Carry forward and set off of loss in case of certain companies

The existing provisions of section 79 of the Act, inter-alia provides that where a change in shareholding has taken place in a previous year in the case of a company, not being a company in which the public are substantially interested, no loss incurred in any year prior to the previous year shall be carried forward and set off against the income of the previous year unless on the last day of the previous year the shares of the company carrying not less than fifty-one per cent of the voting power were beneficially held by person who beneficially held shares of the company carrying not less than fifty-one per cent of the voting power on the last day of the year or years in which the loss was incurred.

In order to facilitate ease of doing business and to promote start up India, it is proposed to amend section 79 of the Act to provide that where a change in shareholding has taken place in a previous year in the case of a company, not being a company in which the public are substantially interested and being an eligible start-up as referred to in section 80IAC of this Act, loss shall be carried forward and set off against the income of the previous year, if all the shareholders of such company which held shares carrying voting power on the last day of the year or years in which the loss was incurred, being the loss incurred during the period of seven years beginning from the year in which such company is incorporated, continue to hold those shares on the last day of such previous year.

The above provision will not applicable in following cases:

1. Where a change in the said voting power and shareholding takes place in a previous year consequent upon the death of a shareholder or on account of transfer of shares by way of gift to any relative of the shareholder making such gift

2. Any change in the shareholding of an Indian company which is a subsidiary of a foreign company as a result of amalgamation or demerger of a foreign company subject to the condition that fifty-one per cent shareholders of amalgamating or demerged foreign company continue to be the shareholders of the amalgamated or the resulting foreign company

3. A company where a change in the shareholding takes place in a previous year pursuant to a resolution plan approved under the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016, after affording a reasonable opportunity of being heard to the jurisdictional Principal Commissioner or Commissioner

4. A company, and its subsidiary and the subsidiary of such subsidiary, where:

    • The Tribunal, on an application moved by the Central Government under section 241 of the Companies Act, 2013 has suspended the Board of Directors of such company and has appointed new directors nominated by the Central Government under section 242 of the said Act and
    • A change in shareholding of such company, and its subsidiary and the subsidiary of such subsidiary, has taken place in a previous year pursuant to a resolution plan approved by the Tribunal under section 242 of the Companies Act, 2013 after affording a reasonable opportunity of being heard to the jurisdictional Principal Commissioner or Commissioner.

This amendment will take effect from 1st April, 2020 and will, accordingly, apply in relation to the all subsequent years.

Extract of amended Section 79:

“79 (1) Notwithstanding anything contained in this Chapter, where a change in shareholding has taken place during the previous year in the case of a company, not being a company in which the public are substantially interested, no loss incurred in any year prior to the previous year shall be carried forward and set off against the income of the previous year, unless on the last day of the previous year, the shares of the company carrying not less than fifty-one per cent of the voting power were beneficially held by persons who beneficially held shares of the company carrying not less than fifty-one per cent of the voting power on the last day of the year or years in which the loss was incurred:

Provided that even if the said condition is not satisfied in case of an eligible start-up as referred to in section 80-IAC, the loss incurred in any year prior to the previous year shall be allowed to be carried forward and set off against the income of the previous year if all the shareholders of such company who held shares carrying voting power on the last day of the year or years in which the loss was incurred, continue to hold those shares on the last day of such previous year and such loss has been incurred during the period of seven years beginning from the year in which such company is incorporated.

(2) Nothing contained in sub-section (1) shall apply,—

 (a) to a case where a change in the said voting power and shareholding takes place in a previous year consequent upon the death of a shareholder or on account of transfer of shares by way of gift to any relative of the shareholder making such gift;

(b) to any change in the shareholding of an Indian company which is a subsidiary of a foreign company as a result of amalgamation or demerger of a foreign company subject to the condition that fifty-one per cent shareholders of amalgamating or demerged foreign company continue to be the shareholders of the amalgamated or the resulting foreign company;

 (c) to a company where a change in the shareholding takes place in a previous year pursuant to a resolution plan approved under the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016 (31 of 2016), after affording a reasonable opportunity of being heard to the jurisdictional Principal Commissioner or Commissioner;

 (d) to a company, and its subsidiary and the subsidiary of such subsidiary, where,—

  (i) the Tribunal, on an application moved by the Central Government under section 241 of the Companies Act, 2013 (18 of 2013), has suspended the Board of Directors of such company and has appointed new directors nominated by the Central Government, under section 242 of the said Act; and

 (ii)  a change in shareholding of such company, and its subsidiary and the subsidiary of such subsidiary, has taken place in a previous year pursuant to a resolution plan approved by the Tribunal under section 242 of the Companies Act, 2013 (18 of 2013) after affording a reasonable opportunity of being heard to the jurisdictional Principal Commissioner or Commissioner.

Explanation.—For the purposes of this section,—

 (i) a company shall be a subsidiary of another company, if such other company holds more than half in nominal value of the equity share capital of the company;

 (ii) “Tribunal” shall have the meaning assigned to it in clause (90) of section 2 of the Companies Act, 2013 (18 of 2013).”

Republished with Amendments

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