Actual beneficial owners will be registered from 1 July 2019

The Finnish Patent and Registration Office (PRH) will start registering details about the actual beneficial owners of companies and organisations on 1 July 2019.

The details of beneficial owners for companies will be entered in the Finnish Trade Register, for foundations in the Finnish Register of Foundations, and for associations in the Finnish Register of Associations.

When must the details be filed?

Companies must file a notification of their beneficial owners with the Trade Register during the period from 1 July 2019 to 1 July 2020, and after that whenever the details change.

You cannot file the details for registration before July 2019.

Who is a beneficial owner?

The Finnish Act on Money Laundering defines beneficial owner as a person who either owns a company or otherwise exercises control over the company. Those who meet any of the following requirements are considered as beneficial owners:

  • The person owns directly or indirectly more than 25 percent of the company shares.
  • The person holds directly or indirectly more than 25 percent of the voting rights in the company.
  • The person exercises actual control over the company or organisation on other grounds.

Indirect ownership or use of voting right refers to a situation where the person controls the company through another company. Other grounds may refer to a partnership agreement, for example.

Companies are each responsible for identifying their beneficial owners. The PRH will not determine the beneficial owners of any company or organisation.

Which companies must file a notification of their beneficial owners?

Some companies must file a notification of their beneficial owners for registration. Certain companies and organisations do not file such a notification.

Companies liable to file
a notification of beneficial owners
Companies liable
to file a notification only
if the beneficial owner is not a partner
Companies and organisations
not liable to file a notification of beneficial owners
limited liability company,
public limited company
general partnership listed company
co-operative limited partnership private trader
mutual insurance company,
public mutual insurance company

housing company
savings bank mutual real estate limited company
co-operative bank association
tenant-owners' society
foundation
insurance association
religious community
European economic interest grouping
mortgage society
European company (Societas Europaea)
insurance company,
public insurance company

The branch of a foreign trader must file a notification of beneficial owners in accordance with the legislation of the trader’s home country.

General partnerships and limited partnerships do not usually have to file a notification of beneficial owners. Notification is required only if the beneficial owner is not a partner in the company.

Housing companies, mutual real estate limited companies, foundations, religious communities and associations do not file a notification.

How to file a notification

Filing the details of beneficial owners is free of charge.

File your notification of beneficial owners using the online service at ytj.fi from 1 July 2019. Any changes to the details should also be filed online.

Please note that the online service is available in Finnish and in Swedish.

To use the online service, you need to have a Finnish personal identity code and either personal internet banking codes or a mobile certificate or an electronic identity card (HST card).

The notification must be signed by the same person who signs the company’s other notifications to the Trade Register, for example a member of the board of directors, the managing director or a general partner.

A company can authorise a representative so that he or she can file a notification on behalf of your company. Give authorisations using the online service at ytj.fi. Read more about how to authorise online at ytj.fi.

What details are registered about beneficial owners ?

The following details are entered in the register:

  • name
  • Finnish personal identity code, or date of birth
  • citizenship
  • home country
  • municipality of residence
  • grounds for and extent of the control or the share of ownership.

We disclose the details of beneficial owners from the Trade Register to parties using the information in accordance with the Act on Money Laundering.

Why are beneficial owners registered?

The Finnish Act on Money Laundering and the underlying EU directive on money laundering require that companies and organisations

  • identify their actualbeneficial owners
  • file the beneficial owners’ details for registration, and
  • keep the details up to date.

See the legislation for more information

Actual beneficial owner is defined in chapter 1, sections 5–7 of the Finnish Act on Money Laundering.

Provisions on registering the actual beneficial owners of companies are laid down in the Finnish Trade Register Act.

Provisions on registering the executive committee members of associations are laid down in the Finnish Associations Act.

Provisions on registering the members of the committee of directors in religious communities are laid down in the Finnish Freedom of Religion Act.

Provisions on registering the members of the board of trustees and the supervisory board in foundations are laid down in the Finnish Foundations Act.

Read more in the reference database of Finnish legislation Finlex:

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Latest update 03.05.2019