Keep Up To Date: Changes To 2014 Companies Act You Need To Know
Recent amendments to the 2014 Companies Act show a welcome commitment from Government to backing business, supporting economic recovery and making sure as many people as possible have jobs to go back to following the impact of Covid-19. The following are the main points to the amendments of the Bill that all businesses need to be aware of:
EXTENSION OF INTERIM PERIOD
The measures will remain in place for an interim period up until the end of December 31st, with potential for extension of this period.
Businesses will now be permitted to hold their Annual General Meetings virtually. The amendments also allow companies to postpone their AGMs until December 31st and hold creditors and general meetings virtually.
In the past, businesses had up to 100 days to present an examiners report to the court. In order to give businesses some much needed ‘breathing space’, a provision to extend the period for examinership of a company to 150 days was made.
EXECUTION OF DOCUMENTS
In order to deal with the practical difficulties of officers of a company all being required to sign a single page, documents which are required to be executed under seal can be executed in counterpart i.e each of the relevant countersignatures may be made on separate pages, irrespective of any provision in the company’s constitution.
It increases the threshold at which a company is deemed unable to pay its debts and can be wound up by the courts. The measure increases the threshold from €10/€20k to €50,000.
In summary, the act makes the following changes:
- provides that the measures will be operative for an interim period (up until 31 December 2020, with potential for extension of this period)
- allows companies to postpone AGMs until 31 December 2020
- provides that both general and creditors’ meetings may be held virtually
- allows documents which are required to be executed under seal to be executed in counterpart
- increases the amount at which a statutory demand can be issued from €10/20k to €50k
- extends the examinership process to a total of 150 days (subject to court approval)
- provides the Minister with regulation making power in respect of extending the interim period and amending the operational detail of hybrid and virtual general meetings
For a full copy of the Act, visit: https://data.oireachtas.ie/ie/oireachtas/act/2020/9/eng/enacted/a0920.pdf
If your or your business need advice on any of the changes to the Act and how they affect your business, our team of corporate solicitors are available to chat with you. Contact us at: 01 663 2000