Companies complaint

How to keep your company compliant with Companies House

In the third and fourth #getstartedup series I discussed how to create your company and the decisions you would need to make to when doing so. I also discussed the immediate post-registration obligations you have to do to ensure compliance with Companies House and the documents you will receive.

There are many ongoing obligations to complete to make sure you stay compliant. These obligations may seem overwhelming but being organised is key. Read on to find out what your responsibilities are.

What do I have to submit to Companies House?

Every year you have to submit

  • An annual return
  • Annual accounts

In addition you have to keep and maintain statutory books and file any ‘event driven notices’

What is an annual return?

An annual return is a record of your company on a certain date. The date is usually the anniversary of your company’s incorporation. This record includes

  • the current directors
  • the current company secretary (if one is appointed)
  • the current registered office
  • the current company’s principal business activities
  • the issued share capital and shareholders
  • where the company’s records are kept.

Your return is due a year after either the:

  • incorporation of your company
  • date you filed your last annual return

You can file your annual return up to 28 days after the due date.

What are annual accounts?

These are prepared from your company’s financial records at the end of your company’s financial year. They include a balance sheet, a profit and loss account, notes about the accounts and a director’s report (you might have to include an auditor’s report depending on the size of your company).

Your first accounts start on the day your company was incorporated and end on your accounting reference date. This date is set by Companies House, it is usually the last date of the month your company was set up. New companies must file their first set of accounts within 21 months of the incorporation date.

What are company statutory books?

Company books include

    • the register of the company’s members
    • the register of directors
    • the register of directors’ residential addresses
    • the register of secretaries (if applicable)
    • the register of charges registered against the company
    • minute books including copies of shareholder resolutions passed

These books must be kept at your company’s registered office or another place where they can be inspected.

What are event driven notices?

You have to notify Companies House of events as and when they happen. These events include a change of registered office, an allotment of new shares, a change of the company’s name. Read Filings at Companies House for more information.

What happens if I don’t submit my annual return or accounts?

There are penalties for late filing of accounts and your annual return. Your company could also be struck off the register!