Trusts in Malta

There are a number of reasons why a person may want to hold shares in a trust. Confidentially is typically one of these reasons. Moreover, trusts are often sought to preserve family-owned businesses. In other cases, they are used for medium-to-long-term planning in family offices or family estates. Trusts can also be used in certain commercial transactions. Maltese law deals with the institute of trusts in a very flexible manner. This offers a myriad of advantages to persons or entities making use of trusts.

Under the 2004 Act, a registered trust must have a Maltese Professional Trustee as one of its trustees, which files an annual declaration of conformity with the law,In addition, no accounts or tax returns need be filed.

Some of the main features of Maltese trust law are as follows:
  • The perpetuity period for Maltese trusts is 100 years;
  • The settlor may be a beneficiary under the trust;
  • Powers of the trustee are wide and flexible;
  • The office of Protector is allowed for;
  • Forced heirship provisions are excluded

There is no legal requirement for foreign trusts to be registered in Malta even if they are administered from this jurisdiction.

Correspondingly, trusts registered in Malta pay a flat rate of tax per annum on the aggregate income of the trust and on any income of the beneficiary. Trusts do not pay any annual registration fees, death duty, stamp duty. or customs duty on property imported into Malta. In addition, they are also exempt from Exchange Control regulations.

Absolute confidentiality in respect of the identity of the beneficiaries of a trust is guaranteed

E&S Group are authorised to receive and hold property in trust through a licensed trustee company, SOLV International Ltd. We offer our clients comprehensive guidance and all the required support on all trust-related matters. We are also authorised to hold shares in a fiduciary capacity such that the ownership structure of a company remains confidential. Services offered include:

  • Advice on implications of setting up a trust;
  • Assistance in the structuring and organisation of the trust;
  • Ensuring all procedures and formalities necessary for compliance with the Trusts and Trustees Act;
  • Procuring a favourable tax rate for non-resident beneficiaries of Maltese trusts.

The content on this website is for information purposes only and should not be taken as tax, legal or any other professional advice.

For further information contact our CBDO on LinkedIn Deborah Vella or email us on