Current topics.

Entry in the transparency register is mandatory

Pursuant to Section 20 (1) Sentence 1 of the German Money Laundering Act (GwG), it is mandatory for

  • all legal entities under private law (e.g. GmbH, Unternehmergesellschaft, Aktiengesellschaft, Genossenschaften)
  • registered partnerships (e.g. GmbH & Co. KG, OHG, limited partnership, partnership companies) as well as for
  • non-incorporated foundations, if the purpose of the foundation is self-interested,

the obligation to report their beneficial owners for entry in the transparency register.


Up to now, many parties subject to the reporting obligation still benefited from the so-called notification fiction, i.e. they did not need to report to the transparency register because the beneficial owners could be identified from other public registers (e.g. commercial register).

Since August 1, 2021, this facilitation has ceased and the transparency register is now a full register.

The notification fiction has become a notification obligation. For a missing entry, severe fines can be imposed on the management after the expiry of the transition periods, which vary depending on the legal form of the company.

Beneficial owners are:

  • Natural persons who ultimately own or control the company.
  • If a person directly or indirectly holds more than 25% of the voting rights or capital shares or exercises control in a comparable manner.
  • Natural persons at whose instigation a transaction is ultimately carried out or a business relationship is ultimately established (e.g. trustors).

We would like to make all legal representatives aware of this issue.

The following information on the beneficial owner must be disclosed:

First name and surname, date of birth, place of residence, type of beneficial owner (fictitious or actual) as well as type and scope of the beneficial interest (Section 19 AMLA), in certain cases the nationality (Section 21 (1) AMLA).

The Transparency Register offers, among other things, a free service number for registration (0800-123 43 37) Mon-Fri. from 8:00 to 18:30.

Please contact the Transparency Register if you have any questions.


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On our own account

MSW celebrated its 20th anniversary together with clients and companions at the China Club Berlin on September 30, 2021. Together we looked back at long-standing client relationships and several successfully supported IPOs. However, we also used the anniversary as an opportunity to look to the future. We had the pleasure of welcoming Johannes Vogel, Deputy Federal Chairman of the FDP and General Secretary of the FDP in Nordrhein Westfalen, whose presentation "For an Agenda 2030" provided important impetus for the challenges of our time. The discussion that followed showed how many small and large changes the future can bring, and conversations developed that lasted throughout the evening. The anniversary lets us look optimistically into the future and we are pleased to be able to support our clients also beyond the next 20 years. We would like to thank all participants for this great evening!