Late Annual Return Filing Extension
The Companies Act 2014 has introduced a new mechanism for companies that have missed the filing deadline for filing the annual return and financial statements on time. This will eliminate the need to pay the late filing penalties and retain the audit exemption.
The company may make an application to their local District Court (or High Court) seeking an order extending the time for filing the annual return and the financial statements. If granted by the Court, the company must file the order with the CRO within 28 days and then file the annual return and the financial statements (audit exempt if applicable) with the CRO within the extended time granted by the Court. Only one application can be made per order.
The company cannot represent itself so it must seek the services of a solicitor or barrister to make the application to the Court.
The company must also make the application at the District Court where the registered office is situated.
A company will have to weigh up the cost of paying the late filing penalties in addition to the cost of an audit to be carried out for the current financial statements and the next financial year against the cost of making the application to the District Court.
Struck Off Company
CRO have confirmed that the district court application cannot be used for companies that have been struck off the register
- No loss of audit exemption or audit for 2 years
- No late filing penalties
- Fixed fee for the application
- Cost of making the application
What is the process?
The CRO have issued an information leaflet on the process (Information Leaflet 39).
In summary, the process is as follows:
- Make an application for a court date
- Serve copy of notice and affidavit on CRO putting CRO on notice of the application
- File affidavit and declaration of service four days before the court date
- When order is granted showing the new filing date the order should be filed at the CRO and the company file the annual return within 28 days of the new date