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FAQs

 

Are all insurance companies required to have Insurance Managers?

Only captive insurers are mandated to appoint and and at all times have an insurance manager.

A foreign insurer is required to have a representative in the BVI if it does not operate a branch in the BVI. The representative may be licensed either as an insurance agent or insurance manager.

What are the minimum requirements for a Company Management Licence?

The minimum requirements for obtaining a Company Management Licence are: proven company management experience, a minimum paid up capital of twenty five thousand dollars (US$25,000) and physical presence in the British Virgin Islands. The application fee is two hundred dollars (US$200). Special Note: These requirements are by no means exhaustive.

Note: A consensus has now emerged that only in circumstances where the institution concerned is of blue chip international stature and renown, whose presence in the jurisdiction would be a fillip to the reputation of the BVI as a situs for conduct of international business; or where the institution concerned will be providing additional services not currently provided within the jurisdiction, will company management licences be granted to companies other than companies with local ownership and a physical presence here in the BVI. In both cases, the company is expected to establish its own physical presence and apply for a general trust licence within two years of the grant of the licence. All other interests will initally have to apply for a General Trust Licence.

What are the different types of banking licences issued by the British Virgin Islands?

There are three banking licences issued under the Banks and Trust Companies Act, 1990; a General Banking Licence, a Restricted Class I Banking Licence and a Restricted Class II Banking Licence.

Who is a General Trust Licence holder?

A General Trust Licence holder is an entity which holds a valid general trust licence as prescribed by the Banks and Trust Companies Act, 1990 and enables the holder to carry on trust business without restrictions. Trust business as defined by this Act means "the business of (a) acting as a professional trustee, protector or administrator of a trust or settlement, (b) managing or administering any trust or settlement, and (c) company management as defined by the Company Management Act, 1990.

How are documents from VIRRGIN signed?

Official documents issued by the FSC will be issued by hard copy original and bear an electronically affixed signature.

Can Foreign Character Names be submitted separately?

For existing name reservations, please add foreign character names PRIOR to submission for incorporation. Foreign Character Names cannot be submitted separately except for Change of Name filings. For applications with foreign character names that were not attached to the name reservation, prior to 29 January 2007, please send foreign characters to foreigncharacters@bvifsc.vg

What happens if a company does not appoint a registered agent within the prescribed time?

Failure by a company to appoint a registered agent within the prescribed timeframe means that the company cannot effect any transaction which under the Act can be effected only by a registered agent. In addition, the company may be in violation of its obligations under the Act and is therefore liable to be struck off the Register.

Can the owners of disabled bearer shares in a grandfathered bearer share company submit them to the company and request their exchange for registered shares?

The option of converting or exchanging an existing bearer share of a grandfathered bearer share company to a registered share expired on the transition date. After the transition date the existing bearer shares became disabled and the rights attaching to them were extinguished. In the circumstances, a disabled bearer share may not be exchanged for or converted to a registered share.

Is there a separate fee payable for the approval to appoint directors, senior officers, functionaries or auditors where the approval forms part of an application for licensing, registration or recognition?

As the processing of new applications under SIBA involves the assessment of the applicant’s directors, senior officers, functionaries and auditors, a separate fee is not payable for approval of the appointment.

What is the minimum margin of solvency requirement for an insurer?

Insurer Minimum Solvency Margin

General Insurers

written premiums less than $500,000 $100,000

written premiums $500,000-$5,000,000 20% of annual net written premium

written premium greater than $5,000,000 $1,000,000 PLUS 10% of difference

difference between annual net written premium and $5,000,000

Long-term Insurers $250,000

the prescribed minimum solvency margin is $100,000;

  • if the insurer’s annual net written premium is greater than $500,000, but less than $5,000,000, the prescribed minimum solvency margin is 20% of the annual net written premium;
  • if the insurer’s annual net written premium is greater than $5,000,000, the prescribed minimum solvency margin is $1,000,000 plus 10% of the difference between the annual net written premium and $5,000,000.

Long-term insurers - the prescribed minimum solvency margin is $250,000

What are the minimum requirements for a General Trust Licence?

The minimum requirements for obtaining a General Trust Licence are: a minimum paid up capital of two hundred and fifty thousand dollars (US$250,000), proven trust experience and the applicant must satisfy our "fit and proper" criteria. Special Note: These requirements are by no means exhaustive.

In addition, an applicant who receives written confirmation that the granting of a general trust licence has been approved is required to make the following investment deposits:

  • Twenty thousand dollars (US$20,000.) where the licensee provides registered agent services for no companies, or for companies not exceeding 1,500 in number; or
  • Forty thousand dollars (US$40,000.) where the licensee provides registered agent services for companies exceeding 1,500 in number.

What are the minimum requirements for a General Banking Licence?

The minimum requirements for obtaining a General Banking Licence are: proven banking experience, a minimum paid up capital of two million dollars (US$2,000,000), physical presence in the British Virgin Islands and the applicant must meet our "fit and proper" criteria. Special Note: These requirements are by no means exhaustive.

Further, an applicant who receives written confirmation that the grant of a General Banking licence has been approved is required to make a deposit or investment of five hundred thousand dollars (US$500,000).

What is the VIRRGIN service?

VIRRGIN is the FSC's internet based information network that provides on-line electronic access to the services of the Registry of Corporate Affairs including full electronic filing of all documents.

What should I put in Agent's Title on the VIRRGIN Registration Form?

Please fill in the job title of the Agent Representative completing that section of the form.

Can I submit filings for IBCs or in an unapproved format?

All companies on the Register are BVI Business Companies or Local (Cap. 285) companies. Filings for IBCs or filings not in the BC approved format will not be accepted.

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