COVID- 19 update: Companies House offers three-month extension to businesses filing their accounts

26th March 2020 Corporate

Companies House has issued new guidance relating to filing company accounts which could affect around 4.3 million registered businesses in the UK.

From 25 March 2020, businesses affected by the coronavirus outbreak will be able to apply to Companies House for a three-month extension for filing their annual accounts.

Usually when company accounts are filed late, they are issued with an automatic penalty. However, in the current circumstances, businesses can apply for an extension of 3 months.

Applications can be processed through the fast- tracked online system and usually take around 15 minutes to complete. Where the application cites “COVID-19” as the issue, such applications will be granted immediately.

This change in policy was part of a joint initiative between the Government and the official register to support businesses through these challenging times.

Other proposals put forward by the Government include looking at changes to rules on annual shareholder meetings. Under the current requirements, there must be a certain number of shareholders present, but the rules could be relaxed.

Other filing requirements at Companies House remain largely unchanged, as most filings are capable of being completed online. We will continue to monitor the official advice on a daily basis.

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Rachael Sykes is a Paralegal located in Manchester in our Corporate department

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