How much information do companies file?

Which companies file accounts?

Under the Companies Act, all companies, trading or non trading, must file accounts at Companies House annually. For each company you can purchase copies of the original Annual Accounts or a Credit Report which includes the past five years of accounts. The size of a company affects the level of accounting data filed. For example Small and Medium sized companies are not required to file Turnover.

Private Limited companies must file accounts within twenty-two months of incorporation. 
Public Limited companies must file accounts within nineteen months of incorporation.

Are there exemptions?

If they are eligible and wish to, medium-sized, small and dormant companies may prepare and file abbreviated accounts. Exemptions are not available to public companies, banking, insurance or shipping companies and any of their subsidiaries regardless of size.

What level of financial information is filed?

In the UK filing regulations are determined by the size of the company, although some small companies still choose to file full accounts. These would be shown as 'Total Exemption Full' in a companies 'Accounts Type' listing. There are three variations on filing accounts and these impact on the amount of information available in a Credit Report. Each company must deliver the following to Companies House:

 

Small companies

Medium companies

Large companies

Balance sheet

Abbreviated balance sheet with notes. 

Full balance sheet.

Full balance sheet signed by a Director .

Profit and Loss

Not required.

Abbreviated profit and loss account.

Full profit and loss account.

Turnover

No. Not required.

No. Not required.

Yes. Required

Auditor report

Special auditor report (if required).

Special auditor report.

Auditor report signed by an auditor.

Director report

No.

Yes.

Yes. Signed by an officer of the company.

Notes to the accounts

No.

Yes.

Yes. Plus group accounts if appropriate.

What determines the size of a company?

For companies with financial years starting before 6 April 2008, the company must meet at least two of the following three criteria:

 

Small sized company

Medium sized company

Large sized company

Annual Turnover

must not exceed £5.6m

must not exceed £22.8m

more than £22.8m

Balance Sheet total

must not exceed £2.8m

must not exceed £11.4m

more than £11.4m

Number employees

no more than 50

no more than 250

250 or more

For companies with financial years starting on or after 6 April 2008, the company must meet at least two of the following three criteria:

 

Small sized company

Medium sized company

Large sized company

Annual Turnover

must not exceed £6.5m

must not exceed £25.9m

more than £25.9m

Balance Sheet total

must not exceed £3.26m

must not exceed £12.9m

more than £12.9m

Number employees

no more than 50

no more than 250

250 or more

For more information on preparing and filing accounts and the exemptions available to small and medium sized companies please download the full Companies House guide.

 

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