Jurisdictions

Full details on all of STEP's jurisdictions are available below, allowing you to access the most up-to-date information about each area. Key legal information, new developments and useful resource information are included.

The summaries were prepared and updated by the STEP Yearbook editorial board members who devoted their time and energy to share valuable information and insights.

Anguilla
Anguilla is a British Overses Territory, having a constitutional relationship with Britain that is simular to Cayman Islands, the British Virgin Islands and Bermuda.
 
Argentina
Argentina is a republic established under the 1853 Constitution (amended several times since then but still in force), composed of 23 provinces and the City of Buenos Aires (federal capital)
 
Australia
Australia was first settled by Europeans on 26 January 1788, when the United Kingdom of Great Britain's government established a penal colony at Sydney under the administration of Captain Arthur Phillip RN, later to become Governor Phillip of the colony of New South Wales.
 
Austria
Austria, the core of the former Austro-Hungarian Empire, is using its historical ties and easy access to Central and Eastern Europe to the full.
 
Bahamas
The Commonwealth of the Bahamas is a 100,000-square-mile archipelago of several hundred islands, rocks and cays situated in the Atlantic Ocean approximately 50 miles off the coast of Florida.
 
Bahrain
Bahrain is a constitutional monarchy headed by King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa; the head of government is the Prime Minister, Shaikh Khalifa bin Salman al Khalifa
 
Barbados
Barbados is known for its political and economic environment, telecommunications systems, confidentiality laws, regulatory controls, supervision and other attributes.
 
Belgium
Belgium is a hereditary constitutional monarchy governed by a multi-party coalition Until 1815, Belgium was part of France and the French Code Napoleon was installed
 
Belize
Belize can trace its history back to 1500bc when the Mayan civilisation flourished.
 
Bermuda
Bermuda enjoys a reputation as being one of the world's leading offshore business centres. Bermuda is the United Kingdom's oldest overseas territory and has been self-governing since 1622
 
Brazil
The Federative Republic of Brazil is composed of 26 states, which gained independence from Portugal in 1822 It represents 47 per cent of South American territory and is now the ninth largest economy in the world
 
Brunei
Brunei Darussalam (Adobe of Peace) is situated on the north-west coast of Borneo Island.
 
British Virgin Islands
The British Virgin Islands (BVI) lie east of Puerto Rico in the Caribbean Sea and form part of the archipelago known as the Leeward Islands.
 
Canada
Canada is a federal country made up of ten provinces and three territories, the latter being subject to federal suzerainty but largely under local administration.
 
The Cayman Islands
The Cayman Islands (the Islands) consist of three islands located 475 miles south of Miami and 180 miles west of Montego Bay, Jamaica
 
China
State power within the People's Republic of China (PRC) is divided among three bodies, namely the Communist Party of China, the State and the People's Liberation Army
 
Cyprus
An independent and sovereign Republic of Cyprus (Cyprus) came into being in 1960, following several decades as a British colony.
 
England and Wales
The United Kingdon (UK) of Great Britain and Northern Ireland contains three major legal jurisdictions: England and Wales, Northern Ireland, and Scotland.
 
France
This summary provides a review of French law relevant to trust and estate practitioners and gives an overview of French civil law, with an emphasis on where the concepts of French law differ materially from those of English law.
 
Germany
Germany is a civil law, democratic - parliamentary republic, founded in 1949, and reunited with eastern parts in 1990. Consisting of 16 federal states, Germany is a member of the Unitied Nations, G8 nations and the European Union (EU)
 
Gibraltar
For over 300 years, Gibraltar has been a self-governing British Overseas Territory.
 
Greece
Greece is situated on the southern end of the Balkan Peninsula, bordered by Albania, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and Bulgaria to the north; and by Turkey to the east.
 
Guernsey
Located in the English Channel, the Channel Islands were caught between the French and English throughout their many wars
 
Hong Kong
On 1 July 1997, the UK government relinquished control over Hong Kong and the territory became a Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) of the People's Republic of China (PRC)
 
Hungary
Hungary is a parliamentary republic. Following the collapse of the communist system and restoration of full sovereignty in 1889, the legal and economic system was radically reformed.
 
India
India is the world's largest democracy, operating within the framework of a federal parliamentary representative democratic republic with 28 states and seven Union Territories.
 
Ireland Republic
Ireland is located off the north-west coast of Europe. It is approximately 60 miles from the mainland of the UK and, although an island, is very much part of the European Union (EU)
 
Isle of Man
The Isle of Man (population approximately 80,000) is located in the Irish Sea.
 
Israel
The modern state of Israel is a small country at the crossroads of Europe, Asia and Africa that maintains important political and economic ties with North America.
 
Italy
Prior to Italy's ratification of the Hague Convention on the Law Applicable to Trusts and on their Recognition, 1 July 1985 (Convention) on 16 October 1989, trusts were generally considered incompatible with the Italian legal system.
 
