The Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Act 2015 introduced a number of measures to increase the accountability of companies by making it easier to see who owns or controls them and who might be making decisions about how they are run.
As part of the Act there are a number of significant changes that will be made to company law, including:
- the introduction of a public register of people with significant control over UK companies
- restrictions on use of corporate directors
- changes to filing requirements, including replacement of the annual return with a process for confirmations with effect from 30 June 2016
- option for a private company to elect to use the central register (i.e. Companies House) in lieu of keeping its own register of members, directors, directors’ residential addresses or secretaries
- shortened periods for striking off companies
People with significant control (PSC)
Companies will need to keep a register of people with significant control (PSC register) from April 2016. This is in preparation for the need to file this information at Companies House from 30 June 2016.
A person with significant control (PSC) is anyone in the company who meets one or more of the conditions listed in the legislation. This is a person who:
- owns more than 25% of the company’s shares
- owns more than 25% of the company’s voting rights
- has the right to appoint or remove a majority of the board of directors
- has significant influence or control over the company
- has significant influence or control over a trust or firm
The register will follow the same procedure as the register of members, directors and other statutory registers in that it will be available for inspection at the registered address and registered at Companies House; therefore making it open to the general public.
Some of the information that will need to be kept and provided to Companies House is:
- service address
- usual residential address
- country and state of residence
- date of birth
- date they became a PSC
- nature of company control
The usual residential address and date of birth will be protected, in a similar way to how director information is treated under the new legislation.
We can help
Milsted Langdon use specialist company secretarial software to assist clients in maintaining their statutory records. Please let us know if you would like us to help you set up this register for your company. For further advice or assistance with any of the above matters please speak with your usual Milsted Langdon contact.