If you are an Irish company or a co-operative society, you may have heard of the term RBO. But what exactly is RBO and why is it important for your business? In this blog, we will explain everything you need to know about RBO, including what it is, why it is important, who needs to register with it, what information is required, how to register, what are the deadlines and penalties, and how to access and search the RBO register. We will also show you how Peak Accounting Solutions can help you with RBO compliance.
What is RBO?
RBO stands for the Central Register of Beneficial Ownership of Companies and Industrial and Provident Societies. It is a statutory register that collects and stores information on the natural persons who are the ultimate beneficial owners of Irish companies and co-operative societies.
A beneficial owner is someone who owns or controls more than 25% of the shares, voting rights, or interest in a company or co-op, or who has the power to appoint or remove directors or managers.
Why is RBO important?
RBO is important because it helps to prevent and combat money laundering and terrorist financing. Money laundering is the process of concealing the origin of illegal funds, while terrorist financing is the provision of funds for terrorist activities.
Both of these activities pose serious threats to the security and stability of the global financial system. By collecting and disclosing information on the beneficial owners of Irish companies and co-ops, RBO aims to increase transparency and accountability in the corporate sector and to assist law enforcement authorities in tracing and confiscating illicit assets.
Who needs to register with RBO?
All Irish companies and cooperative societies that are registered with the Companies Registration Office (CRO) need to register with RBO unless they are exempted by law.
Exempted entities include companies listed on a regulated market, companies that are subject to equivalent disclosure requirements in another jurisdiction, or companies that are owned by exempted entities.
If you are not sure whether your company or cooperative society needs to register with RBO, you can contact Peak Accounting Solutions for professional advice.
What information is required for RBO?
The information that is required for RBO includes the following details of each beneficial owner:
- Full name
- Date of birth
- Residential address
- PPS number (or foreign equivalent)
- Date of entry as a beneficial owner
- Date of cessation as a beneficial owner (if applicable)
- Nature and extent of ownership or control
How to register with RBO?
To register with RBO, you need to follow these steps:
- Create and maintain an internal register of your beneficial owners. You can use a template provided by the CRO or create your own format.
- File your internal register with the RBO online portal. You will need a digital signature certificate from ROS or a verified MyGovID account to access the portal.
- Verify the PPS numbers of your beneficial owners. You will receive an email from the Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection (DEASP) with instructions on how to do this.
- Update your internal register and file it with the RBO whenever there are changes in your beneficial ownership information.
What are the deadlines and penalties for RBO?
The deadlines for registering with RBO depend on when your company or co-operative society was incorporated.
For companies incorporated before June 22, 2019, the deadline was November 22, 2019. For companies incorporated after June 22, 2019, the deadline is five months from the date of incorporation.
For cooperative societies incorporated before August 1, 2020, the deadline was April 1, 2021. For co-ops incorporated after August 1, 2020, the deadline is five months from the date of incorporation.
The penalties for not complying with RBO include fines of up to €5,000 for individuals and €500,000 for companies or co-ops. In addition, failure to register with RBO may result in delays or rejections in opening bank accounts, applying for loans, or obtaining government grants.
How to access and search the RBO register?
The RBO register is accessible to the public on the RBO website. However, not all information on the beneficial owners is disclosed. The public can only view the name, month and year of birth, country of residence, nationality, and nature and extent of ownership or control of each beneficial owner.
The full date of birth, residential address, and PPS number are only available to certain competent authorities such as Revenue Commissioners, Garda Síochána, Central Bank of Ireland, etc.
To search the RBO register, you need to enter either the company number or the co-op number of the entity you are interested in. You can also use advanced search options such as name, address, or Eircode of the entity. You will then see a list of matching results, and you can click on the entity name to view the beneficial ownership information.
How Peak Accounting Solutions can help you with RBO?
RBO compliance can be a complex and time-consuming process for many Irish companies and co-ops. That is why you need the help of Peak Accounting Solutions, a leading provider of Irish company formation services. We have the expertise and experience to assist you with all aspects of RBO compliance, including:
- Identifying your beneficial owners and their ownership or control details
- Creating and maintaining your internal register of beneficial owners
- Filing your internal register with the RBO online portal
- Verifying the PPS numbers of your beneficial owners
- Updating your internal register and filing it with the RBO whenever there are changes
- Accessing and searching the RBO register for any information you need
With Peak Accounting Solutions, you can rest assured that your RBO compliance is in good hands. Contact us today to find out more about our RBO services and how we can help you.