UK Limited Partnership Law Reform – Two Developments

In the same week that Theresa May declared the UK would be leaving the EU Single Market, the government took steps to make UK vehicles more attractive for private funds. Legislation for a new form of limited partnership, a “private fund limited partnership” was laid before Parliament on 16 January 2017. The new regime will apply to limited partnerships which meet the “private fund conditions”, and is expected to come into force on 6 April 2017.

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Also focusing on UK limited partnership reform, the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (“BEIS”) has released a call for evidence seeking views and evidence on the possible reasons why registration of limited partnerships in Scotland has increased, in comparison to those in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. BEIS is also considering the types of economic uses of Scottish limited partnerships, and what the legal characteristics are that might act as an enabler to possible criminal activity, following media reports alleging the involvement of these vehicles in illegal purposes. BEIS is also taking the opportunity to look at other characteristics of UK limited partnership law, such as transparency requirements, principal place of business, arrangements for ending a limited partnership, and the role of formation agents. The call for evidence closes on 17 March 2017.