Under the Companies Act 2006 all Directors of a Company can be subject to criminal proceedings for failing to file Annual Financial Accounts and/or Annual Returns in accordance with the statutory deadlines. The requirements in respect of Annual Returns have changed slightly as a result of recent changes in the law, but the threat of prosecution remains.
These prosecutions are increasingly common and often lead to fines which can be quite serious for a small company.
Whilst the fee for filing such accounts and returns is approximately £25, a failure to comply with this duty can land a Director with a personal liability of several thousand pounds in the criminal Courts.
This will also mean that the Director (or Directors) will have a criminal record as a result of such proceedings and this may jeopardise the company’s business, either directly in terms of the sector it engages in, or indirectly in terms of credit referencing etc.