When setting up or running a UK company, the company directors and/or the company secretary (if appointed) are responsible for sending information to Companies House to ensure that the Registry is up-to-date. This may include changes in company details, or the submission of accounts.
Although there are literally hundreds of forms which may at some time or another be submitted to Companies House, the key ones are listed below – updated in line with the final implementation of the Companies Act 2006.
1. Company Accounts
All limited companies are legally obliged to keep accounting records and file their annual accounts with Companies House. Directors are personally responsible for ensuring that accounts are delivered, and can be penalised if the annual accounts are delivered late – even if your accountant is to blame.
This booklet provides more information on preparing and filing accounts and when you are exempt from doing so.
Your annual accounts must always be produced to a high standard, so they can be scanned electronically.
2. Annual Returns (Form AR01)
The annual return, which all companies have to complete, provides a snapshot of company information, including details of its director(s) and secretary, the registered office address, shareholders and share capital.
Companies House will write to the company’s registered address to inform you that an Annual Return is due. It will also contain details of how to submit the form online.
You can still request a paper form to return, however companies are encouraged to used electronic filing for all commonly used forms these days.
The details should be checked, signed off and returned within 28 days with a small fee.
The old Form 363 was replaced by Form AR01 from 1st October 2009.
For further information, try our dedicated article on Annual Returns.
3. Change of accounting reference date (Form AA01)
For various reasons, your accountant may suggest that your company changes its accounting reference date, which is the date to which the company’s accounts are prepared on an annual basis. This can be done by submitting Form AA01.
This Form replaces the old Form 225 from 1st October 2009.
4. Change of registered office (Form AD01)
All limited companies have a registered office, which must be a physical location to which official papers and documents can be sent to.
If you need to change your registered office address, you should submit Form AD01 to Companies House. Please note that any change becomes legally effective only when Companies House have acknowledged receipt of the form.
This Form replaces the old Form 287 from 1st October 2009.
5. Change of directors and secretary and their details
The old Forms 288(a,b,c) have been replaced by a series of more meaningfully-named Forms, as a result of the main implementation of Companies Act 2006, effective from 1st October 2009.
AP01 – Appointment of Director
AP02 – Appointment of Corporate Director
AP03 – Appointment of Secretary
AP04 – Appointment of Corporate Secretary
TM01 – Terminating appointment as Director
TM02 – Terminating appointment as Secretary
CH01 – Change of particulars for Director
CH02 – Change of particulars for Corporate Director
CH03 – Change of particulars for Secretary
CH04 – Change of particulars for Corporate Secretary
6. Further Requirements
You also need to inform Companies House if you make a number of further changes, such as a change to the company name, change of constitution, certain company resolutions, the allotment and changes to the company share capital, and registering a charge (mortgage).
Read ‘Life of a Company’ (Guide GP3) for more details about your obligations as a limited company director.