Legal Alert – The Finnish Trade Register Reports Over 25% of New Limited Liability Companies Are Established On-line
As from December 2012, the Finnish Trade Register (of the National Board of Patents and Registration of Finland) has offered an e-service for establishing limited liability companies on-line. According to the Trade Register, the e-service had been used 1,679 times in the first six months of 2013. The e-service, which carries out all mandatory identity and legal competence checks on-line, offers a step-by-step guidance and automated creation of the Memorandum of Association and Articles of Association. The e-service requires from the user (as well as from each subscriber to shares, board member, managing director and possible auditor) a Finnish personal identification number and, for the purposes of online identification, personal online banking identification codes or an official ID chip card.
The overall ambition to expand the online services and possibilities to register information with the Finnish Trade Register electronically took a step forward with the introduction of an e-service for establishing limited liability companies online. The service has proved popular, as some 26 % of all new companies established in the first six months of 2013 utilized the service.
While the service provides accessible and simplified means to establish a Finnish Ltd, there are certain requirements that restrict the usability of the service. To log in to the e-service, and to sign the online Memorandum of Association of limited liability companies, a Finnish personal identity code and web banking identifiers are required from each signatory.
The company name, field of business, accounting period, domicile and possible auxiliary business names and their field of business are all information required to complete the Memorandum of Association and Articles of Association by the e-service.
The e-service is stated to be suitable for companies that:
- only require standard template Articles of Association;
- issue shares against a subscription price payable in cash (not consideration in kind);
- register the subscription price in its entirety as restricted share capital;
- have shareholders and board members with Finnish personal identification codes and web banking identifiers or official ID chip card;
- have authorized registered representatives or holders of power of procuration with Finnish personal identification codes.
Further, the e-service also allows the user to automatically register the company with the Tax Administration, and information required for determining advance tax can be provided simultaneously.
After the signing the online notice and paying the handling fee, the e-service will immediately issue the registration number and the company’s Business ID (for a company under registration).