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Companies Act 1989

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Commencement Orders bringing legislation that affects this Act into force:

Part VE+W+S+N.I. Other amendments of Company Law

A company’s capacity and related mattersE+W+S+N.I.

108 A company’s objects and the power of the directors to bind it.E+W+S+N.I.

(1)In Chapter III of Part I of the Companies Act 1985 (a company’s capacity; formalities of carrying on business), for section 35 substitute—

35 A company’s capacity not limited by its memorandum.

(1)The validity of an act done by a company shall not be called into question on the ground of lack of capacity by reason of anything in the company’s memorandum.

(2)A member of a company may bring proceedings to restrain the doing of an act which but for subsection (1) would be beyond the company’s capacity; but no such proceedings shall lie in respect of an act to be done in fulfilment of a legal obligation arising from a previous act of the company.

(3)It remains the duty of the directors to observe any limitations on their powers flowing from the company’s memorandum; and action by the directors which but for subsection (1) would be beyond the company’s capacity may only be ratified by the company by special resolution.

A resolution ratifying such action shall not affect any liability incurred by the directors or any other person; relief from any such liability must be agreed to separately by special resolution.

(4)The operation of this section is restricted by section 30B(1) of the Charities Act 1960 and section 112(3) of the Companies Act 1989 in relation to companies which are charities; and section 322A below (invalidity of certain transactions to which directors or their associates are parties) has effect notwithstanding this section.

35A Power of directors to bind the company.

(1)In favour of a person dealing with a company in good faith, the power of the board of directors to bind the company, or authorise others to do so, shall be deemed to be free of any limitation under the company’s constitution.

(2)For this purpose—

(a)a person “deals with” a company if he is a party to any transaction or other act to which the company is a party;

(b)a person shall not be regarded as acting in bad faith by reason only of his knowing that an act is beyond the powers of the directors under the company’s constitution; and

(c)a person shall be presumed to have acted in good faith unless the contrary is proved.

(3)The references above to limitations on the directors’ powers under the company’s constitution include limitations deriving—

(a)from a resolution of the company in general meeting or a meeting of any class of shareholders, or

(b)from any agreement between the members of the company or of any class of shareholders.

(4)Subsection (1) does not affect any right of a member of the company to bring proceedings to restrain the doing of an act which is beyond the powers of the directors; but no such proceedings shall lie in respect of an act to be done in fulfilment of a legal obligation arising from a previous act of the company.

(5)Nor does that subsection affect any liability incurred by the directors, or any other person, by reason of the directors’ exceeding their powers.

(6)The operation of this section is restricted by section 30B(1) of the Charities Act 1960 and section 112(3) of the Companies Act 1989 in relation to companies which are charities; and section 322A below (invalidity of certain transactions to which directors or their associates are parties) has effect notwithstanding this section.

35B No duty to enquire as to capacity of company or authority of directors.

A party to a transaction with a company is not bound to enquire as to whether it is permitted by the company’s memorandum or as to any limitation on the powers of the board of directors to bind the company or authorise others to do so..

(2)In Schedule 21 to the M1Companies Act 1985 (effect of registration of companies not formed under that Act), in paragraph 6 (general application of provisions of Act), after sub-paragraph (5) insert—

(6)Where by virtue of sub-paragraph (4) or (5) a company does not have power to alter a provision, it does not have power to ratify acts of the directors in contravention of the provision..

(3)In Schedule 22 to the Companies Act 1985 (provisions applying to unregistered companies), in the entries relating to Part I, in the first column for “section 35” substitute “sections 35 to 35B”.

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Commencement Information

I1Ss. 108-112 and Schedule 19 para 11 were not in force at the 1.2.1991 (base date) but were brought into force on 4.2.1991 by S.I. 1990/2569.

Marginal Citations

109

(1)In Part X of the Companies Act 1985 (enforcement of fair dealing by directors), after section 322 insert—

322A Invalidity of certain transactions involving directors, etc.

(1)This section applies where a company enters into a transaction to which the parties include—

(a)a director of the company or of its holding company, or

(b)a person connected with such a director or a company with whom such a director is associated,

and the board of directors, in connection with the transaction, exceed any limitation on their powers under the company’s constitution.

(2)The transaction is voidable at the instance of the company.

(3)Whether or not it is avoided, any such party to the transaction as is mentioned in subsection (1)(a) or (b), and any director of the company who authorised the transaction, is liable—

(a)to account to the company for any gain which he has made directly or indirectly by the transaction, and

(b)to indemnify the company for any loss or damage resulting from the transaction.

(4)Nothing in the above provisions shall be construed as excluding the operation of any other enactment or rule of law by virtue of which the transaction may be called in question or any liability to the company may arise.

(5)The transaction ceases to be voidable if—

(a)restitution of any money or other asset which was the subject-matter of the transaction is no longer possible, or

(b)the company is indemnified for any loss or damage resulting from the transaction, or

(c)rights acquired bona fide for value and without actual notice of the directors’ exceeding their powers by a person who is not party to the transaction would be affected by the avoidance, or

(d)the transaction is ratified by the company in general meeting, by ordinary or special resolution or otherwise as the case may require.

(6)A person other than a director of the company is not liable under subsection (3) if he shows that at the time the transaction was entered into he did not know that the directors were exceeding their powers.

(7)This section does not affect the operation of section 35A in relation to any party to the transaction not within subsection (1)(a) or (b).

But where a transaction is voidable by virtue of this section and valid by virtue of that section in favour of such a person, the court may, on the application of that person or of the company, make such order affirming, severing or setting aside the transaction, on such terms, as appear to the court to be just.

(8)In this section “transaction” includes any act; and the reference in subsection (1) to limitations under the company’s constitution includes limitations deriving—

(a)from a resolution of the company in general meeting or a meeting of any class of shareholders, or

(b)from any agreement between the members of the company or of any class of shareholders..

(2)In Schedule 22 to the M2Companies Act 1985 (provisions applying to unregistered companies), in the entries relating to Part X, insert—

section 322AInvalidity of certain transactions involving directors, etc.Subject to section 718(3).
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Commencement Information

I2Ss 108-112 and Schedule 19 para 11 were not in force at the 1.2.1991 (base date) but were brought into force on 4.2.1991 by S.I. 1990/2569.

Marginal Citations

110 Statement of company’s objects.E+W+S+N.I.

In Chapter I of Part I of the M3Companies Act 1985 (company formation), after section 3 (forms of memorandum) insert—

3A Statement of company’s objects: general commercial company.

Where the company’s memorandum states that the object of the company is to carry on business as a general commercial company—

(a)the object of the company is to carry on any trade or business whatsoever, and

(b)the company has power to do all such things as are incidental or conducive to the carrying on of any trade or business by it..

(2)In the same Chapter, for section 4 (resolution to alter objects) substitute—

4 Resolution to alter objects.

(1)A company may by special resolution alter its memorandum with respect to the statement of the company’s objects.

(2)If an application is made under the following section, an alteration does not have effect except in so far as it is confirmed by the court..

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Commencement Information

I3Ss. 108-112 and Schedule 19 para 11 were not in force at the 1.2.1991 (base date) but were brought into force on 4.2.1991 by S.I. 1990/2569.

Marginal Citations

F1111. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .E+W+S

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Amendments (Textual)

F1S. 111 repealed (1.8.1993) by 1993 c. 10, ss. 98(2), 99(1), Sch. 7

112 Charitable companies (Scotland).E+W+S

(1)In the following provisions (which extend to Scotland only)—

(a)company” means a company formed and registered under the M4Companies Act 1985, or to which the provisions of that Act apply as they apply to such a company; and

(b)charity” means a body [F2entered in the Scottish Charity Register]F2.

(2)Where a charity is a company or other body corporate having power to alter the instruments establishing or regulating it as a body corporate, no exercise of that power which has the effect of the body ceasing to be a charity shall be valid so as to affect the application of—

(a)any property acquired by virtue of any transfer, contract or obligation previously effected otherwise than for full consideration in money or money’s worth, or any property representing property so acquired,

(b)any property representing income which has accrued before the alteration is made, or

(c)the income from any such property as aforesaid.

(3)Sections 35 and 35A of the Companies Act 1985 (capacity of company not limited by its memorandum; power of directors to bind company) do not apply to the acts of a company which is a charity except in favour of a person who—

(a)gives full consideration in money or money’s worth in relation to the act in question, and

(b)does not know that the act is not permitted by the company’s memorandum or, as the case may be, is beyond the powers of the directors,

or who does not know at the time the act is done that the company is a charity.

