Beneficial Ownership

The EU has legislated for numerous Anti-Money Laundering Directives (AMLD) with the purpose of preventing the use of the financial system for money laundering and terrorist financing. As a result of this, in the Republic of Ireland, Statutory Instrument 110 of 2019 was introduced which requires companies to maintain an internal register of their beneficial owners. As of 22nd March 2019 this information is to be filed with the Central Register of Beneficial Ownership (RBO).

What is the purpose of the RBO?

The purpose of the RBO is to improve corporate trust and transparency in Ireland and the EU by making it clear to law enforcement agencies, regulators, obliged entities, other businesses and the public about who ultimately owns and controls Irish companies and industrial and provident societies. This register is a standalone register separate from the CRO/RFS registers.

Who is a Beneficial Owner?

A beneficial owner, as defined in Article 3(6) 4AMLD, is “any natural person(s) who ultimately owns or controls a legal entity, either through direct or indirect ownership of a sufficient percentage of shares or voting rights or ownership interest in the entity, including through bearer shareholdings, or through control via other means. In other words:

  • ownership (directly or indirectly) of more than 25% of the company/society’s shares
  • controlling (directly or indirectly) more than 25% of the company/society’s voting rights
  • control via other means, including the exercise of dominant influence or the power to appoint senior management

The beneficial owner must be a natural person(s). Therefore, in the case of a relevant entity being a subsidiary owned by another corporate entity, any person(s) controlling 25% plus one share of the parent entity is the beneficial owner of the subsidiary.

Registering a Beneficial Owner

There are no paper forms however the RBO website allows registration of beneficial owners free of charge. The following information is required for each beneficial owner:

  • Company / Society Name:
  • Company / Society Number:
  • Surname:
  • Forename(s):
  • Date of Birth:
  • PPS Number
  • Nationality
  • Country of Residence:
  • Statement of the nature & extent of interest held:
  • Statement of the nature & extent of control exercised:
  • Residential Address:
  • Eircode (optional):
  • Date of entry as beneficial owner:
  • Date of cessation as beneficial owner:
  • Presenter Details:
  • Name of presenter:
  • Address of presenter:
  • Phone number of presenter:
  • e-Mail address of presenter:
  • Capacity in which the presenter is acting: (eg officer/employee of company/ society, person acting on behalf of the company/society etc).
  • If the presenter is not a natural person, please enter the name, address, phone number and e-mail address of a natural person for correspondence purposes.


A fine of up to €500,000 is applicable for information is not filed by 22nd November 2019 and there is also a provision for imprisonment up to 12 months.

For more information on the incorporation of an Irish company, give us a call on 028 9055 9955 or contact us via our website.