991, as amended
Types of Companies available –          Private and Public Limited Companies-          Unlimited Companies-          Protected Cell Companies-          Guarantee Companies-          No Par Value Companies

–          Limited Partnerships.

 

Time-scale for incorporation of private limited companies Normal incorporation 2-3 days although for an additional fee it is possible to incorporate the same day.
Availability of ready-made companies Yes
The regulations governing availability of names The name of a limited company shall end with the word ‘limited’ or the abbreviation ‘ltd’ or with the words ‘ avec responsabilite limitee or the abbreviation ‘a.r.l’
Minimum and maximum number of shareholders It is possible to incorporate a single member company.
Statutory minimum paid-up capital requirements £1 (unless a no par value company)
Standard authorised capital £10,000
Classes of share available Share capital may be divided into different classes.  ‘No par value’ shares may be issued as redeemable.  Shares may be fully or partly paid.
Denomination of share capital Share capital may be denominated in any recognised hard currency.
Residency requirement on shareholders or shareholders’ meetings None
Information published relating to shares and shareholders The issued share capital and registered shareholders are available for public inspection.
Minimum and maximum number of directors Minimum of one for a private company and two for a plc, and no maximum (unless indicated in the company’s articles.)
Are Corporate directors permitted? Yes, but these can only be provided by a licensed trust and company service provider inJersey.
Nationality and residency requirements of directors None
Nature of the powers of the directors The directors have all the powers of the company that are not reserved to the members under the law or in the memorandum and articles.
Directors’ meetings The directors may meet at such times and places within or outsideJerseyas the directors may determine necessary.  Telephone and other electronic meetings are permissible subject to the memorandum and articles.
Information published relating to directors None
Must accounts be prepared? By law financial statements must be produced
Must such accounts be filed with the financial authorities? No (unless a public company)
Must such accounts be audited and if so by whom? No requirement
Must the company have a registered presence in the territory of incorporation? Yes, the company must have registered office inJersey.
What records must be maintained in the territory and are they available for public inspection? Documents which must be maintained at the Registered Office are the registers of members, directors and secretary.  Minutes of members’ meetings/resolutions. These documents are not available for public inspection.The information available for public inspection is; the authorised share capital, the issued share capital and registered shareholders.
Can the company make secured loans? Yes
Can the company make unsecured loans? Yes
What are the limits placed on the company’s borrowing powers? None
Is there a register of company charges? No
Company seal Not mandatory
Re-domiciliation provisions Subject to Article 127H of the Jersey Law, a company incorporated outside Jersey may apply to the Jersey Financial Services Commission for continuance in Jersey similarly a Jersey company may seek continuance under the laws of another jurisdiction.
Taxation Under Jersey Law, Jersey Companies residing in the island are taxed at the standard rate of 0%. For non-Jersey resident beneficial owners, profits dividended or otherwise attributed to them from the Jersey Company suffer no further liability to Jersey Tax.

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