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September 9, 2017
Company and accounting records
You must keep:
records about the company itself
financial and accounting records
You can hire a professional (for example, an accountant) to help with your tax.
HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) may check your records to make sure you’re paying the right amount of tax.
Records about the company
You must keep details of:
directors, shareholders and company secretaries
the results of any shareholder votes and resolutions
promises for the company to repay loans at a specific date in the future (‘debentures’) and who they must be paid back to
promises the company makes for payments if something goes wrong and it’s the company’s fault (‘indemnities’)
transactions when someone buys shares in the company
loans or mortgages secured against the company’s assets
You must tell Companies House if you keep the records somewhere other than the company’s registered office address.
Register of ‘people with significant control’
You must also keep a register of ‘people with significant control’ (PSC). Your PSC register must include details of anyone who:
has more than 25% shares or voting rights in your company
can appoint or remove a majority of directors
can influence or control your company or trust
You still need to keep a record if there are no people with significant control.
Read more guidance on keeping a PSC register if your company’s ownership and control isn’t simple.
You must keep accounting records that include:
all money received and spent by the company
details of assets owned by the company
debts the company owes or is owed
stock the company owns at the end of the financial year
the stocktakings you used to work out the stock figure
all goods bought and sold
who you bought and sold them to and from (unless you run a retail business)
You must also keep any other financial records, information and calculations you need to prepare and file your annual accounts and Company Tax Return. This includes records of:
all money spent by the company, for example receipts, petty cash books, orders and delivery notes
all money received by the company, for example invoices, contracts, sales books and till rolls
any other relevant documents, for example bank statements and correspondence
You can be fined £3,000 by HMRC or disqualified as a company director if you don’t keep accounting records.
How long to keep records
You must keep records for 6 years from the end of the last company financial year they relate to, or longer if:
they show a transaction that covers more than one of the company’s accounting periods
the company has bought something that it expects to last more than 6 years, like equipment or machinery
you sent your Company Tax Return late
HMRC has started a compliance check into your Company Tax Return
If your records are lost, stolen or destroyed
If you can’t replace your records after they were lost, stolen or destroyed you must:
do your best to recreate them
tell your Corporation Tax office straight away
include this information in your Company Tax Return
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