Changes to UK company law. The Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Act.

Why this is important

The Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Act received royal assent on 26 October 2023.   

The act introduces the biggest changes to Companies House since corporate registrations were established in 1844. We’ll have the power to play a far more significant role in tackling economic crime, supporting economic growth, and making sure the UK is one of the best places in the world to start and grow a business.  

Over time, the measures will lead to improved transparency and more accurate and trusted information on our registers. This will drive confidence in the UK economy, increasing the value of the register for businesses and citizens across the UK and beyond. 

The measures include: 

  • introducing identity verification for all new and existing registered company directors, people with significant control (PSCs), and those who file on behalf of companies  
  • broadening our powers to become a more active gatekeeper over company creation and more reliable data 
  • more reliable and accurate financial information on the register, which reflects the latest advancements in digital technology and enables better business decisions 
  • providing Companies House with more effective enforcement powers, and increasing our ability to share relevant information with partners 
  • enhancing the protection of personal information to protect individuals from fraud and other harms 

This act builds on the Economic Crime (Transparency and Enforcement) Act, which introduced the Register of Overseas Entities in August 2022. Together, both acts are a major step forward in tackling economic crime and improving corporate transparency.