What are the Filing Requirements for UK Companies?

By Caitlyn Buchanan, 10th January 2017

Forming a company requires a bit of extra paperwork but there are many benefits of keeping your business separate from your personal finances. For example, Corporation tax is likely to be less than personal tax as a sole trader. Since a business is its own legal entity any profits earned after taxes are owned by the company. You may be able to take home more earnings, if you pay yourself only a small salary and draw additional income from dividends. Dividends are taxed separately so you can minimize the National Insurance Contributions the company must pay.

Use this guide when incorporating a business in the UK and be aware of the filing deadlines.

 

Confirmation Statement

Formerly referred to an Annual Return, the Confirmation Statement must be submitted to Companies House at least once per year. When a new company is formed, you have one year and 28 days to submit your first statement. This submission does not include any of company’s financial information, it just illustrates various information of your company.

 

What do I need to provide?

•              Basic information –The full company name, registration number, registered office address standard and industrial classification or SIC code (standard industrial classification code).

•              Officer information –Details of the company’s Director, Shareholder and Secretary (optional). Director’s name, date of birth, occupation, service address and residential address. Just the name and residential address of your Shareholder and Secretary are required.

•              Share information – Breakdown of shares and number of shares held.

 

What happens if I don’t file?

All Company’s active and dormant must submit a confirmation statement at least once a year. If you don’t file, the registrar may assume the company is no longer carrying out business and take steps to strike it from the register. If a company gets stricken from the register it will cease to exist and its assets will become property of The Crown.

For more information visit GOV.UK/Confirmation-Satement 

 

 

Statutory Accounts

At the end of the company’s financial year annual accounts from the financial records are to be prepared and filed with Companies House. This process is more simple for small businesses. You qualify as a small business if within the financial year, turnover was less than £6.5m, there is less than £3.26m in reserves and the company employees less than 50 people.

 

What do I need to provide?

•              Balance sheet –This shows the company’s worth at the date of the financial period end date. Assets – Liabilities = Equity & Reserves

•              Profit & loss – Includes details of company sales, operating cost and profit/ loss for the past year.

•              Director report – This is a detailed report used to assess how the company is complying with financial or accounting standards.

 

Statutory accounts can be filed online with your annual return, visit GOV.UK/Annual-Return to learn more. Or Contact Us for information on our filing service.

 

What if my company is dormant?

A company is dormant if there have been no significant accounting transactions during the financial year, perhaps the company is no longer trading or you’ve reserved a company name that will start trading later. If any of these situations apply you need to file dormant company accounts. For more information on dormant company requirements visit GOV.UK/Dormant.

 

What happens if I don’t file?

The company’s Annual Accounts must be filed with Companies House by June 30th of each year. This deadline is strict, if you miss it that following charges will apply.

Fines for Late Filing
Private Company Public Company
Less than 1 month late £150 £750
Between 1 & 3 months late £375 £1500
Between 3 & 6 months late £750 £3000
More than 6 months late £1500 £7500

It is essential to file on time to avoid large fines. If your accounts are in arrears, please  Contact Us for assistance.

 

Company Tax Returns

Annual tax returns are different to Statutory Accounts as they contain more detailed information and are filed with HMRC. Deadlines for your tax return are longer than your annual returns and annual accounts – they are due 12 months after the end of the accounting period it covers.

 

What do I need to provide?

•              Statutory Accounts – These are essentially the same as first section (some addition account information may be required). For this reason, it may be beneficial to file your company tax return and your Statutory Accounts at the same time.

•              Detailed information – The information is more detailed and must include money owed to the business, a summary of profit gained by selling assets and any tax relief or allowances.

•              Filing software – If your turnover is more than £6.5m or you have several miscellaneous sources of income to report you will need to use dedicated filing software. If your company is small, professional filing software is probably not necessary. Tax returns can be filed yourself online or you can use a filing service to ensure the greatest return.

To view the official guidelines, visit GOV.UK/Company-account-and-tax-return.

 

What if I miss the deadline?

Again, the penalties are quite strict. The fine for filing only one day late is £100, and if you still haven’t filed in after three months you may receive an additional £100 fine. After six months HMRC will add a 10% penalty to your corporation tax bill.

 

Company tax returns can be filed online with a Government Gateway user ID and password. You can also register for other government and tax related obligations, including VAT returns or PAYE. Or you can appoint an agent to file on your behalf.

If you need assistance registering a company in the UK or with any of the annual filing requirements listed in this article, please do not hesitate to contact us on +353(0)1 687 4518.

We have over 20 years of experience in company formation and corporate services with an excellent network of professions around the globe.