Updates to substance guidance good news for fund managers in Jersey

November 27, 2019

Updated Guidance Notes published last week (22 November) by Jersey’s government, in conjunction with the other Crown Dependencies, provide further clarity around the interpretation of economic substance legislation which came into play in January this year and reflect Jersey’s focus on maintaining a substance-driven environment for fund managers, according to the Chair of the Jersey Funds Association.

Following the publication of the first iteration of Guidance Notes in April this year, the updated notes contain a number of points of relevance to the funds industry, in particular:

• that collective fund vehicles are out of scope of the law (save where they are carrying out fund management activities themselves, which will be the subject of future legislation) but their subsidiaries could still be in scope if they derive income from a relevant sector
• there is more specific guidance on the treatment of cell companies
• there is further clarification on the basis on which certain isolated decisions can be taken outside the island, provided this does not outweigh decisions taken in the jurisdiction.

Tim Morgan, Chair of the Jersey Funds Association, said: “This additional detail should prove helpful to managers in terms of how the law will be applied, and should give them reassurance that Jersey takes its economic substance commitments seriously. In particular, the notes generally clarify that funds themselves are not caught by the law and also provide more detail about the basis on which governance decisions should be taken.

‍“As a centre for fund management, Jersey has long had a market-leading approach towards substance and these guidance notes reflect Jersey’s approach to governance best practice.”

The JFA welcomed the initial publication of guidance notes earlier this year, as reinforcing the jurisdiction’s proposition for fund management.