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Changes to the Trust Registration Service

Introduction

The Trust Registration Service (TRS) is a government register of the beneficial ownership of trusts. It was established initially for trusts where the trustees were liable to pay tax within the trust. However, new requirements have been introduced in alignment with the Fifth Money Laundering Directive proposals which now extend the scope of registering trusts on the UK Trust Register regardless of the trustees being liable to pay tax (with the exemption of some excluded trusts).


Non-Taxable express trusts

The main trusts associated with the new registration requirements are non-taxable express trusts. These trusts are predominately the main type of trust created to deal with Estate and Inheritance Tax planning and normally don’t have any tax charges (some potentially could have chargeable events). Under these new regulations all UK express trusts must be registered unless they ae specifically exempt.


When is the deadline for a trust to be registered?

The deadline for the registration of a non-taxable trust is the 1st September 2022.


Any new trusts established after the 1st June 2022 will have 90 days to be registered on the TRS.


Who can register the Trust?

HMRC have identified two key personnel who can register the trust. The trustees can register the trust, with one trustee being designated as the ‘lead trustee’ for HMRC correspondence and who is responsible for the trust being registered. An agent can also register the trust, however only if the agent operates as an accountancy service provider.


How to register the Trust


If the ‘lead trustee’ is registering the trust


The trustees must agree who is the ‘Lead Trustee’; who will be the point of contact for HMRC and will require an email address which will be used as the main point of contact. The lead trustee will need to:


  • obtain an Organisation Government Gateway ID and password.

  • when registered, if the trust is liable / trustees are liable to tax the lead trustee will be sent a Unique Taxpayer Reference.

  • the Unique Taxpayer Registration allows the lead trustee to file self-assessment tax returns on behalf of the trust.

  • If the trust isn’t liable for tax, the lead trustee can obtain the Unique Reference Number by logging back into the HMRC account following registration.

  • The lead trustee can obtain a PDF copy of the submission as proof or registration.

  • The lead trustee can also use the login details make any changes to the information submitted.


If an agent is registering the trust


  • for an agent to register the trust, the agent must be registered with HMRC as an agent and be registered with a supervisory authority for Anti Money Laundering purposes.

  • if the trust is liable for tax (trustees are liable for tax and not the settlor/beneficiaries), a Unique Taxpayer Reference will be issued to allow the agent to start filling tax returns for the trust.


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