Stamp Duties Act

Link to law: http://www.belizelaw.org/web/lawadmin/PDF%20files/cap064.pdf
Published: 2000

CAP. 64 STAMP DUTIES ACT BELIZE

STAMP DUTIES ACT

CHAPTER 64

REVISED EDITION 2000

SHOWING THE LAW AS AT 31ST DECEMBER, 2000.

This is a revised edition of the law, prepared by the Law Revision Commissioner

under the authority of the Law Revision Act, Chapter 3 of the Laws of Belize,

Revised Edition 1980 - 1990.

This edition contains a consolidation of the following laws - Page

ARRANGEMENT OF SECTIONS 3

STAMP DUTIES ACT 8 Amendments in force as at 31st December, 2000

BELIZE

STAMP DUTIES ACT

CHAPTER 64

REVISED EDITION 2000

SHOWING THE LAW AS AT 31ST DECEMBER, 2000.

This is a revised edition of the law, prepared by the Law Revision Commissioner

under the authority of the Law Revision Act, Chapter 3 of the Laws of Belize,

Revised Edition 1980 - 1990.

This edition contains a consolidation of the following laws - Page

ARRANGEMENT OF SECTIONS 3

STAMP DUTIES ACT 8 Amendments in force as at 31st December, 2000

THE SUBSTANTIVE LAWS OF BELIZE REVISED EDITION 2000

Printed by the Government Printer

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Stamp Duties [CAP. 64 3

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CHAPTER 64

STAMP DUTIES

ARRANGEMENT OF SECTIONS

PART I

Preliminary

1. Short title.

2. Interpretation.

PART II

Management of Stamp Duties

3. Constitution and duties of Commissioners of Stamps.

Dealing in Stamps

4. Licences to deal in stamps.

5. Discount on sale of stamps to licensees.

6. Recovery of money received for duty.

7. Allowance for spoiled stamps.

8. Allowance for misused stamps.

9. Allowance in stamps or money.

10. Re-purchase of stamps by Commissioners.

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11. Forgery of dies or stamps.

12. Penalty for frauds in relation to duties.

13. Search warrants.

PART III

General Regulations as to Stamps on Instruments

14. Charge of duties in Part IV.

15. Nature of stamps to be used.

16. Use of printed device as a stamp.

17. Manner of writing and stamping instruments.

18. Separate charge of duty in respect of each matter in instrument.

19. Statements in instruments of facts affecting duty.

20. Time for stamping instruments.

21. Penalty for stamping after due time.

22. Use of adhesive stamps.

23. Frauds as to adhesive stamps.

24. Appropriated stamps.

25. Ad valorem duties.

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26. Use of several instruments for one transaction.

27. Denoting stamps.

28. Assessment of duty by Commissioners.

29. Appeals against assessments.

30. Reception of unstamped instruments in evidence.

31. Recovery of stamp duties and penalties.

32. No penalty where instrument stamped within prescribed period.

33. Recovery of unpaid stamp duties, penalties and fines.

34. Avoidance of conditions and agreements as to absence of stamps.

35. Registration of unstamped instruments.

36. If consideration expressed on any instrument less than actual

amount paid, instrument void.

PART IV

The Duties on Particular Instruments

37. Affidavits.

38. Agreements.

39. Agency documents.

40. Airline ticket.

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41. Apprenticeship.

42. Articles of clerkship.

43. Bankruptcy.

44. Bills of lading.

45. Bonds.

46. Building Societies.

47. Charterparties.

48. Certificates, etc.

49. Produce licences.

50. Company winding-up.

51. Consular residences, etc.

52. Customs documents.

53. Deeds.

54. Duplicates.

55. Friendly Societies.

56. Insurance policies.

57. Leases.

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58. Mahogany and logwood licences.

59. Mortgages.

60. Notarial acts.

61. Partnership agreement.

62. Receipts.

63. Settlements.

64. Sales.

65. Share warrants.

66. Ships.

67. Appointment and retirement of trustees.

68. Warrant of attorney.

69. Conveyances, etc., exempted from duty.

70. Stamp duty on customs warrants.

71. Voluntary disposition dutiable as sale.

72. Stamp duty on transfer of land.

73. Instrument of conveyance inter vivos or transfer to be submitted for

Commissioners’ opinion.

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74. Stamp duty on foreign exchange permits.

75. Stamp duty on temporary employment permits.

76. Power of Minister to waive stamp duty.

SCHEDULE

CHAPTER 64

STAMP DUTIES

[1st August, 1917]

Ch. 39,

R.L., 1958.

CAP. 51,

R.E. 1980-90.

8 of 1959.

40 of 1963.

9 of 1966.

8 of 1978.

11 of 1980.

10 of 1981.

12 of 1982.

1 of 1984.

11 of 1984.

5 of 1985.

1 of 1986.

22 of 1986.

22 of 1987.

5 of 1993.

25 of 1994.

7 of 1996.

19 of 1996.

3 of 1998.

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PART I

Preliminary

1. This Act may be cited as the Stamp Duties Act.

2. In this Act, unless the context otherwise requires:-

“agreement’ includes memorandum of agreement, whether it is the actual

contract or is only evidence of the contract, and whether it does or does

not contain all the terms of the contract;

“conveyance” includes every instrument and every decree or order of court

whereby any property or right is transferred to or vested in any person, or

whereby any property or right not previously in existence is created;

“executed” and “execution”, with reference to instruments not under seal,

mean signed and signature;

“impressed stamp”, with reference to instruments and material, means a

stamp impressed by means of a die, or an adhesive stamp cancelled by

the Commissioners after it has been affixed to the instrument or material

by or under the authority of the Commissioners, or, in the case of bills of

exchange and foreign exchange permits, any printed device approved by

the Commissioners under section 16;

“instrument” includes every written document, except a will, however the

words are represented or reproduced;

“land” includes hereditaments and tenements, whether corporeal or

incorporeal, houses, buildings, or any interests therein;

“marketable security” means a security of such a description as to be ca-

pable of being sold in a stock market;

Short title.

Interpretation.

8 of 1978.

1 of 1984.

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“material” includes every sort of material upon which words or figures can

be expressed;

“prescribed” means prescribed by regulations made under this Act;

“stamp” includes a stamp impressed by means of a die or a printed device

approved by the Commissioners under section 16;

“stamp duties” includes all duties for the time being chargeable by law as

stamp duties, and all fees which are for the time being directed to be col-

lected or received by means of stamps; and

“stock” includes the stocks, funds, shares, or securities of any Govern-

ment or State, or of any public, municipal, or local body or authority, or of

any corporation or company.

PART II

Management of Stamp Duties

3.- (1) All stamp duties shall be under the care and management of one or

more persons in this Act called “the Commissioners” to be appointed from

time to time by the Minister.

(2) The Commissioners may sue and be sued by the name of the

Commissioners of Stamps, and may for all purposes be described by that

name.

(3) The Commissioners may, with the approval of the Minister from

time to time, by Order published in the Gazette, make regulations with

respect to any matter which, under this Act, may or is required to be

prescribed, and generally for carrying this Act into effect, and may, with

such approval as aforesaid, from time to time delegate any power or duty

to any person.

Constitution and

duties of Commis-

sioners of Stamps.

40 of 1963.

8 of 1978.

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(4) Subject to this Act, the Minister may from time to time give general

or special directions to the Commissioners with respect to any matter or

thing which the Commissioners are required or empowered to do, whether

discretionary or otherwise, and such directions shall be observed by the

Commissioners accordingly.

Dealing in Stamps

4. The Commissioners may grant a licence to any person to deal in

stamps, subject to such conditions as the Commissioners think fit.

5. The Commissioners shall allow such discount on the sale of stamps

to a licensed dealer in stamps as the Minister directs.

6. Every person who, having received money as or for any stamp duty,

does not apply the money to the due payment of that duty or improperly

withholds or detains it, shall be accountable for the amount thereof, and it

shall be a debt from him to the Crown, and recoverable as such by the

Commissioners.

7. Subject to the prescribed regulations and to the payment of the

prescribed fee if any, and to the production of such evidence by statutory

declaration which shall be exempt from stamp duty or otherwise as the

Commissioners may require, allowance shall be made by the Commission-

ers for stamps spoiled in the following circumstances-

(a) where the stamp on material which is inadvertently and

undesignedly spoiled, obliterated, or by any means rendered

unfit for the purpose intended before it is signed by any per-

son or an instrument written thereon is executed by any per-

son;

Licences to

deal in stamps.

