Interim Newsletter 196a - 10th October 2019
ANNUAL RETURNS - OCTOBER PEAK
There are over 52,700 companies with an annual return date of 30th September and a filing deadline of 29th October. If you are filing an annual return in respect of one of these companies, you are requested to ensure that your correctly completed annual return is delivered to the CRO on-time. The only way of doing this is by filing online. Please allow enough time to carry this out in advance of your specific deadline, including the delivery of the signature page.
NOTE: Where the 28 day filing period expires on a Saturday, Sunday or public holiday, the 28 day period is extended to the next working day.
EFILING IS MANDATORY
Mandatory electronic filing for the submission of an Annual Return and its associated financial statements applies to all Irish companies. https://www.cro.ie/Annual-Return/Filing-an-Annual-Return/FAQ-Mandatory-E-Filing
You may get a warning or error when efiling on CORE. Warnings will not prevent you filing your annual return. The warnings are alerting you to the fact that information provided on the B1 does not match the CRO records.
However, if you receive an error this must be corrected before the annual return can be submitted. You will not be permitted to submit an annual return with errors.
To facilitate the implementation of PSD2, a European law which came into force recently to make it more secure for consumers to make electronic payments online, CRO had to make changes to our payment page, by adding 6 new fields. We are aware that some Core users have been having difficulties with these new fields and are encountering errors when trying to pay online.
Please ensure that you fill in details in all 6 fields (Address 1, Address 2, City, Postcode, Country and Phone Number) to avoid errors and proceed with payment.
The inputting of some special characters into the fields will cause errors and prevent the credit card entry screen from loading, for instance the phone number field does not accept brackets “(“ “)”. Any non-alphabetic/non-numeric characters apart from quotes and hyphens for the addresses should be avoided.
The current CRO online systems tend to work better with the Internet Explorer browser so we would advise customers to use Internet Explorer where possible
If you experience issues e-filing, changing to an alternative web browser may rectify the issue. Also be aware of the high volumes of users accessing the system at the same time and you may need to try again. If this does not resolve the issue, then contact the CRO: Telephone 00 353 (0) 1 804 5200/Lo call 1890 220 226*
or firstname.lastname@example.org. With regards to electronic filing you can contact the Electronic Filing section on 00 353 (0) 1 804 5355/5374 or email email@example.com.
*Note that the rates charged for the use of 1890 (LoCall) numbers may vary among different service providers.
CORRECT EMAIL ADDRESS
Companies and Presenters should ensure that they provide the correct email addresses, one that is monitored regularly, to ensure they are alerted when their documents are sent back as they no longer receive a letter or documents by post. Provisions should be put in place that prevent emails from the CRO going to Spam or being blocked.
Once the B1 (Annual Return form) has been filed on CORE within 28 days of the annual return date, the Financial Statements must be uploaded as a single PDF no later than the end of the second 28 days and BEFORE the signature page is delivered to the CRO.
PAYMENT MUST BE MADE ONLINE
The filing fee for an e-B1 is €20. Remember that if you have chosen to pay by credit card, payment will be taken immediately and is NON REFUNDABLE (as we cannot store card details). If you would prefer to pay by customer account, payment will not be deducted from your customer account until the signature page is received and processed. Please see Open a Customer Account Online page.
If an annual return is filed late, late filing penalties apply and, where applicable, the company also loses its entitlement to claim audit exemption in the following two years.
CRO ACCOUNT HOLDERS
CRO Account holders should ensure that there is sufficient money in their account to cover the transaction before submitting their documents.
The B1 form can be signed digitally using a Revenue Online Service (ROS) certificate or can be signed using a signature page. The signature page is available after the B1 form has been submitted electronically and must be printed, signed and delivered to the CRO within 28 days of submitting the form online. Failure to deliver the signature page to the CRO on time can result in late filing penalties and loss of audit exemption. Where a document is delivered to the CRO after its filing deadline for any reason, including as a result of being lost or delayed in the postal system, the law leaves the CRO with no option but to treat it as being late.
