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Frequently asked questions

According to the Money Laundering Act, payments made for the renewal of intellectual property rights are to be considered a financial service which is subject to regulation. We have compiled the most frequently asked questions about legally compliant renewals of your industrial property rights and the associated processes at PAVIS Payments GmbH.

ZAG - Payment Services Supervision Act

Provision of a payment service in order to renew your intellectual property right renewals

In order to carry out intellectual property right renewals in a compliant manner, clients enter into a business relationship with PAVIS GmbH and PAVIS Payments GmbH. The following FAQs deal with basic information.

What is the ZAG?

The Payment Services Supervision Act (Zahlungsdiensteaufsichtsgesetz - ZAG) regulates the supervision of payment services in the Federal Republic of Germany. It already entered into force on 31 October 2009 for the purpose of implementing the First EU Payment Services Directive. As part of the implementation of the Second EU Payment Services Directive, the ZAG was significantly amended on 13 January 2018. The Second EU Payment Services Directive for regulating payment services and payment service providers in the European single market (PSD II) will be implemented over time in all EU member states.

The aim of the PSD II is to harmonise payment services law in Europe and thus remove obstacles to the cross-border provision of payment services. The intention is to strengthen and harmonise security standards within Europe. The supervision of payment service providers should also help to prevent money laundering and terrorist financing.

What is BaFin?

The Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin) is an authority based in Frankfurt/Main and Bonn, Germany. It is subject to the legal and technical supervision of the Federal Ministry of Finance. As the financial market supervisory authority, BaFin supervises and controls all areas of the finance sector in Germany within the framework of financial supervision. As a result, it also monitors compliance with the ZAG.

What does this mean for PAVIS GmbH and PAVIS PAYMENTS GmbH clients?

NB: You as our client will communicate mainly with PAVIS GmbH, which will instruct PAVIS Payments GmbH as an intermediary in your name after receiving your order. The task of PAVIS Payments GmbH is the execution of worldwide payments.

This enables us to achieve our absolute priority - namely to change as little as possible in the processes for our clients and to avoid creating any additional work at your end. Our processes are even safer and our quality standards have become even higher.

For you as a client, this means that you must enter into a business relationship with PAVIS Payments GmbH on the basis of the terms and conditions for the use of payment services (hereinafter "PAVIS Payments Terms of Use") in order to be able to have your intellectual property rights renewed. At the same time, it is necessary for you to agree to the General Business Terms (GBT) of PAVIS GmbH.

What are the advantages for PAVIS clients?


100% compliant with PAVIS GmbH & PAVIS Payments GmbH

  • BaFin licence
  • Annual external audit of legal requirements


Preventing money laundering and terrorism financing

  • Transaction monitoring
  • Know-Your-Customer (KYC) checking

Security / Risk avoidance

No non-payment risks and insolvency protection

  • PAVIS liquidity guarantee
  • Trust account
  • Risk management
What are the main changes at PAVIS since July 2020?

PAVIS makes payments in the name and on account of third parties for the purpose of renewing industrial property rights. It therefore provides payment services. The Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin) has found PAVIS GmbH’s business model to be a financial service which requires formal approval.

In order to comply, PAVIS GmbH has decided to transfer any finance services requiring approval - i.e. the worldwide payment of fees for industrial property rights - to PAVIS Payments GmbH, a new subsidiary established specifically for this purpose.

This spin-off was completed in July 2020.

Why do clients have to accept GBT for two companies?

The regulatory requirements of BaFin also affect our general terms and conditions.

In order to maintain the processes in their usual form and to keep the costs for our clients as low as possible, any finance services requiring approval - i.e. the worldwide payment of fees for industrial property rights – have been transferred to the new subsidiary PAVIS Payments GmbH. PAVIS GmbH remains as your main point of contact. As a result, there are two companies under one roof – each with its own GBT.


How PAVIS and PAVIS Payments fit together

In order to make renewal payments for industrial property rights in compliance with the law, all clients must first go through an identity verification process. We have summarised the most important questions and definitions for you.

What is meant by "Know Your Customer" (KYC)?

"Know Your Customer" (KYC) refers to the verification of the identity of a contractual partner, or the persons acting on behalf of the contractual partner, as laid down in the Money Laundering Act (Section 10 (1) Nos. 1 and 2 AMLA). It stipulates that payment service providers must not only verify the ownership and control structure of their customers, but also that individuals acting on behalf of the contracting party are actually entitled to do so. For this reason, various company-related and personal data need to be requested as part of the KYC process.

What does "anti-money laundering" (AML) mean?

The term refers to a set of European laws, regulations and procedures designed to prevent both the financing of terrorism and money laundering. These are implemented at national level, in Germany for example through the Money Laundering Act (GWG - Geldwäschegesetz).

Why does PAVIS Payments GmbH have to carry out the KYC process for its customers?