(4)However, where such a company purports to transfer or grant an interest in property, the fact that the act was not permitted by the company’s memorandum or, as the case may be, that the directors in connection with the act exceeded any limitation on their powers under the company’s constitution, does not affect the title of a person who subsequently acquires the property or any interest in it for full consideration without actual notice of any such circumstances affecting the validity of the company’s act.

(5)In any proceedings arising out of subsection (3) the burden of proving—

(a)that a person knew that an act was not permitted by the company’s memorandum or was beyond the powers of the directors, or

(b)that a person knew that the company was a charity,

lies on the person making that allegation.

(6)Where a company is a charity and its name does not include the word “charity” or the word “charitable”, the fact that the company is a charity shall be stated in English in legible characters—

(a)in all business letters of the company,

(b)in all its notices and other official publications,

(c)in all bills of exchange, promissory notes, endorsements, cheques and orders for money or goods purporting to be signed by or on behalf of the company,

(d)in all conveyances purporting to be executed by the company, and

(e)in all its bills of parcels, invoices, receipts and letters of credit.

(7)In subsection (6)(d) “conveyance” means any document for the creation, transfer, variation or extinction of an interest in land.

(8)Section 349(2) to (4) of the M5Companies Act 1985 (offences in connection with failure to include required particulars in business letters, &c.) apply in relation to a contravention of subsection (6) above.

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Amendments (Textual)

Commencement Information

I4Ss 108-112 and Schedule 19 para. 11 were not in force at the 1.2.1991 (base date) but were brought into force on 4.2.1991 by S.I. 1990/2569.

Marginal Citations

De-regulation of private companiesE+W+S+N.I.

113 Written resolutions of private companies.E+W+S+N.I.

F3. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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Amendments (Textual)

114 Written resolutions: supplementary provisions.E+W+S+N.I.

F4. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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Amendments (Textual)

F4S. 114 repealed (1.10.2007 for s. 114(1) and 6.4.2008 for s. 114(2)) by Companies Act 2006 (c. 46), ss. 1295, 1300(2), Sch. 16; S.I. 2007/2194. {art. 8}, Sch. 2 Pt. 1 (with art. 12, Sch. 3 (as amended by S.I. 2007/2607, arts. 1, 4 and S.I. 2007/3495, arts. 2(6), 11, Sch. 5 para. 2(3)-(7)) and subject to Sch. 1); S.I. 2007/3495, art. 8, Sch. 2 Pt. 1 (with arts. 7, 12)

115 Election by private company to dispense with certain requirements.E+W+S+N.I.

[F5(1)In Part IV of the Companies Act 1985 (allotment of shares and debentures), in section 80(1) (authority of company required for certain allotments) after “this section” insert “or section 80A”; and after that section insert—

80A Election by private company as to duration of authority.

(1)A private company may elect (by elective resolution in accordance with section 379A) that the provisions of this section shall apply, instead of the provisions of section 80(4) and (5), in relation to the giving or renewal, after the election, of an authority under that section.

(2)The authority must state the maximum amount of relevant securities that may be allotted under it and may be given—

(a)for an indefinite period, or

(b)for a fixed period, in which case it must state the date on which it will expire.

(3)In either case an authority (including an authority contained in the articles) may be revoked or varied by the company in general meeting.

(4)An authority given for a fixed period may be renewed or further renewed by the company in general meeting.

(5)A resolution renewing an authority—

(a)must state, or re-state, the amount of relevant securities which may be allotted under the authority or, as the case may be, the amount remaining to be allotted under it, and

(b)must state whether the authority is renewed for an indefinite period or for a fixed period, in which case it must state the date on which the renewed authority will expire.

(6)The references in this section to the maximum amount of relevant securities that may be allotted shall be construed in accordance with section 80(6).

(7)If an election under this section ceases to have effect, an authority then in force which was given for an indefinite period or for a fixed period of more than five years—

(a)if given five years or more before the election ceases to have effect, shall expire forthwith, and

(b)otherwise, shall have effect as if it had been given for a fixed period of five years..

(2)In Chapter IV of Part XI of the M6Companies Act 1985 (meetings and resolutions), after section 366 (annual general meeting) insert—

366A Election by private company to dispense with annual general meetings.

(1)A private company may elect (by elective resolution in accordance with section 379A) to dispense with the holding of annual general meetings.

(2)An election has effect for the year in which it is made and subsequent years, but does not affect any liability already incurred by reason of default in holding an annual general meeting.

(3)In any year in which an annual general meeting would be required to be held but for the election, and in which no such meeting has been held, any member of the company may, by notice to the company not later than three months before the end of the year, require the holding of an annual general meeting in that year.

(4)If such a notice is given, the provisions of section 366(1) and (4) apply with respect to the calling of the meeting and the consequences of default.

(5)If the election ceases to have effect, the company is not obliged under section 366 to hold an annual general meeting in that year if, when the election ceases to have effect, less than three months of the year remains.

This does not affect any obligation of the company to hold an annual general meeting in that year in pursuance of a notice given under subsection (3)..

(3)In the same Chapter, in sections 369(4) and 378(3) (majority required to sanction short notice of meeting) insert—

A private company may elect (by elective resolution in accordance with section 379A) that the above provisions shall have effect in relation to the company as if for the references to 95 per cent. there were substituted references to such lesser percentage, but not less than 90 per cent., as may be specified in the resolution or subsequently determined by the company in general meeting..F5]

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Amendments (Textual)

F5S. 115 repealed (1.10.2007 for s. 115(2)(3) and otherwise prosp.) by Companies Act 2006 (c. 46), ss. 1295, 1300(2), Sch. 16; S.I. 2007/2194. {art. 8}, Sch. 2 Pt. 1 (with art. 12, Sch. 3 (as amended by S.I. 2007/2607, arts. 1, 4 and S.I. 2007/3495, arts. 2(6), 11, Sch. 5 para. 2(3)-(7)) and subject to Sch. 1)

Marginal Citations

116 Elective resolution of private company.E+W+S+N.I.

(1)Chapter IV of Part XI of the Companies Act 1985 (meetings and resolutions) is amended as follows.

(2)After section 379 insert—

379A Elective resolution of private company.

(1)An election by a private company for the purposes of—

(a)section 80A (election as to duration of authority to allot shares),

(b)section 252 (election to dispense with laying of accounts and reports before general meeting),

(c)section 366A (election to dispense with holding of annual general meeting),

(d)section 369(4) or 378(3) (election as to majority required to authorise short notice of meeting), or

(e)section 386 (election to dispense with appointment of auditors annually),

shall be made by resolution of the company in general meeting in accordance with this section.

Such a resolution is referred to in this Act as an “elective resolution”.

(2)An elective resolution is not effective unless—

(a)at least 21 days’ notice in writing is given of the meeting, stating that an elective resolution is to be proposed and stating the terms of the resolution, and

(b)the resolution is agreed to at the meeting, in person or by proxy, by all the members entitled to attend and vote at the meeting.

(3)The company may revoke an elective resolution by passing an ordinary resolution to that effect.

(4)An elective resolution shall cease to have effect if the company is re-registered as a public company.

(5)An elective resolution may be passed or revoked in accordance with this section, and the provisions referred to in subsection (1) have effect, notwithstanding any contrary provision in the company’s articles of association..

(3)In section 380 (registration of resolutions), in subsection (4) (resolutions to which the section applies), after paragraph (b) insert—

(bb)an elective resolution or a resolution revoking such a resolution;.

117 Power to make further provision by regulations.E+W+S+N.I.

(1)The Secretary of State may by regulations make provision enabling private companies to elect, by elective resolution in accordance with section 379A of the M7Companies Act 1985, to dispense with compliance with such requirements of that Act as may be specified in the regulations, being requirements which appear to the Secretary of State to relate primarily to the internal administration and procedure of companies.

(2)The regulations may add to, amend or repeal provisions of that Act; and may provide for any such provision to have effect, where an election is made, subject to such adaptations and modifications as appear to the Secretary of State to be appropriate.

(3)The regulations may make different provision for different cases and may contain such supplementary, incidental and transitional provisions as appear to the Secretary of State to be appropriate.

(4)Regulations under this section shall be made by statutory instrument.

(5)No regulations under this section shall be made unless a draft of the instrument containing the regulations has been laid before Parliament and approved by a resolution of each House.

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Marginal Citations

Appointment and removal of auditors and related mattersE+W+S+N.I.

