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Managing compliance: how long do corporate documents take to retrieve?

Whether it is due diligence for an acquisition, refinancing or good housekeeping; retrieving corporate documents can be time consuming if not managed effectively.

Corporate documents are not just a formality, companies need to keep accurate records of all their entities; this can be to prove existence in a foreign country, for internal reporting, annual legal compliance processes and so forth. Meeting compliance requirements is essential for good corporate governance.

This may sound straightforward, but confusion can ensue with documents across jurisdictions; with different names but similar purposes, formats, and significantly varied lengths of time for retrieval. For instance, particularly with the latter, retrieving a Certificate of Good Standing may take up to 21 days in Argentina; eight days in Labuan, up to six days in Malaysia or Sweden, and only three days in the United States or Jersey. Obtaining Articles of Association takes approximately 30 days in Israel, 7-11 days in Nicaragua and only 3-5 days in Hong Kong. Another example is a Certificate of Incorporation; this document takes up to 30 days to retrieve in Israel, 12 days in India, and only three days in the British Virgin Islands.

Other documents that may take more than a week to obtain include:

  • Copies of the Company’s file* from Argentina (up to 21 days)
  • Certification of no Derogatory Information* from the Philippines (11 days), and
  • Confirmation of Indebtedness* from the Czech Republic (up to 33 days).

No two countries are alike, and gathering records from multiple jurisdictions can be a lengthy administrative and resource-heavy process.

TMF QuickDocs simplifies the process for obtaining company documents from public registries via a single, easy-to-use online portal. TMF QuickDocs provides a user-friendly documents menu that clearly explains and describes each type of document. Available documents include: Certificate of Good Standing, Certificate of Formation, Articles of Incorporation, Certificate of Compliance, and local equivalents in more than 80 countries.

Learn more about TMF QuickDocs here.

*This document may be a full or partial equivalent of the Certificate of Good Standing available in other jurisdictions.