URGENT - BUREAUCRACY ALERT – IGNORE AT YOUR PERIL

The “big brothers” in government are out of control!

You might be tempted to think this is an April Fool prank - it isn't!

They now want you to keep a register showing “Who is in Control of your business” despite all the information they already have about you , and you could go to prison if you ignore them!!!!

 If you were to cast your mind back to the 2013 G8 Summit, if indeed you can remember it, it was agreed that, to combat financial crime and generate trust in UK companies, there was a need for greater transparency in revealing who controls a company.

 However, fast forward a couple of years and, unnoticed by most, the “Small Business Enterprise and Employment Act 2015” was passed to introduce us to the Register of People with Significant Control (PSC).

 Unfortunately despite the target being companies with complex ownership structures, almost all UK companies must keep this new register.

 Ridiculous? We agree – but we unfortunately were not in government to stop them.

 It is a legal requirement, and failure to comply can result in a prison sentence of up to two years and/or a fine, so please continue reading as action should be started by 6 April 2016.

 Companies affected:

 

  • Private companies limited by shares
  • Private companies limited by guarantee
  • Most public limited companies
  • Limited liability partnerships
  • Unlimited companies
  • Societates Europaeae

 This also includes dormant companies.

 Your responsibilities:

 

  • By the 6 April 2016, to have undertaken reasonable steps to identify potential PSCs
  • Contact them and confirm they meet the conditions of a PSC
  • Confirm the relevant statutory information required in the PSC Register
  • Create a PSC register and keep it up to date with any changes in PSCs and/or their details
  • After the 30 June 2016 the PSC register will be sent to Companies House as part of the new Confirmation Statement, replacing the Annual Return

 As a PSC register is filed with Companies House, it is available for public inspection.

 Any new company formed after the 6 April 2016 will produce a “Statement of Initial Significant Control”.

 So – Who are “People with Significant Control”? They are people who:

 

  • Directly or indirectly hold more than 25% of the shares
  • Directly or indirectly hold more than 25% of the voting rights
  • Directly or indirectly hold the right to appoint or remove the majority of directors
  • Otherwise have the right to exercise, or actually exercise, significant influence or control
  • Where a trust or firm would satisfy one or more of the first four conditions if it were an individual, any individual holding the right to exercise, or actually exercising, significant influence or control over the activities of that trust or firm

 Any individual who meets one of the above conditions will be considered a PSC.

 A legal entity that meets any of the conditions above, if it was an individual, is classed as a Relevant Legal Entity (RLE) and will also need to have their details on the PSC register.

 Information required:

 

  • Name
  • Date when you/it became a PSC / RLE (to be 6 April 2016 for existing PSCs / RLEs when the regime comes into force)
  • Official wording describing the conditions that the PSC / RLE meets to be categorised as a PSC / RLE (i.e. the nature of its control)
  • Address of registered or principal office
  • Legal form and governing law
  • Register in which it appears (if applicable)
  • Date of Birth
  • Country, state or part of the UK where the PSC usually lives
  • Nationality
  • Service address
  • Usual residential address (if different from service address)
  • Any restrictions on disclosing the PSC’s information that are in place

 Keep calm.

 As you can see there is a lot of information to digest.

 Your first action is to take reasonable steps to identify PSCs in your company by the 6 April 2016.

 If you wish, OBC can work with you to produce a PSC register for a one off fee of £100 plus VAT.

 Companies House will charge an annual fee to file the Confirmation Statement.

 Please get in touch with your usual contact at OBC or call us on 01323 720555 so we can answer any questions about setting up a PSC register for you.

 For further information please follow this link to the full government guidance: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-the-people-with-significant-control-requirements-for-companies-and-limited-liability-partnerships

 

 

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