118 Introduction.E+W+S+N.I.

F6. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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Amendments (Textual)

119 Appointment of auditors.E+W+S+N.I.

F7. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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Amendments (Textual)

120 Rights of auditors.E+W+S+N.I.

F8. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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Amendments (Textual)

121 Remuneration of auditors.E+W+S+N.I.

F9. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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Amendments (Textual)

122 Removal, resignation, &c. of auditors.E+W+S+N.I.

F10. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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Amendments (Textual)

123 Statement by person ceasing to hold office as auditor.E+W+S+N.I.

[F11(1)The following section is inserted in Chapter V of Part XI of the Companies Act 1985 (auditors)—

394 Statement by person ceasing to hold office as auditor.

(1)Where an auditor ceases for any reason to hold office, he shall deposit at the company’s registered office a statement of any circumstances connected with his ceasing to hold office which he considers should be brought to the attention of the members or creditors of the company or, if he considers that there are no such circumstances, a statement that there are none.

(2)In the case of resignation, the statement shall be deposited along with the notice of resignation; in the case of failure to seek re-appointment, the statement shall be deposited not less than 14 days before the end of the time allowed for next appointing auditors; in any other case, the statement shall be deposited not later than the end of the period of 14 days beginning with the date on which he ceases to hold office.

(3)If the statement is of circumstances which the auditor considers should be brought to the attention of the members or creditors of the company, the company shall within 14 days of the deposit of the statement either—

(a)send a copy of it to every person who under section 238 is entitled to be sent copies of the accounts, or

(b)apply to the court.

(4)The company shall if it applies to the court notify the auditor of the application.

(5)Unless the auditor receives notice of such an application before the end of the period of 21 days beginning with the day on which he deposited the statement, he shall within a further seven days send a copy of the statement to the registrar.

(6)If the court is satisfied that the auditor is using the statement to secure needless publicity for defamatory matter—

(a)it shall direct that copies of the statement need not be sent out, and

(b)it may further order the company’s costs on the application to be paid in whole or in part by the auditor, notwithstanding that he is not a party to the application;

and the company shall within 14 days of the court’s decision send to the persons mentioned in subsection (3)(a) a statement setting out the effect of the order.

(7)If the court is not so satisfied, the company shall within 14 days of the court’s decision—

(a)send copies of the statement to the persons mentioned in subsection (3)(a), and

(b)notify the auditor of the court’s decision;

and the auditor shall within seven days of receiving such notice send a copy of the statement to the registrar.

394A Offences of failing to comply with s.394.

(1)If a person ceasing to hold office as auditor fails to comply with section 394 he is guilty of an offence and liable to a fine.

(2)In proceedings for an offence under subsection (1) it is a defence for the person charged to show that he took all reasonable steps and exercised all due diligence to avoid the commission of the offence.

(3)Sections 733 (liability of individuals for corporate default) and 734 (criminal proceedings against unincorporated bodies) apply to an offence under subsection (1).

(4)If a company makes default in complying with section 394, the company and every officer of it who is in default is guilty of an offence and liable to a fine and, for continued contravention, to a daily default fine..

(2)In Schedule 24 to the M8Companies Act 1985 (punishment of offences), at the appropriate place insert—

394A(1)Person ceasing to hold office as auditor failing to deposit statement as to circumstances.1. On indictment.A fine.
2. Summary.The statutory maximum.
394A(4)Company failing to comply with requirements as to statement of person ceasing to hold office as auditor.1. On indictment.A fine.
2. Summary.The statutory maximum.One-tenth of the statutory maximum..

(3)In section 733 of the Companies Act 1985 (liability of individuals for corporate default), in subsection (1) (offences in relation to which provisions apply) after “216(3)” insert “, 394A(1)”.

(4)In section 734 of the Companies Act 1985 (criminal proceedings against unincorporated bodies), in subsection (1) (offences in relation to which the provisions apply), after “under” insert “section 394A(1) or”.

(5)In Schedule 22 to the Companies Act 1985 (unregistered companies), in the entry for sections 384 to 393, for “393” substitute “394A”.F11]

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Amendments (Textual)

F11S. 123 repealed (6.4.2008 for s. 123(1)-(4) and otherwise prosp.) by Companies Act 2006 (c. 46), ss. 1295, 1300(2), Sch. 16; S.I. 2007/3495, art. 8, Sch. 2 Pt. 1 (with arts. 7, 12)

Marginal Citations

F12124. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .E+W+S

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Amendments (Textual)

Company records and related mattersE+W+S+N.I.

125 Delivery of documents to the registrar.E+W+S+N.I.

(1)For section 706 of the M9Companies Act 1985 (size, durability, &c. of documents delivered to the registrar) substitute—

706 Delivery to the registrar of documents in legible form.

(1)This section applies to the delivery to the registrar under any provision of the Companies Acts of documents in legible form.

(2)The document must—

(a)state in a prominent position the registered number of the company to which it relates,

(b)satisfy any requirements prescribed by regulations for the purposes of this section, and

(c)conform to such requirements as the registrar may specify for the purpose of enabling him to copy the document.

(3)If a document is delivered to the registrar which does not comply with the requirements of this section, he may serve on the person by whom the document was delivered (or, if there are two or more such persons, on any of them) a notice indicating the respect in which the document does not comply.

(4)Where the registrar serves such a notice, then, unless a replacement document—

(a)is delivered to him within 14 days after the service of the notice, and

(b)complies with the requirements of this section (or section 707) or is not rejected by him for failure to comply with those requirements,

the original document shall be deemed not to have been delivered to him.

But for the purposes of any enactment imposing a penalty for failure to deliver, so far as it imposes a penalty for continued contravention, no account shall be taken of the period between the delivery of the original document and the end of the period of 14 days after service of the registrar’s notice.

(5)Regulations made for the purposes of this section may make different provision with respect to different descriptions of document..

(2)For section 707 of the Companies Act 1985 (power of registrar to accept information on microfilm, &c.) substitute—

707 Delivery to the registrar of documents otherwise than in legible form.

(1)This section applies to the delivery to the registrar under any provision of the Companies Acts of documents otherwise than in legible form.

(2)Any requirement to deliver a document to the registrar, or to deliver a document in the prescribed form, is satisfied by the communication to the registrar of the requisite information in any non-legible form prescribed for the purposes of this section by regulations or approved by the registrar.

(3)Where the document is required to be signed or sealed, it shall instead be authenticated in such manner as may be prescribed by regulations or approved by the registrar.

(4)The document must—

(a)contain in a prominent position the registered number of the company to which it relates,

(b)satisfy any requirements prescribed by regulations for the purposes of this section, and

(c)be furnished in such manner, and conform to such requirements, as the registrar may specify for the purpose of enabling him to read and copy the document.

(5)If a document is delivered to the registrar which does not comply with the requirements of this section, he may serve on the person by whom the document was delivered (or, if there are two or more such persons, on any of them) a notice indicating the respect in which the document does not comply.

(6)Where the registrar serves such a notice, then, unless a replacement document—

(a)is delivered to him within 14 days after the service of the notice, and

(b)complies with the requirements of this section (or section 706) or is not rejected by him for failure to comply with those requirements,

the original document shall be deemed not to have been delivered to him.

But for the purposes of any enactment imposing a penalty for failure to deliver, so far as it imposes a penalty for continued contravention, no account shall be taken of the period between the delivery of the original document and the end of the period of 14 days after service of the registrar’s notice.

(7)The Secretary of State may by regulations make further provision with respect to the application of this section in relation to instantaneous forms of communication.

(8)Regulations made for the purposes of this section may make different provision with respect to different descriptions of document and different forms of communication, and as respects delivery to the registrar for England and Wales and delivery to the registrar for Scotland..

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Marginal Citations

126 Keeping and inspection of company records.E+W+S+N.I.

(1)In Part XXIV of the M10Companies Act 1985 (the registrar of companies, his functions and offices), after the sections inserted by section 125 above, insert—

707A The keeping of company records by the registrar.

(1)The information contained in a document delivered to the registrar under the Companies Acts may be recorded and kept by him in any form he thinks fit, provided it is possible to inspect the information and to produce a copy of it in legible form.

This is sufficient compliance with any duty of his to keep, file or register the document.

(2)The originals of documents delivered to the registrar in legible form shall be kept by him for ten years, after which they may be destroyed.

(3)Where a company has been dissolved, the registrar may, at any time after the expiration of two years from the date of the dissolution, direct that any records in his custody relating to the company may be removed to the Public Record Office; and records in respect of which such a direction is given shall be disposed of in accordance with the enactments relating to that Office and the rules made under them.

This subsection does not extend to Scotland.

(4)In subsection (3) “company” includes a company provisionally or completely registered under the Joint Stock Companies Act 1844..

