Warning on Scottish limited partnerships and PSC rules

Scottish limited partnerships may not be aware of extensions to the rules for the register of people with significant control (PSC), which come into effect from next month, warns Saffrey Champness 

The PSC reporting requirement came into force from 6 April 2016 and requires businesses to keep a register listing those people who have ‘significant control’ over any company or limited liability partnership (LLP).

Now, as part of the Fourth Money Laundering Directive coming into effect in June 2017, there are to be changes to the PSC regime that broaden its scope. From 24 July, Scottish limited partnerships will be required to register PSC information at Companies House for the first time.

In addition from the same date, general Scottish partnerships, where there is a limited company as a partner, will be required to register PSC information at Companies House. AIM listed companies will have to maintain a PSC register and file PSC information at Companies House.

From 26 June, the annual confirmation statement that replaced the old annual return will not be used to update the PSC register. This will need to be updated instead by separate forms, with a 28-day time limit set for changes to be notified and registered.

Jamie Younger, a partner at Saffery Champness, and a member of the firm’s landed estates group, said: ‘This is an unwelcome broadening of the PSC rules, and limited liability brings with it further erosion of privacy and more annual compliance.

‘On the surface, the whole concept may seem relatively simple, but it will require some thinking through - about how a business is run and who actually runs it, and Scottish limited partnerships (of which there are a large number in the farming sector) and Scottish general partnerships (with partners who have limited liability) must now file their PSC. 

‘Some people may not have been aware that there has, for some time, been a requirement for Scottish limited partnerships to register at Companies House. Furthermore, non-compliance is a criminal matter, and non-submission of timeous information is likely to incur a penalty.’

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