Discount on

sale of stamps

to licensees.

40 of 1963. Recovery of

money received

for duty.

Allowance for

spoiled stamps.

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(b) where the adhesive stamp which has been inadvertently

and undesignedly spoiled or rendered unfit for use, and

has not, in the opinion of the Commissioners, been affixed

to any material;

(c) where the adhesive stamp representing a fee capable of

being collected by means thereof which has been affixed

to material if it is certified by the officer responsible for

collecting the fee that the stamp should be allowed;

(d) where the stamp on a bill of exchange signed by or on

behalf of the drawer which has not been accepted or made

use of in any manner whatever or delivered out of his hands

for any purpose other than by way of tender for accep-

tance;

(e) where the stamp on a promissory note signed by or on

behalf of the maker which has not been made use of in any

manner whatever or delivered out of his hands;

(f) where the stamp on a bill of exchange or promissory note

which from an omission or error is spoiled or rendered

useless, although it, being a bill of exchange, has been ac-

cepted or endorsed, or, being a promissory note, has been

delivered to the payee, if another completed and duly

stamped bill of exchange or promissory note is produced

identical in every particular, except in the correction of the

error or omission, with the spoiled bill or note;

(g) where the stamp on an instrument executed by a party

thereto, but afterwards found to be absolutely void from

the beginning;

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(h) where the stamp on an instrument executed by a party

thereto, but afterwards found unfit, by reason of an error or

mistake therein, for the purpose originally intended;

(i) where the stamp on an instrument executed by a party

thereto which has not been made use of for any purpose

whatever, and which by reason of the inability or refusal of

some necessary party to execute it or to complete the trans-

action according to the instrument, is incomplete and insuf-

ficient for the purpose for which it was intended;

(j) where an instrument executed by a party thereto, which by

reason of the refusal of any person to act under it, or for

want of enrolment or registration within the time required

by law, wholly fails of the intended purpose or becomes

void;

(k) where an instrument executed by a party thereto which is

inadvertently and undesignedly spoiled, and in lieu whereof

another instrument made between the same parties and for

the same purpose is executed and duly stamped, or which

becomes useless in consequence of the transaction intended

to be thereby effected being effected by some other duly

stamped instrument:

Provided that-

(a) the application for relief is made within two years after the

stamp has been spoiled or become useless, or, in the case

of an executed instrument, after the date of the instrument,

or, if it is not dated, within two years after the execution

thereof by the person by whom it was first or alone

executed; or

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(b) in the case of an executed instrument, no legal proceeding

has been commenced in which the instrument could or would

have been given or offered in evidence, and that the instru-

ment is given up to be cancelled.

8. Where any person has inadvertently used for an instrument liable

to a stamp duty a stamp of greater value than was necessary, or has inad-

vertently used a stamp for an instrument not liable to any stamp duty, the

Commissioners may, on application made within two years after the date

of the instrument, or, if it is not dated, within two years after the execution

thereof by the person by whom it was first or alone executed, and upon

the instrument, if liable to duty, being stamped with the proper duty, cancel

and allow as spoiled the stamp so misused.

9. The Commissioners may give as allowance for spoiled or misused

stamps other stamps of the same denomination and value or, if required,

and they think fit, stamps of another denomination to the same amount in

value, or, if they think fit, the same value in money, deducting therefrom

such discount, if any, as the Minister may from time to time direct.

10. The Commissioners may, if they think fit, re-purchase any stamp

at its face value less such discount, if any, as the Minister may from time to

time direct.

11.-(1) Any person who, with intent to defraud, counterfeits or forges any

die or stamp, or imports or exports or has in his possession, power or

control any counterfeited or forged die or stamp, is guilty of an offence

and is liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding fourteen years.

(2) This section shall have effect as if it formed part of the Criminal

Code (Forgery).

Allowance for

misused stamps.

Allowance in

stamps or money.

Re-purchase of

stamps by

Commissioners.

Forgery of dies or

stamps.

40 of 1963.

CAP. 101.

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12. Any person who practises or is concerned in any fraudulent act,

contrivance, or device, not specially provided for by law, with intent to

defraud Her Majesty of any stamp duty, is guilty of a misdemeanour pun-

ishable summarily or on indictment, but so that the punishment on summary

conviction shall not exceed six months imprisonment.

13. Any justice of the peace before whom an information on oath is laid

that reasonable suspicion exists that an offence against this or any other law

punishable on indictment, has been committed with respect to any die, or

stamp, or stamp duty, may issue his warrant for search of any building or

place belonging to, or occupied by, or under the control of the suspected

person, and such search may be effected accordingly, and any document

or thing there found which appears to be or may be material evidence, and

any die or stamp there found, may be seized, and shall be detained and

dealt with as an exhibit in proceedings.

PART III

General Regulations as to Stamps on Instruments

14.-(1) Subject to this Act, there shall be charged as stamp duties for the

use of the Crown in aid of the Consolidated Revenue Fund upon the instru-

ments of the several descriptions specified in Part IV, the duties of the sev-

eral amounts specified in the said Part.

(2) The charge by this Act of a duty on an instrument shall, unless

otherwise provided, be in addition to any fee chargeable in respect of that

instrument under any other law, whether the fee is or is not for the time

being directed to be collected or received by means of stamps.

(3) Unless otherwise provided, the charge of duty by this Act applies

only to instruments relating to property situated in Belize, or to some matter

or thing done or omitted or which may or is to be done or omitted in Belize,

but applies to such instruments wherever executed.

Penalty for

frauds in relation

to duties.

Search warrants.

Charge of duties

in Part IV.

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(4) The stock of a company incorporated outside Belize which has a

place of business in Belize or owns land in Belize shall, for the purposes of

stamp duty, be deemed to be situated in Belize.

(5) Where an instrument relating to the stock of any such company is

executed by the holder of the stock in the country under whose laws the

company is incorporated, that stock shall not for the purposes of the stamp

duty on that instrument be deemed to be situated in Belize.

15.-(1) The Commissioners may prescribe that any stamp duty shall or

may be denoted by adhesive stamps, or by impressed stamps, or partly by

adhesive stamps and partly by impressed stamps.

(2) Unless otherwise provided or prescribed, all stamp duties may be

denoted by adhesive stamps, whether marked postage or inland revenue.

16. The Commissioners may approve, under such terms and condi-

tions as the Commissioner may from time to time in writing prescribe the

use by a bank licensed under the Banks and Financial Institutions Act, or

a bank, as defined in section 74 of this Act, or an insurance company

licensed under the Insurance Act on policies issued by it, of a printed

device for the purpose of denoting the payment of stamp duty chargeable

under this Act.

17.-(1) An instrument written upon stamped material shall be so written,

and an instrument partly or wholly written before being stamped shall be

so stamped, that the stamp appears on the face of the instrument, and

cannot be used for or applied to another instrument written upon the same

piece of material.

(2) If more than one instrument is written upon the same piece of

material, each instrument shall be separately and distinctly stamped with

the duty with which it is chargeable.

Nature of stamps

to be used.

Use of printed

device as a stamp.

8 of 1978.

1 of 1984.

CAP. 263.

CAP. 251.

Manner of writing

and stamping

instruments.

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18. Unless otherwise provided or prescribed-

(a) an instrument containing or relating to more than one matter

shall be separately and distinctly charged, as if it were a sepa-

rate instrument, with duty in respect of each matter;

(b) an instrument made for a consideration in respect whereof it is

chargeable with ad valorem duty, and also for any other valu-

able consideration, shall be separately and distinctly charged,

as if it were a separate instrument, with duty in respect of each

consideration;

(c) an instrument shall not, except as mentioned in paragraphs (a)

and (b), be charged with more than one duty in respect of the

same matter, but shall, in respect of each matter, be charged

with the highest duty applicable thereto.

19.-(1) All the circumstances affecting the liability of an instrument to duty,

or the amount of the duty chargeable thereon, shall be truly set forth in the

instrument.

(2) Every person who, with intent to defraud the Crown-

(a) executes or issues an instrument in which all the circum-

stances as required by subsection (1) are not truly set forth;

or

(b) being employed or concerned in or about the preparation

of an instrument, does not truly set forth therein all the said

circumstances,

is guilty of a misdemeanour punishable summarily or on indictment,

but so that the punishment on summary conviction shall not exceed

six months’ imprisonment.