(2)For sections 709 and 710 of the M11Companies Act 1985 (inspection of documents kept by the registrar) substitute—

709 Inspection, &c. of records kept by the registrar.

(1)Any person may inspect any records kept by the registrar for the purposes of the Companies Acts and may require—

(a)a copy, in such form as the registrar considers appropriate, of any information contained in those records, or

(b)a certified copy of, or extract from, any such record.

(2)The right of inspection extends to the originals of documents delivered to the registrar in legible form only where the record kept by the registrar of the contents of the document is illegible or unavailable.

(3)A copy of or extract from a record kept at any of the offices for the registration of companies in England and Wales or Scotland, certified in writing by the registrar (whose official position it is unnecessary to prove) to be an accurate record of the contents of any document delivered to him under the Companies Acts, is in all legal proceedings admissible in evidence as of equal validity with the original document and as evidence of any fact stated therein of which direct oral evidence would be admissible.

In England and Wales this is subject to compliance with any applicable rules of court under section 5 of the Civil Evidence Act 1968 or section 69(2) of the Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984 (which relate to evidence from computer records).

(4)Copies of or extracts from records furnished by the registrar may, instead of being certified by him in writing to be an accurate record, be sealed with his official seal.

(5)No process for compelling the production of a record kept by the registrar shall issue from any court except with the leave of the court; and any such process shall bear on it a statement that it is issued with the leave of the court.

710 Certificate of incorporation.

Any person may require a certificate of the incorporation of a company, signed by the registrar or authenticated by his official seal.

710A Provision and authentication by registrar of documents in non-legible form.

(1)Any requirement of the Companies Acts as to the supply by the registrar of a document may, if the registrar thinks fit, be satisfied by the communication by the registrar of the requisite information in any non-legible form prescribed for the purposes of this section by regulations or approved by him.

(2)Where the document is required to be signed by him or sealed with his official seal, it shall instead be authenticated in such manner as may be prescribed by regulations or approved by the registrar..

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Commencement Information

I5 S. 126 wholly in force at 1.7.1991, see s. 215(2) and S.I. 1991/488, art. 2(1) (with transitional provisions in art. 3)

Marginal Citations

127 Supplementary provisions as to company records and related matters.E+W+S+N.I.

(1)In Part XXIV of the M12Companies Act 1985 (the registrar of companies, his functions and offices), after section 715 insert—

715A Interpretation.

(1)In this Part—

  • document” includes information recorded in any form; and

  • “legible”, in the context of documents in legible or non-legible form, means capable of being read with the naked eye.

(2)References in this Part to delivering a document include sending, forwarding, producing or (in the case of a notice) giving it..

(2)In section 708(1) of the Companies Act 1985 (fees)—

(a)in paragraph (a) for the words from “any notice or other document” to the end substitute “any document which under those Acts is required to be delivered to him”, and

(b)F13. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

(3)F13. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

(4)In section 713(1) (enforcement of duty to make returns, &c.), for the words from “file with” to “or other document” substitute “deliver a document to the registrar of companies”.

(5)In section 735A(2) of the M13Companies Act 1985 (provisions applying to Insolvency Act 1986 M14 and Company Directors Disqualification Act 1986 as to the Companies Acts)—

(a)after “707(1),” insert “707A(1),”,

(b)after “708(1)(a) and (4),” insert “709(1) and (3),”, and

(c)for “710(5)” substitute “710A”.

(6)After section 735A of the M15Companies Act 1985 insert—

735B Relationship of this Act to Parts IV and V of the Financial Services Act 1986.

In sections 704(5), 706(1), 707(1), 707A(1), 708(1)(a) and (4), 709(1) and (3), 710A and 713(1) references to the Companies Acts include Parts IV and V of the Financial Services Act 1986..

(7)In Schedule 22 to the Companies Act 1985 (unregistered companies), in the entry for Part XXIV for “sections 706, 708 to 710, 712 and 713” substitute “sections 706 to 710A, 713 and 715A”.

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Amendments (Textual)

F13S. 127(2)(b)(3) repealed (22.7.2004) by Statute Law (Repeals) Act 2004 (c. 14), s. 1(1), {Sch. 1 Pt. 17 Group 5}

Commencement Information

I6S. 127 wholly in force at 1.7.1991. See s. 215(2) and S.I. 1991/488 art. 2(1).

Marginal Citations

MiscellaneousE+W+S+N.I.

Prospective

128 Form and articles for partnership company.E+W+S+N.I.

In Chapter I of Part I of the Companies Act 1985 (company formation), after section 8 (Tables A, C, D and E) insert—

8A Table G.

(1)The Secretary of State may by regulations prescribe a Table G containing articles of association appropriate for a partnership company, that is, a company limited by shares whose shares are intended to be held to a substantial extent by or on behalf of its employees.

(2)A company limited by shares may for its articles adopt the whole or any part of that Table.

(3)If in consequence of regulations under this section Table G is altered, the alteration does not affect a company registered before the alteration takes effect, or repeal as respects that company any portion of the Table.

(4)Regulations under this section shall be made by statutory instrument which shall be subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament..

128 Form and articles for partnership company.E+W+S+N.I.

[F22In Chapter I of Part I of the Companies Act 1985 (company formation), after section 8 (Tables A, C, D and E) insert—

8A Table G.

(1)The Secretary of State may by regulations prescribe a Table G containing articles of association appropriate for a partnership company, that is, a company limited by shares whose shares are intended to be held to a substantial extent by or on behalf of its employees.

(2)A company limited by shares may for its articles adopt the whole or any part of that Table.

(3)If in consequence of regulations under this section Table G is altered, the alteration does not affect a company registered before the alteration takes effect, or repeal as respects that company any portion of the Table.

(4)Regulations under this section shall be made by statutory instrument which shall be subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament..F22]

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Amendments (Textual)

129 Membership of holding company.E+W+S+N.I.

(1)In Chapter I of Part I of the Companies Act 1985 (company formation), for section 23 (membership of holding company) substitute—

23 Membership of holding company.

(1)Except as mentioned in this section, a body corporate cannot be a member of a company which is its holding company and any allotment or transfer of shares in a company to its subsidiary is void.

(2)The prohibition does not apply where the subsidiary is concerned only as personal representative or trustee unless, in the latter case, the holding company or a subsidiary of it is beneficially interested under the trust.

For the purpose of ascertaining whether the holding company or a subsidiary is so interested, there shall be disregarded—

(a)any interest held only by way of security for the purposes of a transaction entered into by the holding company or subsidiary in the ordinary course of a business which includes the lending of money;

(b)any such interest as is mentioned in Part I of Schedule 2.

(3)The prohibition does not apply where the subsidiary is concerned only as a market maker.

For this purpose a person is a market maker if—

(a)he holds himself out at all normal times in compliance with the rules of a recognised investment exchange other than an overseas investment exchange (within the meaning of the Financial Services Act 1986) as willing to buy and sell securities at prices specified by him, and

(b)he is recognised as so doing by that investment exchange.

(4)Where a body corporate became a holder of shares in a company—

(a)before 1st July 1948, or

(b)on or after that date and before the commencement of section 129 of the Companies Act 1989, in circumstances in which this section as it then had effect did not apply,

but at any time after the commencement of that section falls within the prohibition in subsection (1) above in respect of those shares, it may continue to be a member of that company; but for so long as that prohibition would apply, apart from this subsection, it has no right to vote in respect of those shares at meetings of the company or of any class of its members.

(5)Where a body corporate becomes a holder of shares in a company after the commencement of that section in circumstances in which the prohibition in subsection (1) does not apply, but subsequently falls within that prohibition in respect of those shares, it may continue to be a member of that company; but for so long as that prohibition would apply, apart from this subsection, it has no right to vote in respect of those shares at meetings of the company or of any class of its members.

(6)Where a body corporate is permitted to continue as a member of a company by virtue of subsection (4) or (5), an allotment to it of fully paid shares in the company may be validly made by way of capitalisation of reserves of the company; but for so long as the prohibition in subsection (1) would apply, apart from subsection (4) or (5), it has no right to vote in respect of those shares at meetings of the company or of any class of its members.

(7)The provisions of this section apply to a nominee acting on behalf of a subsidiary as to the subsidiary itself.

(8)In relation to a company other than a company limited by shares, the references in this section to shares shall be construed as references to the interest of its members as such, whatever the form of that interest..

