A Trust is a legal arrangement where a Settlor transfers asset to a Trustee who will administer and manage the Trust for the benefit of beneficiaries. The Trustee will manage the Trust according to the wishes of the settlor. The wishes of the settlor are set out in writing in a Trust Deed or a Declaration of Trust.
A trust can be described as a fiduciary relationship in which one party, known as a settlor, gives another party, the trustee, the right to hold title to property or assets for the benefit of a third party, beneficiary.
Provision of a Money Laundering Reporting Officer (“MLRO”), Deputy Money Laundering Reporting Officer (“DMLRO”), and a Compliance officer where required
Trust is governed by Mauritius Trusts Act 2001.
It is one of the mostly used common vehicles for the holding of assets either for the benefit of beneficiaries or for charitable purposes.
Conditions of validity of a trust
*The trust property may not include immovable property in Mauritius in the case where the beneficial interest is held by a non-resident except where it has been approved by the Prime Minister.
A trust is absolutely confidential in Mauritius. There is no need to disclose to any authority that a trust has been formed. A trustee has a duty to keep the terms of the trust confidential unless required by law enforcement agencies.
Asset Protection Features
A resident trust is taxable at a flat rate of 15% on the income after deduction for expenses. Resident trusts may apply for a Global Business License.
A trust with non-resident settlor and beneficiaries may elect to be non-resident by the Mauritius Revenue Authority to be exempt from tax.
Migration of trust
A trust established outside Mauritius can be transferred to Mauritius for tax purposes. This has to be done by ensuring by the majority of trustees resident in Mauritius and the trust is managed in Mauritius. Depending on the terms of the original trust, the law of the trust can be amended to that of Mauritius by a simple declaration by the trustees in the deed.
A settlor is a person who vests property in the trust. A settlor may be one of the trustees, beneficiary, protector or enforcer of the trust but may not be the sole beneficiary.
One of the trustees must be a qualified trustee. A qualified trustee is a management company authorised to carry out trust services by the Financial Services Commission. The number of trustees must not exceed four.
A beneficiary of the trust must be clearly identified or identifiable. A list of beneficiaries or potential beneficiaries must be set out in the trust deed.
Duration of a trust
The duration of a trust cannot exceed 99 years. A charitable trust may be of perpetual duration. A non-charitable purpose trust shall limit its duration to 25 years.
Where an immovable property situated in Mauritius is vested in a trust, the accumulation period shall not exceed 25 years.
Forced heirship Provision
The Civil Code has been amended to ensure that the forced heirship provision only relate to trust settled by Mauritius subjects or trust settled to property situated in Mauritius and subject to Mauritius national laws.
The settlor of a discretionary trust gives to the trustee a letter of wishes which is used a guide to administer and manage the trust.
A discretionary trust allows for the amendment of the list of beneficiaries or potential beneficiaries.
A discretionary trust also allows for unequal distribution of the income and capital of the trust to the beneficiaries.
A purpose trust is created for a specific purpose and may not have any beneficiary. For a purpose trust to be valid, the trust deed shall provide for the appointment of an enforcer and his designated successor. The enforcer shall be capable of enforcing the trust. The enforcer shall be not a trustee of the trust. The trustee needs to be a qualified trustee.
A protective trust is used to protect the assets held in trust from a financially irresponsible beneficiary. The interest of a beneficiary of protective trust may be reduced, suspended or terminated if the beneficiary is declared bankrupt or the property of the beneficiary is liable to seizure.
A charitable trust may benefit privately one or more persons or objects within a class of persons not resident in Mauritius.
AAcapital International Limited is licensed by the Financial Services Commission to act as qualified trustee in Mauritius. Contact us to set up your trust in Mauritius.