Event-based filing requirements for SMEs
The directors of a company have an ongoing duty to ensure the information held on the public register is correct. As well as the specific reporting requirements above, this means that they must report promptly to Companies House when various details change. The changes that must be reported as and when they occur include:
The deadlines for submitting each of these forms differ, although they typically fall between 14 days and a month from the event occurring. Some changes, like a move of the company’s registered office address, only take effect once the update has been registered by Companies House.
The main types of company filing and reporting requirements are:
This is high-level summary of the certain company filing requirements. It is not intended to comprise definitive legal advice or to be conclusively relied upon by any recipient and no liability is accepted in relation to the information contained in it.
The confirmation statement relates to more general information about the company. It must be completed annually as dictated by UK company filing requirements and filed once a year at Companies House.
Of these, only changes to shareholders (including their shareholdings and any share transfers) and principal business activities are updated via the confirmation statement itself. Other changes should have been reported to Companies House as and when they occur – see below for details.
Even if nothing has changed during the year and the public record is correct, a company still needs to file the confirmation statement.
The first confirmation statement should reflect the correct position as at anniversary of formation of the company, and must be delivered within 14 days of that anniversary. Thereafter, a confirmation statement must be delivered to Companies House at least once every 12 months, although a company can choose to file more frequently if it wishes.
Once the confirmation statement is filed, the public register available via Companies House is updated with the latest information about the company.
All UK companies, whether they are trading or dormant, must prepare some kind of annual financial accounts, submit them to Companies House and make copies available to their members. The accounts of trading companies must also be sent to HMRC.
For most private limited companies, accounts must be filed within 9 months of the company’s accounting reference date to avoid penalties, interest and other potential sanctions.
A company can change its accounting reference date, often thereby resulting in a shorter accounting period than the standard 12 months. While it’s also possible to extend the accounting period, there are more limitations on doing so.
Within 3 months of undertaking any form of business activity, a company must register online with HMRC as being active for corporation tax purposes. As well as annual accounts, the company will – even if it has made a loss or doesn’t owe any corporation tax – then be required to submit a corporation tax return to HMRC each year.
Alongside other filing requirements, VAT registered companies must then complete a quarterly VAT return to HMRC, which is now done online.
The VAT return is due at the end of the month following the end of the quarter covered by the return.
If the company has to pay wages or salaries (including for the directors), it will need to register under Pay As You Earn (PAYE) with HMRC. There are then a number of reporting requirements. Please refer to your payroll administrator for further information.
There are different deadlines and frequency for each return. Please download the Farringford Legal Guide to Filing Requirements for a limited company below.
If you are unsure about filing your returns we are happy to provide advice and guidance.
The information on these small business guide pages do not constitute legal advice, it is simply information. You should always seek independent legal advice.
Farringford Legal can advise you on all the topics covered.
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