In a bid to help businesses during the coronavirus pandemic, HMRC has joined forces with the government to give businesses a three month extension from, 25 March 2020, to file their accounts to help them avoid paying penalties.

Businesses can apply through a fast-tracked online system which will only take 15 minutes to complete – however, companies that have already extended their filing deadlines, or shortened their accounting reference period, may not be eligible for an extension. Further information can be found at:

Companies House Chief Executive, Louise Smyth, said: “we recognise that these are uncertain times for businesses and that’s why we’re doing all we can to help”.

Lee Sugden, Director at Horsfield & Smith, commented: “under normal circumstances when businesses file late accounts, they are issued with an automatic penalty. These measures will come as a huge relief to many business owners during this challenging time”.

For further help or advice, please do not hesitate to contact the team on 0161 761 5231 or email