Companies House to change filing requirements for small businesses

Author: Hayley Huckle
Hayley Huckle

The Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) has published a whitepaper detailing its response to consultations on Companies House reform.

We know the service to be flexible and accessible, as it enables many entrepreneurs, every day, to incorporate their businesses. However, there are those who abuse the system, and the Government want to crack down on this.

Reforms are likely to focus on two key remits:

  • filing and reporting requirements, and
  • the role that Companies House plays as a custodian of data.
Reporting and filing requirements

Plans point towards the limiting of filing selections to ‘micro-entities’ and ‘small companies’. Abridged or filleted accounts will no longer be an option.

This, it is hoped, will improve accuracy and transparency of the financial information appearing on the register for all businesses.

Small companies will effectively file what they prepare – i.e., a profit and loss account, balance statement and directors report.

However, it is worth noting that companies meeting the micro-entity threshold will retain the option not to prepare or file a directors report.

Accounts filed with Companies House will mirror those submitted to other Government departments and, consequently, we may eventually see a more centralised approach to filing.

Filing periods will remain unchanged, (nine months following the end of the reporting year) for the time being. However, an examination of these further down the line should not be ruled out.

The plans outlined in the whitepaper also put forward a requirement to use full iXBRL tagging for accounts being filed. This is in line with the Government’s digital agenda and non-compliant accounts will be rejected.

The role of Companies House

As part of the reforms, Companies House will take on a more active role in ensuring the trustworthiness of the data it holds, and in preventing fraudulent use of its services, by implementing more stringent checks.

We anticipate that it will be able to request further evidence from directors, for cross-referencing, and to share pertinent information more easily with other Government bodies or law enforcement.

How can George Hay help?

Our experts in Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire and Cambridgeshire, can assist you with the preparation of your annual accounts to ensure you comply with the relevant accounting regulations and to give you accurate financial information to use in your business.

As part of our partner-led service, we are here to support you throughout the year. We will be keeping abreast of all further developments in respect of these plans.

To discuss your requirements with us, contact us on 01462 708810 or fill in our online enquiry form.

 

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