Companies House issues coronavirus advice for its customers
We summarise advice issued by Companies House to its customer and employees regarding coronavirus and the filing of accounts.
Companies House has issued advice to its customers and employees. It advises that it has robust plans in place to maintain services for its customers and protect the welfare of its employees during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. It recognises that the situation is dynamic and could change quickly, so they are preparing for a number of scenarios.
They highlight that for users filing documents with Companies House, that it’s quicker and easier to use their online services that permit filing of accounts; filing confirmation statements; and making changes to company information e.g. change of directors etc.
Coronavirus: if a company cannot file accounts with Companies House on time
Companies House advises that if coronavirus has affected a company and the directors need more time to file the company’s annual accounts, then it is essential that action is taken before the filing deadline. If a company’s accounts are filed late, the law imposes an automatic penalty. A company should take appropriate measures to ensure accounts are filed on time and should also file its accounts online if they are able to.
If, immediately before the filing deadline, it becomes apparent that accounts will not be filed on time due to a company being affected by coronavirus (COVID-19), an application may be made to extend the period allowed for filing. If such an extension has not been sought and the accounts have been filed late, an automatic penalty will be imposed. The Registrar of Companies has very limited discretion not to collect a penalty.
Companies House highlight that each appeal is treated on a case-by-case basis, and they already have policies in place to deal with appeals based upon unforeseen poor health. Appeals based upon COVID-19 will be considered under these policies. Further information is available from the Companies House website.