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Bermuda's Business & Economy Index

Local laws governing companies, corporations and their Annual or other registrations

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By Keith Archibald Forbes (see About Us) exclusively for Bermuda Online

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Applicable Bermuda (Not UK) Business Laws include:

Enacted by the Bermuda Legislature:

House of Assembly

House of Assembly, where all Bermuda laws are legislated

Blockchain Legal and Regulatory Working Group members

Blockchain Business Development Working Group.  Members:

American International Insurance CompanyClarendon House, HQ for manyInternational Insurance companies on Pitts Bay Road

Companies Annual Fees due in January and March each year

As published in a mid-January edition of Bermuda's The Royal Gazette daily newspaper. 

These are upfront fees, paid irrespective of whether companies are successes or failures, with no refunds applicable in the event of liquidations and with no tax rebates of any kind. They are in addition to other tax obligations applicable to employers.

This is not a substitute, merely a summary, with their responsibility entirely to comply with the right procedure, for companies under The Companies Act 1981; Companies Amendment (No. 2) Act 1990; The Companies Act 1981 (Fifth Schedule) Amendment Order 1994; The Banks and Deposit Companies (Fees) Act 1975; Insurance Act 1978; Non-Resident Insurance Undertaking Act; Exempted Partnerships Act 1992; Overseas Partnerships Act 1995; Trust Companies Act 1981; and Segregated Accounts Companies Act 2000 and its Amendment Act 2002.

Companies should check to see what fees apply from April 1 annually - the start of the new accounting year for the Bermuda Government. Every company should use its registration number on all correspondence with the Bermuda Government and when making any purchases. Every company must notify the Registrar of Companies, at the Government Administration Building, 30 Parliament Street, Hamilton HM 12, Bermuda, of its registered office, which cannot be a post office box, on Form 13.

General Notes re paying fees

Warwick Long Bay

Warwick Long Bay

Exempted or international companies 

In other words, not locally owned or majority locally owned. Every company shall, in the month of January, forward to the Registrar of Companies a declaration signed on behalf of the company as to the company's principal business and its assessable capital, together with the appropriate fee payable. Fees submitted after the due date carry a penalty.

Fifth Schedule.

Where the assessable capital of the exempted company is as follows, specific fees apply:

Assessable capital shall be calculated in accordance with the provisions of the Companies Amendment (No. 2) Act.

1-2. Where the exempted company has been designated as a Foreign Sales Corporation (FSC) under the Internal Revenue Code of the USA:

And has submitted to the Registrar a certified copy of the document which evidences such designation, specific fees apply:

Overseas (Permit) Companies

Specific fees apply:

Local Companies 

Excludes banks & deposit companies, treated separately.

They are those which are at least 60 percent locally owned and trade locally with Bermudians and other residents.

Specific fees apply where the issued capital is: 

Exempted & Overseas Companies

When the company engages in or is carrying on in Bermuda or trading in petroleum or and other oils or liquefied petroleum gas, specific fees apply:

When the company's business includes the management of any unit trust scheme, in respect of each unit trust scheme managed by the company at the date of the declarations.

Plus any other applicable fees.

Exempted Partnerships

Under the Limited Partnerships Act 1883 (as amended) and Exempted Partnerships Act 1992 (as amended). A notice is published in the Official Gazette by the  attorney for the applicant when an exempted limited partnership is formed.  It shows by whom and gives its name.

Every partner shall be liable to a penalty per day if the partnership fails to pay the annual fee on time and fails to file a declaration.

Overseas Partnerships

Non-Resident Insurance Undertakings (NRIU)

Import tariffs (Revised Bermuda Customs Tariff Code)

 The Customs Tariff Amendment Act applies. It is a 540-page list of special codes for every imaginable type of imported product and it provides for Customs Officers the rate of Customs or import duty on the item. The revised code consists of up to seven digits in heading and tariff code fields and a detailed description of the item to be imported or exported. It also includes the unit to be used for calculating the duty, whether the value of the item or its quantity or weight. Some items, like alcohol, are calculated by the liter. Some other items, like cigarettes,  are calculated by the cigarette.

Insurance Companies Business Fees

Insurance companies registered in accordance with the provisions of The Insurance Act 1978 shall forward the appropriate annual business fee applicable to each category on or before March 31.

(a) (i) Non-resident Insurance Undertaking

(ii) Class 1 Insurer carrying on general business

(iii) Class 2 Insurer carrying on general business

(iv) Class 3 Insurer carrying on general business

(v) Class 4 Insurer carrying on general business

(vi) Long Term Insurer

(vii) Class 1 Insurer carrying on general business and long-term business

(viii) Class 2 Insurer carrying on general business and long-term business

(ix) Class 3 Insurer carrying on general business and long-term business

(x) Class 4 Insurer carrying on general business and long-term business

(b) An insurance manager under Section 10 of the Insurance Act

(c) An insurance broker under Section 10 of the Insurance Act

(d) An insurance agent under Section 10 of the Insurance Act

(e) An insurance salesman under Section 10 of the Insurance Act

Investment Companies

Investment Business Act 1998 applies. Local Investment Companies must be granted a license to carry on investment business in Bermuda within the meaning of section 2 of the Act, before they can sell their services. Licenses carry specific fees:

Licensed Companies


Deposit Companies

Trust Companies

Public Trusts (Regulation of Trust Business) Act 2001

Regulates all trust companies. Came into force on 25 January 2002, replacing the Trust Companies Act 1991.Licensing is a requirement.

Medical Practitioners Act 1950

To register a medical practitioner in Bermuda under section 7, specific fees apply:

Segregated Accounts Companies (SACs)

In addition to the annual fee or tax otherwise payable, these companies pay an annual fee in respect of each segregated account operated by the company, subject to a maximum fee in the aggregate. A segregated account company is one with separate cells or accounts created where assets and liabilities in each cell or account are completely ring-fenced. For example, for a split rights deal in a recording or theatrical company, one cell has sound recording receipts and the other has theatrical and merchandising receipts.

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Last Updated: May 22, 2019
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