Separate charge

of duty in respect

of each matter in

instrument.

Statements in

instruments of

facts affecting

duty.

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20.-(1) Unless otherwise provided or prescribed, an instrument charge-

able with stamp duty shall be stamped before or at the time of notification

by the Commissioners of the duty chargeable on such instrument:

Provided that the instrument chargeable shall be submitted to the

Commissioners within thirty days of the date of the execution thereof, and

shall not be stamped after that time except with an impressed stamp on

payment of the proper penalty.

(2) An instrument chargeable with an ad valorem duty not being a

promissory note or bill of exchange may be stamped with an impressed

stamp without the payment of a penalty at any time within thirty days after

it was first executed.

(3) An instrument which is first executed outside Belize may be stamped

without payment of any penalty at any time within thirty days after it is first

received in Belize, or within thirty days after the notification by the Com-

missioners of the duty chargeable on such instrument where the instrument

was submitted to the Commissioners under section 73;

Provided that such submission shall be made within thirty days

after such instrument was first received in Belize.

21.-(1) The Commissioners shall stamp with an impressed stamp any in-

strument after the time when it ought to have been stamped on payment of

the unpaid duty and of the proper penalty.

(2) The proper penalty shall be the sum of five dollars for the first

week or part of a week, and the sum of ten dollars for each week or part

of a week after the first week, which has elapsed since the time when the

instrument could have been stamped without the payment of a penalty,

with the maximum of fifty-five dollars.

Time for stamping

instruments.

8 of 1978.

Penalty for

stamping after due

time.

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(3) The payment of a penalty payable on stamping shall be denoted on

the instrument by the Commissioners.

(4) The Minister may, if he thinks fit, mitigate or remit a penalty payable

on stamping.

22.-(1) Unless otherwise provided or prescribed, an instrument shall not

be stamped with an adhesive stamp after the time when the instrument is

first executed.

(2) An instrument is not duly stamped with an adhesive stamp unless, at

a time when the instrument can lawfully be so stamped, every adhesive

stamp affixed thereto is effectually cancelled so as to be incapable of being

used for another instrument or for any postal purpose.

(3) The Commissioners may, if satisfied that failure to cancel an adhe-

sive stamp at the proper time was accidental, themselves cancel the adhe-

sive stamp on payment of the proper penalty for stamping the instrument

after execution, and thereupon the instrument shall be deemed duly stamped

with that adhesive stamp.

(4) If any person not authorised by the Commissioners affixes an adhe-

sive stamp to an unstamped or insufficiently stamped instrument, or cancels

an adhesive stamp on such instrument after the time when the instrument is,

by this Act, permitted to be stamped with an adhesive stamp, he shall incur

a fine of two hundred dollars.

23.-(1) Every person who-

(a) fraudulently removes, or causes to be removed, from an

instrument any adhesive stamp, or affixes to another instru-

ment or uses for any postal purpose, an adhesive stamp

which has been so removed, with intent that the stamp may

be used again; or

Use of adhesive

stamps.

Frauds as to

adhesive stamps.

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(b) sells, or offers or has in his possession for sale, or utters,

an adhesive stamp which has to his knowledge been so

removed, or utters an instrument having thereon an adhe-

sive stamp which has to his knowledge been so removed

as aforesaid,

is guilty of a misdemeanour punishable summarily or on indictment, but

so that the punishment on summary conviction shall not exceed six

months’ imprisonment.

(2) The expression “instrument” in this section includes any postal

packet as defined by the Post Office Act, and the cover of any

such letter.

24.-(1) Unless otherwise prescribed, a stamp which by any word or words

on the face of it is appropriated to instruments of a particular description

shall not be used or be available for use on an instrument of another de-

scription.

(2) An instrument of the description to which any stamp is so appro-

priated shall not, unless otherwise prescribed, be deemed duly stamped

unless it is stamped with the stamp so appropriated.

25. Where an instrument is chargeable with an ad valorem duty on

money or money’s worth which is expressed in any manner other than in

the currency of Belize, the duty shall be calculated as follows-

(a) a duty on money in any currency not being local currency

shall be calculated on its value in local currency, at the date

of the instrument, according to the current rate of exchange;

(b) a duty on stock or on a marketable security shall be calcu-

lated on its value, at the date of the instrument, according

to the average price thereof;

Appropriated

stamps.

Ad valorem duties.

CAP. 228

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(c) a duty on a debt or on a security, not being a marketable

security, shall be calculated on the amount due, at the date

of the instrument, for principal and interest; and

(d) an instrument which contains a statement of the value of any

money or stock, or other property or right, or as to the

amount due on a debt or security, and is stamped in accor-

dance with that statement shall, so far as regards the sub-

ject matter of the statement, be deemed duly stamped un-

less it is shown that the statement is untrue, and that the

instrument is in fact insufficiently stamped.

26.-(1) Unless otherwise provided, where several instruments are executed

for effecting a transaction chargeable with one ad valorem duty, the princi-

pal instrument only shall be charged with the ad valorem duty, and every

other instrument shall be charged with such other duty as it may be liable

to, but the last-mentioned duty shall not exceed the ad valorem duty charged

on the principal instrument.

(2) In such a case the parties may determine for themselves which in-

strument is to be stamped as the principal instrument.

27. Where the duty with which an instrument is chargeable or any ex-

emption from duty depends in any manner upon the duty paid on another

instrument, the payment of the last-mentioned duty shall, upon application

to the Commissioners and production of both instruments, be denoted on

the first-mentioned instrument in such manner as the Commissioners think

fit.

28.-(1) Subject to such regulations as may be prescribed, the Commis-

sioners may be required by any person to express their opinion with refer-

ence to any executed instrument upon the following questions-

Use of several

instruments for

one transaction.

Denoting stamps.

Assessment of

duty by Com-

missioners.

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(a) whether it is chargeable with any duty;

(b) with what amount of duty it is chargeable.

(2) The Commissioners may require to be furnished with an abstract

or copy of the instrument and also with such evidence as they may think

necessary in order to show to their satisfaction whether all the facts and

circumstances affecting the instrument with regard to duty or the amount

of duty chargeable thereon are fully and truly set forth therein.

(3) If the Commissioners are of opinion that the instrument is not

chargeable with any duty, it may be stamped with a particular stamp de-

noting that it is not chargeable with any duty.

(4) If the Commissioners are of opinion that the instrument is charge-

able with duty, they shall assess the duty with which it is, in their opinion,

chargeable, and when the instrument is stamped in accordance with the

assessment it may be stamped with a particular stamp denoting that it is

duly stamped.

(5) Every instrument stamped with a particular stamp denoting either

that it is not chargeable with any duty, or is duly stamped, shall be admis-

sible in evidence and available for all purposes notwithstanding any objec-

tion relating to duty:

Provided as follows-

(a) an instrument upon which the duty has been assessed by

the Commissioners shall not, if it is unstamped or insuffi-

ciently stamped, be stamped otherwise than in accordance

with the assessment;

THE SUBSTANTIVE LAWS OF BELIZE REVISED EDITION 2000

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Stamp Duties [CAP. 64 23

[ ]

(b) a statutory declaration made for the purposes of this sec-

tion shall not be used against any person making it in any

proceedings whatever except in an inquiry as to the duty

with which the instrument to which it relates is chargeable

and every person by whom any such declaration is made

shall on payment of the duty chargeable upon the instru-

ment to which it relates be relieved from any fine or disabil-

ity to which he may be liable by reason of the omission to

state truly in the instrument any fact or circumstance re-

quired by this Act to be stated therein.

29.-(1) Any person who is dissatisfied with the assessment of the Commis-

sioners may within twenty-one days after the date of the assessment and on

payment of duty in conformity therewith, appeal against the assessment to

the Supreme Court and may for that purpose require the Commissioners to

state and sign a case setting forth the question upon which their opinion was

required and the assessment made by them and the reasons therefor.

(2) The Commissioners shall thereupon state and sign a case and shall

transmit it to the Registrar of the Supreme Court and the case may within

fourteen days thereafter be set down for hearing.

(3) Upon the hearing of the case, the court shall determine the question

submitted and if the instrument in question is in the opinion of the court

chargeable with any duty, assess the duty with which it is chargeable.

