Ireland: Law of Offshore
Between 2003 and October 2010, insurance business in Ireland (including captive insurance) was regulated by the Financial Services Regulatory Authority. Following the 1994 implementation of the EU Insurance Framework Directives through the European Communities (Life Assurance) Framework Regulations 1994 and the European Communities (Non-Life Assurance) Regulations 1994, there is a 'single passport' regime in effect for EU insurance companies, and they can commence business in Ireland, as elsewhere, subject to a notification procedure and the annual filing of accounts with the Registrar of Companies. The EU legislation lies alongside pre-existing Irish insurance legislation, and the two need to be read together to construct the regulatory regime for Irish insurance companies; this task is not attempted here.
The captive insurance sector in Ireland took root in the International Financial Services Centre (IFSC) in Dublin, where substantial tax advantages have traditionally been available to companies who obtained certification from the Minister for Finance. From 2003 the 10% IFSC regime was supplanted by the 12.5% general corporation tax rate.
The minimum paid-up capital required for a captive insurer is EUR635,000, and the captive must conform with the normal body of EU and Irish insurance legislation, including solvency ratios.
The Central Bank of Ireland resumed responsibility for central banking and financial regulation with the introduction of the Central Bank Reform Act, 2010, on October 1, 2010.