The Companies (Amendment) Ordinance, 2019 – highlights

The Companies (Amendment) Ordinance, 2019 was promulgated on January 12, 2019.

It repeals and replaces the Companies (Amendment) Ordinance, 2018 promulgated on November 2, 2018.

The 2019 Ordinance amends several provisions in the Companies Act, 2013 relating to penalties, among others.

 

Key Highlights

  • Commencement of business – Declaration by the Director: The Ordinance states that a company may not commence business, unless it (i) files a declaration within 180 days of incorporation, confirming that every subscriber to the Memorandum of the company has paid the value of shares agreed to be taken by him, and (ii) files a verification of its registered office address with the Registrar of Companies within 30 days of incorporation.  If a company fails to comply with these provisions and is found not to be carrying out any business, the name of the Company may be removed from the Register of Companies.

Any default in complying with the said will invite a fine of INR 50,000 to be paid by the company.

 

  • Removal of a Company’s name from the register – If the Registrar has enough reason to believe that a company is not carrying on business then he, after a physical verification of the registered office, can remove the company’s name from the register of companies. The ROC can strike off a company if the address of Registered Office is bogus or an incomplete/ improper address.

 

  • Issue of shares at a discount: The Act prohibits a company from issuing shares at a discount, except in certain cases.  On failure to comply, the company is liable to pay a fine between one lakh rupees and five lakh rupees every officer in default may be punished with imprisonment up to six months or fine between one lakh rupees and five lakh rupees.  The Ordinance changes this to remove imprisonment for officers as a punishment.

 

  • Further, the company and every officer in default will be liable to pay a penalty equal to the amount raised by the issue of shares at a discount or five lakh rupees, whichever is lower. The company will also be liable to refund the money received with interest at 12% per annum from the date of issue of the shares.

 

  • Alteration of Articles – After this amendment, any conversion of a Public Company to a Private Company will not be valid unless approved by an order of the Central Government. Previously, the power to issue such an order was with the Tribunal.

 

  • Registration of charges: The Act requires companies to register charges (such as mortgages) on their property within 30 days of creation of charge.  The Registrar may permit the registration within 300 days of creation.
  • The Ordinance changes this to permit registration of charges: (i) within 300 days if the charge is created before the Ordinance, or (ii) within 60 days if the charge is created after the Ordinance. If the charge under the first category is not registered within 300 days, it must be completed within six months from the date of the Ordinance.  If the charge under the second category is not registered within 60 days, the Registrar may grant another 60 days for registration.

 

  • Annual Return:  Annual Return should be filed within 60 days from the date of the AGM, failure to this, penalty of Rs. 100 per day to Company + directors maximum Rs. 5 Lakh apart from ROC delay charges is applicable.

 

  • Penalty of Rs. 5 lakhs to Company secretary certifying wrong Annual Return.

 

  • Annual Financial Statement: Filing of Balance sheet with ROC within time limit- failure is costly for Company + Directors both. Penalty of Rs.100 per day + Rs. 1 lakh to Company + Director each.

 

  • Resignation of Auditor: The Return must be filed by the resigning Auditor within 30 days, failure to which the resigning Auditor is liable for penalty of Rs. 50,000 plus Rs. 500 per day.

 

  • Disqualification of Directors: A director can not become director in more than 20 companies. If he continues, he becomes disqualified now.

 

  • Company Secretary: Appointment of Company Secretary on the payroll (Private Companies having paid-up capital Rs. 5 crores & above) is mandatory. Default is now very costly- penalty increased substantially.

 

  • ROC may strike off a company if subscribers have not paid initial share capital after incorporation of a Company within 6 months.

 

  • Financial Year: The Indian subsidiary or associate or holding company of the foreign company may be allowed to follow any period as its financial period on an application made by such company if it is required for consolidation of its financials with the foreign company. Also the such period may or may not be one year.

 

  • Change in approving authority: Under the Act, change in period of financial year for a company associated with a foreign company, has to be approved by the National Company Law Tribunal.  Similarly, any alteration in the incorporation document of a public company which has the effect of converting it to a private company, has to be approved by the Tribunal.  Under the Ordinance, these powers have been transferred to central government.

 

  • Declaration of beneficial ownership: If a person holds beneficial interest of at least 25% shares in a company or exercises significant influence or control over the company, he is required to make a declaration of his interest. Under the Act, failure to declare this interest is punishable with a fine between one lakh rupees and ten lakh rupees, along with a continuing fine for every day of default.  The Ordinance provides that such person may either be fined, or imprisoned for up to one year, or both.