(4) If it is decided by the court that the assessment of the Commission-

ers is erroneous, any excess of duty which has been paid in conformity with

the erroneous assessment together with any fine or penalty which has been

paid in consequence thereof shall be ordered by the court to be paid to the

appellant, with or without costs as the court may determine.

Appeals against

assessments.

Stamp DutiesCAP. 64]

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24

(5) If the assessment of the Commissioners is confirmed, the court

may make an order for the payment to the Commissioners of the costs

incurred by them in relation to the appeal.

30.-(1) Upon the production of an instrument chargeable with any duty

as evidence in any court of civil jurisdiction or before any arbitrator, notice

shall be taken by the judge, magistrate or arbitrator of any omission or

insufficiency of the stamps thereon, and if the instrument is one which may

legally be stamped after the execution thereof, it may, on payment to the

officer of the court whose duty it is to receive the instrument, or the arbi-

trator, of the amount of the unpaid duty, and the penalty payable on stamping

the same, and a further penalty of $5.00, be received in evidence, saving

all just exceptions on other grounds.

(2) The officer or arbitrator receiving the duty and penalty shall give a

receipt for it and shall communicate to the Commissioners the name or

title of the cause or proceeding and of the party from whom he received

the duty and penalty and the date and description of the instrument and

shall pay over to the Commissioners the money received by him for the

duty and penalty.

(3) On production to the Commissioners of any instrument in respect

of which any duty or penalty has been paid together with the receipt, the

payment of the duty and penalty shall be denoted on the instrument.

(4) The decision of the judge, magistrate or arbitrator as to the neces-

sity or sufficiency of stamp upon any document, or as to the amount pay-

able for stamp duty thereupon, shall be final.

(5) Except as mentioned in subsection (1), an instrument in any part of

Belize, or relating, wherever executed, to any property situate, or to any

matter or thing done or to be done, in any part of Belize shall not, except

Reception of

unstamped instru-

ments in evidence.

THE SUBSTANTIVE LAWS OF BELIZE REVISED EDITION 2000

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Stamp Duties [CAP. 64 25

[ ]

in criminal proceedings, be given in evidence or be available for any pur-

pose whatever, unless it is duly stamped.

31.-(1) If an instrument of a kind specified below and chargeable with ad

valorem duty is not duly stamped before or at the time after which it cannot

be lawfully stamped except on payment of a penalty, the person mentioned

in subsection (2) shall be liable to pay to the Commissioners the amount of

the stamp duty on the instrument and the penalty payable on stamping it,

and shall in addition incur a fine of fifty dollars.

(2) The instruments to which this section applies and the persons liable

as mentioned in subsection (1) are-

Instruments chargeable with duty as: Persons liable as aforesaid:

(a) conveyance on sale ............................. the purchaser;

(b) a lease .................................................the lessee;

(c) mortgage (except a debenture) ..............the mortgagee;

(d) debenture............................................. the company issuing the same;

(e) transfer, assignment, or disposition ...... the transferee, assignee or disponee;

of a mortgage (f) reconveyance, release, or discharge of....the person redeeming the security. a mortgage

(3) Nothing in this section shall affect any express or implied agree-

ment as to the incidence of any stamp duty as between the parties.

32. Where a period is prescribed within which an instrument may be

stamped after execution without the payment of a penalty, no fine shall,

notwithstanding anything contained in this Act, be incurred in respect of

such an instrument if it is duly stamped within that period.

33.-(1) All unpaid stamp duties and penalties for non-payment of stamp

duties may be recovered by the Crown in civil proceedings in any court of

competent jurisdiction.

Recovery of

stamp duties

and penalties.

No penalty

where instru-

ment stamped

within pre-

scribed period.

Recovery of

unpaid stamp

duties, penalties

and fines.

Stamp DutiesCAP. 64]

THE SUBSTANTIVE LAWS OF BELIZE REVISED EDITION 2000

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26

(2) The Commissioners, with the approval of the Minister, may miti-

gate or remit any penalty for non-payment of a stamp duty imposed by this

Act, either before or after judgment, and may compromise any proceed-

ings.

(3) All fines imposed by this Act may be recoverable under the Sum-

mary Jurisdiction Acts.

(4) The court may, if satisfied that there was no intention of evading

the payment of duty, reduce, mitigate or remit the fine.

(5) Nothing in this Act shall affect any power of the Minister to miti-

gate or remit any fine.

34. A condition of sale framed with the view of precluding objection

or requisition on the ground of absence or insufficiency of the stamp on an

instrument, and every contract, arrangement, or undertaking for assuming

the liability on account of the absence or insufficiency of the stamp on an

instrument or indemnifying against such liability, absence or insufficiency,

shall be void.

35. If any person whose office or duty it is to record, enrol, register, or

enter in or upon any rolls, books or records, an instrument chargeable

with stamp duty, knowingly records, enrols, registers, or enters any such

instrument not being duly stamped, he shall incur a fine of two hundred

dollars.

36. If, with intent to evade the payment of duty under this Act, a con-

sideration or sum of money shall be expressed to be paid on any instru-

ment less than the amount actually paid or agreed to be paid, every such

instrument shall be void.

Avoidance of

conditions and

agreements as to

absence of stamps.

Registration of

unstamped

instruments.

If consideration

expressed on any

instrument less than

actual amount paid,

instrument void.

CAP. 98.

CAP. 99.

THE SUBSTANTIVE LAWS OF BELIZE REVISED EDITION 2000

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Stamp Duties [CAP. 64 27

[ ]

PART IV

The Duties on Particular Instruments

37.-(1) On every affidavit and on every declaration made under section 17

or 18 of the Oaths Act there shall be paid a duty of $1.50.

(2) The following instruments are exempt from the duty charged by this

section-

(a) an affidavit made for the immediate purpose of being filed

and used in any proceedings in any court;

(b) an affidavit or declaration required by any customs or ex-

cise law;

(c) a declaration required as a condition of accepting any

employment or office under Government;

(d) a declaration made by or at the request of any Govern-

ment official solely for the purposes of Government

business;

(e) a declaration required to be made by any law or Act with a

view to marriage;

(f) a declaration required to accompany an application for a

patent under the Patents Act;

(g) an affidavit or statutory declaration required to be made by

any Act.

(3) Every person who takes, swears, or makes any affidavit or decla-

ration which is chargeable with duty under this section and is not duly

stamped shall incur a fine of fifty dollars.

Affidavits.

CAP. 130.

8 of 1978.

CAP. 253.

Stamp DutiesCAP. 64]

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38.-(1) There shall be paid on every agreement of a kind not otherwise

charged with duty-

(a) if not under seal, a duty of .......... $0.75

(b) if under seal, a duty of .................... $12.00

(2) An agreement not under seal the matter whereof is not of the

value of twenty-five dollars shall be exempt from all duties charged by

this Act.

(3) An agreement not under seal for the hire of any labourer, artifi-

cer, artisan, or domestic servant is exempt from all duties charged by

this Act.

39.-(1) There shall be paid on every instrument appointing an agent or

an attorney-

(a) if not under seal, and for the sole purpose of appointing

one or more proxies to vote at one meeting, a duty of

....................................................................... . $0.15

(b) in the case of the appointment of a receiver by a mort-

gagee, a duty of ................................................$15.00

(c) in every other case, if under seal, a duty of

........................................................................ $15.00

(2) An instrument not under seal appointing a proxy to vote at a

meeting shall name the date of the meeting, and shall be available only at

the meeting and any adjournment thereof.

(3) A vote at a meeting given under the authority of an instrument

which is not duly stamped shall be void.

Agreements.

Agency docu-

ments.

8 of 1978.

8 of 1978.

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Stamp Duties [CAP. 64 29

[ ]

40. A duty shall be paid on every ticket issued in Belize for transpor-

tation by air to and from Belize or any place outside Belize, where the

fare-

(a) does not exceed $250.00..........................$25.00

(b) exceeds $250.00.................................... $30.00:

Provided that no duty shall be payable on tickets issued to any person

exempt from the payment of departure tax under the Departure Tax Act.

41.-(1) There shall be paid on every instrument of apprenticeship-

(a) if not under seal, a duty of ...................... $0.50

(b) if under seal, a duty of ............................ $4.00

(2) An instrument of apprenticeship to the sea service is exempt from

all stamp duties charged by this Act.

