As the nation faces one of the most challenging times in decades, the government have made changes to the statutory compliance duties of businesses to ease the burden. We have summarised these updates below.
The government has extended insolvency measures to support businesses during the pandemic and help them recover.
The measures, which were introduced in March 2020, include protecting businesses from aggressive creditor enforcement and removing personal liability on company directors. After previous extensions last year, the measures have been extended again until the end of June 2021.
The measures being extended include:
You can read more about these measures here.
Companies House users can now request to have authorisation codes sent to home addresses instead of the company’s registered office.
This is a temporary measure due to the COVID-19 outbreak.
From 10 September 2020, Companies House will restart the process for companies that have applied for voluntary strike off.
Further details can be found here.
The Companies etc. (Filing Requirements) (Temporary Modifications) Regulations 2020 (“the regulations”) were signed into law on 26 June 2020 and came into force on 27 June 2020.
The measures introduced by the regulations will relieve the burden on businesses during the coronavirus outbreak and allow them to focus all their efforts on continuing to operate.
Full details of the changes can be found on the government website here.
Given the current crisis, Directors are being urged to look again at their dividend policy and consider the following:
As at 1 June, there remains no indication from the government that support will be available to shareholders where the amount of their dividend has been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
New legislation has been introduced to provide companies, who are required by law to hold AGMs, greater flexibility to enable them to do so safely, including holding AGMs online or postponing the meetings.
The government has introduced the corporate governance and insolvency Bill in parliament. This will put in place a series of measures to amend insolvency and company law to support business to address the challenges resulting from the impact of COVID-19.
The Bill consists of six insolvency measures and two corporate governance measures. The measures include:
Details of how to apply for a moratorium were published by the government on 26 June and can be found here.
Enforcement of gender pay gap reporting deadlines have been suspended for this year.