The concept of "private foundation" was not used until 1926 when Liechtenstein created the "Law of Persons and Companies (Personen und Gesellschaft Recht - PGR), which first established the concept of the "Foundation Family "and "Mixed Foundation". The first is for the benefit of one or more members of a family and the second allows the Foundation to add a capacity of charity for others or charitable individuals.

The foundation, despite having no shareholders or members, is a separate legal entity and is founder of both their rights and obligations. The Liechtenstein foundation can not conduct business for profit, unless they are produced in a manner not usual and serve the purposes stipulated in its founding charter. It is primarily used by the field of wealth management.

Types of Foundations

The Liechtenstein Foundation, offers various forms of incorporation, the most common being the following:

  1. The foundation of public interest (gemeinnützige Stiftung). Donated equity and its returns are used on targets that benefit the community. May engage in activities such as awareness of art, science or performing charitable work.
  2. The religious foundation (Stiftung Kirchliche). Devoted to church purposes.
  3. The family foundation (Familienstiftung). It is used for conservation and management of family assets, to ensure the education or child support or other similar activities. Can also be used effectively for succession planning as an alternative to a will. It further distinguishes between pure family foundations (reign), dedicated to the activities described here only, and mixed (gemischte) also can be combined with other relatives for the public interest or ecclesiastical.
  4. The foundation of personal care (Personalfürsorgestiftung). Are mainly to administer pension plans in favor, hiring freezes and compensation for loss of life and disability insurance. Usually the capital contribution is made on a shared basis between employee and employer.
  5. Investment Foundation (Anlagestiftung), which actually works as a collective investment vehicle. The founder would be a bank or financial institution and the beneficiaries of investors.

Foundation Structure

Uses and Benefits


Beneficiaries pay no gift tax or inheritance for the goods they receive from the foundation, if not habitually resident in Liechtenstein. It should however be noted that, unless they want to act illegally, they should declare in their respective countries.