(3) Every person who executes an instrument which is chargeable

with duty under this section and is not duly stamped shall incur a fine of

fifty dollars.

42.-(1) On any article of clerkship whereby any person becomes bound to

serve as a clerk with a view to his admission as a Solicitor of the Supreme

Court, there shall be paid—

(a) on the first occasion..................................... $100.00

(b) on every subsequent occasion ..................... $10.00

Airline Ticket.

Articles of

clerkship.

5 of 1993.

Apprenticeship.

8 of 1959.

8 of 1959.

8 of 1978.

CAP. 50

Stamp DutiesCAP. 64]

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(2) Any person who executes any such articles which are not duly

stamped shall incur a fine of fifty dollars.

43. The following instruments are exempt from the stamp duties im-

posed by this Act—

(a) every instrument required for or relating solely to proceed-

ings under the Bankruptcy Act, whether before or after

adjudication, and whether an adjudication is made or not;

(b) every instrument relating solely to the property of a bank-

rupt where the property, after the execution of the instru-

ment, remains the estate of the bankrupt or of his trustee in

bankruptcy.

44.-(1) There shall be paid on every bill of lading for goods to be

exported, a duty of .........................................................................$0.75

(2) For the purposes of stamp duty, “bill of lading” includes every docu-

ment signed by the shipowner, or master, or by an agent of the shipowner

or master acknowledging the receipt of goods, whether already shipped

or for shipment.

(3) Every person who executes or issues such a bill of lading which is

not duly stamped shall incur a fine of fifty dollars.

45.-(1) There shall be paid on every fifty dollars or part of fifty dollars of

the amount of the penalty of every bond, not otherwise chargeable with

duty under this Act, a duty of ................................................. $0.30

Provided that the maximum duty chargeable shall not exceed twelve

dollars.

Bankruptcy.

Bills of lading.

8 of 1978.

Bonds.

CAP. 244.

8 of 1978.

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Stamp Duties [CAP. 64 31

[ ]

(2) A bail bond and a bond for obtaining probate or letters of adminis-

tration and a security given with a view to an appeal from an Inferior Court

to the Supreme Court under Part X of the Supreme Court of Judicature

Act, are exempt from all stamp duties charged by this Act.

46. The following instruments relating to Building Societies duly estab-

lished under the Building Societies Act, are exempt from all stamp duties

imposed by this Act-

(a) a statutory declaration required by section 15 of the said

Act on the occasion of the rescission or alteration of, or the

addition to, any rule of the society;

(b) a bond or other security given by an officer in accordance

with section 19 of the said Act;

(c) a receipt for money paid to the society by a member;

(d) a receipt for money lawfully paid to a member or his agent

or next of kin, or personal representative, by a society;

(e) a transfer of a share in the society;

(f) an appointment by the society of an agent;

(g) a mortgage by a member to the society, and every instru-

ment executed by the society having the effect of a recon-

veyance or release of any such mortgage.

47. A charter-party not under seal is exempt from any stamp duty.

48.-(1) There shall be paid the stamp duty enumerated in Column II of the

Schedule in respect of the corresponding professional certificate, licence or

Building Societies.

CAP. 91.

Charter- parties.

Certificates,

etc.

CAP. 310.

Stamp DutiesCAP. 64]

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commission set out in Column I of that Schedule.

(2) The Minister may, by Order published in the Gazette, add to the

Schedule any profession or vocation the licence or certificate to practice

which has to be recorded or in respect of which a certificate of registration

must be issued and prescribe the duty therefor, or may by such Order

remove any profession or vocation from that Schedule.

49. There shall be paid on every instrument operating as a licence to

cut, collect, prepare, use or remove forest produce as defined in section 2

of the Forests Act, where the value of such produce exceeds twenty dol-

lars-

(a) if not under seal, a duty of .................................. $0.75

(b) if under seal, a duty of ........................................$12.00.

50. In the case of company winding-up proceedings, the following in-

struments are exempt from the stamp duties imposed by this Act—

(a) every instrument required for or relating solely to pro-

ceedings for winding-up a company by the court,

whether before or after the winding-up order is made,

and whether such an order is ultimately made or not;

(b) every instrument relating solely to the property of a

company being wound up by the court, where the prop-

erty after the execution of the instrument remains the

estate of the company or of the Official Receiver or

Liquidator.

51. Documents-

Schedule.

8 of 1978.

Produce licences.

Company winding-

up.

Consular resi-

dences, etc.

Schedule.

CAP. 213.

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Stamp Duties [CAP. 64 33

[ ]

(a) relating to the purchase or lease of property by or on

behalf of a Foreign Government as a consular residence;

and

(b) required in connection with the transfer of property to a

Foreign Government or State for the use of its agencies

(other than diplomatic or consular establishments),

shall be exempt from all stamp duties if the Foreign Government or State

accords a similar exemption to the Belizean Government.

52. A bond with a view to the export of warehoused goods under sec-

tion 39 of the Customs Regulation Act, or by inland carriage or navigation

under section 51 of that Act, or with a view to the transfer of warehoused

goods to another part of Belize under section 71 of that Act is exempt from

all stamp duties charged by this Act.

53. On every deed not chargeable with ad valorem duty, there shall

be paid a duty of .......................................................... $12.00

54.-(1)There shall be paid on every duplicate or counterpart of an instru-

ment chargeable with duty-

(a) where such duty is less than $1.00, the same duty as on

the original instrument;

(b) in every other case, a duty of ...............................$3.00

(2) A duplicate or counterpart of an instrument chargeable with stamp

duty shall not be deemed duly stamped unless it is stamped as an original

instrument, or it is shown that the original instrument is duly and sufficiently

stamped.

Customs docu-

ments.

CAP. 49.

Deeds.

8 of 1978.

8 of 1978.

Duplicates.

Stamp DutiesCAP. 64]

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55. The following instruments relating to Friendly Societies duly

established under the Friendly Societies Act, are exempt from all stamp

duties imposed by this Act-

(a) a receipt by the Society for a subscription due from a

member;

(b) a receipt by a member, or his wife or child, or agent,

next of kin, or personal representatives for money paid

by the society;

(c) an instrument for effecting an appointment of a trustee or

of a new trustee or the retirement of a trustee of the

society, or for transferring property of the society in

pursuance of such an appointment or retirement;

(d) a bond by a treasurer or steward of a society given in

accordance with the said Act;

(e) any statutory declaration required to be made by the said

Act or by the rules of the Society.

56.-(1) There shall be paid-

(a) on every policy of insurance against accident, or for any

payment agreed to be made during the sickness of any per-

son or his incapacity from personal injury, or by way of

indemnity against loss or damage of or to any property, a

duty of.............................................................. $0.10

(b) on every hundred dollars or part of one hundred dollars of

the amount insured under any policy of life insurance, a

duty of .............................................................$0.10

Friendly Societies.

CAP. 317.

Insurance policies.

11 of 1980.

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Stamp Duties [CAP. 64 35

[ ]

(c) on every policy of marine insurance where the premium does

not exceed the rate of one-eighth per centum of the sum

insured, a duty of .................................................$0.10

(d) on every hundred dollars or part of one hundred dollars of

the amount insured under any policy of marine insurance,

where the insurance is for one voyage, or for any time not

exceeding six months, a duty of..............................$0.05

(e) on every hundred dollars or part of one hundred dollars of

the amount insured under any policy of marine insurance,

where the insurance is for any time exceeding six months,

but not exceeding twelve months, a duty of ...............$0.10

(2) A policy of marine insurance for a period exceeding twelve

months shall be void.

(3) The charge of duty by this Act on insurance policies extends to all

policies executed in Belize, whether so executed by the insurer or by his

agent, and to all policies, wherever executed, effected through an agent in

Belize of the insurer, or relating to property in Belize, or where the sum

insured is to be paid in Belize.

(4) A policy of insurance which is not executed in Belize or effected

through an agent in Belize of the insurer and is duly stamped in accordance

with the law for the time being in force in the United Kingdom or some

British possession shall not by virtue of this Act, be liable to any stamp duty

by reason only that it relates to property in Belize or provides that the sum

insured shall be paid in Belize.

