On 22 September 2022, the Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Bill (the "Bill") was introduced to Parliament. The Bill, if passed, will give greater powers to the Registrar of Companies to act as gatekeeper for the integrity of the register by querying filings and requiring further information. The Bill also contains provisions requiring verification of identity for company directors and others, new rules intended to improve the financial information on the register, and various other changes which aim to "prevent organised criminals and kleptocrats from abusing our open economy".
In this briefing, we examine the key features of the government's proposals put forward under the Bill and explain their significance in the context of the day-to-day corporate management of companies incorporated in England and Wales.
In addition to company law reform, the Bill proposes reform of the law on Limited Partnerships, and provisions on the new Register of Overseas Entities. These changes are outside the scope of this briefing.