Abolition of the Annual Return for Companies

13 June 2016 09:02

As from the end of the month (30 June 2016), the Annual Return will be replaced by a ‘Confirmation Statement’. This is to be a shorter document, stating that the information held by Companies House is correct as of a specific date.

The aim is to simplify the submission of information that Companies House may already hold. Currently, you have to re-submit information on annual returns that Companies House already holds.

Companies will not be asked to complete annual returns made up to 30 June 2016 or later. One thing to note however, is that the confirmation statement must be submitted within 14 days of the confirmation date. This is a much tighter deadline than the 28-day deadline for annual returns.

As is the case with the current system, the confirmation statement will not be able to be used to inform Companies House of new information if a separate form exists for reporting the change. For example, any changes to the registered office, or any alterations to the company’s directors, must be notified to Companies House using the relevant form before the confirmation statement is filed.

Furthermore, the firm must also provide updated information about people with significant control (PSCs). As Companies House do not currently hold such information, firms incorporated before 30 June 2016 need to send details. The details that need to be reported on the PSC register is similar to those required for directors. In addition, you must explain why the person is a PSC (e.g. they own more than 25% of the share capital).

So, the good news is that once all the information has been submitted to Companies House, only changes will need reported each year (though you will need to confirm the information held is up to date if there are no changes). You can also choose the date for the confirmation statement, for example to tie in with year ends?

We think the changes are a step forward, however in reality, we are not sure the actual time savings will be that significant.

Need a little bit more information on the changes? Don't hesitate to get in touch. Or give us a call on 01228 586790 to find out sooner.

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