Companies Act 2006

Summary of the new Companies Act 2006
 
A new companies act was introduced in 2006, that became fully operational on the 1st October 2009.  The full act of parliament is over 700 pages long, so we have decided to try to highlight some of the key points / changes for quick reference.
 
General
   *  Private limited companies no longer need to have a company secretary.
   *  Private limited companies are no longer required to have an annual  general meeting.
   *  There are new standard company constitution documents.
   *  Companies are no longer required to specify their objects on
       incorporation.
 
Company Directors
   *  Director's general duties have been formally codified in law.
   *  Company Directors are no longer required to publish their
       residential address for all to see. They may opt to provide an
       additional service address for correspondence, which can be the
       same as their company's registered office address.  A residential address must still be given to
       companies house, but this will only be shared with selected 3rd parties (certain public bodies,
       and credit reference agencies).
   *  Company Directors must now be atleast 16 years old.
 
Accounts and Reports
   *  The statements that appear on a company's accounts have changed.
   *  The accounts filing deadline has been reduced from 10 months to 9 months for private
       companies, and 7 months to 6 months for PLCs.
 
Members / Shareholders
   *  Companies are able to make better use of electronic communication to communicate with
       shareholders.
   *  It's no longer as easy for external parties to demand to see a company's list of shareholders.
       Interested parties must declare their name, address, and the purpose of their request.  It must
       be for a "proper" purpose - whatever that means!  A company can apply to a court to reject
       the request.
 
Forms
   *  Lots of the companies house forms have been redesigned / renamed with much more logical
       names. Rather than being named after the section of the companies house act that describes
       them, they are named after their purpose.  For example, the Annual Return is now Form AR01
       rather than Form 363.  The relevant law sections are now referred to
       within the body of the form.
   *  Companies must now complete a Statement of Capital when they are
       first registered, whenever share capital changes, and every year
       when they file their annual return.  This is a snapshot of the companies
       share capital at a given point in time, and also gives details of
       voting and dividend rights for each share.