HOW TO REGISTER A YACHT COMPANY IN GREECE
YACHTING IN GREECE NO ADVERTISING NEEDED. BUT IN THIS ARTICLE WE ARE TELLING NOT HOW TO RELAX UNDER SAIL, BUT HOW TO PUT THE BOAT UNDER THE GREEK FLAG AND WHY YOU NEED IT.
The material was prepared by Oksana Pavlova, an Advocate of the Athens Bar Association
Based on huge law practice and extensive experience in accompanying our own yacht business in Greece and companies of our friends and clients trusted to us, our team decided to eliminate the lack and fragmentation of the legal information about building charter business in Greece. You can find it across the Internet but, unfortunately, it is not always reliable.
Traditionally, yachting is fashionable, progressive, cool, sporty and creative business, but at the same time it is very expensive.
Therefore, for yachtsmen and successful people it is very attractive not only to have and use your own yacht, but also to receive income from it or, at least, to reimburse the costs of annual maintenance, parking, etc.
Yachting in Greece itself does not need advertising, so the registration and maintenance of charter business in Greece is one of the main activities of the legal division of our company.
Greek law provides for a specialized form of legal entity intended solely for the acquisition of ownership and / or rental of a boat / yacht / catamaran. It is called the "Pleasure Boat Company", known among yachtsmen as the Greek abbreviation "NEPA" (Ναυτιλιακή Εταιρεία Πλοίων Αναψυχής).
Important points to understand:
• At least 2 founders are required to register a NEPA type company;• Non-citizens of the European Union can own no more than 49% of NEPA shares.
A common phenomenon in the first years of the NEPA law was the appeal to us of citizens of the different countries, who had received the documents on registration of their company and were surprised to find that 51% of their company's shares did not belong to them but to "nominal shareholder - a citizen of Greece." We note that the concept of "nominal shareholder" in Greek law does not exist and registering an enterprise with founders like this, the owner of the capital the real beneficiary is really at risk, not having a controlling stake in his own company.
In order to concentrate in the hands of a non-EU shareholder control over his own company, we recommend the following scheme: the founders of the new NEPA are a European legal entity fully controlled by the shareholder (usually Slovakia, Bulgaria, Cyprus, etc.) with a stake participation from 51% and the remaining part of the authorized capital belongs to the real person non-resident of the EU.
Regarding the distribution of participation in the authorized capital of NEPA, there are also some nuances and recommendations related to compulsory insurance contributions, which we usually voice when defining the specific tasks set by clients (just registering NEPA or registering NEPA with subsequent acquisition of residence permits, etc.).
From the point of view of simplicity of management, control over the movement of capital and subsequent disposal of shares, as well as accounting support, it has become a well-established practice to register each boat / yacht / catamaran for a separate NEPA (so-called "NEPA = board" scheme). But this question is opened for discussion because of the prospects and the founders plan to register at NEPA additional boats, it is worth considering of the legal entity, the cost of registration of NEPA and the costs of its legal and accounting support, the plans of the founders to expand the fleet, etc. However, if a decision is made when determining the share capital. This should be done because there is no capital concentration tax at the initial registration of NEPA, while a concentration tax of 1% of the increase amount arises during the procedure of increasing the authorized capital.
• The governing body of NEPA is the Board of Directors, consisting of at least 3 members (President, Vice President and Secretary). Non-EU residents can also be members of the Board of Directors, they usually hold these positions on a gratuitous basis, and the Board of Directors is responsible for making management decisions and ensuring compliance with the company's statutory objectives: making a profit from charter a boat / yacht / catamaran. All members of the Board of Directors must have a Greek tax number (AFM) and have the right, subject to other conditions established by law, to apply for a residence permit with the right to work in Greece.
• Legal Representative is the Director of NEPA. Perhaps a key position in NEPA. Without the signature of the director of NEPA, no contract will be valid, no bank account will be opened, no money will be issued and accepted to the company's account. A person who "represents NEPA and makes commitments by simply affixing his or her own signature". The director of NEPA can be a resident of the European Union only who has a tax number (AFM), registered in the Compulsory Social Insurance Fund (AMKA) and permanently residing in Greece. EU citizens can hold this position provided that they are holders of an "EU Long-Term Citizen Card". By the way, we also know how to get it. At the same time we have an opportunity to limit powers of the official so that he will not be able to influence property assets of your company without your consent
• Legal address of NEPA. It is mandatory to have an office lease agreement, as well as the accompanying "energy certificate" of the premises (πιστοποιητικό ενεργειακής απόδοσης). It is possible to obtain a legal address at the place of residence of the legal representative - the director.
We provide a service to provide a legal address.
• Registration of the director in the compulsory social insurance fund of Greece.
• Registration of NEPA as a member of the Greek Maritime Chamber.
• NEPA Tax Number (AFM). In order for the newly registered NEPA to be able to make transactions, enter into contracts, etc., open bank accounts, it is necessary to obtain a tax number. The NEPA tax numbers are assigned by the Greek tax authorities in accordance with the NEPA legal address.
• Opening a NEPA bank account in one of the Greek banks.
IN THE FIRST STAGE TO SOLVE YOUR PERSONAL SHIP CONTROL PROBLEM, PLEASE PROVIDE:
FROM AN INDIVIDUAL:
2. Power of attorney to obtain a tax number in Greece (AFM) - the text is provided by us, as well as a meeting with a notary (embassy).
3. Filling in the questionnaire of the founder of NEPA provided by us.
FROM THE LEGAL ENTITY:
1. Certificate of registration of a legal entity indicating the names of the founders, types of activity, the name of the director (Good standing certificate) with an apostille.
2. Charter with apostille.
3. The decision of the legal entity to participate in the establishment of NEPA with an apostille - the text of the document is prepared by us.
4. Power of attorney from a legal entity to represent interests in Greece with an apostille is being prepared by us.
The NEPA registration period is from 3 weeks to 2 months from the moment of submitting an application and a package of corporate documents to the Ministry of Shipping and Island Policy.
Translations and certification of documents on the Greek side are performed by us.
We provide a full range of NEPA registration services, starting from the submission of the application and ending with the transfer of the details of the NEPA bank account to the client.
We will register for you a legal entity in any European jurisdiction (Slovakia, Bulgaria, Cyprus, etc.) that best meets your task.
The estimated cost of turnkey NEPA registration is 4,500 euros.
The final and exact cost of services is determined after the first FREE consultation.
1. Registration of change of the legal representative - the director of NEPA.
2. Registration of changes in the composition of the members of the NEPA Board of Directors.
3. Registration of change of the legal address of NEPA.
4. Support of the purchase and sale transaction of NEPA shares.
5. Support of the procedure of increase / decrease of the authorized capital of NEPA.
ORDER THE QUESTIONNAIRE OF THE FOUNDER OF NEP (active button).