Companies House advises companies "not to postpone until the last moment"

Company directors and accountants are encouraged to submit their documents earlier than usual and online.

Businesses across the UK are urged not to delay submitting their annual accounts until the last minute and to consider moving away from paper submission as a coronavirus (COVID-19) disruptions continue to affect lives, businesses and people's economies.

Available 24/7, the online filing service can take as little as 15 minutes and has built-in controls to help managers avoid mistakes. Invoices sent on paper are 6 times more likely to be rejected than those sent electronically (7.5% vs 1.2%, respectively).

Paper invoices submitted too close to the December 31, 2020 deadline, which are then rejected, run the risk of not having enough time to manually correct, resubmit, and review. This type of overdue invoice will result in an automatic late registration penalty; However, if the delay in bill delivery was directly caused by the coronavirus outbreak, Companies House will treat penalty appeals sympathetically.

In accordance with government guidance and coronavirus-related restrictions, the company currently has a reduced workforce. As a result, the processing of documentation for the 2019/20 fiscal year is expected to take much longer this year.

Louise Smith, CEO of Companies House, says:

«When we ask companies to submit their invoices in advance and preferably online, we try to keep them quiet during the busy year-end filing period.

Like many other organisations in these unprecedented times, the number of people in our offices is currently decreasing due to the current coronavirus crisis, as well as government directives and restrictions related to the pandemic.

As a result, paper accounts that need to be verified manually will take longer than usual to process.

We want to do everything we can to help businesses during a pandemic and ensure the safety and well-being of everyone who works at Companies House. It is a delicate balance, but we are determined to achieve it.»