May 24, 2023

Amendment to Trust Regulations

Please note that, effective 1st April 2023, the Trust Property Control Act of 1988, (which regulates and administers trusts), was amended by the Anti-Money Laundering and Combating Terrorism Financing Amendment Act, No 22 of 2022, (chiefly introducing the requirement that the Trustees furnish certain details and information to the Master of the High Court).

Our experience is that said Master’s office:

1. will find that this is a very time-consuming task and

2. is “not geared up” to keep an accurate register of the details and information required per such amendment.

Clearly the legislature is aware of this, and has placed this burden on the Trustees, (of all trusts on register at the particular division of the Master of the High Court), and introduced penalties, (to be applied where there is proved “non-compliance” by the Trustees).

The information required arises from certain persons being seen to be “the beneficial owners of the trust” in terms of the aforesaid amendment, such information being the full name, I D Number, e-mail address, domicilium, (physical address), and postal address, cell phone number of all Trustees, of all named beneficiaries per the trust deed, and of the Donor/Founder of the Trust.

The need for the amendment to the Trust Property Control Act is professed to be to make it easier for the powers that be to access the details of trusts and/or trustees and/or beneficiaries engaged in activities such as money laundering.

The penalties in the case of not providing said information are draconian, (being a R 10 000 000.00, {TEN MILLION RAND}, fine or 5, {FIVE}, years imprisonment or both), and would be levied against the trustees of the relevant trust.

Clearly government wants to show that it is a first world country, (being serious about putting a stop to suspected money laundering and financing terrorism activities!).

If you need to know more about the actual amending legislation, you can type “Amendment to the Trust Property Control Act of 1988” when accessing the internet via your search engine.

We have inserted the link to the “portal” below for your ease of reference. On the left-hand side is the link that will allow you to input the information required.

Provided by: Jon Rademan
Trust Specialist