Company in Estonia
 

Starting a financial institution company in Estonia

with in area of advisory services

 

1. About license   |   2. Requirements   |   3. Timeframe  |   4. Opening bank account   |   5. Taxation   |   6. Token types   |   8. Inquiry forms

 
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Provision of advice to clients


1. The main service is to provide advice to clients dealing in the financial field, i.e. crypto, Forex etc.


The client must describe what they are providing advice in regards of and the AML rules will be formed accordingly.


General information about the above-mentioned license


The operating licence is issued by the Estonian Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU), which is an independent structural unit of the Estonian Police and Border Guard Board. Link
It is possible to apply for this license together with the crypto licenses as well. When applied together, two or more applications must be submitted and two or more licenses are issued.
The main acts that regulate the activity can be found here.


The company is qualified as a Financial Institution, but has no special reporting requirements to tax authorities. Accounting must be done like for any other company. No special reporting to the regulator is needed, but FIU can always make precepts and inquiries about the company's activities. You may find Financial Intelligence Unit's advisory guidelines here.


§ 75.  Revocation of authorisation/license

In addition to the grounds provided for in subsection 1 of § 37 of the General Part of the Economic Activities Code Act, the Financial Intelligence Unit will revoke authorization specified in subsection 1 of § 70 of this Act where:

  1. the Financial Supervision Authority has granted authorisation to the undertaking;

  2. the undertaking repeatedly fails to follow the precepts of the supervisory authority;

  3. the undertaking has not commenced operation in the requested field of activity within six months from the issue of the authorisation.


Refusals

As per June 20th. 2018, our clients have received 4 refusals because of one or more reasons listed below

  1. There is a foreign corporate shareholder (offshore), which can't present criminal records

  2. Related persons have a U.S.A. citizenship. Our experience shows that it is difficult to get a criminal record certificate from the U.S.A., which is compliant to the FIU requirements

  3. Related persons have had a criminal record in the past

 
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Requirements


  1. Documents presented to officials

  • Certificate of the register of convictions (a.k.a. criminal record) for all related persons (shareholders, board members, ultimate beneficiary owners and responsible person)

  • Passport copies of all above mentioned persons

As a rule all documents must be in English (or Russian) and certified with an apostille. These documents may not be older than 3 month. It is also required to present rules of procedure for AML purposes. Usually this is prepared by KRM Advisor. Officials have the right to ask for additional information and they often ask:

  • CV-s of related persons

  • Description of planned activities


2. License obtaining process

To apply for the above mentioned license(s), it must be done via a company registered in Estonia or through a registered branch office of a foreign company in Estonia. As a rule, we suggest to use a local company not a branch office, as branch registration is clearly a more complicated task.

When a local company is registered and all required documents collected, we will pay the state fee of 345 EUR and apply for the license(s).

During  the licence application process we also assist in current matters, as authorities often have additional questions or they need some clarifications.


3. FIU meeting request since 17 April 2019

The FIU has a new policy regarding the crypto licensing process, both for the new applications and also for changing the current licenses.

They now have a right to invite the FIU contact person/compliance officer (responsible person) for a face to face meeting before granting any license(s). The goal is to confirm that the person in charge is familiar with the AML rules of procedure, relevant Estonian laws and obligations to notify the FIU in case of money laundering or terrorism financing suspicion.

In case the FIU contact person/compliance officer is not in the structure of the company (in the board or shareholding), the FIU wants to see a clear employment relation between the him and the company. Inability to fulfil this requirement has been a reason for a FIU negative decision.

In case of a meeting request, the client has 30 days to travel to Estonia and meet the FIU. The protocol and the licensing decision are both issued after the meeting. In case the client cannot come to Estonia within the given deadline, the FIU automatically closes the case and gives a negative answer. 

The meeting lasts approx. 2 hours and it will be conducted in Estonian, thus a translator is requested to accompany the client. We can provide an experienced translator for the fee of 250 EUR per meeting.

4. Additional transparency requirement

In case of a foreign corporate shareholder (of an Estonian cryptocurrency company), the FIU requires the criminal record of the foreign company and every related person of that legal entity. It is also required to provide the foreign registry extract with the list of UBOs of the relevant entity. Thus, using a foreign company in your structure complicates the process a lot. Our suggestion is to avoid using foreign corporate shareholders.


 
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Timeframe


Company registration

Once we have obtained all the initial information from you, it takes usually about 1-2 days to create the company.

In case you choose a ready-made company, it is already created and ready to be transferred to you.

To transfer a company to your name, you will need to visit Estonia for 1 day. During that day we transfer the company shares and board membership to you. Changes will be visible in the register in a few days (max 1 week).

In case you want to start a company remotely (without visiting Estonia) - it usually takes 2-3 weeks additional time and involves some additional costs.


Registration for the license

After the company is registered and we have received from you all the required information and documents mentioned above, we can do the rest of the job and apply for the license.

The process of an application

An application for activity licence shall be processed by the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) by granting or refusing to grant the activity licence within 30 working days as of the date of submission of the application.

During the process FIU has the right to request additional information and explanations about the planned activity. License will be issued after all required information is considered sufficient and all of the conditions are fulfilled.


Real results of license registrations

Currently we have succeeded to get above mentioned licenses
registered in ca 2-3 weeks with a 100% success rate.

 
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Inquiry forms for financial institution companies


Fill in the relevant form and get a fee estimation


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