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29 April 2015

Corporate update – Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Act (“Act”)

The Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Bill received royal assent on 26 March 2015.

As previously reported, the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills (BIS) has published a provisional implementation plan dealing with the company provisions of the Act.

Changes with effect from 26 May 2015

With effect from 26 May, companies will no longer be able to issue bearer shares and a nine month conversion period for bearer shares still in issue will begin.

The second change coming into force within the next month is that the general duties of directors under the Companies Act 2006 will apply to shadow directors. Please refer to our Guide to your Responsibilities as a Director for a refresher on what those duties are.

October 2015 – Guidance to be provided on “significant influence or control”

The government has since announced that a working group of company law specialists will be established to draft the statutory and non-statutory guidance on what is meant by the term “significant influence or control” in the context of the register of people with significant control (“PSC register”). The working group is expected to publish this guidance in October 2015. Under the proposed implementation plan the requirement for companies to keep a PSC register will come into force in January 2016, and file this information at Companies House by April 2016.

We will continue to provide updates on the Act as its provisions come into force, however, if you have any queries in the meantime contact commercial@steeleslaw.co.uk or 01603 598000.