Recent announcements from Companies House have detailed various changes firms should be mindful of, including those that will affect small or micro companies. One of the most significant changes coming into force is the change to the level of detail small companies are allowed to make when filling accounts.
2. Accounts Filing options for Small and Micro Companies
Due to the Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Bill, which has been making its way through Parliament since September 2022, Companies House has reacted by implementing various changes to the way they are operating. The changes set out in the Bill aim to improve transparency by making more financial information available to the public. The changes focus on tackling economic crime and providing more information for enforcement agencies. As part of these changes, Companies House is streamlining the accounts filing options available to small and micro companies as part of this reform package.
3. Why profit and loss requirements are changing
While public disclosure of the information is a requirement for all companies, following a consultation phase, the research identified that the minimal disclosures that small companies are allowed to make do not give a level of transparency sufficient to get limited liability protection. Subsequently, it was felt that this minimal level of disclosure has the potential to appeal to fraudsters wishing to present a false image of the company.
4. How will the changes affect small and micro companies?
Below is an overview of the changes coming into effect:
“To simplify our framework, we’ll be reducing our account filing options to just two: micro-entities and small companies. Under the new measures, the option for abridged accounts will be removed. Having fewer filing options will help to avoid confusion and reduce costly mistakes.”
“Under this new framework, all small companies, including micro-entities, will be required to file their profit and loss accounts.”
“The detail and format of the profit and loss account filings will be set out in secondary legislation. This is being developed in consultation with business and accountancy groups. We’ll keep you updated on its development and on timescales.”
4.1 Other changes to filing accounts will include:
- a requirement for accounts to be filed digitally and fully tagged using iXBRL.
- the removal of a paper filing option for most companies.
- the requirement for a company relying on an audit exemption to provide an additional statement by the directors on the balance sheet, confirming the exemption being relied upon, and that the company meets the qualifying criteria.
- giving the Registrar power to require all component parts of a filing to be delivered together to facilitate the digital filing of more complex accounts.
- limiting the number of times a company can shorten its Annual Reporting Period.
For full information on this announcement and these changes you can view details here: Changes to accounts, part 2: small company filing options – Companies House (blog.gov.uk)
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