The UK Government has today announced that it is continuing with its plans to create a public register of foreign property owners in the UK, by seeking views on its proposals for a new public register, showing the beneficial owners of overseas companies, that own or want to buy property in the UK.

The Government is looking for views on the design of the policy and additional evidence on the impacts of the policy.

The good news is that the Government intends to "proceed cautiously, striking the right balance between improving transparency and minimising burdens on legitimate commercial activity" but it remains keen to offset this with a need to prevent those who wish to hide illicit funds and launder the proceeds of crime via offshore ownership of UK property.

This is going to have a significant effect on those who currently structure their ownership of property through offshore companies for legitimate reasons and such persons need now to consider the implications for them of this news.

More information here - this consultation closes 15th May 2017.