Europa Trust Company Ltd trust license extends to act as a professional foundation councillor to help our clients with tax and succession planning and, protect assets from unexpected events. Whether you already have established a foundation or are contemplating creating one, our foundation specialists can guide you through the options to achieve your goals.

A private foundation is a legal entity setup by an individual, family or group of people for a specific purpose. It is established by a Foundation Charter and registered by the Registrar of Foundations.

There are many reasons for setting up a foundation and some of them include asset protection, charitable purposes, and estate and inheritance planning. Foundation assets enjoy protection, flexibility and level of control not always available in the Trust.

How is it set up?

Foundations are setup when any one or more persons (founder) transfer the initial assets and signs the Foundation Charter.

Parties of a foundation

The founder is the person who makes the endowment establishing the foundation. A person who endows assets to a foundation after its establishment does not thereby acquire the position or status of founder.

A group of councillors appointed in the Foundation Charter deal with the administration of the foundation. A foundation must appoint a licensed Gibraltar resident body corporate on its foundation council. This body corporate may be the sole councillor of the foundation council and there is no limit to the number of councillors on its foundation council.

The beneficiaries are the persons who may be entitled to benefit from a foundation.

The guardian is a person appointed who is given specific powers of administration. Appointment of a guardian is not always compulsory, however, a guardian is required in the following circumstances:

  • The foundation has a purpose in respect of which there are no designated beneficiaries;
  • The foundation is established for the benefit of a class of beneficiaries which is not sufficiently certain e.g. if the founder names his nephew as the beneficiary but doesn’t specify his name and has more than one nephew;
  • The foundation is established for the benefit of large class of beneficiaries e.g. the employees of a large company;
  • The foundation is established for a class of beneficiaries which includes one or more disenfranchised beneficiaries i.e. beneficiaries who do not have a right to information.

Permitted uses cannot include

  • The carrying on of a commercial or trading activity unless that activity is incidental to the attainment of its purpose or objects;
  • Licensable activity in Gibraltar unless that license has been granted to the Foundation.