Company directors and accountants urged to file earlier than usual and online
Companies across the UK are being urged not to leave filing their annual accounts until the last minute and consider going paperless, as the disruption caused by coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to affect people’s lives, businesses and the economy. Companies House have therefore issued an announcement urging accountants and finance professionals to file their clients’ annual accounts online and as early as possible.
Government guidance and restrictions surrounding COVID-19, has meant that there is currently a reduced number of staff working at Companies House offices. Companies House is therefore expecting that the processing of accounts filed on paper for the 2019/20 financial year will take significantly longer than usual. In order to help companies during the pandemic, as well as ensuring the safety and wellbeing of Companies House staff – Companies House are strongly encouraging online filing. The online filing service is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week and has inbuilt checks to help filers avoid mistakes.
Where accounts can only be filed on paper, these should be filed as early in December as possible. Companies House highlight that paper accounts submitted too close to the 31 December 2020 deadline, which are then rejected, run the risk of not having enough time to be corrected, re-submitted and manually checked. This type of late accounts will incur an automatic late filing penalty.