(5) Where an insurance is effected through an agent in Belize of the

insurer, the agent, if he does not himself execute the policy of such insur-

ance, shall within seven days after the receipt of any proposal form signed

Stamp DutiesCAP. 64]

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by or on behalf of the person intending to be insured or the receipt of the

first or only premium for the insurance, whichever first happens, cause the

proposal form or the receipt for the premium, as the case may be, to be

duly stamped in the same manner as if it were the actual policy, and, if he

fails to do so, shall incur a fine of two hundred dollars:

Provided that where the proposal form or the receipt for the first or

only premium in respect of an insurance is duly stamped as a policy of

insurance, the policy of such insurance shall not, by virtue of this Act, be

chargeable with any stamp duty.

(6) For the purposes of stamp duties, “insurance” includes every con-

tract of insurance, and “policy of insurance” or “insurance policy”, includes

every instrument whereby an insurance is made or agreed to be made or is

evidenced.

(7) No insurance which, if effected by a policy, would give rise to a

charge of stamp duty shall be valid, unless it is effected by a duly stamped

policy, or, in the case of an insurance effected through an agent in Belize,

the proposal form or receipt for the first or only premium in respect thereof

is duly stamped as a policy of insurance.

(8) Every person who executes or issues a policy which is liable to

stamp duty but which is not duly stamped shall incur a fine of fifty dollars.

57.-(1) There shall be paid on every letting of land-

(a) in the case of a weekly or monthly tenancy, or for any

definite and limited term not longer than one year-

(i) of a dwelling house or part of a dwelling house at

a rent not exceeding the rate of ninety-six dollars

per annum, a duty of ........................... $0.15

Leases.

THE SUBSTANTIVE LAWS OF BELIZE REVISED EDITION 2000

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Stamp Duties [CAP. 64 37

[ ]

(ii) in every other case-

if not under seal, a duty of ...................... $0.75

if under seal, a duty of ............................. $12.00

(b) in the case of any other tenancy or term-

(i) where the consideration or any part of the consid-

eration given or at any time to be given for the lease

consists of a premium in money or money’s worth

not being a rent in respect of such premium, the same

duty as on a conveyance on sale for the same amount

or value;

(ii) where the consideration or any part of the consid-

eration for the lease is a rent in respect of such con-

sideration, if the rent, whether reserved as a yearly

rent or otherwise, is at a rate or average rate per

annum-

(c) in the case of a tenancy of or permission to occupy land

solely for planting or agricultural purposes for a definite and

limited term not longer than one year, for which the total

amount or value of the consideration given or at any time to

be given does not exceed twenty-five dollars, a duty of ...

.............................................................................$0.15

8 of 1978.

sdeecxemretehtfI

tonseodtubraey1

.sraey7deecxe

sdeecxemretehtfI

seodtubsraey7

03deecxeton

.sraey

sdeecxemretehtfI

seodtubsraey03

99deecxeton

.sraey

sdeecxemretehtfI

sirosraey99

.etinifedni

.......................52$gnideecxetoN 57.0$ 52.2$ 05.4$ 00.3$

gnideecxetontub52$gnideecxE

...............................................05$ 05.1$ 05.4$ 00.3$ 00.6$

fomushcaerof05$gnideecxE

.....................foerehttrapro05$ 05.1$ 05.4$ 00.3$ 00.6$

8 of 1978.

8 of 1978

Stamp DutiesCAP. 64]

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(d) in any case not otherwise chargeable under this section-

(i) if not under seal, a duty of .................... $0.75

(ii) if under seal, a duty of ...................... $12.00

(2) A lease by the Crown or the Government is exempt from any

stamp duty imposed by this Act.

(3) In this section “lease” includes an agreement for a lease and a

permission to occupy land.

58. There shall be paid on every instrument operating as a licence to

fell, cut, get, or take away mahogany, cedar or logwood-

(a) if not under seal, a duty of ............ $0.75

(b) if under seal, a duty of ................... $12.00

59.-(1) There shall be paid-

(a) on every fifty dollars or part of fifty dollars of the

amount or value secured, or which may at any time

be secured, by any mortgage for the payment or

transfer of money or money’s worth, a duty of ....... $0.75

(b) on every fifty dollars or part of fifty dollars of the

amount or value transferred, assigned or disposed

of (including interest in arrear) by any transferor,

assignment or disposition of any mortgage, a duty

of ................................................................. $0.30

and

Mahogany and

logwood licences.

8 of 1978.

Mortgages.

8 of 1978.

8 of 1978.

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Stamp Duties [CAP. 64 39

[ ]

(c) on every fifty dollars or part of fifty dollars of

the highest amount or value at any time secured

(excluding interest in arrear which has not been

capitalised) by the re-conveyance, release,

discharge or surrender of any mortgage,

a duty of................................................... $0.30

(2) The duties payable in respect of a mortgage transferable by

delivery or by any means other than an instrument of transfer shall be

three times the amount of the above duties.

(3) For the purposes of stamp duties, the expression “mortgage”

means-

(a) a mortgage on any instrument creating a charge or lien on

land;

(b) a bill of sale registered or requiring registration under the

Bills of Sale Act; and

(c) a debenture issued by a company:

Provided that “mortgage” shall not include-

(i) a security by way of pledge or pawn; or

(ii) a charge or lien apart from the land on timber or

logwood, whether standing, felled, or cut, or there-

after to be felled or cut, or on chicle, whether al-

ready bled, or thereafter to be bled, where it is stipu-

lated by the instrument creating the charge or lien

that the money secured thereby shall be used exclu-

CAP. 246.

Stamp DutiesCAP. 64]

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sively for the purposes of one, some, or all of the

following operations, namely, cutting and deliver-

ing timber or logwood for, to, or on behalf of the

mortgagee, or which is to be sold to the mortgagee,

and collecting and delivering chicle for, to, or on

behalf of the mortgagee, or which is to be sold to

the mortgagee.

(4) Where the total amount or value secured or to be ultimately

recoverable is in any way limited, the mortgage shall be deemed a mort-

gage for the amount or value so limited.

(5) Where such total amount or value is unlimited, the mortgage

shall be deemed duly stamped for such an amount or value only as the

stamp thereon is sufficient to cover according to the ad valorem scale,

and if subsequently money or money’s worth in excess of that amount or

value is advanced or becomes owing, the mortgage shall, as regards that

excess, be stamped as a new and separate mortgage executed on the date

when such excess is advanced or becomes owing.

(6) A transfer of a mortgage, and also a mortgage for money to be

added to money previously secured, shall not be charged with any more

duty by reason of its containing further security for the money transferred

or previously secured, or any new provision in relation thereto or to prop-

erty comprised in the transferred or previous mortgage.

(7) Mortgagees’ costs, charges and expenses, whether expressly

secured by the mortgage or not, shall not be subject to an ad valorem

duty.

(8) The duty on a transfer or assignment of a mortgage on the

occasion of the appointment of a new trustee or the retirement of a trustee

shall not exceed twelve dollars.

8 of 1978.

THE SUBSTANTIVE LAWS OF BELIZE REVISED EDITION 2000

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Stamp Duties [CAP. 64 41

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60.-(1) There shall be paid-

(a) on every notarial act, not being a protest of a bill

of exchange or promissory note, a duty of ............ $1.50

(b) on every protest of a bill of exchange, or promissory note,

the same duty as on the bill or note:

Provided that the maximum duty payable on such protest

shall be............................................................... $1.50

(2) A notary who does or executes any notarial act or protest which is

liable to duty but is not duly stamped shall incur a fine of fifty dollars.

61. There shall be paid on every instrument operating as an

agreement for a partnership-

(a) if not under seal, a duty of ..................................$0.75

(b) if under seal, a duty of.........................................$12.00

62.-(1) There shall be paid on every receipt given for or upon the pay-

ment of the amount of ten dollars or upwards, a duty of.................$0.10

(2) Every person who-

(a) gives a receipt liable to duty which is not duly stamped; or

(b) refuses, or, if requested, fails or neglects to give a receipt

which would be liable to duty; or

(c) with intent to evade this Act, gives or accepts any receipts

in which a less sum is expressed than the sum actually paid

and received,

Notarial acts.

8 of 1978.

Partnership

agreement.

8 of 1978.

Receipts.

8 of 1978.

Stamp DutiesCAP. 64]

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shall incur a fine of fifty dollars.

