Organizations incorporated in the British Virgin Islands must now fulfill a mandatory obligation to submit annual financial information to regulatory authorities. This new requirement came into effect in 2023, with the first reports coming due beginning in 2024. We’ll cover what you need to know and, more importantly, what you need to provide to stay compliant with the new BVI Annual Returns regulation.
What is a BVI Annual Return?
A BVI Annual Return is a mandatory yearly filing for companies incorporated in the British Virgin Islands. The purpose of this report is to keep the BVI’s corporate registry updated with information on each company’s current structure and status. It’s a compliance requirement, ensuring transparency and governance standards are maintained.
This document is to be prepared in a standard format. Essentially, it is a simplified profit and loss statement and balance sheet.
Fortunately, the requirement has some flexibility:
• The Annual Return can be prepared in whatever currency your company prepares its financial statements.
• There is no requirement that the financial statements need to be audited.
BVI Annual Return Privacy
The Annual Return will not be made available to the public.
BVI Annual Return Timing
The Annual Return is due nine months after the end of your company’s financial year-end. For example, if your corporation operates on a calendar year basis, the report for the year ending December 31, 2023 will be due on or before September 30, 2024. Then, the annual report will be due on the same date in future years (in this example, September 30). Does your entity have a non-calendar year end? In that case, just take the ending date of your fiscal year and add nine months. Then, that same month and day will be your annual reporting date going forward.
How to Submit Your BVI Annual Return
To file your Annual Return, you must send the completed form to your Registered Agent, who will file with the BVI Registrar on your behalf. The Registered Agent is also responsible for informing the BVI Registrar if your entity does not comply. That non-filing status will be reported one month after your company’s deadline passes.
Penalties for Non Compliance
Compliance is mandatory, with very few exceptions. If you do not comply, the company will have failed the test of good standing and be subject to financial penalties. Continued noncompliance may result in the company being struck from the BVI Registrar of Companies or possibly even being dissolved by BVI authorities.
Exemptions from the Filing Requirement
All BVI companies must file an Annual Return unless they meet one of these reasons for exemption:
• The company is listed on a stock exchange.
• The company is regulated under BVI financial services legislation and provides financial statements to the BVI Financial Services Commission (FSC) per the requirements of that financial services legislation.
• The company submits its financial statements and annual tax returns to the BVI Inland Revenue Department.
• The company is undergoing liquidation, and the Annual Return is due after the liquidation process begins.
As you can see, staying compliant with BVI regulations is crucial for maintaining your company’s good standing. A well-prepared and timely Annual Return helps avoid penalties and ensures your business operates smoothly in the BVI jurisdiction.
Need Help with your BVI Reporting?
To help you save time and headaches, Linnovate Partners offers a BVI annual reporting service. Our team understands the requirements and can help you prepare and file your report accurately and efficiently.
Annual Return Preparation
Pressed for time? Let our experienced staff prepare the BVI Annual Return for you, letting you and your team focus on your other priorities.
Annual Return Filing
Whether you prepare the return or rely on our team to do it for you, we can ensure it is filed on time and correctly.
Don’t leave something as important as compliance to chance. Contact Linnovate Partners today so we can handle this for you quickly and efficiently.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT BVI ANNUAL RETURNS
What are the penalties for not filing the Annual Return on time?
Penalties start at USD 300 for the first month of delay and USD 200 for each subsequent month, up to a maximum of USD 5,000. Continued noncompliance may lead to the company being struck off the BVI Companies Register or even dissolved.
Is there a specific accounting standard required for the Annual Return?
The Act that created the requirement does not specify a particular accounting standard for the Annual Return, allowing companies some flexibility in their accounting methods. However, directors must ensure reasonable accuracy in representing the company’s financial position.
How can a company establish its financial year-end if it hasn’t done so already?
A company can set its financial year-end date through a simple board resolution. This is important for determining the due date for the Annual Return.
How does a company file the Annual Return?
The Annual Return must be filed privately with the company’s registered agent in the prescribed form. Although the return itself is not public, the registered agent must provide it to the BVI Financial Services Commission or a competent authority upon request.
What is the specific required format of the BVI Annual Report?
You can view the format here.
Need Help with BVI Annual Reporting?
Linnovate Partners makes navigating your BVI Annual Return requirement hassle-free. Contact us today for comprehensive support in preparing and filing your financial reports accurately and on time.