The New “Register of People With significant Control”

From April 2016 businesses (including Limited Liability Partnerships) are obliged to create and maintain a register of people with “significant control over the company or partnership”.

“The introduction of the PSC register is one of a number of changes to the Companies Act 2006 brought about by the Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Act 2015. The aim of the Act is to create greater transparency in the ownership and control of UK companies, to help in the fight against money laundering, whilst increasing trust in UK companies.”

What does this mean?

It means that, if you’re a UK business owner, you’re going to have to work out which people in your organisation qualify as “People of Significant Control (PSC)”; collate a series of government specified details on all such people and then send the information off to Companies House. From then on, you’ll have to repeat the task at least once annually, and be sure to inform Companies House within a month of someone new becoming a PSC. PSC’s themselves are also obliged to notify their own company within a month of becoming a PSC, and “commit an offence if they fail to notify or respond to a notice from the company”.

What do I need to work out?

Two things:

1. Who in my organisation qualifies as a PSC?

2. What details do I need to provide about them?

For a detailed explanation, click here for a guide from Jordans Legal, Trusts & Insight, from which most of the information in this article is drawn.

The bottom line is that if you’re a business owner there’s no need to panic about this but you’ll save yourself a headache if you get this sorted out ASAP. The information on PSC’s that you’ll require is almost certainly data you’ll already have access to so the administrative burden shouldn’t be too great.