(3) For the purposes of stamp duties, “receipt” includes every instru-

ment, whether signed or not, whereby the receipt, deposit, or payment of

any money, bill of exchange, or promissory note, or the settlement, satis-

faction, release, or discharge of a debt or demand or part of a debt or

demand is admitted or acknowledged, or which imports such an admis-

sion or acknowledgment.

(4) Neither the name of a banker, whether accompanied by words of

receipt or not, written in the ordinary course of his business as a banker

upon a duly stamped bill of exchange or promissory note, nor the name of

the payee written upon a draft or order, if it is payable to order and does

not contain any reference to any debt or demand or to the purpose for

which the draft or order was drawn or for which the money paid in respect

thereof is received, shall constitute a receipt chargeable with stamp duty.

(5) The following instruments are exempt from the stamp duty charged

by this section-

(a) a receipt for money paid into or out of the Government

Savings Bank;

(b) a receipt by a banker for money paid to him in the ordinary

course of his business as such for the account of the payer

or for the account of any other person:

Provided that an unstamped receipt by a banker for an

amount of ten dollars or upwards paid to him for the account of

any person other than the payer shall not be evidence of such re-

ceipt except as between the banker and the payer;

THE SUBSTANTIVE LAWS OF BELIZE REVISED EDITION 2000

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Stamp Duties [CAP. 64 43

[ ]

(c) a receipt by a banker for a bill of exchange or promissory

note for the sole purpose of being presented for accep-

tance or payment;

(d) a receipt for money paid to or for the use of Her Majesty,

or the Government, or a City Council or a District Town

Council;

(e) a receipt by an officer of a public department of Belize for

money paid by way of imprest or advance, or in adjustment

of an account, where he derives no personal benefit there-

from;

(f) a receipt by any member of Her Majesty’s Naval or Mili-

tary Forces (including the Belize Defence Force), or the

Royal Air Force, or his nominee or legal personal repre-

sentatives or widow or children or next of kin for pay, al-

lowances, or pension due from the United Kingdom Minis-

try of Defence, the Imperial Government or this Govern-

ment;

(g) a receipt on the issue or payment by the Post Office of a

post office money order or postal order;

(h) a receipt for wages.

63.-(1) Any deed or any order, or decree, of the Court of Chancery of

England, or of Belize or other jurisdiction or authority, or instrument what-

ever, whether voluntary or gratuitous, or upon any good or valuable con-

sideration other than a bona fide pecuniary consideration, whereby any

certain and definite sum or sums of money (whether charged or chargeable

on lands or other hereditaments or not or to be laid out in the purchase of

lands or other hereditaments or not and if charged or chargeable on lands

9 of 1966.

Settlement.

8 of 1959.

Stamp DutiesCAP. 64]

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or other hereditaments, whether to be raised at all events or not) or whereby

any lands, tenements, rents, annuities, or other property, real or personal,

or any right, title, interest, or claim into, out of, or upon, any lands, tene-

ments, rents, annuities, or other property, shall be settled, or agreed to be

settled upon, or for the benefit of any person or persons, either in posses-

sion or reversion, either absolutely or conditionally or contingently, or for

life, or other partial interest, or in any other manner whatever, there shall

be paid for every fifty dollars or part of fifty dollars of the amount or value

of the property settled or agreed to be settled a duty of seventy-five cents.

(2) The value of such property shall be ascertained by a declaration of

the true and real value of it.

(3) The following are exempt from the provisions of this section-

(a) bonds, mortgages, and other securities operating as settle-

ments, if chargeable with the ad valorem duties on bonds

and mortgages hereinbefore granted;

(b) deeds, or instruments of appointment, apportionments, in

execution of powers given by any previous settlement, deed

or will to, or in favour of persons, specially named or de-

scribed as the object of such powers;

(c) deeds, or instruments merely declaring the trusts of any

money, pursuant to any previous settlement (in respect of

which ad valorem settlement duty has been paid) deed or

will, or for securing any gifts or dispositions made by any

previous settlement, (in respect of which ad valorem settle-

ment duty has been paid) deed or will;

(d) wills, testaments, and testamentary instruments and dispo-

sitions mortis causa, of every description;

8 of 1978.

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Stamp Duties [CAP. 64 45

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(e) where several instruments are executed for effecting the

settlement of the same property, and the ad valorem duty

chargeable in respect of the settlement of the property ex-

ceeds two dollars, one only of the instruments is to be

charged with the ad valorem duties;

(f) where a settlement is made in pursuance of a previous agree-

ment, upon which ad valorem settlement duty exceeding

two dollars has been paid in respect of any property, the

settlement is not to be charged with ad valorem duty in

respect of the same duty.

(4) On the instruments not chargeable with ad valorem duty under sub-

section (3) (e) and (f), there shall be paid the duty of one dollar.

64.-(1) There shall be paid-

(a) on every agreement for the sale of property passing by

delivery, or of an equitable interest in property, or for the

sale of property where no conveyance is necessary to

complete the sale, or having the effect of a conveyance on

sale, the same ad valorem duty as on a conveyance on

sale of that property or interest; and

(b) on every other agreement for sale-

(i) if not under seal, a duty of................................$0.75

(ii) if under seal, a duty of ...................................$12.00

(2) There shall be paid on every fifty dollars or part of fifty

dollars of the amount or value of the consideration given or at any time to

be given on every conveyance on sale other than a transfer of land a duty

of one dollar and fifty cents.

Sales.

8 of 1978.

Stamp DutiesCAP. 64]

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(3) Where the consideration or any part of the consideration for a sale

is payable or transferable periodically for a definite period not exceeding

twenty years, so that the total amount or value to be paid or transferred

can be previously ascertained, the conveyance shall be charged in respect

of that consideration with ad valorem duty on such total amount or value.

(4) Where the consideration or any part of the consideration for a sale

is payable or transferable periodically for a definite period exceeding twenty

years, or in perpetuity, or for any indefinite period not terminable with life,

the conveyance shall be charged in respect of that consideration with ad

valorem duty on the total amount or value which will or may, according to

the terms of sale, be payable or transferable during the period of twenty

years next after the day of the date of the instrument.

(5) Where the consideration or any part of the consideration for a sale

is payable or transferable periodically during any life or lives, the convey-

ance shall be charged in respect of that consideration with ad valorem

duty on the amount or value which will or may, according to the terms of

sale, be payable or transferable during the period of twelve years next

after the day of the date of the instrument.

(6) No conveyance on sale chargeable with ad valorem duty in re-

spect of any periodical payments or transfers, and containing also provi-

sions for securing the payments or transfers shall be charged with any duty

in respect of such provision, and no separate instrument made in that case

for securing the payments or transfers shall be chargeable with any higher

duty than twelve dollars.

(7) A conveyance completing an agreement stamped ad valorem as a

conveyance on sale shall, as regard the consideration for which it is so

stamped, be subject to a duty of seventy-five cents only.

8 of 1978.

8 of 1978.

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Stamp Duties [CAP. 64 47

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(8) Where property agreed to be sold is re-sold before completion of

the original sale, the ad valorem duty shall not be charged in respect of

more than one sale, but shall be charged in respect of that consideration

which is the largest.

(9) The Commissioners, if satisfied that an agreement stamped ad va-

lorem as a conveyance on sale is rescinded or for any reason cannot sub-

stantially be carried into effect, shall return the whole or such part of the

duty as they think just.

(10) Sales of goods, wares, and merchandise and of timber and pro-

duce severed from the land or of property of the value of less than twenty-

five dollars are exempt from any stamp duty charged by this Act.

(11) An agreement for sale required to be stamped as a conveyance

shall, if stamped with the duty of twelve dollars in the case of an agreement

under seal or of seventy-five cents in the case of any agreement not under

seal, be deemed duly stamped for the mere purpose of proceedings to

enforce specific performance or to recover damages for the breach thereof.

65.-(1) There shall be paid on every fifty dollars or part of fifty dollars of

the nominal value of every share warrant to bearer by a company regis-

tered in Belize a duty of ................................................................$2.25

(2) If any such warrant is issued without being duly stamped, the com-

pany issuing it, and also every person who at the time when it is issued is

the managing director or secretary of the company, and also every person

who is knowingly a party to such issue or who accepts the warrant, shall be

jointly and severally liable to pay to the Commissioners the amount of the

stamp duty chargeable thereon and the penalty payable on stamping it, and

in addition shall each incur a fine of two hundred and fifty dollars.

