New company ownership register hit by a raft of early filing errors
05 Sep 2019

People using names in their Irish version instead of English, maiden instead of married names, and shortened versions of first names are just a few of the reasons why the Companies Registration Office says it has rejected submissions to the new Register of Beneficial Ownership (RBO).

The register, which gives precise details of the ownership of corporate entities and provident societies in Ireland, is being established as a result of the EU’s fourth money-laundering directive, commonly known as MLD4.

Companies and societies have until November 22 to file their ownership data with the RBO or risk breaching the law.

The RBO does not have access to the personal details that are entered by filers in order to verify them.

Instead, the details are checked against information held by the Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection. The details are not verified with the Revenue Commissioners.

The CRO said that based on the first two weeks of operation of the register, the common reasons for rejecting submissions also include: entering incorrect dates of birth or personal public service numbers; using a middle name in everyday usage, but not using the correct forename that’s registered with the department; using variations of a name and mixing up details of multiple owners.

Failure to register beneficial owners can result in a fine of up to €500,000 on conviction on indictment. On summary conviction, a fine and/or a prison sentence of up to 12 months can be imposed.

The launch of the RBO was delayed during the summer, and establishing the register consumed a significant amount of resources within the CRO.

The Small Firms’ Association had urged the CRO during the summer to postpone the launch of the register until November, but its introduction was already overdue at that stage.

By John Mulligan,, 5 September 2019


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