Business Formation

Verify the name of the company

Agency: Commercial Register

The verification of the company name is done with the commercial register – either online (https://www.gesetze.li) or at the office.

Time and cost: Less than 1 day (online procedure), no charge

Obtain the trade license from the Office of Economic Affairs

Agency: Office of Economic Affairs

Prior to applying for company incorporation, it is required to obtain a trade license from the Office of Economic Affairs.

The application for the trade license is submitted online. Documents required to be uploaded online include:

  • A certificate from the court stating that a debtor has no arrears;
  • Criminal record from the police department;
  • A lease agreement;
  • All the cofounders’ certifications: CVs, diplomas.

Once the license is approved, the founders receive it by mail. A letter is also sent to the Commercial Register.

Time and cost: 30 days, CHF 600

Open a bank account and deposit the capital of the company

Agency: Bank

The minimum capital of CHF 50,000 needs to be deposited in a bank account.

Time and cost: 1 day (simultaneous with previous procedure), CHF 100

Notarize the acceptance of mandate and specimens of signature of the board members

Agency: Commercial Register or Court

Company founders need to go to the Commercial Register or to the Court to legalize their signatures with an apostille. The founders can either go all together or separately.

Time and cost: 1 day (simultaneous with previous procedure), CHF 10 per signature

Appoint an auditing firm

Agency: Auditor

This is a legal requirement according to the Persons and Companies Act, Article 144. is mandatory to choose and appoint an auditor prior to going to the Commercial Register. Both parties need to sign a letter of acceptance by an auditor. The letter could either be a standard form or in free style. In the list of incorporation documents, there is the declaration of acceptance by the audit authority that must be submitted for the application to be accepted for processing.

Time and cost: 1 day (simultaneous with previous procedure), no charge

Incorporate the company with the Commercial Register

Agency: Company Register

The company incorporation is done at the commercial register of the Ministry of Justice. A document packet needs to be brought in person to the Commercial Register. Then, the Commercial Register reviews the application and sends the official incorporation documents to the founders in about two weeks. Commercial Register issues an invoice that is sent by mail two days after the registration application is submitted. The invoice then needs to be paid at the bank.

The list of documents for AG can be downloaded from the Commercial Register’s website. They include the:

  • Declaration of formation
  • Declaration of acceptance and corporate signature by the directors and the managing director
  • Declaration of acceptance by the audit authority
  • Articles of association
  • Proof of capital issued by the bank
  • Application to the Commercial Register Division

The fees to be paid are:

  • For the basic charge: CHF 700 (including 2 excerpts)
  • For companies with a share capital higher than CHF 200,000: a fee of 2 per mil of the exceeding capital, with a maximum fee of CHF 10,000
  • For additional excerpts: CHF 15
  • For each director: CHF 20
  • For each address: CHF 30
  • For the public deed of incorporation: a fee of 1 per mil of the capital until CHF 500,000 of share capital (with a minimum of CHF 300) and an additional fee of CHF 100 for every additional CHF 100,000 exceeding the first CHF 500,000 of capital (with a maximum of CHF 15,000).

Time and cost: 14 days, Cf. procedure details

Pay the incorporation fees at the bank

Agency: Bank

An invoice is received from the Commercial Register by mail two days after the registration is requested and the founder needs to pay the fees at the bank.

Time and cost: Less than 1 day (online procedure), simultaneous with previous procedure; included in previous procedure

Apply for the Business Identification Number (UBI – Unternehmens – Identifikationsnummer)

Agency: Tax authority

All the companies also need to register for the Swiss ID number – UID. Registration can be done online and is free of charge.

Time and cost: Less than 1 day (online procedure), no charge

Register for VAT

Agency: Tax authority

All businesses, irrespective of their type of organization, are subject to value added tax liability, as soon as they generate a turnover of more than CHF 100,000.00 per year.

Businesses which meet the conditions of tax liability must register with the Liechtenstein Tax Administration of their own accord in writing within 30 days of them meeting the said conditions. For registration purposes, they must use this Website: https://www.llv.li/onlineschalter.

Businesses which do not reach the turnover threshold may voluntarily subject themselves to value added tax liability. For example, this can make sense if the majority of the activities carried out comprise exports or if supplies are made outside of Liechtenstein.

Time and cost: Less than 1 day (online procedure), simultaneous with previous procedure; no charge

Register employees with the Central National Administration Office

Agency: Central National Administration Office

Companies and the self-employed who are based in Liechtenstein, as well as the employers of domestic staff and domestic carers, are obliged to register new or departing employees to a central national administration office. The employment reports are forwarded for processing to the Liechtenstein Old Age and Survivors’ Insurance Scheme (Alters – und Hinterlassenenversicherung “AHV”), Disability Insurance Scheme (Invalidenversicherung – “IV”) and the Family Compensation Fund (Familienausgleichskasse – “FAK”), and to the Office of Statistics (Amt für Statistik).

Time and cost: Less than 1 day (online procedure), simultaneous with previous procedure; no charge