Singapore trust law has a strong foundation in English common law and trust principles. Originally created to solve a social problem related to land ownership during the Crusades, the concept of trusts has evolved considerably. Singapore has further enhanced the trust framework to adapt to modern requirements and meet international regulatory and compliance standards. The governing trust legislation in Singapore includes the Trust Companies Act, Business Trusts Act, Civil Law Act and the Trustees Act. The Trustees Act was modernized in 2004 to facilitate and promote wealth management in Singapore.

Singapore Trust Legal Requirements

Singapore Trust

Corporate Details

Restricted

  • Type of Entity

Trust

  • Registered Office in Singapore

Yes

Share capital or equivalent

  • Standard currency

USD

  • Permitted currencies

Any

  • Minimum paid up

None

Trustee

  • Minimum number

One

  • Corporate directorship allowed

Yes

Protector

  • Minimum number

One

  • Corporate shareholder allowed

NA

Accounts

  • Requirements to prepare

Yes

  • Audit requirements

No

  • Requirements to file accounts

No

Singapore Trust Tax Requirement

The territorial principle of tax applies to the income of a Singapore Trust.

Duration of Set up

2 Weeks

Distinctive Benefits of the Singapore Trust

  • No requirement for formal registration of Singapore trusts
  • Strict confidentiality and banking secrecy laws
  • Settlors are protected from forced heirship claims
  • A Settlor is free to reserve to himself any or all the powers of investment or asset management functions; thereby retaining an active role in managing the investments of the trust
  • Settlors can appoint another person (known as a protector) to supervise the conduct of the trustees
  • No estate duty or inheritance tax
  • No capital gains tax
  • Income tax mitigation for foreign trusts

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