Why Choose Belize for Offshore Trusts


Offshore TrustsTrust Formation  

Orion Corporate & Trust Services Ltd offers the following Offshore Trust services:

  • Offshore Trust Formation
  • Offshore Trust Administration
  • Offshore Trust Registration
  • Offshore Trust Agent Service
  • Trustee Service
  • Protector Service

Regulation and Administration of Offshore Trust Companies

The International Financial Services Commission  (pursuant to the International Financial Services Commission Act, Chapter 272 of the Laws of Belize (Revised Edition 2000) has been influential in passing into law a Practitioner's Code of Conduct. This seeks to regulate the identity of the parties to a Trust:
"A Trustee shall verify the identity of a Settlor or any person adding assets to a Trust in accordance with the procedures relating to the verification of identity of clients and the Trustee shall recognize the purpose and the nature of the Trust and the identity of the funds settled on it. Where an International Financial Services ("IFS") practitioner acts as Trustee with control and custody of the Trust assets, he shall ensure that payments from the relevant Trust are authorized and made in accordance with the terms of the Trust."

All practitioners in the offshore industry must now be licensed by the Commission before engaging in international financial services. This definition includes the incorporation of or management of International Business Companies and the formation and management of offshore Trusts and provision of offshore Trustee services. The Commission is the regulatory body for the offshore sector and has developed a rigorous body of criteria that an applicant must satisfy before being licensed. All Belize Trusts are required to be registered. The absolute confidentiality provisions are not jeopardized since the Trust Agent has only to provide details of the parties and main terms but not the inner workings or consequences of the Trust. This information itself is lodged with the International Financial Services Commission and is not open to public inspection by anyone without the express written permission of the Trustee.
Trust Companies and Trustees must also comply with the Money Laundering (Prevention) Act Cap. 104 of the Laws of Belize (Revised Edition 2000) and the Trustees must inter alia, maintain business transaction records for a period of 5 years after the termination of the business transaction.

The Law

Trusts in Belize are governed by the Trust Act, Chapter 202 of the Laws of Belize (Revised Edition 2000). This act is one of the strongest, most flexible and widely used asset protection legislation in the world. Legal ownership is separated from the benefit of the assets and as such cannot legally be sued against or inquired into. It provides tax reduction or minimization, asset protection, investment flexibility and confidentiality simultaneously.

Section 2 of the Trusts Act states:

"A Trust exists where a person (known as a "Trustee") holds or has vested in him, or is deemed to hold or have vested in him, property which does not form, or which has ceased to form, part of his own estate.

    1. for the benefit of any person (known as "a beneficiary") whether or not yet ascertained or in existence;
    2. for any valid charitable or non-charitable purpose which is not for the benefit only of the Trustee; or
    3. for such benefit as is mentioned in sub-paragraph (a) and also for any such purpose as is mentioned in sub-paragraph (b)."

The Trust has become a necessity for many investors worldwide as when established offshore it becomes a creative, flexible and sophisticated instrument for their Asset Protection, Confidentiality, Tax, Estate and Investment Planning.
By virtue of Statutory Instrument No. 83 of 2003 signed by the Attorney General of Belize on the 23rd day of June, 2003, Orion Corporate & Trust Services Ltd. was declared a Trust Corporation for the purpose of the Trust Corporation Act, Chapter 200 of the Substantive Laws of Belize.

Orion Corporate & Trust Services Limited can assist you in all aspects of Offshore Trust Formation and Administration including Advice on Trust Structuring, Trust Agency, Drafting of the Trust Instrument, assisting in selecting the proper Governing Law, Provision of qualified Trustee, Management and Accounting Services, and Others.


Questions? Contact us for more information about offshore trust formation
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