Barbados: Types of Company
Societies with Restricted Liability
The Society with Restricted Liability (SRL) is similar to the Limited Liability Company in a number of other jurisdictions - it is designed to allow US taxpayers to claim individual tax treatment on their participation in an entity which is treated as a corporation in its own jurisdiction.
SRLs are formed under the Societies with Restricted Liability Act 1995, and have the following characteristics:
- a maximum duration of 50 years (this restriction was removed by a legislative amendment in 2004);
- limited liability for the members;
- legal personality in Barbados;
- restrictions on the transferability of shares (called quotas);
SRLs do not need to have any physical presence in Barbados, but must maintain a local registered agent and registered office; they are classed as exempt or non-exempt.
Exempt SRLs are subject to the same limitations on ownership and trading as International Business Companies (see above) and receive the same tax treatment (see Offshore Legal and Tax Regimes). A legislative amendment in 2004 permitted Exempt SRLs to trade within Caricom.
Non-exempt SRLs can trade within Caricom and Barbados, and are not subject to the ownership limitations that apply to IBCs. They can take advantage of tax treaties (not open to IBCs or exempt SRLs.)