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A copy of the statutory accounts must be filed with the Registrar of Companies at Companies House within 9 months of the accounting reference date. There are strict deadlines imposed for filing the accounts and they are only considered delivered when they are actually received at Companies House in an acceptable format. A reminder is sent every year to the registered office and if deadlines are missed then the company will receive an automatic financial penalty even if the accounts are late by just one day. Even sending the accounts too close to a deadline that expires during a bank holiday will not be acceptable. If there are any reasons for the accounts to be late it might be possible to apply for an extension in writing before the deadline but this will apply only in situations that are beyond the control of the directors and their professional advisors. If there is persistent failure to file accounts (and several letters will be sent by Companies House giving notice of the failure to file), the company may be struck off the Register of Companies. Once this happens the all the assets of the company will become the property of the Crown and the company will no longer exist. In the case of a RMC the asset will mean the building of which each member owns a flat! Below are some of the reasons that are used in an attempt justify not having to pay a penalty for late or no filing:

  1. The accounts were delayed or lost in the post;
  2. The company is dormant;
  3. The company is in financial difficulties and can’t afford to pay;
  4. The accounts were received by Companies House on time but were rejected;
  5. Another director is responsible for preparing the accounts;
  6. The accountant was ill;
  7. These are the first accounts;
  8. The company is not familiar with the filing requirements.

The penalty for missing the filing deadline (for private limited companies) is:

  1. Up to 1 month £150;
  2. 1 to 3 months £375;
  3. 3 to 6 months £750;
  4. More than 6 months £1,500
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