The provisions on anti-money laundering have been changed in accordance with EU standards. The amendment of the act of March 1, 2018 on counteracting money laundering and terrorist financing (the Act) implements EU Directive 2015/849 and establishes new obligations on reporting on beneficial owners to the Central Register of Beneficial Owners in Poland (Centralny Rejestr Beneficjentów Rzeczywistych) (the Register). The aim of the new regulations is to tighten up the tax system, as well as to provide protection of corporate transactions. The new beneficial owners obligations come into force on October 13, 2019.
Under the Act, the beneficial owner is the natural person or persons who are the ultimate owner of the client, or who control the client or the natural person or persons for whom or on behalf of whom the business relationship is established or an occasional transaction is carried out. In order to identify the beneficial owner of a company, it is required to determine whether there is any natural person who possesses direct, or indirect, at least 25% of the shares or voting rights in the company. If the beneficial owner cannot be determined on the basis of the above criteria, more complex analysis is required (in accordance with the rules provided by the Act).
The Register will be maintained in an IT system, publicly available, and will start working on October 13, 2019.