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Trusts & Foundations

A foundation is an independent self-governing legal entity, with some characteristics of both a company and a trust. The Foundations Act 2011 provides a vehicle that has proved very popular in other jurisdictions such as Liechtenstein and Panama.

Isle of Man Foundations are used mainly for private wealth and charitable purposes, but can also be used for commercial reasons if required. Foundations are particularly attractive for clients that are more familiar with civil law systems than common law.

The existence of a foundation is a matter of public record and a registered agent must be appointed that holds a class 4 corporate services licence. A foundation will have rules and objects, which will be included in the foundation instrument and beneficiaries do not need to be named when the foundation is established.

A foundation beneficially owns its own assets and will allocate those assets to beneficiaries according to the foundation rules and instrument.

A foundation must have a foundation council; the composition of the members of the council will need careful consideration, but can contain the founder, beneficiaries, investment advisers, tax advisers, family advisers, lawyers or any other individual that would benefit the foundation.

Confidence in Tradition