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Guide to the key Companies House forms used by limited companies

September 27, 2011

If you are running a limited company, chances are you may need to change your address, personnel or the company share structure. How do you report these changes to Companies House?

Companies House is the the regulatory body for the registration of companies, and the maintenance of company records. Whenever you change any details to do with the company administration, you need to inform Companies House.

Every UK limited company also needs to send in an Annual Return (Form AR01) each year, regardless of whether you have made changes or not.

We have included links to downloadable PDF versions of each form below, which have to be manually completed and posted to Companies House. The list has been updated in line with the final implementation of the Companies Act 2006 – where the names of all commonly used forms were changed from 1st October 2009.

You are encouraged to submit the most commonly used company forms via the WebFiling service which is rapidly taking over from the traditional paper submission service. You can register for the service here.

Most commonly used Companies House forms

The links contained in this section are to PDF (paper) versions, however you can now submit online versions of all Companies House forms, as highlighted later in the article.

1. Change of Registered Office (Form AD01) – Every limited company must have a registered address. The address must be a physical location, not a PO Box.

2. Change of Accounting Reference Date (Form AA01) – This is date to which the company’s accounts are made up to each year. This date can be amended using this form.

3. Appointment of a Director or Company Secretary (Form AP01, Form AP03) – Includes personal details on the Director, including any other directorships they may hold.

4. Termination of Appointment of a Director or Company Secretary (Form TM01, Form TM02) – Personal details on the Director or Secretary who is leaving the company.

5. Change of Particulars for a Director or Company Secretary (Form CH01, Form CH03) – Used to record any change of name or residential address.

6. Annual Return (Form AR01) – Provides a ‘snapshot’ of your company information each year. Every company is required to submit an Annual Return each year, the penalties for not doing so can be severe.

7. Dormant Company Accounts (Form AA02) – For companies who have never traded. Companies who traded in the past, but have become dormant may be able to use Form AA02 (formerly Form DCA), but only if no transactions have been recorded in the current financial year and no residual balances exist. Read more in our guide to Dormant limited companies.

Online Companies House Forms

Alongside the paper forms listed above, you can file most Companies House forms online these days, and company directors are encouraged to do so.

The most popular online forms include the Annual Return (AR01), and forms relating to the appointment and termination of company officials, and changes to their particulars.

You can access an up-to-date list of the forms you can file online here.