Under its latest measures to support businesses affected by Covid-19, Companies House reported on 16 April 2020 that it would temporarily pause its strike off policy in a bid to prevent companies from being dissolved, and treat late filing penalty appeals sympathetically.

Changes to strike off policy

Upon receipt of a voluntary application for strike off from a company, Companies House will register the application and will (as usual) publish a notice in the Gazette. However, from this point onwards, any further action to strike off the company will be suspended.

Moreover, whilst companies should always strive to file their annual accounts and confirmation statements on time, Companies House has also indicated that while it will continue to send reminders to companies that have failed to meet filing deadlines, it will not publish a notice in the Gazette announcing its intention to strike off the company. A word of caution though as these changes do not apply to companies that are being dissolved via administration or liquidation.

Approach to late filing penalty appeals

Companies House has made it clear that companies issued with a late filing penalty due to Covid-19 will have appeals treated sympathetically, providing a break for companies to pay late filing penalties as well as payment plans for late filing penalties. These new changes build on the previous measures announced on 25 March 2020, as reported in our previous blog, under which companies are now able to make an application for an immediate and automatic three-month extension for filing their annual accounts, whereby the delays are caused by Covid-19 issues.

Readers will be reminded that Edwin Coe has put together a multi-specialist task force to provide advice to businesses amidst the new insolvency relief measures.

For further information on this development please contact Russel Shear or any other member of our Corporate & Commercial team.

For an update on all the legal implications relating to Coronavirus please see here.

Please note that this blog is provided for general information only. It is not intended to amount to advice on which you should rely. You must obtain professional or specialist advice before taking, or refraining from, any action on the basis of the content of this blog.

Edwin Coe LLP is a Limited Liability Partnership, registered in England & Wales (No.OC326366). The Firm is authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority. A list of members of the LLP is available for inspection at our registered office address: 2 Stone Buildings, Lincoln’s Inn, London, WC2A 3TH. “Partner” denotes a member of the LLP or an employee or consultant with the equivalent standing.

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