Opening or expanding your business into the Turks and Caicos Islands (TCI) can be an exciting prospect. The TCI is fully open for business and investment, and offers a number of different business structures under the law, each offering unique benefits.
This article looks at starting a company in the TCI – specifically the features of incorporation. Wessex Fairchild Attorneys and its associated company management business Lex Corporate Services Ltd is here to help you at every step of the process. The formation of TCI companies is regulated pursuant to the Turks and Caicos Islands Companies Ordinance 2017.
Incorporating a Turks and Caicos Company
If you are looking to set up business in the TCI, it is important to ensure your business is structured in a way that allows you to most effectively meet your business goals. Private limited companies are overwhelmingly popular in the TCI as a result of the many benefits they offer owners. Private limited companies are among one of the simplest and quickest structures to set up, but there are specific legal requirements that must be adhered to. The incorporation of a TCI company can take as little as a few days.
Benefits of incorporation in the TCI
When you set up a TCI company, you will benefit from limited liability. This means that you will be protected, to an extent, from company costs and liabilities. Incorporating a company creates a new legal entity with what is known as ‘legal personality’ – this means the company itself is held accountable for its actions, can enter into contracts and can hire employees, among other things. Owners of the company are not party to these contracts and therefore not directly accountable. Those who set up a company in the TCI normally take shares in that company and become shareholders. Shareholders may only be held liable for the debts of the company, up to the amount of their shareholding. This is in contrast to a partnership where the partners may be held liable for all the debts of the company – both jointly and severally.
Assuming no fraud has taken place, your ‘limited liability’ means you will not be personally liable for any financial losses made by your business. A limited company can therefore give you added protection should things go wrong.
Those running a business in the TCI as self employed do not enjoy such protection from financial claims. If things go wrong with a business operating as a sole trader (or partnership,) the owners are personally liable for all the debt and liabilities of the business.
Finding funding can be difficult for all types of new or existing businesses, but because a limited company is a distinct entity from its owners it may be a little easier for a company to secure business finance than it is for their sole trader counterparts.
A limited company can issue various classes of shares. This means you can easily sell stakes in the company, or transfer ownership of shares. If a shareholder wishes to retire, sell his shareholding, or dies, it is far easier to transfer ownership of a TCI limited company than a non-registered business.
Wessex Fairchild Attorneys and Lex Corporate Services Ltd. are here to both advise you on company formation in Turks and Caicos, in a professional, prompt and cost-effective manner seeking to tailor your individual business requirements to the business environment of the TCI.