Private Foundations

What you need to know about Foundations

What is a Foundation?

A foundation is usually a body corporate that holds assets, usually provided by the Founder or sometimes by other Dedicators for a particular purpose or for the benefit of particular Beneficiaries.

Beneficiaries do not usually have any legal or beneficial interest in the assets of the foundation.

A foundation must have a Registered Agent that has responsibility for certain functions.

The assets of the foundation are administered by a Council, who have a fiduciary duty to act in accordance with the foundation instrument and in good faith.

How does a foundation differ from a Trust?

A Foundation differs in main from a Trust in that it is a legal person whilst the Trust is a legal relationship.

In which jurisdictions can you form a Foundation?

The most commonly used jurisdictions are:

  • Panama
  • Liechtenstein
  • Isle of Man