New Zealand Foreign Trusts:
Recent Registration and Disclosure Requirements

New Zealand has seen some recent changes with the introduction of compulsory registration for foreign trusts.

That registration process, and the annual return, require disclosure of distributions and settlements as well as the tax identification number of recipient beneficiaries and settlors.

Other details such as email addresses, foreign residential address and tax identification numbers are required for the settlor, protector, non-resident trustees and persons with effective control. A copy of the trust deed must also be provided.

There are three important issues arising from New Zealand’s new foreign trust registration regime, namely:

  1. The tax exemption on all foreign sourced income remains intact;
  2. The details required are not publicly available; and
  3. The details required are no more onerous than those retained by any prudent trustee, and soon to be required anyway under Common Reporting Standards.

New Zealand has done well in its swift response to the Panama Scandal, introducing reasonable disclosure requirements and maintaining its favourable tax treatment of foreign trusts. More importantly, these measures see New Zealand retaining its status as a trustworthy and desirable planning jurisdiction for high net worth families.

Jones Law welcomes enquiries from overseas families looking for a legitimate structure through which to protect family wealth and managed from a well respected and stable jurisdiction.

For more details, please contact us at

The above article is provided for general information purposes and does not constitute legal advice.

The partners at Jones Law are internationally qualified and practise in the areas of cross-border tax planning, estate planning and acquisition structuring.

We invite you to contact us at to discuss your specific circumstances.

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