(2)In Schedule 2 to the M16Companies Act 1985 (interpretation of references to “beneficial interest”), in paragraphs 1(1), 3(1) and 4(2) for “as respects section 23(4)” substitute “as this paragraph applies for the purposes of section 23(2)”

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Marginal Citations

130 Company contracts and execution of documents by companies.E+W+S+N.I.

(1)In Chapter III of Part I of the Companies Act 1985 (a company’s capacity; the formalities of carrying on business), for section 36 (form of company contracts) substitute—

36 Company contracts: England and Wales.

Under the law of England and Wales a contract may be made—

(a)by a company, by writing under its common seal, or

(b)on behalf of a company, by any person acting under its authority, express or implied;

and any formalities required by law in the case of a contract made by an individual also apply, unless a contrary intention appears, to a contract made by or on behalf of a company..

(2)After that section insert—

36A Execution of documents: England and Wales.

(1)Under the law of England and Wales the following provisions have effect with respect to the execution of documents by a company.

(2)A document is executed by a company by the affixing of its common seal.

(3)A company need not have a common seal, however, and the following subsections apply whether it does or not.

(4)A document signed by a director and the secretary of a company, or by two directors of a company, and expressed (in whatever form of words) to be executed by the company has the same effect as if executed under the common seal of the company.

(5)A document executed by a company which makes it clear on its face that it is intended by the person or persons making it to be a deed has effect, upon delivery, as a deed; and it shall be presumed, unless a contrary intention is proved, to be delivered upon its being so executed.

(6)In favour of a purchaser a document shall be deemed to have been duly executed by a company if it purports to be signed by a director and the secretary of the company, or by two directors of the company, and, where it makes it clear on its face that it is intended by the person or persons making it to be a deed, to have been delivered upon its being executed.

A “purchaser” means a purchaser in good faith for valuable consideration and includes a lessee, mortgagee or other person who for valuable consideration acquires an interest in property..

(3). . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . F14

(4)After the section inserted by subsection (3) insert—

36C Pre-incorporation contracts, deeds and obligations.

(1)A contract which purports to be made by or on behalf of a company at a time when the company has not been formed has effect, subject to any agreement to the contrary, as one made with the person purporting to act for the company or as agent for it, and he is personally liable on the contract accordingly.

(2)Subsection (1) applies—

(a)to the making of a deed under the law of England and Wales, and

(b)to the undertaking of an obligation under the law of Scotland,

as it applies to the making of a contract..

(5)In Schedule 22 of the M17Companies Act 1985 (provisions applying to unregistered companies), at the appropriate place insert—

Section 36Company contracts.Subject to section 718(3).
Sections 36A and 36BExecution of documents.Subject to section 718(3).
Section 36CPre-incorporation contracts, deeds and obligations.Subject to section 718(3)..

(6)The Secretary of State may make provision by regulations applying sections 36 to 36C of the Companies Act 1985 (company contracts; execution of documents; [F15execution of deeds;]F15 pre-incorporation contracts, deeds and obligations) to companies incorporated outside Great Britain, subject to such exceptions, adaptations or modifications as may be specified in the regulations.

Regulations under this subsection shall be made by statutory instrument which shall be subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament.

(7)Schedule 17 contains further minor and consequential amendments relating to company contracts, the execution of documents by companies and related matters.

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Amendments (Textual)

Marginal Citations

131 Members’ rights to damages, &c.E+W+S+N.I.

(1)In Part IV of the Companies Act 1985 (allotment of shares and debentures), before section 112 and after the heading “Other matters arising out of allotment &c.”,insert—

111A Right to damages, &c. not affected.

A person is not debarred from obtaining damages or other compensation from a company by reason only of his holding or having held shares in the company or any right to apply or subscribe for shares or to be included in the company’s register in respect of shares..

(2)In section 116 of the Companies Act 1985 (extended operation of certain provisions applying to public companies) for “and 110 to 115” substitute “, 110, 111 and 112 to 115”.

132 Financial assistance for purposes of employees’ share scheme.E+W+S+N.I.

In Chapter VI of Part V of the Companies Act 1985 (financial assistance by company for purchase of its own shares), in section 153 (transactions not prohibited), for subsection (4)(b) (provision of money in accordance with employees’ share scheme) substitute—

(b)the provision by a company, in good faith in the interests of the company, of financial assistance for the purposes of an employees’ share scheme,.

Prospective

133 Issue of redeemable shares.E+W+S+N.I.

(1)In Part V of the M18Companies Act 1985 (share capital, its increase, maintenance and reduction), Chapter III (redeemable shares, purchase by a company of its own shares) is amended as follows.

(2)After section 159 (power to issue redeemable shares) insert—

159A Terms and manner of redemption.

(1)Redeemable shares may not be issued unless the following conditions are satisfied as regards the terms and manner of redemption.

(2)The date on or by which, or dates between which, the shares are to be or may be redeemed must be specified in the company’s articles or, if the articles so provide, fixed by the directors, and in the latter case the date or dates must be fixed before the shares are issued.

(3)Any other circumstances in which the shares are to be or may be redeemed must be specified in the company’s articles.

(4)The amount payable on redemption must be specified in, or determined in accordance with, the company’s articles, and in the latter case the articles must not provide for the amount to be determined by reference to any person’s discretion or opinion.

(5)Any other terms and conditions of redemption shall be specified in the company’s articles.

(6)Nothing in this section shall be construed as requiring a company to provide in its articles for any matter for which provision is made by this Act..

(3)In section 160 (financing, &c. of redemption)—

(a)omit subsection (3) (which is superseded by the new section 159A), and

(b)in subsection (4) (cancellation of shares on redemption) for “redeemed under this section” substitute “redeemed under this Chapter”.

(4)F16. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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Amendments (Textual)

F16S. 133(4) repealed (1.12.2003) by The Companies (Acquisition of Own Shares)(Treasury Shares) Regulations 2003 (S.I. 2003/1116), reg. 4, {Sch. para. 34}

Marginal Citations

133 Issue of redeemable shares.E+W+S+N.I.

[F23(1)In Part V of the M18Companies Act 1985 (share capital, its increase, maintenance and reduction), Chapter III (redeemable shares, purchase by a company of its own shares) is amended as follows.

(2)After section 159 (power to issue redeemable shares) insert—

159A Terms and manner of redemption.

(1)Redeemable shares may not be issued unless the following conditions are satisfied as regards the terms and manner of redemption.

(2)The date on or by which, or dates between which, the shares are to be or may be redeemed must be specified in the company’s articles or, if the articles so provide, fixed by the directors, and in the latter case the date or dates must be fixed before the shares are issued.

(3)Any other circumstances in which the shares are to be or may be redeemed must be specified in the company’s articles.

(4)The amount payable on redemption must be specified in, or determined in accordance with, the company’s articles, and in the latter case the articles must not provide for the amount to be determined by reference to any person’s discretion or opinion.

(5)Any other terms and conditions of redemption shall be specified in the company’s articles.

(6)Nothing in this section shall be construed as requiring a company to provide in its articles for any matter for which provision is made by this Act..

(3)In section 160 (financing, &c. of redemption)—

(a)omit subsection (3) (which is superseded by the new section 159A), and

(b)in subsection (4) (cancellation of shares on redemption) for “redeemed under this section” substitute “ redeemed under this Chapter ”.

(4)F16. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .F23]

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Amendments (Textual)

F16S. 133(4) repealed (1.12.2003) by The Companies (Acquisition of Own Shares)(Treasury Shares) Regulations 2003 (S.I. 2003/1116), reg. 4, {Sch. para. 34}

Marginal Citations

134 Disclosure of interests in shares.E+W+S+N.I.

F17. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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Amendments (Textual)

135 Orders imposing restrictions on shares.E+W+S+N.I.

(1)The Secretary of State may by regulations made by statutory instrument make such amendments of the provisions of the M19Companies Act 1985 relating to orders imposing restrictions on shares as appear to him necessary or expedient—

(a)for enabling orders to be made in a form protecting the rights of third parties;

(b)with respect to the circumstances in which restrictions may be relaxed or removed;

(c)with respect to the making of interim orders by a court.

(2)The provisions referred to in subsection (1) are section 210(5), section 216(1) and (2), section 445 and Part XV of the Companies Act 1985.

(3)The regulations may make different provision for different cases and may contain such transitional and other supplementary and incidental provisions as appear to the Secretary of State to be appropriate.

(4)Regulations under this section shall not be made unless a draft of the regulations has been laid before Parliament and approved by resolution of each House of Parliament.

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Marginal Citations

136 A company’s registered office.E+W+S+N.I.

For section 287 of the Companies Act 1985 (registered office) substitute—

287 Registered office.

(1)A company shall at all times have a registered office to which all communications and notices may be addressed.

(2)On incorporation the situation of the company’s registered office is that specified in the statement sent to the registrar under section 10.

