Belize is a well-known jurisdiction in the offshore business world, and the only destination that is known better is the British Virgin Islands. Belize is appreciated for the affordable price of company registration and a common-law legal framework favorable to non-resident businesses. It is also a destination that offers bulletproof asset protection on an absolutely lawful basis: it does not recognize the decisions of foreign courts, so your creditors will have a hard time trying to get your money. The world’s banks are often reluctant to cooperate with offshore companies, but they make an exception for Belize, which is a sign of respect for the jurisdiction. If you are interested in more details or you think you may need help, read a more detailed article on setting up an IBC or an LLC with expert assistance.

Some Preliminary Details About Belize Companies

First of all, you may be happy to find out that establishing a Belize company from scratch is not the only option available as you can also start your business tomorrow by buying a ready-made company with a fully functional bank account! If this is exactly what you need, simply click on the link to see how you can do that.

Second, Belize is a great jurisdiction when it comes to confidentiality, but you will need to take a few precautions to fully benefit. You will need to engage a professional (nominee) director, and in this case, your name as a beneficial owner will not appear in any company documents. 

Finally, Belize may be interesting for startups that do their business online as they will receive a lot of perks.

Belize: Overview

Belize is a former British colony located in the heart of the Caribbean that borders Mexico and Guatemala. There are three major cities here: 

  • Belize City (the country’s commercial capital)
  • Belmopan (it is a place where the LLC/IBC registries are located, and it is also the seat of the local government)
  • Corozal (a city with a major free trade zone)

The present-day Belize is a great place for offshore company registration, but it is also an excellent banking jurisdiction as its financial institutions can compete with the best American and European banks. If you set up a company in Belize, you are under no obligation to set up a corporate account here, but it is a very quick option you can take advantage of.

Belize boasts political and economic stability, and the risk rate of its banks is moderate, making it a good place for keeping your savings. The local currency is pegged to the US dollar (2:1), which adds to the jurisdiction’s stability. The bank accounts are usually opened in US dollars, but other currencies are also available. There are ready-made bank accounts opened in a matter of hours that come with convenient online banking (follow the link for more details). 

What about taxation? Well, Belize offers a standard offshore option: the companies registered here are tax-exempt if they generate 100% of their income abroad. LLCs are considered pass-through entities, so they are not subject to any taxation. The situation with IBCs is somewhat different and changes quickly, so you’d better click on the above link and use the live chat to ask an expert for updates. You may be unsure whether you need an LLC or an IBC, and this is a question you can ask as well.

If you decide to set up an IBC, please keep in mind that you will need to contribute a standard initial capital of 50,000 US dollars to register the company (it is usually divided into 50,000 shares with a par value of USD 1).

Here are the main features of Belize LLCs and IBCs:

  • Directors and shareholders can be individuals or legal entities.
  • You will need at least one director and one owner.
  • One person can combine the director’s and the shareholder’s positions.
  • You must take care of a registered office and a registered agent.
  • You are not required to have a company secretary.
  • You will need to pay an annual extension fee to continue your company’s activities into the next year. 
  • There is no need to visit Belize to set up a company.
  • You are required to properly keep the company’s books.
  • You need to hold meetings of directors/shareholders, and they can take place anywhere in the world (any online means of communication will be valid). You can keep minutes anywhere in the world.
  • You can get a ready-made account with a Belize bank on the same day if you successfully pass the due diligence procedure.

Corporate Documents

Upon completion of your Belize company registration, you will receive the following package of documents:

  • Articles of Incorporation and By-Laws for your Belize LLC/IBC
  • Certificate of Incorporation
  • Minutes of the first meeting where a director/manager is appointed for your Belize IBC/LLC
  • List (Register) of directors
  • List (Register) of shareholders
  • Resignation letter of the nominee director with signature but without a particular date
  • Set of copies of corporate documents
  • Declaration of Trust (if you need a nominee shareholder for an extra fee)
  • Share Certificate(s) in the name of the nominee shareholder or in your name

Belize LLC/IBC Incorporation Procedure

Let’s look at the steps you need to take to get a fully operational company:

  • You need to make sure that Belize is the right destination for you and choose between an LLC or an IBC. If you have any doubts, follow the above link to find articles that will help you with the choice or ask questions using the live chat (it’s free).
  • Decide whether you are going to take all the steps on your own or you want to delegate it to professionals and concentrate on your business. Weigh carefully whether your legal competencies are sufficient.
  • Find a registered agent (this is mandatory).
  • Collect the required package of documents and have them translated/notarized/apostilled if necessary.
  • Choose a name for your company that will resonate with your target audience and will sound relevant as you expand your business.
  • Follow the registered agent’s requirements.

Interested? Do not hesitate to ask your questions and discuss the prospects of your business with professionals!