All companies (including external companies) and close corporations are required by law to lodge their annual returns with CIPC within a certain period of time every year.
An annual return is a statutory return in terms of the Companies and Close Corporations Acts and therefore MUST be complied with. Failure to do so will result in the Commission assuming that the company and/or close corporation is not doing business or is not intending on doing business in the near future. Non-compliance with annual returns may lead to deregistration, which has the effect that the juristic personality is withdrawn and the company or close corporation ceases to exist.
You are therefore required to submit your annual return to CIPC on the anniversary date of when you first registered your business.
- Companies have 30 business days from the date that the entity become due to file annual returns before it is in non-compliance with the Companies Act.
- Close Corporations have from the first day of its anniversary month up until the thereafter to file Annual returns before it is non-compliance with the Close Corporations Act
- Annual returns can only be filed electronically.
There is no service delivery turnaround time for submitting annual returns since the lodgement is instantaneous once “File Annual Returns” is clicked. If the entity is in “Annual Return deregistration” process, the status will automatically be updated to “In Business” if all outstanding annual returns are payed and lodged.