(3)The company may change the situation of its registered office from time to time by giving notice in the prescribed form to the registrar.

(4)The change takes effect upon the notice being registered by the registrar, but until the end of the period of 14 days beginning with the date on which it is registered a person may validly serve any document on the company at its previous registered office.

(5)For the purposes of any duty of a company—

(a)to keep at its registered office, or make available for public inspection there, any register, index or other document, or

(b)to mention the address of its registered office in any document,

a company which has given notice to the registrar of a change in the situation of its registered office may act on the change as from such date, not more than 14 days after the notice is given, as it may determine.

(6)Where a company unavoidably ceases to perform at its registered office any such duty as is mentioned in subsection (5)(a) in circumstances in which it was not practicable to give prior notice to the registrar of a change in the situation of its registered office, but—

(a)resumes performance of that duty at other premises as soon as practicable, and

(b)gives notice accordingly to the registrar of a change in the situation of its registered office within 14 days of doing so,

it shall not be treated as having failed to comply with that duty.

(7)In proceedings for an offence of failing to comply with any such duty as is mentioned in subsection (5), it is for the person charged to show that by reason of the matters referred to in that subsection or subsection (6) no offence was committed..

137 Effecting of insurance for officers and auditors of company.E+W+S+N.I.

F18. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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Amendments (Textual)

138 Increase of limits on certain exemptions.E+W+S+N.I.

F19. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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Amendments (Textual)

F19S. 138 repealed (1.10.2007) by Companies Act 2006 (c. 46), ss. 1295, 1300(2), Sch. 16; S.I. 2007/2194. {art. 8}, Sch. 2 Pt. 1 (with art. 12, Sch. 3 (as amended by S.I. 2007/2607, arts. 1, 4 and S.I. 2007/3495, arts. 2(6), 11, Sch. 5 para. 2(3)-(7)) and subject to Sch. 1)

139 Annual returns.E+W+S+N.I.

(1)In Part XI of the Companies Act 1985 (company administration and procedure), for Chapter III (annual return) substitute—

Chapter IIIE+W+S+N.I. Annual Return
363 Duty to deliver annual returns.

(1)Every company shall deliver to the registrar successive annual returns each of which is made up to a date not later than the date which is from time to time the company’s “return date”, that is—

(a)the anniversary of the company’s incorporation, or

(b)if the company’s last return delivered in accordance with this Chapter was made up to a different date, the anniversary of that date.

(2)Each return shall—

(a)be in the prescribed form,

(b)contain the information required by or under the following provisions of this Chapter, and

(c)be signed by a director or the secretary of the company;

and it shall be delivered to the registrar within 28 days after the date to which it is made up.

(3)If a company fails to deliver an annual return in accordance with this Chapter before the end of the period of 28 days after a return date, the company is guilty of an offence and liable to a fine and, in the case of continued contravention, to a daily default fine.

The contravention continues until such time as an annual return made up to that return date and complying with the requirements of subsection (2) (except as to date of delivery) is delivered by the company to the registrar.

(4)Where a company is guilty of an offence under subsection (3), every director or secretary of the company is similarly liable unless he shows that he took all reasonable steps to avoid the commission or continuation of the offence.

(5)The references in this section to a return being delivered “in accordance with this Chapter” are—

(a)in relation to a return made after the commencement of section 139 of the Companies Act 1989, to a return with respect to which all the requirements of subsection (2) are complied with;

(b)in relation to a return made before that commencement, to a return with respect to which the formal and substantive requirements of this Chapter as it then had effect were complied with, whether or not the return was delivered in time.

364 Contents of annual return: general.

(1)Every annual return shall state the date to which it is made up and shall contain the following information—

(a)the address of the company’s registered office;

(b)the type of company it is and its principal business activities;

(c)the name and address of the company secretary;

(d)the name and address of every director of the company;

(e)in the case of each individual director—

(i)his nationality, date of birth and business occupation, and

(ii)such particulars of other directorships and former names as are required to be contained in the company’s register of directors;

(f)in the case of any corporate director, such particulars of other directorships as would be required to be contained in that register in the case of an individual;

(g)if the register of members is not kept at the company’s registered office, the address of the place where it is kept;

(h)if any register of debenture holders (or a duplicate of any such register or a part of it) is not kept at the company’s registered office, the address of the place where it is kept;

(i)if the company has elected—

(i)to dispense under section 252 with the laying of accounts and reports before the company in general meeting, or

(ii)to dispense under section 366A with the holding of annual general meetings,

a statement to that effect.

(2)The information as to the company’s type shall be given by reference to the classification scheme prescribed for the purposes of this section.

(3)The information as to the company’s principal business activities may be given by reference to one or more categories of any prescribed system of classifying business activities.

(4)A person’s “name” and “address” mean, respectively—

(a)in the case of an individual, his Christian name (or other forename) and surname and his usual residential address;

(b)in the case of a corporation or Scottish firm, its corporate or firm name and its registered or principal office.

(5)In the case of a peer, or an individual usually known by a title, the title may be stated instead of his Christian name (or other forename) and surname or in addition to either or both of them.

(6)Where all the partners in a firm are joint secretaries, the name and principal office of the firm may be stated instead of the names and addresses of the partners.

364A Contents of annual return: particulars of share capital and shareholders.

(1)The annual return of a company having a share capital shall contain the following information with respect to its share capital and members.

(2)The return shall state the total number of issued shares of the company at the date to which the return is made up and the aggregate nominal value of those shares.

(3)The return shall state with respect to each class of shares in the company—

(a)the nature of the class, and

(b)the total number and aggregate nominal value of issued shares of that class at the date to which the return is made up.

(4)The return shall contain a list of the names and addresses of every person who—

(a)is a member of the company on the date to which the return is made up, or

(b)has ceased to be a member of the company since the date to which the last return was made up (or, in the case of the first return, since the incorporation of the company);

and if the names are not arranged in alphabetical order the return shall have annexed to it an index sufficient to enable the name of any person in the list to be easily found.

(5)The return shall also state—

(a)the number of shares of each class held by each member of the company at the date to which the return is made up, and

(b)the number of shares of each class transferred since the date to which the last return was made up (or, in the case of the first return, since the incorporation of the company) by each member or person who has ceased to be a member, and the dates of registration of the transfers.

(6)The return may, if either of the two immediately preceding returns has given the full particulars required by subsections (4) and (5), give only such particulars as relate to persons ceasing to be or becoming members since the date of the last return and to shares transferred since that date.

(7)Subsections (4) and (5) do not require the inclusion of particulars entered in an overseas branch register if copies of those entries have not been received at the company’s registered office by the date to which the return is made up.

Those particulars shall be included in the company’s next annual return after they are received.

(8)Where the company has converted any of its shares into stock, the return shall give the corresponding information in relation to that stock, stating the amount of stock instead of the number or nominal value of shares.

365 Supplementary provisions: regulations and interpretation.

(1)The Secretary of State may by regulations make further provision as to the information to be given in a company’s annual return, which may amend or repeal the provisions of sections 364 and 364A.

(2)Regulations under this section shall be made by statutory instrument which shall be subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament.

(3)For the purposes of this Chapter, except section 363(2)(c) (signature of annual return), a shadow director shall be deemed to be a director..

(2)Where a company was, immediately before the commencement of this section, in default with respect to the delivery of one or more annual returns, this section does not affect its obligation to make such a return (in accordance with Chapter III of Part XI of the M20Companies Act 1985 as it then had effect) or any liability arising from failure to do so.

(3)In Schedule 24 to the Companies Act 1985 (punishment of offences) in the entry relating to section 363(7), in the first column for “363(7)” substitute “363(3)”.

(4)In Schedule 1 to the M21Company Directors Disqualification Act 1986 (matters relevant to determining unfitness of directors), in paragraph 4 (failure of company to comply with certain provisions), for sub-paragraphs (f) and (g) substitute—

(f)section 363 (duty of company to make annual returns);.

(5)F20. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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Amendments (Textual)

F20S. 139(5) repealed (22.7.2004 with effect in accordance with s. 77 of the amending Act) by Finance Act 2004 (c. 12), s. 326, Sch. 42 Pt. 2(7)

Marginal Citations

140 Floating charges (Scotland).E+W+S

(1)In section 463 of the Companies Act 1985 (effect of floating charge on winding up), in subsection (1) for the words “On the commencement of the winding up of a company,” there shall be substituted the words “ Where a company goes into liquidation within the meaning of section 247(2) of the Insolvency Act 1986, ”.

(2)Section 464 of the Companies Act 1985 (ranking of floating charges) is amended as follows.