PAVIS Payments is a payment service provider in accordance with § 1 para. 1, sentence 2, no. 6 of the Payment Services Supervision Act (Zahlungsdiensteaufsichtsgesetz - ZAG) and is thus an obligated party in accordance with § 2 para., 1 sentence 2, no. 6 of the Money Laundering Act (GWG). Under the Money Laundering Act, all obligated parties must verify the identity of their contractual partners - including their customers and persons acting on their behalf - by means of obtaining appropriate data. This serves to prevent and avert financial crime and the financing of terrorism.

What information is required?

The Money Laundering Act stipulates that both the ownership and control structure of the contractual partner are verified within the framework of the KYC process.

This includes company-specific information such as legal structure, address, registration number and industry sector. Depending on the actual type of legal entity, personal data of the legal representative, the person appearing and/ or the beneficial owner may also have to be collected.

What documents must be submitted to PAVIS Payments in this context?

Depending on the type of legal entity of the customer, either the business licence or shareholders' agreement or the extract from the commercial register and the list of shareholders are required. In addition, for some legal forms, the identification of the appearing person via Post Ident or Video Ident procedure may be required.

How can the necessary information and documents be submitted?

The fastest and safest way to submit data is through the PAVIS Portal. With just a few clicks, you can easily and conveniently upload all required documents. It is also possible to send the data by email. In exceptional cases and if specifically agreed, the required documents can also be sent by post.

What is the PAVIS Portal?

The PAVIS Portal was developed for the Know-Your-Customer process (KYC) to make the input and submission of data as quick and user-friendly as possible for our clients.

Each customer or interested party receives a personal invitation to the PAVIS Portal via email. All required data and documents can be submitted at in a single step, without the need for sending anything by email or post. The Portal provides state-of-the-art technology and data security.

In the future, other PAVIS services will also be offered via this portal.

What information do you need to submit in the PAVIS Portal?

All clients receive an email invitation to register for the PAVIS Portal by entering their first and last name, email address and a password. Once the user account has been created, the KYC process starts, requesting information under the following categories:

  1. General company data
  2. Legal representative or proprietor (including address, date of birth and contact details)
  3. Beneficial owner

Legal entities (corporations and partnerships) are requested to submit a current extract from the commercial register and a list of partners online.

Natural persons (freelancers, civil law partnership (GbR), tradespersons / self-employed persons etc.) are requested to submit appropriate documents such as trade licences, partnership agreements or proof of freelance activity.

The information provided will be verified by an authorized PAVIS officer who may contact you if there are any queries or anything is missing. Once verification has been completed, the status is set as ready-to-use.

When is a personally identification necessary and how can that be done?

Depending on the client legal entity, a verification of the appearing person by Postident or Video-Ident verification process may be required.

1. Identification via Video-Ident:

This is done online. A Deutsche Post employee will personally guide you through the Video-Ident process. You will need a stable internet connection and a webcam (smartphone, PC, tablet, etc.). The person to be identified must be visible and hold the ID card (front and back) or passport in the camera so that all security features are visible. You will also receive a security code or TAN by SMS or email. You need to enter this at the end of the process to successfully confirm your identity.

2. Verification via Postident:

PAVIS sends a Postident coupon to the client, which needs to be presented together with a valid identity card at a Deutsche Post branch. Alternatively, a passport can be used in combination with a confirmation of residence from the local authorities (Ordnungsamt). For foreign citizens, the passport should contain information on their place of residence. After a Deutsche Post employee has successfully completed the identity check, he or she will forward the information to PAVIS. The identification itself takes only a few minutes and is of course free of charge for PAVIS customers.

3. Personal identification:

An employee of PAVIS Payments GmbH will identify you personally using your ID card at our business premises in Starnberg.

What are beneficial owners?

A beneficial owner is a natural person who is the owner of the company, controls it or on whose initiative the business relationship is established. Control or ownership is assumed if a person directly or indirectly controls more than 25 % of the voting rights or shareholdings. If there is no beneficial owner as defined above, please identify a managing director or other member of the board of directors as the notional beneficial owner.

We have compiled further information and examples for you in our information sheet.

Does a listed stock corporation (AG) have to include a beneficial owner?

If it is a listed public limited company (AG), there is no need to identify a beneficial owner. In this case it is sufficient to indicate the (international) securities identification number / ISIN.

However, there is one exception: If it is an independent subsidiary in which a listed public limited company holds less than 75 % of the shares, it must be checked whether there are any beneficial owners among the co-owners. If an unlisted company controls more than 25 % of the capital and voting rights, it must be determined whether these are held by natural persons. According to the Money Laundering Act, these must then be recorded as beneficial owners.

Where can I find information about the ownership structure of a company?

You can find information on your company's ownership structure in the articles of incorporation, in the consolidated statement of changes in your balance sheet, and in lists of equity holdings. You can also contact your notary public, your tax advisor / auditor, and your legal, financial, accounting or controlling department.

Any questions? Please contact our support team: