In an effort to manage the possible loss to the Indian Industries and businesses due to pandemic Corona Virus – COVID19 The Govt of India introduces a Scheme namely Companies Fresh Start Scheme, 2020 (CFSS-2020) allowing the delay in filing the specified forms and documents with the Registrar, without charging of additional fees and granting of immunity from launching of prosecution or proceedings for imposing a penalty on account of delay associated with certain filings vide General Circular No. 12/2020 dated 30/03/2020
General Circular No. 12/2020
Government of India
Ministry of Corporate Affairs
5th Floor, ‘A’ Wing, Shastri Bhawan,
Dr. R. P. Road, New Delhi-110001
All Regional Directors,
All Registrar of Companies,
Subject: Companies Fresh Start Scheme, 2020.
In furtherance of the Ministry’s Circular No. 11/2020, dated 24th March. 2020 and in order to facilitate the companies registered in India to make a fresh start on a clean slate, this Ministry has decided to take certain alleviative measures for the benefit of all companies.
2. Companies Act, 2013 requires all companies to make annual statutory compliance by filing the Annual Return and Financial Statements. Apart from this, various other statements, documents, returns, etc are required to be filed on the MCA21 electronic registry within prescribed time limits. Filing fees for filing such statements, documents, returns, etc is governed by section 403 of the Companies Act, 2013 read with Companies (Registration Offices and Fees) Rules 2014.
3. The Ministry has received representations from various stakeholders requesting for grant of one-time opportunity, so as to enable them to complete their pending compliances by filing necessary documents in the MCA-21 registry including annual filings without being subject to higher additional fees on account of any delay.
4. In order to give such an opportunity to the defaulting companies and to enable them to file the belated documents in the MCA-21 registry, the Central Government in the exercise of powers conferred under section 460 read with section 403 of the Companies Act, 2013 has decided to introduce a Scheme namely “Companies Fresh Start Scheme, 2020 (CFSS-2020) condoning the delay in filing the above-mentioned documents with the Registrar, insofar as it relates to charging of additional fees and granting of immunity from launching of prosecution or proceedings for imposing a penalty on account of delay associated with certain filings. Only normal fees for filing of documents in the MCA-21 registry will be payable in such ease during the currency of CMS-2020 as per the provisions of section 403 read with Companies Registration Offices and Feel Rules, 2014 and section 460 of the Act..
5. In addition, the scheme gives an opportunity to inactive companies to get their companies declared as ‘dormant company’ under section 455 of the Act by filing a simple application at a normal fee. The said provision enables inactive companies to remain on the register of the companies with minimal compliance requirements.
6. The details of the Scheme are as under:-
(i) The scheme shall come into force on the 01.04.2020 and shall remain in force till 30.09.2020
(ii) Definitions – In this Scheme, unless the context otherwise requires,
(a) ‘Act” means the Companies Act, 2013 and Companies Act, 1956 (where ever applicable);
(b) “Company” means a company as defined in clause (20) of section 2 of the Companies Act, 2013;
(c) “defaulting company means a company defined under the Companies Act, 2013, and which has made a default in filing of any of the documents, statements, returns, etc including annual statutory documents on the MCA-21 registry.
(d”Designated authority” means the Registrar of Companies having jurisdiction over the registered office of the company;
(e) “Immunity certificate’ means the certificate referred to in subparagraph of paragraph 6 of the Scheme;
(f) “inactive Company means a company as defined in Explanation (i) to sub-section (1) of section 455(1) of the Companies Act, 2013;
(iii) – Any ‘defaulting company” is permitted to file belated documents which were clue for filing on any given date in accordance with the provisions of this Scheme:
(iv) Manner of payment of normal fees for filing of belated documents and seeking immunity under the Scheme – Every defaulting company shall be required to pay normal fees as prescribed under the Companies (Registration Offices and Feel Rules, 2014 on the date of filing of each belated document and no additional fee shall be payable. Immunity from the launch of prosecution or proceedings for imposing penalty shall be provided only to the extent such prosecution or the proceedings for Imposing penalty under the Act pertain to any delay associated with the filings of belated documents. Any other consequential proceedings, including any proceedings involving interests of any shareholder or any other person qua the company fir its directors or key managerial personnel would not he covered by such Immunity For Example, under section 420, every company is required to file a return of allotment within the period provided therin. However, the proviso to section 42(4) also requires that the utilisation of money raised through private placement shall not be made unless the return of allotment has been filed in the registry. Now, the immunity under the Scheme shall only be available in respect of the proceeding for imposing penalty On account of delay in filing the return of allotment, but not on account of utilization of the money raised through private placement prior to the filing of the return with the registry.