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New online procedure for establishing a firm in Belgium and Flanders

Establishing a company via an online application? Since 1 August 2021, it’s possible – and easy as one, two, three – in Belgium and Flanders as a region! Local as well as international entrepreneurs and corporations who want to get started in Flanders can put their signature on the authentic company deed digitally and remotely.

Saving precious time

Becoming an entrepreneur takes ambition, especially when you want to set up a company, branch or subsidiary abroad. It can also be time-consuming to get all the paperwork done. To help companies and entrepreneurs save precious time in Belgium and Flanders, it will no longer be necessary to physically go to the notary to put your signature on the authentic deed required to start a company.

As such, the Federal Council of Ministers approved a preliminary draft law amending the Companies Code and the Law of 16 March 1803 on the Notary Profession. This draft aims to apply a European directive regarding the use of digital tools and processes in the context of company law.

This extensive digitization is a logical step in times of COVID-19, when we need to work in a more digital way. ‘Time is money’ is the motto for many entrepreneurs. We now make it possible for them to avoid physically going to the notary to set up a company, saving them a lot of time in the process.

Vincent Van Quickenborne
Federal Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Justice

Digital incorporation made easy

The result? Since 1 August 2021, it is possible to establish a company digitally. The execution of the authentic deed can be done via electronic signature during a video conference with the notary. This digital procedure applies to all legal entities and comes with no additional cost to entrepreneurs. In case of suspected fraud, the physical appearance of the entrepreneur can still be requested.

The substantive requirements for the drawing up of an authentic deed – introduced by the Companies Code and the Associations Code – remain the same. The presence of the notary as an independent intermediary is still required, as they remain the best-placed person to help founders choose the most appropriate legal form and draw up the correct articles of association.

For the notarial profession, digitization is one of the keys to respond to the modern needs of citizens, including entrepreneurs. Thanks to the new law as well as our investments, entrepreneurs will be able to handle the incorporation of a company more smoothly while retaining the notarial advice and the certainty of a legally conclusive deed of incorporation.

Jan Sap
CEO of the Royal Federation of Belgian Notaries (Fednot)

More info

Notaris.be
Reported by
website notaris.be
8 September 2021

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