(3)In subsection (1)(b) at the beginning there shall be inserted the words “ with the consent of the holder of any subsisting floating charge or fixed security which would be adversely affected, ”.

(4)After subsection (1) there shall be inserted the following subsection—

(1A)Where an instrument creating a floating charge contains any such provision as is mentioned in subsection (1)(a), that provision shall be effective to confer priority on the floating charge over any fixed security or floating charge created after the date of the instrument..

(5)For subsection (3) there shall be substituted—

(3)The order of ranking of the floating charge with any other subsisting or future floating charges or fixed securities over all or any part of the company’s property is determined in accordance with the provisions of subsections (4) and (5) except where it is determined in accordance with any provision such as is mentioned in paragraph (a) or (b) of subsection (1)..

(6)In subsection (5) at the end there shall be added the following paragraph—

; and

(e)(in the case of a floating charge to secure a contingent liability other than a liability arising under any further advances made from time to time) the maximum sum to which that contingent liability is capable of amounting whether or not it is contractually limited..

(7)In subsection (6) after the words “subject to” there shall be inserted the words “ Part XII and to ”.

(8)In section 466 of the Companies Act 1985 (alteration of floating charges), subsections (4) and (5) and in subsection (6) the words “falling under subsection (4) of this section” shall cease to have effect.

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Modifications etc. (not altering text)

C1S. 140(1) restricted (20.5.1995) by S.I. 1995/1352, art.4

S. 140(3) restricted (20.5.1995) by S.I. 1995/1352, art.5

S. 140(6) restricted (20.5.1995) by S.I. 1995/1352, art.8

Commencement Information

I7S. 140 partly in force; s. 140 not in force at Royal Assent see s. 215(1)(2); s. 140(1)-(6) in force at 3.7.1995 by S.I. 1995/1352, art. 3(a)

141 Application to declare dissolution of company void.E+W+S+N.I.

(1)Section 651 of the M22Companies Act 1985 (power of court to declare dissolution of company void) is amended as follows.

(2)In subsection (1) omit the words “at any time within 2 years of the date of the dissolution”.

(3)After subsection (3) add—

(4)Subject to the following provisions, an application under this section may not be made after the end of the period of two years from the date of the dissolution of the company.

(5)An application for the purpose of bringing proceedings against the company—

(a)for damages in respect of personal injuries (including any sum claimed by virtue of section 1(2)(c) of the Law Reform (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1934 (funeral expenses)), or

(b)for damages under the Fatal Accidents Act 1976 or the Damages (Scotland) Act 1976,

may be made at any time; but no order shall be made on such an application if it appears to the court that the proceedings would fail by virtue of any enactment as to the time within which proceedings must be brought.

(6)Nothing in subsection (5) affects the power of the court on making an order under this section to direct that the period between the dissolution of the company and the making of the order shall not count for the purposes of any such enactment.

(7)In subsection (5)(a) “personal injuries” includes any disease and any impairment of a person’s physical or mental condition..

(4)An application may be made under section 651(5) of the Companies Act 1985 as inserted by subsection (3) above (proceedings for damages for personal injury, &c.) in relation to a company dissolved before the commencement of this section notwithstanding that the time within which the dissolution might formerly have been declared void under that section had expired before commencement.

But no such application shall be made in relation to a company dissolved more than twenty years before the commencement of this section.

(5)Except as provided by subsection (4), the amendments made by this section do not apply in relation to a company which was dissolved more than two years before the commencement of this section.

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Marginal Citations

Prospective

142 Abolition of doctrine of deemed notice.E+W+S+N.I.

(1)In Part XXIV of the Companies Act 1985 (the registrar of companies, his functions and offices), after section 711 insert—

711A Exclusion of deemed notice.

(1)A person shall not be taken to have notice of any matter merely because of its being disclosed in any document kept by the registrar of companies (and thus available for inspection) or made available by the company for inspection.

(2)This does not affect the question whether a person is affected by notice of any matter by reason of a failure to make such inquiries as ought reasonably to be made.

(3)In this section “document” includes any material which contains information.

(4)Nothing in this section affects the operation of—

(a)section 416 of this Act (under which a person taking a charge over a company’s property is deemed to have notice of matters disclosed on the companies charges register), or

(b)section 198 of the Law of Property Act 1925 as it applies by virtue of section 3(7) of the Land Charges Act 1972 (under which the registration of certain land charges under Part XII, or Chapter III of Part XXIII, of this Act is deemed to constitute actual notice for all purposes connected with the land affected)..

(2)In Schedule 22 to the M23Companies Act 1985 (unregistered companies), in the entry for Part XXIV at the appropriate place insert—

Section 711AAbolition of doctrine of deemed notice.Subject to section 718(3)..
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Marginal Citations

142 Abolition of doctrine of deemed notice.E+W+S+N.I.

[F24(1)In Part XXIV of the Companies Act 1985 (the registrar of companies, his functions and offices), after section 711 insert—

711A Exclusion of deemed notice.

(1)A person shall not be taken to have notice of any matter merely because of its being disclosed in any document kept by the registrar of companies (and thus available for inspection) or made available by the company for inspection.

(2)This does not affect the question whether a person is affected by notice of any matter by reason of a failure to make such inquiries as ought reasonably to be made.

(3)In this section “document” includes any material which contains information.

(4)Nothing in this section affects the operation of—

(a)section 416 of this Act (under which a person taking a charge over a company’s property is deemed to have notice of matters disclosed on the companies charges register), or

(b)section 198 of the Law of Property Act 1925 as it applies by virtue of section 3(7) of the Land Charges Act 1972 (under which the registration of certain land charges under Part XII, or Chapter III of Part XXIII, of this Act is deemed to constitute actual notice for all purposes connected with the land affected)..

(2)In Schedule 22 to the M23Companies Act 1985 (unregistered companies), in the entry for Part XXIV at the appropriate place insert—

Section 711AAbolition of doctrine of deemed notice.Subject to section 718(3)..F24]
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Amendments (Textual)

Marginal Citations

143 Rights of inspection and related matters.E+W+S+N.I.

[F21(1)In Part XXV of the Companies Act 1985 (miscellaneous and supplementary provisions), after section 723 insert—

723A Obligations of company as to inspection of registers, &c.

(1)The Secretary of State may make provision by regulations as to the obligations of a company which is required by any provision of this Act—

(a)to make available for inspection any register, index or document, or

(b)to provide copies of any such register, index or document, or part of it;

and a company which fails to comply with the regulations shall be deemed to have refused inspection or, as the case may be, to have failed to provide a copy.

(2)The regulations may make provision as to the time, duration and manner of inspection, including the circumstances in which and extent to which the copying of information is permitted in the course of inspection.

(3)The regulations may define what may be required of the company as regards the nature, extent and manner of extracting or presenting any information for the purposes of inspection or the provision of copies.

(4)Where there is power to charge a fee, the regulations may make provision as to the amount of the fee and the basis of its calculation.

(5)Regulations under this section may make different provision for different classes of case.

(6)Nothing in any provision of this Act or in the regulations shall be construed as preventing a company from affording more extensive facilities than are required by the regulations or, where a fee may be charged, from charging a lesser fee than that prescribed or no fee at all.

(7)Regulations under this section shall be made by statutory instrument which shall be subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament..

(2)In section 169(5) of the M24Companies Act 1985 (contract for purchase by company of its own shares), omit the words from “, during business hours” to “for inspection)”.

(3)In section 175(6) of the Companies Act 1985 (statutory declaration and auditors’ report relating to payment out of capital), in paragraph (b) omit the words from “during business hours” to “period”.

(4)In section 191 of the Companies Act 1985 (register of debenture holders)—

(a)in subsection (1), omit the words from “(but” to “for inspection)” and for the words from “a fee of 5 pence” to the end substitute “such fee as may be prescribed”;

(b)in subsection (2) for the words from “10 pence” to the end substitute “such fee as may be prescribed”; and

(c)in subsection (3), after “on payment” insert “of such fee as may be prescribed” and omit paragraphs (a) and (b).

(5)In section 219 of the Companies Act 1985 (register of interests in shares, &c.)—

(a)in subsection (1), omit the words from “during” to “for inspection)”; and

(b)in subsection (2) for the words from “10 pence” to “required to be copied” substitute “such fee as may be prescribed”.

(6)In section 288 of the Companies Act 1985 (register of directors and secretaries), in subsection (3), omit the words from “during” to “for inspection)” and for the words from “5 pence” to the end substitute “such fee as may be prescribed”.

(7)In section 318 of the Companies Act 1985 (directors’ service contracts), in subsection (7) omit the words from “, during business hours” to “for inspection)”.

