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Welcome to EQUITY ISSUES, a short note on a relevant issue in the private equity and venture capital industry.

If you would like to discuss any of the points we raise below, please contact me or one of our other lawyers.


Claire Cummings

020 7585 1406


Companies House Business Plan - Corporate Transparency

Companies House recently published its business plan for 2018 to 2019 which, among other things, addresses Companies House’s role in tackling money laundering and sets out its role in supporting corporate transparency and the people with significant control (“PSC”) regime. The information on the Companies House register is vital in building a picture of corporate transparency and its links with the wider law enforcement network help ensure that money laundering is tackled effectively.

The requirement to provide PSC information was introduced in 2016 and is an integral part of the government’s commitment to corporate transparency, ensuring that the UK is a trusted and fair place to do business. In June 2017, Companies House implemented changes resulting from the EU’s fourth anti-money laundering directive which means PSC information is more up to date and that a greater number of company types are required to provide information on their PSCs. Over 98% of companies have provided information regarding their PSCs. While this has been a great success, Companies House has identified areas where improvements can be made.

In relation to PSC information, Companies House outlines a number of areas for improvement, indicating that it will:

  • Contact companies where it believes they have misunderstood the requirements with a view to ensuring that records are correct and comply with the legal requirements.
  • Pursue companies that have not provided PSC information in their confirmation statement or that have not provided a statement of additional matters.

  • Follow up with companies and PSCs where they have issued notices to their PSC (asking PSCs to provide information) or restrictions (where a PSC has failed to provide information) with a view to ensuring the information on company records is updated.

  • Seek compliance from companies where there has been a complaint about missing or incorrect PSC information.

  • Develop data and intelligence sharing gateways with law enforcement and government departments to support information being shared correctly and the tackling of economic crime.

  • Follow up complaints regarding PSC information, aiming to respond within 10 working days.

The business plan also states that Companies House will work with Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy on the following:
  • The development of a register of beneficial owners of overseas companies that own property in the UK or enter into contracts with government aimed at addressing concerns about the potential use of property transactions to launder money or commit fraud.

  • The potential changes to limited partnership law aimed at addressing concerns about their possible misuse for fraudulent activities.

  • The 2019 government review of the effectiveness of the PSC register, by gathering the necessary evidence to assist this review.

  • The implementation of the ban on corporate directors.

This document is for general guidance only. It does not contain definitive advice.


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Tel: + 44 20 7585 1406
Mob: + 44 7734 057 327

Cummings Law
42 Brook Street
London Greater London W1K 5DB
United Kingdom

25 05 2019

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