BVI VISTA trusts—management
Produced in partnership with Mourant Ozannes
BVI VISTA trusts—management

The following Private Client guidance note Produced in partnership with Mourant Ozannes provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • BVI VISTA trusts—management
  • Separation of trust and corporate governance
  • Express application
  • Office of director rules
  • Intervention
  • Retention
  • Beneficiaries
  • Virgin Islands shares
  • Designated trustee

British Virgin Islands (BVI) trusts law is contained in the Trustee Ordinance (as amended) (Cap 303, Laws of BVI) and the Virgin Islands Special Trusts Act 2003 (as amended) (VISTA Law) (the legislation is available in the further reading links to Spitz & Clarke Offshore Service in the related documents pod and on the BVI FSC—Banking and Fiduciary Services Legislation web page). Trusts established pursuant to the VISTA Law (VISTA Trusts) typically hold shares (whether directly or indirectly) in a company engaged actively in some form of business (rather than passive investment holding) in an industry with which the trustee is not familiar and often in a location geographically remote to the BVI. The ability to deal with these challenging circumstances is what led to the design and enactment of the VISTA Law in the first place and makes VISTA Trusts such a valuable resource in an international wealth structuring context. This Practice Note addresses certain aspects of the management and administration of VISTA Trusts.

Separation of trust and corporate governance

The VISTA Law recognises that trustees are rarely natural entrepreneurs. On the other hand a settlor of a VISTA Trust may be a highly successful and enterprising businessman who is comfortable ceding ownership of his business to a trustee for the greater good of his family but wishes to