Key dates for limited companies

Limited Company key dates throughout the financial year – your responsibilities and what you need to file with Companies House and HMRC

By Published On: 12 March 2023

As a director of your Limited Company you’ll have legal responsibilities, such as submitting / filing various returns and forms to HMRC and Companies House throughout the financial year. When you’re busy running your own Limited Company it can be easy to miss important deadlines, and what you need to do.

In this blog we highlight the key dates a Limited Company director needs to be aware of.

Limited Company director responsibilities

Directors have the legal responsibility to run their companies, and are bound by a statutory code of practice with certain legal obligations which must be met.

Forming a Limited Company creates a separate legal entity from yourself, which contains its own accountabilities and legal framework, and its profits and losses belong to the company. Therefore any decisions you make that affect the company must be made in the interest to benefit the company, which includes ensuring all paper work is completed correctly and filed on time.

What do you need to file?

Accounting reference date and accounting periods for filing information – HMRC and Companies House set dates for filing information in different ways:

Companies House will issue an ‘Accounting Reference Date’ when your company is first incorporated. The first Accounting Reference Date is the very last day of the month in which the first anniversary of incorporation falls. So the very first Accounting Reference Date for the first set of Company Accounts you’ll file will usually have a longer period than 12 months. Eg – if you incorporated your company on December 7th 2023, your Accounting Reference Date will most likely be 31st December 2024.

For your payment of Corporation Tax and Company Tax Return, HMRC will provide you with an accounting period, which will start once you’ve begun trading, and will end on your Accounting Reference Date.

Confirmation Statement – Contains important information about your company, its director/s, and any other administrative arrangements. It must also contain information about any Persons of Significant Control that are involved in your business. Confirmation Statements are completed annually, and if your company’s information changes then you can file more than one per year. It’s a criminal offence if you fail to file your statement within 14 days of the end of the ‘review’ period. If you have a new Limited Company then the review period begins on the date you incorporate, and ends 12 months later. A Confirmation Statement can only cover a 12 month period.

Corporation Tax Payment – If your company made a profit during the accounting period, you’ll need to pay Corporation Tax to HMRC. You’ll have to pay this nine months and one day after the accounting period.

Form CT600 – You must file a CT600 form with HMRC once a year, which includes details about your company’s income, minus any tax allowances or business expenses. Your taxable profit is left, which will be used to calculate the total amount of Corporation Tax your company is due to pay. Your company’s first Corporation Tax return is due 12 months after your first yearend, and then within 12 months each year of your Accounting Period end.

National Insurance – You must pay it if your salary exceeds the Primary Threshold of £12,570 per year, or £1,048 per month / £242 per week.

Should your pay exceed the NI Primary Threshold you’ll need to pay Employee’s NI, and should you pay yourself or any employees / directors above the secondary threshold, your company will also have to pay Employers NI.

If you run your company’s payroll monthly, you’ll usually pay your NI on a quarterly basis.

P60 – will show the total amount you’ve been paid through your Limited Company, including the amount of tax you’ve paid in that specific tax year. You’ll need to keep your P60 safe for:

  • When you complete your Self-Assessment
  • Should you need to reclaim any overpaid National Insurance or Income Tax
  • Loan or mortgage applications
  • Tax credits application

PAYE – information is submitted monthly to HMRC

Payment on account – if you owe any personal tax, you’ll need to make the following payments on account every year:

  • 1st payment- must be made on account by 31st January
  • 2nd payment – much be made on account by 31st July

If the previous tax year’s outstanding tax exceeds £1,000, you’ll need to pay that amount plus a contribution towards the new tax year, which is based on an estimate that HMRC will provide to you.

You’ll then need to make a second payment for the new tax year by 31st July.

Self Assessment – All Limited Company directors must annually submit a self assessment, which details your personal income and allowances to HMRC. Every detail from your employment income must also be included, any dividends you pay to yourself from your company, and any other sources of income (ie rental income or sole trader income).

This must be completed and returned by the 31st January every year, but you’re able to file as soon as you have your P60 from the correct tax year.

Statutory Accounts / Yearend Accounts – your company’s finances are made public every year, in accordance with the Companies Act 2006 and accounting standards. You must submit your company’s Statement of Financial Position, Income Statement, and other information in accounting notes. Your company’s very first accounting period is set to finish the last day of the month, one year after it has been incorporated. Your first set of accounts are then due nine months after your company’s first yearend (or within 21 months of the company’s incorporation date, should the first accounting period be longer than 12 months).

Submitting your yearend accounts to Companies House is calculated to the exact day, so make sure you don’t miss it.

VAT Return – If VAT registered, you must calculate all of the VAT you’ve added to the sales for the past year, and then deduct the VAT paid on business expenses. As a contractor or freelancer you’ll most likely be on the Flat Rate Scheme (FRS) with a limited cost trader rate of 16.5%, which is instead of reclaiming the VAT on business allowable expenses.

You’ll need to keep your VAT records digitally, and use compatible Making Tax Digital (MTD) software to submit it.

Key dates to remember

It might seem like a lot of things and dates to remember, but you’re not alone! Every Limited Company director must take these steps in order to run their company correctly. Take a look at the example calendars below to help remind you what needs to be done and when, in a typical year if you were to have incorporated your company on 1 January.

Let Aardvark help you keep on top of your responsibilities

You’re busy running your Limited Company, so let us help you keep on top of the other bits and bobs. Enlist the services of our expert Aardvark team who looks after the needs of Limited Company contractors every day, and can help you’re meeting all of your director’s obligations. If this sounds like the type of support you need, get in touch today.

Note: All the information and advice in this blog post was correct at the time of writing.

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