A Guide to Foundations in The Bahamas

… Expanding the Options for International Clients

As a Common Law country, The Bahamas has looked beyond its boundaries and traditions to be of greater relevance for estate planning by persons from civil law countries. Through the enactment of The Foundations Act 2004 The Bahamas became the first leading Common Law jurisdiction to introduce foundations legislation.

Complementing and enhancing the vibrant wealth management industry in The Bahamas, The Foundations Act is also consistent with The Bahamas’ long history of establishing legislation that is attractive to international clientele and which encourages the continued growth of the country’s financial services sector.

Careful steps were taken to bridge the common and civil law worlds, ensuring that Civil Law features have been properly incorporated for the jurisdiction’s Common Law environment. This environment includes a long history of political stability and democratic traditions; a well-respected judiciary; and a large pool of financial services professionals. Within this environment, the Act addresses all the key issues regarding the formalities, administration and juridical nature of Bahamian foundations.

The Bahamas Foundations Guide reviews the legislation enabling the establishment of a Bahamian foundation and includes examples of its use in the provision of wealth management services by practitioners throughout the world.