Share warrants.

8 of 1978.

8 of 1978.

Stamp DutiesCAP. 64]

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66. The following instruments are exempt from the stamp duties im-

posed by this Act-

(a) every instrument for the sale, transfer, or other disposition, either absolutely or by way of mortgage, or otherwise, of any ship or share or interest therein; and

(b) every instrument which is by the Merchant Shipping Act 1894, as amended by any subsequent enactment, exempt from imperial stamp duties;

(c) every instrument operating as a contract with a passenger for his conveyance by a ship, vessel, or boat, whether by sea or inland navigation;

(d) a receipt by a seaman employed in a ship for his wages.

67.-(1) On every instrument for effecting an appointment of a new trustee

and on every instrument for effecting the retirement of a trustee when a

new trustee is not appointed in his place, there shall be paid a duty of

$12.00.

(2) On every conveyance of property, not being a transfer of a mort-

gage, solely for giving effect to the appointment of a new trustee or the

retirement of a trustee, there shall be paid a duty of .................... $12.00.

(3) Where on the conveyance of property or the transfer of a mort-

gage the stamp duty, if payable ad valorem, would exceed twelve dollars,

a person who for valuable consideration takes or deals, or proposes or

intends to take or deal with the property or mortgage or the property

comprised in the mortgage shall not, by reason only of the stamp duty on

the conveyance or transfer being twelve dollars, whether assessed by the

Commissioners or not, be deemed to have or to have had notice of any

trust, or that the conveyance or transfer was made for giving effect to the

appointment of a new trustee, or the retirement of a trustee.

Ships.

Appointment and

retirement of

trustees.

8 of 1978.

57 and 58 Vict.

c. 68.

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Stamp Duties [CAP. 64 49

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68. On every warrant of attorney not chargeable as a mortgage, there

shall be paid a duty of.. ......................................................... $12.00

69. Every instrument for-

(a) the conveyance of any property or interest therein to the

Crown;

(b) the conveyance of any land as a site for any church or chapel

of any religious denomination,

shall be exempt from duty under this Act.

70. With effect from 1st April, 1996, the stamp duty on customs war-

rants chargeable under section 70 of the Stamp Duties Act, Chapter 45 of

the Laws of Belize, Revised Edition 1980-90, including all exemption or-

ders made under the said section, shall stand repealed, but not withstand-

ing such repeal, the stamp duty on customs warrants for goods imported

into or exported from Belize before the aforesaid 1st April, 1996 shall re-

main payable and may be levied and collected as if the above repeal had

not been passed, and for this purpose the exemption orders referred to

above shall continue to apply.

71.-(1) Stamp duty shall be payable on the value of the property conveyed

by any conveyance or transfer operating as a voluntary disposition inter

vivos as if it were a conveyance on sale.

(2) Notwithstanding subsection (1), a conveyance or transfer or an

agreement for conveyance or transfer operating as a voluntary disposition

of property shall not be chargeable with any duty if such conveyance is in

favour of any charitable organisation or of the trustees of a trust established

for charitable purposes only or where the total value of all the properties so

Warrant of

attorney.

8 of 1978.

Conveyances,

etc., exempted

from duty.

Savings.

7 of 1996.

CAP. 45.

R.E. 1980-1990.

Voluntary

disposition

dutiable as sale.

8 of 1978.

Stamp DutiesCAP. 64]

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conveyed by the transferor in the twelve months ending on the date of the

conveyance concerned is not more than twenty-five thousand dollars.

(3) Where any instrument is chargeable with duty both as a convey-

ance or transfer under this section and as a settlement under section 63 the

instrument shall be charged with duty as a conveyance or transfer under

this section and not as a settlement.

(4) (a) The foregoing provisions of this section shall not apply to a

conveyance or transfer made for effecting the appointment

of a new trustee or the retirement of a trustee whether the

trust is expressed or implied, or under which no beneficial

interest passes in the property conveyed or transferred to

a beneficiary by a trustee or other person in a fiduciary

capacity under any trust, whether expressed or implied;

and

(b) this subsection shall have effect notwithstanding that cir-

cumstances exempting the conveyance or transfer from

charge under this section are not set forth in the convey-

ance or transfer.

72.-(1) Subject to subsection (2) below, there shall be paid a duty at the

following rates on the value of the land or of the amount of the consider-

ation, whichever is greater, in respect of a transfer of land whether by sale,

exchange or gift:-

(a) where the land is tranferred to a person who is an alien*

within the meaning of the Aliens Landholding Act, or to

any person in trust for the benefit of such an alien- ten per

centum of the value or the consideration;

Stamp duty on

transfer of land.

25 of 1994.

CAP. 179.

* This provision to be affected by Aliens Landholding (Repeal) Bill and National Lands

(Amendment) Bill. To be reflected.

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(b) where land is transferred to a person who is not an alien as set

out in paragraph (a) above- five per centum of the value or the

consideration.

(2) Any transfer of property by way of testamentary disposition or pursu-

ant to a devolution on intestacy shall be exempt from the payment of duty

under the foregoing provisions of this section.

73. Any instrument purporting to be a conveyance or a transfer under sec-

tion 71 or 72 shall be submitted to the Commissioners by the person liable to

pay the duty for their opinion in terms of section 28, and the Commissioners

shall express their opinion accordingly.

74.-(1) On every permit issued by a bank for the purchase of foreign currency

under the Exchange Control Regulation Act, or regulations made thereunder,

there shall be paid by the applicant therefor a stamp duty of 1.25 per centum

of the price of the foreign exchange or of the value in Belize dollars of the

transaction, whichever is the greater:

Provided however, that this provision shall not apply to any foreign

exchange transaction of one hundred dollars or less.

(2) For the purposes of this section-

‘bank’ means the Central Bank of Belize, a bank or financial institution for the

time being authorised under the Exchange Control Regulations Act to act as an

authorised dealer in relation to foreign currency for the purposes of the Act

and includes the General Post Office and branches thereof;

“foreign currency” means any currency of a country other than Belize, or any

cheque, draft, letter of credit, money order, postal order and any other nego-

Instrument of

conveyance

inter vivos or

transfer to be

submitted for

Commissioner’s

opinion.

8 of 1978.

Stamp duty on

foreign ex-

change permits.

1 of 1984.

CAP. 52.

24 of 1972.

CAP. 52.

25 of 1994.

Stamp DutiesCAP. 64]

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tiable instrument denominated in currency other than Belizean currency;

“transaction” means any foreign exchange transaction conducted under the Ex-

change Control Regulations Act and regulations made thereunder.

(3) A refund of stamp duty may be made by the Central Bank of Belize

for any unused portion of a permit.

(4) Notwithstanding anything to the contrary contained in this section,

the Minister may, by order in writing, exempt certain categories of persons

from the payment of stamp duty on foreign exchange permits.

75. There shall be paid for the processing of a temporary employment per-

mit pursuant to its issue as provided by section 16 of the Immigration Act, a

stamp duty of twenty dollars.

76. The Minister may by Order published in the Gazette waive the pay-

ment of stamp duty chargeable under this Act in any of the following cases:-

(a) on a transfer of land to any trust or other organization which

holds such land in trust for the people and Government of Belize;

(b) on a transfer of bonds issued or guaranteed by the Government

of Belize.

Stamp duty on

temporary

employment

permits.

CAP. 156.

19 of 1996.

Power of

Minister to waive

stamp duty.

3 of 1998.

CAP. 52.

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SCHEDULE

[Section 48]

InmuloC IInmuloC

)a( ytudatsitnedasanoitartsigerfoetacifitrecyreveno

...........................................................................fo 00.001

)b( foytudaroticilosasaesitcarpotetacifitrecyreveno

................................................................................. 00.001

)c( lacidemasanoitartsigerfoetacifitrecyreveno

................................................foytudarenoititcarp 00.001

)d( aroyevrusdnalasanoitartsigerfoetacifitrecyreveno

.......................................................................foytud 00.001

)e( forerusaemdesnecilasatcaotecnecilyreveno

..........................................................foytudadoow 00.001

)f( yratonasaecitcarpotecnecilronoissimmocyreveno

..........................................................foytudacilbup 00.001

)g( anaicitponasanoitartsigerfoetacifitrecyreveno

.......................................................................foytud 00.001
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