From today (25 March 2020), businesses will be able to apply for a 3-month extension for filing their accounts.
This joint initiative between the government and Companies House will mean businesses can prioritise managing the impact of Coronavirus.
There are approximately 4.3 million businesses on the Companies House register, and all companies must submit their accounts and reports each year. Under normal circumstances, companies that file accounts late are issued with an automatic penalty.
As part of the agreed measures, while companies will still have to apply for the 3-month extension to be granted, those citing issues around COVID-19 will be automatically and immediately granted an extension.
Applications can be made through a fast-tracked online system which will take just 15 minutes to complete.
The process is quick and easy. Companies should simply cite COVID-19 or Health matters as the grounds for their application.
In line with the Companies House announcement, HMRC is offering the same extension.
A company granted further time by the Registrar of Companies in which to deliver its accounts, may be able to deliver its return later than the filing date without incurring a penalty, according to HMRC's manual.