(8)In section 356 of the Companies Act 1985 (register and index of members’ names)—

(a)in subsection (1), omit “during business hours” and for “the appropriate charge” substitute “such fee as may be prescribed”;

(b)omit subsection (2);

(c)in subsection (3) for “the appropriate charge” substitute “such fee as may be prescribed”; and

(d)omit subsection (4).

(9)In section 383 of the Companies Act 1985 (minutes of proceedings of general meetings)—

(a)in subsection (1), omit “during business hours”;

(b)omit subsection (2); and

(c)in subsection (3), after “entitled” insert “on payment of such fee as may be prescribed” and omit the words from “at a charge” to the end.

(10)In Part IV of Schedule 13 to the M25Companies Act 1985 (register of directors’ interests)—

(a)in paragraph 25, omit the words from “during” to “for inspection)” and for the words from “5 pence” to the end substitute “such fee as may be prescribed”; and

(b)in paragraph 26(1), for the words from “10 pence” to the end substitute “such fee as may be prescribed”.

(11)In Schedule 22 to the Companies Act 1985 (provisions applying to unregistered companies), in the entry relating to Part XXV at the appropriate place insert—

Section 723ARights of inspection and related matters.To apply only so far as this provision has effect in relation to provisions applying by virtue of the foregoing provisions of this Schedule..F21]
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Amendments (Textual)

F21S. 143 repealed (20.1.2007 for s. 143(5), 6.4.2007 for s. 143(10), 1.10.2007 for s. 143(8)(9), 6.4.2008 for s. 143(4) and otherwise prosp.) by Companies Act 2006 (c. 46), ss. 1295, 1300(2), Sch. 16; S.I. 2006/3428, art. 7, Sch. 3 Pt. 1, Sch. 4 Pt. 1; S.I. 2007/2194. {art. 8}, Sch. 2 Pt. 1 (with art. 12, Sch. 3 (as amended by S.I. 2007/2607, arts. 1, 4 and S.I. 2007/3495, arts. 2(6), 11, Sch. 5 para. 2(3)-(7)) and subject to Sch. 1); S.I. 2007/3495, art. 8, Sch. 2 Pt. 1 (with arts. 7, 12)

Commencement Information

I8S. 143 wholly in force at 1.11.1991 see s. 215 and S.I. 1991/1996, art. 2(2)(b)

Marginal Citations

144“Subsidiary”, “holding company” and “wholly-owned subsidiary”.E+W+S+N.I.

(1)In Part XXVI of the Companies Act 1985 (general interpretation provisions), for section 736 substitute—

736“Subsidiary”, “holding company” and “wholly-owned subsidiary”.

(1)A company is a “subsidiary” of another company, its “holding company”, if that other company—

(a)holds a majority of the voting rights in it, or

(b)is a member of it and has the right to appoint or remove a majority of its board of directors, or

(c)is a member of it and controls alone, pursuant to an agreement with other shareholders or members, a majority of the voting rights in it,

or if it is a subsidiary of a company which is itself a subsidiary of that other company.

(2)A company is a “wholly-owned subsidiary” of another company if it has no members except that other and that other’s wholly-owned subsidiaries or persons acting on behalf of that other or its wholly-owned subsidiaries.

(3)In this section “company” includes any body corporate.

736A Provisions supplementing s. 736.

(1)The provisions of this section explain expressions used in section 736 and otherwise supplement that section.

(2)In section 736(1)(a) and (c) the references to the voting rights in a company are to the rights conferred on shareholders in respect of their shares or, in the case of a company not having a share capital, on members, to vote at general meetings of the company on all, or substantially all, matters.

(3)In section 736(1)(b) the reference to the right to appoint or remove a majority of the board of directors is to the right to appoint or remove directors holding a majority of the voting rights at meetings of the board on all, or substantially all, matters; and for the purposes of that provision—

(a)a company shall be treated as having the right to appoint to a directorship if—

(i)a person’s appointment to it follows necessarily from his appointment as director of the company, or

(ii)the directorship is held by the company itself; and

(b)a right to appoint or remove which is exercisable only with the consent or concurrence of another person shall be left out of account unless no other person has a right to appoint or, as the case may be, remove in relation to that directorship.

(4)Rights which are exercisable only in certain circumstances shall be taken into account only—

(a)when the circumstances have arisen, and for so long as they continue to obtain, or

(b)when the circumstances are within the control of the person having the rights;

and rights which are normally exercisable but are temporarily incapable of exercise shall continue to be taken into account.

(5)Rights held by a person in a fiduciary capacity shall be treated as not held by him.

(6)Rights held by a person as nominee for another shall be treated as held by the other; and rights shall be regarded as held as nominee for another if they are exercisable only on his instructions or with his consent or concurrence.

(7)Rights attached to shares held by way of security shall be treated as held by the person providing the security—

(a)where apart from the right to exercise them for the purpose of preserving the value of the security, or of realising it, the rights are exercisable only in accordance with his instructions;

(b)where the shares are held in connection with the granting of loans as part of normal business activities and apart from the right to exercise them for the purpose of preserving the value of the security, or of realising it, the rights are exercisable only in his interests.

(8)Rights shall be treated as held by a company if they are held by any of its subsidiaries; and nothing in subsection (6) or (7) shall be construed as requiring rights held by a company to be treated as held by any of its subsidiaries.

(9)For the purposes of subsection (7) rights shall be treated as being exercisable in accordance with the instructions or in the interests of a company if they are exercisable in accordance with the instructions of or, as the case may be, in the interests of—

(a)any subsidiary or holding company of that company, or

(b)any subsidiary of a holding company of that company.

(10)The voting rights in a company shall be reduced by any rights held by the company itself.

(11)References in any provision of subsections (5) to (10) to rights held by a person include rights falling to be treated as held by him by virtue of any other provision of those subsections but not rights which by virtue of any such provision are to be treated as not held by him.

(12)In this section “company” includes any body corporate..

(2)Any reference in any enactment (including any enactment contained in subordinate legislation within the meaning of the Interpretation Act M261978) to a “subsididary” or “holding company” within the meaning of section 736 of the Companies Act M271985 shall, subject to any express amendment or saving made by or under this Act, be read as referring to a subsidiary or holding company as defined in section 736 as substituted by subsection (1) above.

This applies whether the reference is specific or general, or express or implied.

(3)In Part XXVI of the Companies Act 1985 (general interpretation provisions), after section 736A insert—

736B Power to amend ss. 736 and 736A.

(1)The Secretary of State may by regulations amend sections 736 and 736A so as to alter the meaning of the expressions “holding company”, “subsidiary” or “wholly-owned subsidiary”.

(2)The regulations may make different provision for different cases or classes of case and may contain such incidental and supplementary provisions as the Secretary of State thinks fit.

(3)Regulations under this section shall be made by statutory instrument which shall be subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament.

(4)Any amendment made by regulations under this section does not apply for the purposes of enactments outside the Companies Acts unless the regulations so provide.

(5)So much of section 23(3) of the Interpretation Act 1978 as applies section 17(2)(a) of that Act (effect of repeal and re-enactment) to deeds, instruments and documents other than enactments shall not apply in relation to any repeal and re-enactment effected by regulations made under this section..

(4)Schedule 18 contains amendments and savings consequential on the amendments made by this section; and the Secretary of State may by regulations make such further amendments or savings as appear to him to be necessary or expedient.

(5)Regulations under this section shall be made by statutory instrument which shall be subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament.

(6)So much of section 23(3) of the Interpretation Act 1978 as applies section 17(2)(a) of that Act (presumption as to meaning of references to enactments repealed and re-enacted) to deeds or other instruments or documents does not apply in relation to the repeal and re-enactment by this section of section 736 of the Companies Act 1985.

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Marginal Citations

145

The Companies Act 1985 has effect with the further amendments specified in Schedule 19.

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Annotations are used to give authority for changes and other effects on the legislation you are viewing and to convey editorial information. They appear at the foot of the relevant provision or under the associated heading. Annotations are categorised by annotation type, such as F-notes for textual amendments and I-notes for commencement information (a full list can be found in the Editorial Practice Guide). Each annotation is identified by a sequential reference number. For F-notes, M-notes and X-notes, the number also appears in bold superscript at the relevant location in the text. All annotations contain links to the affecting legislation.

Commencement Information

I9S. 145 partly in force; s. 145 not in force at Royal Assent see s. 215(1)(2); s. 145 in force at 3.7.1995 (so far as it extends to paragraph 20 of Schedule 19 to this Act) by S.I. 1995/1352, art. 3(b)

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