Companies House is expected to charge higher fees when it is granted new powers.
The Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency (ECCT) Bill is already making its way through Parliament.
This legislation will change the role and purpose of Companies House to make it a more active gatekeeper over company creation. This would include new powers to check, remove or decline information submitted to, or already on, the register.
Other measures include:
- Providing Companies House with more effective investigation and enforcement powers;
- Introducing better cross-checking of data with other public and private sector bodies; and
- Enhancing the protection of personal information provided to Companies House to protect individuals from fraud and other harms.
Companies House is “ready to take action”, the Government says, and is looking at different workstreams to make sure it is ready to implement many of the measures.
Fees currently ‘much lower than global average’
There’s a clear expectation that the fees will increase after the Bill achieves royal assent.
The Government statement said: “Companies House fees are much lower than the global average and have not changed since 2016. Many believe our fees are too low.
“Our new powers will help improve the reliability of the data on our registers and tackle economic crime, which will drive confidence in the UK economy and benefit companies and society as a whole.
“We’ll be operating in a completely different way in the future with major changes needed for our systems, processes and the skillsets of our people.
“Increasing our fees will enable us to operate effectively within our new powers and deliver outcomes, making sure we continue to recover the costs of the services we deliver.”
What this means for companies
Nothing will change until the ECCT Bill receives royal assent.
Changes to fee values need to go through a robust process, including final sign-off from HM Treasury and ministers.