All the Companies Registered are required conduct an Annual General Meeting of the Shareholders of the company at the end of each financial year and file an annual return with the Ministry of Corporate Affairs(MCA) as part of compliance. For newly incorporated Companies, the First Annual General Meeting should be held within 18 months from date of incorporation. Henceforth Annual General Meetings should be held within 6 months from the end of that financial year. Since In India, normally the financial year starts on April 1st and end on 31st March, a Company's annual general meeting would be on or before September 30th.
Annual returns to be e-filed with MCA consists of Various documents containing Financial and Non Financial information including the Balance Sheet of the Company, Profit & Loss Account, Compliance Certificate from a Company Secretary, Registered Office Address, Register of Member, Directors Details, Shares and Debentures details, Debt details and information about the Management of the Company. The annual return would also disclose the last AGM date, shareholding structure of the Company, changes in Directorship if any and details of transfers of securities during the year.
The Annual return of the Company must be signed by the Directors of the Company. The financial statements filed along with the Annual return must be audited and signed by a Chartered Accountant.
Annual return is required to be filed online. It is normally Prepared, attsested and and filed by a Professional like a Chartered Accountant who would file the returns online through the MCA's E-Filing portal. We have on our panel such professionals who would do the filing.
If a company fails to file annual return with the Registrar of Companies (RoC) within the specified time, then the Company shall be liable to pay a penalty till filing of the return. The amount of penalty will depend on the number of days in default, Authorised capital of the company etc. After Companies Act 2013 the penalty for delayed filing or non filing have been increased manifolds. So it is highly recommended to Comply with the process of annual filing of returns on time so as to avoid heavy penalties.