Can you ask Companies House to extend your filing deadline for company accounts? You can apply to extend your deadline if you cannot send your accounts because of an event that is outside of your control.  

All companies must send their accounts, reports and confirmation statements to Companies House every year. If a company’s accounts are filed late, the law imposes an automatic penalty. There was an emergency COVID-19 provision, introduced on 25 March 2020, that automatically extended the deadlines for certain key statutory filing events, such as the filing of company accounts. This ended on 5 April 2021.

Since November 2019 any company can ask Companies House for an extension to their accounts filing but only if they are delayed due to circumstances outside of your control. Such circumstances include illness or a fire that destroys records.

In all circumstances, applications for an extension must be made prior to your filing deadline. You can Check your filing deadlines on Companies House service (CHS).

How to apply

To apply online you will need:

  • Your company number.
  • Information about why you need more time.
  • Any documents to support your applications (optional).

Applications cannot be accepted by email because of delays caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Companies House will contact you by email to inform you if your application has been successful or not. You may be contacted if Companies House needs more information.

Should an extension be agreed, accounts must be filed before the new deadline date or a late filing penalty will be imposed. Any extension will not change future accounts deadline dates.

Useful guides on this topic

COVID-19: Companies House filing extensions
Companies House has announced that it will now automatically extend the deadlines for certain key statutory filing events, such as the filing of company accounts. This is a temporary measure on account of the Coronavirus outbreak.

Companies: Filing & payment deadlines
What are the filing and payment deadlines for companies? What penalties apply? If you run a UK business via a UK-registered company you will have the following ongoing filing & payment deadlines.

Small Company accounts: Companies House requirements
In 2016 filing obligations for small and micro-entities changed following the withdrawal of the FRSSE and the introduction of new reporting standards FRS101, FRS102 and FRS105.

Penalties & Compliance
This section houses penalties and related appeals, and the compliance category contains information on various tax disclosure provisions, rules to prevent tax avoidance and general compliance-related subjects. 

External links

Companies House: Guidance: Filing your company’s accounts

Guidance on late filing penalties and appeals

Apply to extend your accounts filing deadline online

Oak ad
Are you enjoying our content? 

Thousands of accountants and advisers and their clients use as their primary TAX resource.

Register with us now to receive our receive our FREE SME Topical Tax Update & newletter.