We refer to our alert from June 2019 for guidance on the requirements of the Economic Substance (Companies and Limited Partnerships) Act, 2018 (the ES Act) and the definitions of Legal Entity, Relevant Activity and Financial Period.

On 10 October 2019 the British Virgin Islands International Tax Authority (the ITA) published the Rules on Economic Substance in the British Virgin Islands (the Rules). The Rules provided much welcomed clarification on the economic substance requirements, and are very similar to the draft guidelines published in August 2019.

We have prepared a compendium containing the updated ES Act, the Beneficial Ownership Secure Search System Act, and the Rules. It is available to you at the following link:


Commencing in 2020, all companies and limited partnerships with legal personality will need to make a filing to evidence satisfaction with economic substance requirements or to state that the entity is out of scope. The purpose of this alert is to provide preliminary details about the filings which will need to be made in 2020.

As well, it must be emphasised that all British Virgin Islands business companies and limited partnerships with legal personality which are Legal Entities carrying on a Relevant Activity are required to have established economic substance in the British Virgin Islands as of 30 June 2019.

Timing for Filings

For entities incorporated or formed prior to 1 January 2019, the first filing period starts on 30 June 2020 with the deadline for filing being 30 December 2020. We anticipate sending a further notice to these entities in July 2020 to begin the filing process. For entities incorporated or formed on or after 1 January 2019, the filing period starts on the anniversary of the date of incorporation with the deadline for filing being six months later. As a result, we anticipate sending notices to such entities commencing in January 2020. These notices will set out the exact filing process, but this alert provides an indication of the filing requirements.

BVI Economic Substance Calculator

We are delighted to provide you with Conyers’ economic substance calculator for BVI entities. It is a tool designed to help you quickly determine, using plain English, whether your entity is in or out of scope of the economic substance requirements.

Access Here

Robert J.D. Briant

Partner, Head of BVI Corporate Practice

British Virgin Islands

Anton Goldstein


British Virgin Islands

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