 

  • Resolutions and agreements to be filed – If the company fails to file a resolution and agreement before the specified time, the company shall be liable to pay INR 1,00,000 as penalty and in case of a continuing failure it will be extended further by INR 500 per day subject to a maximum penalty of 25 lakhs. For any officer who is liable, the penalty is of INR 50,000, and in case of a continuing failure it will be extended further by INR 500 per day subject to a maximum penalty of 5 lakhs.

 

  • Penalties in different sections – In section 191, the penalty is increased from a minimum of INR 25,000 to a minimum of one lakh rupees. In section 441, The maximum limit is increased from 5 lakh rupees to 25 lakh rupees.

 

Read the Ordinance Text  Companies-Amendment-Ordinance-2019

MCA extends Annual Return due date upto 31 Dec. 2018

MCA extends due date for Filings of Financial Statements & Annual Return up to 31.12.2018

Keeping in view the requests received from various stakeholders seeking extension of time for filing of financial statements for the financial year ended 31.03.2018 on account of various factors, it has been decided to relax the additional fees payable by companies on e-forms AOC-4, AOC (CFS) AOC-4 XBRL and e- Form MGT-7 upto 31.12.2018 wherever additional fee is applicable.

 

General Circular No. 10/2018

F.No. 01/34/2013 CL-V
Government of India
Ministry of Corporate Affairs

5th Floor, ‘A’ Wing, Shastri Bhawan,
Dr. Rajendra Prasad Road, New Delhi-1

Dated: 29.10.2018

To
 All Regional Directors,
 All Registrar of Companies, All Stakeholders.

Subject: Relaxation of additional fees and extension of last date of in filing of forms MGT-7 (Annual Return) and AOC-4 (Financial Statements) under the Companies Act, 2013– – reg.

Keeping in view the requests received from various stakeholders seeking extension of time for filing of financial statements for the financial year ended 31.03.2018 on account of various factors , it has been decided to relax the additional fees payable by companies on e-forms AOC-4, AOC (CFS) A0C-4 XBRL and e- Form MGT-7 upto 31.12.2018, wherever additional fee is applicable.

2. This issues with the approval of the competent authority.

Yours faithfully,

(KMS Narayanan)

Assistant Director (policy)

011-23387263

For the original circular, please read:  MCA General Circular No. 10/2018 dt. 29 Oct. 2018

MCA extends due date of DIR-3KYC / E-KYC of Directors

MCA extends due date of DIR -3KYC / E-KYC of Directors

In order to update the Directors database of The Ministry of Corporate Affairs(MCA), MCA has requested all Directors holding a DIN to complete DIN KYC before 15th September 2018.

To complete DIN KYC, the Director would be required to file a form known as DIR-3 KYC or DIN e-KYC.

The notification issued by Ministry of Corporate Affairs has been reproduced below:

 

 

Government of India 
MINISTRY OF CORPORATE AFFAIRS

Notification

New Delhi, dated 21st August 2018

G.S.R. …… (E).-In exercise of the powers conferred by sections 396,398,399, 403 and 404 read with sub-sections (1) and (2) of section ‘1-69 of the Companies Act, 2013 (18 of 2013), the Central Government hereby makes the following rules further to amend the Companies (Registration Offices and Fees) Rules, 2014, namely:-

  1. (1) These rules may be called the Companies (Registration Offices and Fees) Fourth Amendment Rules, 2018.
    (2) They shall come into force from the date of their publication in the Official Gazette.
  2. In the Companies (Registration Offices and Fees) Rules, 2014, in the Annexure, under the head VII, for note below Fee for filing e-form DIR-3 KYC, the following note shall be substituted, namely:-

“for the current financial (2018-2019), no fee shall be chargeable till
the 15th September 2018 and fee of Rs.5000 shall be payable on or after the 16th September 2018”.

[F. No. 01/16/2013 CL-V (Pt-I)]

 

Sd/-

K.V.R MURTY, JOINT SECRETARY

Purpose of E-form DIR-3 KYC

The main purpose of e-form DIR-3 KYC is to collect the latest information about the directors of all companies. The information to be provided while completing eKYC procedures include Aadhar, PAN, Passport number, address, phone and email. The information submitted must be authenticated by completing one-time-password (OTP) verification and by signing with Digital Signature of Director and a practising Chartered Accountant.

Applicability

All directors having a DIN as on 31st March of 2018 must file e-form DIR-3 KYC on or before 15th September of 2018. For all Directors who obtained DIN after 31st March, 2018, DIR e-KYC must be filed next year.

Documents Required

The following are the documents required to file E-form DIR-3 KYC:

  • PAN Card for identity proof
  • Aadhar Card for address proof
  • Recent passport size photographs
  • Personal Mobile Number and E-mail ID of director for OTP Verification
  • Digital Signature Certificate of the director (DSC) that must be registered on MCA Portal
  • Passport (if the person holds a foreign citizenship)

Certifying Authority

The E-form DIR-3 KYC has to be duly certified by the Practicing Chartered Accountant (PCA), Practicing Company Secretary (PCS) or Practicing Cost Accountant.