Japan
In recent years, demand for investment and finance schemes in the commercial trust sector has grown, while the advent of an increasingly aged society has led to an increase in the possible use of family trusts, for the purposes of asset management and inheritance transfers.
 
Jersey
When William the Conqueror defeated Harold in 1066, the Channel Islands, including Jersey, were part of his Norman possessions. When he gained the throne of England, Jersey thereby became a possession of the English Crown
 
Liechtenstein
In 1719, Emperor Charles VI of the Austro-Hungarian Empire united the Barony of Schellenberg and the County of Vaduz, creating an imperial principality.
 
Lithuania
Lithuania is a parliamentary republic. Following the collapse of the Soviet Union and restoration of independence in 1990, the legal and economic system was radically reformed.
 
Luxembourg
Luxembourg is a parliamentary representative democracy with a constitutional monarchy, governed by a multi-party coalition. Luxembourg covers 2,586 square km in the heart of Western Europe, between France, Belgium and Germany.
 
Malaysia
Malaysia is an independent federation consisting of two geographical regions separated from each other by the South China Sea.
 
Malta
The Maltese archipelago is composed of five islands. Malta is the largest, followed by Gozo, its sister island.
 
Mauritius
Mauritius is an island situated in the Indian Ocean approximately 2,400 kilometers from the soth-east coast of Africa in the GMT fours hours time zone and has a population of approximately 1.2 million.
 
Mexico
Mexico is currently the 13th largest economy in the world (11th if considered by purchasing power party standards).
 
Monaco
The principality of Monaco, a sovereign state bordered by France, is located on the French Riviera close to the Italian border.
 
Netherlands
The Kingdom of the Netherlands was founded in 1813.
 
Nevis
Nevis is a 36-square-mile island, located in the Caribbean, 250 miles south east of Puerto Rico and two miles south of its sister island, St Kitts.
 
New Zealand
New Zealand comprises of two main islands and a number of smaller islands situated in the South Pacific Ocean, approximately 2,100 kilometers south east of the Australian coastline.
 
Northern Ireland
Northern Ireland is part of the United Kingdom with its own regional Assembly, but is subject to direct rule from the UK Parliament in Westminster in relation to certain reserved matters, including taxation.
 
Panama
The Republic of Panama is located in the narrowest and most central part of the American Continent and forms the isthmus that links North and South America.
 
Poland
Poland is a parliamentary republic. Following the collapse of the communist system and restoration of full sovereignty in 1989, the legal and economic system was radically reformed.
 
Russia
Russia (Rosslyskaya Federatsiya) is the largest country in the world.
 
Scotland
The United Kingdom (UK) of Great Britain and Northern Ireland contains three major legal jurisdictions: Scotland, England and Wales and Northern Ireland
 
Seychelles
Seychelles is a self-governing democratic republic, which gained its independence from the UK in 1976.
 
Singapore
Modern Singapore was founded in 1819 when the East India Company established it as a trading post. After a century and a half of British colonial rule, Singapore became an independent nation on 9 August 1965
 
South Africa
South Africa is a democratic republic consisting of nine provinces.
 
Spain
Spain is made up of 17 autonomous communities and two North African enclaves, each with its own government with independent legislative and financial powers
 
St Kitts
The Caribbean island of St Kitts (formally known as Saint Christopher) is part of the federation of Saint Kitts-Nevis (the federation), which has been independent of Britain since 1983
 
St Lucia
This prized Caribbean port of call was fought over by Britain and France during a 150 year period from 1664, changing possession 14 times.
 
St Vincent
St Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG) consist of a group of islands approximately 100 miles due west of Barbados.
 
Switzerland
In the 13th century, the cantons of Uri, Schwyz and Underwalden concluded the Federal Charter of 1291 and founded the first Swiss Confederation.
 
Trinidad and Tobago
Trinidad and Tobago lies to the extreme south of the Caribbean and it is approximately seven miles from the mainland of Venezuela at its nearest point to the South American continent.
 
Turks and Caicos
The Turks and Caicos Islands (the Islands) are situated some 600 miles to the south-east of Florida On 14 August 2009 the UK government partially suspended parts of the Turks and Caicos Islands Constitution
 
UAE
The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is a federation of seven emirates (Abu Dhabi, Ajman, Dubai, Fujairah, Ras Al Khaimah, Sharjah and Umm Al Quwain).
 
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom (UK) of Great Britain and Northern Ireland incorporates three legal jurisdictions: England and Wales (the latter has not had a distinct legal system since the Middle Ages), Northern Ireland and Scotland.
 
United States
The United States (US) is a union of 50 sovereign states plus the District of Columbia and 15 dependencies.
 
Uruguay
The Oriental Republic of Uruguay, which gained independence from Spain in 1825, is located on the Atlantic coast of southern South America, between Argentina and Brazil
 

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