BUREN (The Netherlands): Court of Justice of the European Union ruling: Invalidity of Public Accessibility of UBO Register

On 22 November 2022, following preliminary questions from the Luxembourg Court, the Court of Justice of the European Union (’’CJEU’’) issued a ruling on the UBO register. In brief, the CJEU is of the view that the general public accessibility of the UBO register constitutes a serious, disproportionate violation of the fundamental rights to respect for private and family life and the protection of personal data of the beneficial owner (”UBO‘‘) in view of the objective pursued. The CJEU established the invalidity of the provision of the European anti-money laundering directive requiring member states in all cases to ensure that the information on UBOs and other legal entities incorporated within their territory are publicly accessible.

Following the above ruling, Minister Kaag of the Finance Ministry requested the Dutch Chamber of Commerce to temporarily stop providing information from the UBO register. The information from the Dutch UBO register has not been publicly available since Tuesday 22 November 2022.

The above ruling does not affect the obligation to register UBOs in the UBO register. All kinds of authorities (including the Public Prosecutor’s Office and the Dutch Tax Authorities) still have the same access they had before.

If you have any questions with respect to the UBO register or the impact (if any) of this ruling on your personal situation, please feel free to contact BUREN.