Penalties

If the DIN holders do not file DIR-3, the MCA will mark them as deactivated. If the DIN holder files e-form DIR-3 KYC after 31st August 2018, a fee of Rs. 5,000 will be charged.

Time Limit

All directors to whom DIN has been allocated as of March 2018, the e-form DIR-3 KYC has to be filed by September 15, 2018. Originally, the MCA had provided a due date of 31st August which was subsequently changed to 15th September.

 

Updating the KYC of all directors by MCA

As part of updating its registry, MCA would be conducting KYC of all Directors of all companies annually through a new eform viz. DIR-3 KYC to be notified and deployed shortly.

Accordingly, every Director who has been allotted DIN on or before 31st March, 2018 and whose DIN is in ‘Approved’ status, would be mandatorily required to file form DIR-3 KYC on or before 31st August,2018.

While filing the form,the Unique Personal Mobile Number and Personal Email ID would have to be mandatorily indicated and would be duly verified by One Time Password(OTP).

The form should be filed by every Director using his own DSC and should be duly certified by a practicing professional (CA/CS/CMA).

Filing of DIR-3 KYC would be mandatory for Disqualified Directors also.

After expiry of the due date by which the KYC form is to be filed,the MCA21 system will mark all approved DINs (allotted on or before 31st March 2018) against which DIR-3 KYC form has not been filed as ‘Deactivated’ with reason as ‘Non-filing of DIR-3 KYC’.

After the due date filing of DIR-3 KYC in respect of such deactivated DINs shall be allowed upon payment of a specified fee only, without prejudice to any other action that may be taken.

Companies Act Compliance: Consequences of not filing Annual Return

Last week, the Parliament cleared a bill to further amend the Companies Act.

The financial statements and annual returns of all company must be filed on time with the ROC / MCA each year. As per Companies Act, 2013, non-filing of annual return is an offence, consequences of which affect the directors, as well as the company.

Hence, it is a must for every company to file with the MCA:

1. The annual return within 60 days of the Annual General Meeting and

2. The Financial Statement, within 30 days of the Annual General Meeting.

The various consequences and the penalties for not filing annual return of a company (Forms MGT-7 & AOC-4) are highlighted here.

A. Consequences – for Directors

The Directors of a company are responsible for ensuring the compliance of the company with all applicable rules and regulations. When a company defaults on compliance or dues payable, the Directors are held responsible for the default. The following are penal consequences for a Director of a company for default of non-filing of the Annual Return.

Director Disqualification

In case a company has not been filed its Annual Return for three continuous financial years, then every person who has been a director or is currently the director of the specific company could be disqualified under the Companies Act, 2013. If a Director is disqualified, his/her DIN would become inactive and the person would not be eligible to be appointed as a Director of any company for a period of five years from the date of disqualification. Further, disqualified Directors would not also be allowed to incorporate another company for a period of five years.

Fine & Imprisonment

A director of the company can be punished if the company has not been filed even after 270 days from the date when the company should have originally filed with additional penalty. Any Director who has defaulted in the filing of annual return of a company can also be penalized with an imprisonment of a term extended up to six months or with a fine of an amount not lesser than fifty thousand rupees and it might extend up to five lakh rupees, or with both imprisonment and fine. However, this provision provided under the Companies Act, 2013 is rarely used.

In addition, if any information filed by a Director or any other person in the annual return is false by any nature or if he/she failed to mention any fact or material that is true can be punished with imprisonment for a term  which is not lesser than six months and which could extend up to 10 years. Further, he/she can also be liable for payment of a fine which is not lesser than the amount subject to the fraud involved and it may extend to an amount three times of the sum concerned with the fraud.

B. Consequences of Default – For Company

The following are some of the penal consequences for a company that has not filed its annual return:

Penalty

Normally, the Government fee for filing or registering any document under the Companies Act required or authorized to be filed with the Registrar is Rs.200. A private limited company would be required to file form MGT-7 and form AOC-4 each year and the government fee applicable if filed on time would be Rs.400. In case of delay in filing of annual return, the penalty as mentioned would be applicable:

The penalty for not filing a company’s annual return (Form MGT-7 and Form AOC-4) is increased to Rs.100 per day w.e.f.July 1, 2018.

Strike-Off

In case the company has not filed its Annual Return for the last two financial years continuously, then such companies would be termed as an “inactive company”. On such a classification, the bank account of the company could be frozen. Further, the Registrar could also issue a notice to the Company and initiate strike-off of the company from the MCA records.

 

In case you need any assistance to file annual return for your company, you can contact us at Director@Sunkrish.com