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Dormant Company – Companies House

A UK company without any activity is often referred to as dormant. A company is dormant for Companies House, if it has had no significant transactions during the year on which it is reporting.

This effectively means a company that has never traded, and has never bought any assets and  is different from a non-trading company; which has other obligations.

If a company has no assets, and only pays

  • filing fees
  • money paid for the transfer of shares

It is a dormant company for Companies House purposes, and can file dormant accounts.

If assets were bought, or the company has opened a bank account, or the company did trade then the company is not dormant, it is non-trading so it can file “abbreviated” accounts, but not dormant accounts.

If a company is not correctly maintained, there can be penalties for directors of UK companies and fines unpaid by a company, can result in personal liability for the directors, even if they are not resident in the UK.

Dormant Company for the tax authorities

A company is dormant for tax purposes if it has never traded, has no assets and has written to the authorities to say that it is dormant; and they have replied acknowledging this.

All other companies are active and have to lodge tax returns.:

A company is active for Corporation Tax purposes, whether it is trading, or practising a profession, or holds any assets which have the potential to generate an income, even if the income is collected by another party.

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