Trust Services

Goldblum and Partners provide trust services to international clients based on the SRO Membership Nr. 100487. In our capacity as trustees, we are subject to a wide range of audit controls and government regulatory supervision.
... the term "trust" refers to the legal relationships created - inter vivos or on death - by a person, the settlor, when assets have been placed under the control of a trustee for the benefit of a beneficiary or a specified purpose.

A trust has the following characteristics -
a) the assets constitute a separate fund and are not a part of the trustee's estate;
b) title to the trust assets stands in the name of the trustee or the name of another person on behalf of the trustee;
c) the trustee has the power and the duty, in respect of which he is accountable, to manage, employ or dispose of the assets by the terms of the trust and the special duties imposed upon him by law.
- Convention of 1 July 1985 on the Law Applicable to Trusts and on their Recognition

We provide our clients with independent wealth services as trustees and company directors. Trust services will help to protect your assets. We take care of your company from day one or will take over the company to make sure that the administration and management of the company fulfil your expectations. The trustees only act in good faith and the client's interest. Thanks to trust services, you can relax and be sure your business works appropriately and as you like.
Escrow service — parties of escrow agreement
Parties of Escrow Agreement
There are usually several parties involved in the escrow transaction:

1. The Beneficiary, who receives the escrow funds when the escrow agreement conditions are met.

2. The Contributor \ Depository, who transfers the escrow funds to the escrow account.

3. The Escrow agent, who controls when the conditions specified in a contract are met. The escrow agent distributes the escrow funds according to the escrow agreement.

The beneficiary and contributor can be either legal entities or natural persons. The legal capacity of a person is the only possible limitation that exists. In case of incapacity, the person may be represented by legal guardians.
Escrow Agent and the main requirement to the Escrow agent
Both natural persons and legal entities may act as escrow agents. Nevertheless, the legal requirement of the country of legislation shall be fulfilled.

The function of an Escrow Agent in Switzerland may have natural persons like an attorney at law (bar members) and fiduciary and legal entities authorized by the supervisory authority FINMA or a Member of the Self-Regulatory Organization.

The nature of the escrow account opening presupposes trust-based relations between parties. In most cases, the escrow services fall under the anti-money laundering provisions (GWG) and supervision.

In practice, this means that in addition to special authorization, it is necessary to follow all the rules and act to prevent financial crimes (Anti-Money Laundering) and terrorism. For these purposes exists the requirement to employ a particular person responsible for the compliance, onboarding and management of client's profiles (AML/Compliance Officer) or to outsource these functions to the external service provider.

One of the essential criteria when choosing an escrow agent is professional insurance for cases if something goes wrong. Our company, Goldblum and Partners, has such insurance in the amount of 1'000'000. CHF. Thanks to the insurance, our clients feel protected.
Escrow agent
The procedure of escrow account opening and drafting of the escrow agreement
After we receive a request for escrow services from one party, we ask for detailed information about the planned transaction. If the nature of the transaction is - we will ask to provide the parties' documents for the identification (KYC), compliance and conflict of interest checkup.
Suppose there is no conflict of interest, and the compliance department does not report anything suspicious. In that case, we will issue an invoice for prepayment and, after receiving the payment, will start drafting the escrow agreement. If the escrow fund is in monetary form, we will initiate the procedure of the escrow account opening for depositing the escrowed funds.

As a result of these actions, the escrow account is opened and ready for receiving the escrowed funds; the escrow agreement is agreed upon and signed by all parties.
The contributor deposits the agreed escrow funds to the escrow account, which will be released upon fulfilling the obligations according to the escrow agreement by the beneficiary.

Some examples of the action required from the beneficiary to dissolve the escrow funds are the transfer of ownership rights on the real estate, securities, goods shipment etc.

In the case of escrow documents, the documents are usually transferred to the beneficiary after the payment. For example, copies of the legal entity will be sent to the Escrow Agent. After the payment and occurrence of the described in the escrow agreements events, the documents will be transferred to the beneficiary.
After the detailed checking of the fulfilment of all the conditions in the escrow agreement and upon receipt of the necessary confirmations, we will complete all the required payments and transfers of escrowed funds to the parties. Finally, the escrow bank account will be closed, and the agreement will be stored as a record.
Escrow agreement: requirements
There is no specific requirement to the escrow agreement usually. However, it has to contain information about the parties, the subject of the deal, obligations of the parties, descriptions of the escrow fund, escrow period, and conditions for dissolution of escrowed funds.

The escrow transaction also involves the bank that opens the escrow account. For this reason, the ban conducts compliance procedures identifying the parties who are or will be beneficial owners of the funds. This reduces the risk of fraud in escrow deals to a minimum.
Banks that open the escrow accounts
We prefer to work with first rang swiss banks such as Credit Suisse, UBS, Saffra Sarasin, and also with private and cantonal banks. The requirement and the procedures are usually very similar, but the fees are different. The plus will be if the party or parties have the bank account in the bank where opening of escrow account is planned.
Credit Suisse
Safra Sarasin
Zuger Kantonalbank
In which cases do we recommend using escrow services?
As mentioned before, the escrow service is popular in real estate deals and trading transactions, where the participation of the independent third party as depository will guarantee the fulfilment of all conditions.

Our advice is to pay attention when choosing an escrow agent. It should be the attorney at law, fiduciary or authorised subject. The escrow service provision has to be authorised by the official bodies of the state. The escrow procedure requires legal work with documentation and a high level of responsibility from the escrow agent. Therefore, avoiding or ignoring such formalities has to be the first sign of the unprofessional attitude of the escrow agent.

Pay attention to the enforceability of the contract: the English law systems differ for the continental, to which the law of the Swiss confederation belongs.
Why Goldblum ?
Professional - Reliable - Independent
The fees for the escrow agent's participation in the transaction are usually not less than 10'000 CHF. Therefore, the parties should consider the costs with the future benefits. The conclusion might be that the escrow service is unnecessary and economically inconsistent.

The legal counsels of Goldblum and Partners are happy to offer you their services: our law firm has official authorization for the escrow services provision according to FINMA requirements.

We have professional liability insurance for 1'000'000 francs. We guarantee a deep analysis, understanding of our client's goals, and a quick response to their requests; we could also offer fixed fees based on our knowledge and experience with similar projects.

The Client-Attorney Privilege guarantees the safekeeping of all the data received, even during the initial stages of contact with our clients.