The Central Government and Ministry of Corporate Affairs vide its General Circular No. 11/2020 dated 24.03.2020, has launched the Companies Fresh Start Scheme, 2020 in order to provide a one-time opportunity to the Companies to complete their pending compliances by filing necessary documents, annual returns, financial statements and other necessary documents as required through MCA Portal without being subject to a higher additional fee on account of such delay.

A few things to keep in mind for the same are detailed below:

1. The tenure of the Scheme shall be from 01.04.2020 till 09.2020

2. The Scheme shall be applicable to all the defaulting Companies

3. The Scheme covers waivers of following forms:

  • 10 forms of Companies Act,1956
  • 54 forms of Companies Act,2013
  • 12 forms of Limited Liability Partnership Act, 2008

4. The scheme aims to provide an immunity from launching of prosecutions and proceedings for imposing penalty on account of delay in certain filings;

5. Only normal fee will be payable at the time of filing of all the belated forms;

6. The scheme further gives following opportunity to Inactive companies, while filing the due documents under the scheme:

  • to get declaration as “Dormant Company” by filing e-form MSC-1 at a normal fee
  • to apply for striking off the name of the Company by filing e-form STK-2 at a normal fee;

7. The Scheme shall provide immunity for the delay with respect to filing of various forms and documents and accordingly, the Companies shall be allowed to file all the belated forms and documents without any additional fee;

8. It shall be noted that the scheme aims to provide immunity in respect of delay in filing of forms and not in respect of violation of law compliances as mentioned in the law;

9. Cases related to Prosecutions/proceedings for penalties in respect of filing of documents and forms:

Case Remedy
Appeal filed against any order passed by Adjudicating Authority of penalty with respect to delay in filing of any form before the commencement of the Scheme In order to avail the benefit the scheme, the applicant company shall first withdraw the appeal and then apply for the Immunity Certificate along with the proof of withdrawal of appeal
Appeal against the order of any Adjudicating Authority with regard to penalty associated with delay in filing of forms could not be filed within the prescribed time limit and last date of filing the appeal was before the commencement date of the scheme The applicant cannot apply for the Immunity Certificate under the scheme
Appeal against the order of any Adjudicating Authority with regard to penalty associated with delay in filing of forms could not be filed within the prescribed time limit and last date of filing falls between 01.04.2020 till 31.05.2020 The applicant shall be allowed an additional period of 120 days with effect from such last date for filing appeal and during such period no prosecution with regard to delay in filing of forms shall be initiated

10. Application seeking Immunity in respect of belated documents shall be filed through e-form CFSS-2020 after closure of the tenure of the Scheme and after the belated forms are filed and taken on record approved by the designated authority up to six months of closure of scheme.

11. While filing the application for Immunity SRN(s) of all the forms for which immunity is to be applied for shall be mentioned in the e-form.

12. Based on the Declaration in the e-form CFSS-2020 and e-forms filed under the  Scheme, Immunity Certificate shall be granted by the Designated Authority

13. After the Immunity Certificate has been granted to the applicant company, all the prosecutions filed against the company in relation to which the Immunity had been granted, shall be revoked by the Designated Authority and all the defaults shall be deemed to be completed by the Company

14. The Scheme shall not provide immunity in relation to disqualification of Directors, violation of law and compliances as stated in Companies Act 2013 and Companies Act 1956, any sort of management disputes

15. The Scheme Shall not be applicable on following Companies:

    • Companies having status of “Strike-off, Amalgamated, Dormant, Active Non-Compliant, Under Process of Srtike-off
    • Vanishing Companies
    • In case of increase in the Authorised Share Capital e. filing of Form SH-7
    • In case of filing of all the charge related documents (CHG-1, CHG-4, CHG-8 and CHG-9) In case of any further query, feel free to

Author- Gunjan Sachdev Partner |  SB & Associates, Company Secretaries

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