Since 1st April 2018, B1’s are automatically rejected where the B1 signature page or overall certificate is not signed, if it has only one signature or where the financial statements have not been uploaded.
Government Departments, enterprise agencies and regulatory bodies have a range of supports covering advice, finance and upskilling to help your business navigate its way through Brexit. With just weeks to go to the UK withdrawal from the European Union, understanding the potential implications is a key first step in developing your Brexit contingency plan. https://www.gov.ie/en/publication/a7ba02-brexit-info/
THE DEADLINE FOR FILING BENEFICIAL OWNERSHIP DETAILS IS FAST APPROACHING
The Register of Beneficial Ownership of Companies and Industrial & Provident Societies (RBO) was established by Statutory Instrument 110/2019 and opened on 29 July 2019. Under the SI, companies and societies have until Friday 22 NOVEMBER 2019 to file their data with the RBO.
Failure to complete the required filing by 22 NOVEMBER may result in the company/society being prosecuted and fined.
Filing of beneficial ownership data can be done online through a portal in the RBO website - www.rbo.gov.ie. No information can be filed with the RBO on paper and there are no filing fees. Further information can be found on the RBO website - www.rbo.gov.ie.
If the company/society cannot find an answer to a question in the FAQs on the RBO website, they can send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
For updates, please follow the RBO on Twitter at www.twitter.com/RBO_ie and on LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/company/central-rbo/
REASONS WHY RBO SUBMISSIONS FAIL TO REGISTER
In the two months since the RBO opened, a high number of submissions have failed to register.
In order to comply with the EU’s Fourth Anti-Money Laundering Directive, the Registrar is required to validate the data entered in the RBO in respect of each beneficial owner. This is to ensure that the natural person exists, is still alive and to avoid duplication on the Register.
As part of the validation process, Registrar compares the data filed with the RBO against the data registered with the Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection (DEASP) for that person.
To-date, the most common reasons for a submission to be rejected is that one or more of the following details do not match the details held by DEASP:
- First Name,
- Last Name,
- PPSN and/or
- Date of Birth.
The most common name mis-matches are:
- maiden name used instead of married name and vice versa,
- middle name used which is not registered with DEASP (middle names are not required in the RBO),
- shortened version or variation of a name, when DEASP has the full/formal version,
- Irish version of a name, when English version is registered with DEASP and vice versa.
Before entering details for a beneficial owner, the company/society should ensure that they are using the same First Name, Last Name, PPSN and Date of Birth registered with the DEASP for that person.
These details can be checked by the beneficial owner contacting DEASP at http://www.welfare.ie/en/Pages/Personal-Public-Service-Number-Registration-Centres-by-Count.aspx
Further information on common reasons why submissions fail to register can be found in FAQ 14.1 on the RBO website - www.rbo.gov.ie.
VERIFICATION OF IDENTITY OF BENEFICIAL OWNERS WHO DO NOT HAVE A PPSN
The Registrar of Beneficial Ownership is obliged by law to verify the identity of beneficial owners in order to comply with the EU’s Fourth Anti-Money Laundering Directive that requires the register to be “adequate, accurate and current”.
For beneficial owners who do not have a PPSN, the Registrar has determined that the Form BEN2 - Declaration as to Verification of Identity - will be the method used to verify the person’s identity.
The BEN2 serves two purposes. It enables the Registrar to verify the identity of a beneficial owner who does not have a PPSN and it is an application for an RBO Number which can be used in all future RBO filings for that person unless he/she obtains a PPSN, in which case the PPSN must be used.
The BEN2 form is currently available to download from the RBO Portal which can be accessed through the RBO website at www.rbo.gov.ie. The facility to upload the completed BEN2 and apply for an RBO Number is expected be available in the Portal shortly. For more information visit FAQ No 12 on the RBO website - https://www.rbo.gov.ie/faqs.html