Why would I need my offshore company documents certified by Apostille?

This certification is necessary to formally enable the usage of the corporate documents worldwide. Documents issued and notarized in one country are generally acceptable only locally. To make an official document legally acceptable abroad, the second-tier certification – the Apostille – must be obtained. Without Apostille there will be little use of the documents of an offshore company, as soon as they are outside its country of incorporation.

When do I pay the company annual renewal (maintenance) fee?

Maintenance fees are paid every year after the first year of incorporation. In Cyprus, Gibraltar, Marshall Islands, New Zealand, Seychelles and UK, it is paid on the anniversary of the date of incorporation. In Belize, BVI and Panama it is payable on January 1st or if incorporated in the second half of the year it is payable on the 1st of July. 
USA companies’ renewal dates vary depending on a state; please contact us for more information.

What is a Nominee Shareholder or Nominee Director, and why should I use them?

A nominee Shareholder or Director is a third party who allows his/her name to be used in place of the real or beneficial owner and director of the company. The nominee is advised particularly in those jurisdictions where the names of the officers are part of a public record. The name of the nominee will appear and ensure the privacy of the beneficial owner. More detail is available on request.

What is a Certificate of Good Standing?

This Certificate is issued by the Company Registry to verify that a company or a corporation actually exists, has paid all its statutory dues, has met all filing requirements and, therefore, is authorized to transact business.

What is a Beneficial owner?

Beneficial owner is the true owner of a company. It is one who ultimately controls and manages the affairs of a company, and receives the profits.


Will I be able to set up a European company as a non EU resident?

Yes, all countries in Europe allow non-EU residents to expand their business into Europe.

Why do I need to obtain an EU VAT number?

This is required to import goods into the EU and to trade in the EU.

Why do I need to obtain an EU VAT number?

This is required to import goods into the EU and to trade in the EU.

Why do I need an apostilled set of documents?

You will require apostilled set of documents if you plan to open a bank account in a country other than the country of incorporation. Most banks require the company charter documents to have an apostille guaranteeing them to be authentic documents. 

What is the most recommended jurisdiction for operations in 'New Europe'?

Our choice would certainly be Latvia. Being a link between East and West, Latvia is a most attractive financial and trading location to facilitate business operations based in both CIS and Western countries. 


  • Member of European Union
  • Fixed low corporate tax rate of 15%
  • Latvian companies can have a European VAT number
  • Highly sophisticated banking system within Eastern Europe
  • Centralized location between Russia and Western Europe
  • Relatively low incorporation and maintenance fees
  • Russian-speaking accountants and bankers 



What is your standard procedure of helping to open a corporate bank account?

Please see our Terms of Business at http://www.ibc.lv/en/top/terms-business/. The bottom half provides a step-by-step description of a bank account opening procedure.

How long it usually take to open bank account?

The fastest timeframe is 1 week once all necessary forms have been completed. The standard timeframe is 2-4 weeks.

How can I open a bank account for an old offshore company bought elsewhere?

We require all originals of apostilled documents of the company including recent Certificate of Good Standing and POA in the original format. We will review documents, and provided they’re accepted, we will proceed with the standard procedure mentioned in the FAQ above. 
*** Additional fee of 200 USD applies.

Can I open retail or investments accounts with your help?

Yes, we assist our clients to open both types of accounts, depending on their needs.

Can I open bank account for a US company?

Yes, US companies are accepted by banks in most European countries except the Baltic states.


What would be regarded as a commercial activity?

Any deal involving some sort of value transfer would be considered a commercial activity of a company. Examples: agreements, loans, sale of goods or services.

What do we need to determine the price of reports?

In order to give you a price quote regarding report preparation we need to see your bank account statement or have a detailed description of the commercial activity during the fiscal year.

What are the benefits of submitting reports?

Nowadays most EU jurisdictions provide a possibility to check the status of companies incorporated in their registers. It might be the case that your client or partner wants to do business only with companies which submit financial reports and appear active on registers. In that case your company would look much better in the eyes of potential clients, suppliers and government institutions.

How much does preparation and submission of financial reports cost?

Minimum prices start at £ 650 – 700 for UK companies and US$ 1000 for Cyprus companies. Preparation cost is based on the number of transactions per year and complexity.

How long does it take to prepare reports in UK, Cyprus and other jurisdictions?

Report preparation and submission usually takes somewhere around 2-3 months.


Which jurisdiction do I choose for my business?

It is best to follow the same approach as above, i.e. consider the general points (see below), and then come to see us for a personal consultation and professional advice:


  • Complexity of registration (can the company be registered remotely or personal visit needed?)
  • Where your trading activities take place
  • VAT registration and tax rates
  • Bureaucracy
  • Accounting/renewal costs
  • Prestige factor
  • Timeframes 


What is the best structure of company for my business?

New alternatives and routes are coming up all the time, and there always is an aspiring match for every enterpreneur. To discuss the specifics of your business operations, you can visit our offices personally or work with us remotely. Together, we will select the legal form and structure of company that will be tailored to meet your needs: solutions are always available!

What is a Shelf company?

This is a term we use to denote a company that we have already registered in a certain jurisdiction and that we keep „on shelf” in our offices, ready for immediate sale. When buying a shelf company, you can save time and hassle.

European vs Offshore company - how to make the right choice for my situation?

Below we list some factors which usually serve as incentives for clients to open a company either within the European Union or offshore. They are very general, but still quite helpful.

Why incorporate in Europe?


  • Prestige
  • Trading within the EU
  • EU VAT number
  • 0% VAT for cross border transactions
  • Tax planning tool 



Why incorporate offshore?


  • Safeguard assets 
  • Manage risk 
  • Maintain confidentiality 
  • Avoid bureaucracy 
  • Reduce operational costs and tax burden 




If these reasons alone are not enough to make a decision, the next best approach would be:
  • write down a list of business issues that you would like to solve
  • create a list of goals that you want to achieve
  • and then send it to us or come to our offices for a consultation!
 Together with yourself, we will analyze your case and help you make the right choice. Please note that the initial consultation is free of charge, but any more in-dept consultation will be for a fee only.
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