When establishing a company, not only do you have to consider the setup procedures and business structure at the initial stage, but also the compliance duties and costs from the second year onwards. Based on our accumulated experience, BRIDGES has summarised a few tips on upkeeping your company here :


1. What Is a Company Secretary?

In HK, all limited companies are required to appoint a company secretary according to the Companies Ordinance. The work of a company secretary is essential to the governance and administration of the company, as it deals with different Government and regulatory bodies like Companies Registry, etc.

If the company secretary is an individual, he or she should ordinarily reside in HK; if the company secretary is a corporate secretary, its registered office or place of business should be in HK.


2. What Are Covered in Company Secretarial Services Generally?

The following items are already included in our company secretarial service package:

BRIDGES Company Secretarial Package

1. Being appointed as Company Secretary for 1 anniversary year.
2. Preparation and filing of Annual Return with the Company Registry (not included in some firms).
3. Maintain company statutory records.
4. Unlimited complimentary assistance in changing registered office addresses.

Besides the above, a competent firm should be able to manage more sophisticated company secretarial matters such as: 

Company Secretarial Matters

- Change of Company Name
- Business Registration License Renewal
Share Transfer
- Change of Business Name / Branch Name
- Change of Business Nature
- Change of Director / Shareholders
- Nominee Services
- Certified True Copies
- Company Deregistration

A team that is familiar with the latest legislation and duties required by the Companies Registry and other regulatory bodies could be favourable for you to manage all yearly duties or ad-hoc changes, making sure your local filing deadlines (e.g. Annual Return) are being met and the compliance work is handled satisfactorily to avoid any hassles or penalties.


3. How Much is the Maintenance Fee from the Second Year Onwards?

We have a few company secretarial service packages and each covers differently. As a business owner, you will also need to settle the Government fees of Business Registration renewal (to be announced by the Inland Revenue Department every year) and the Government fees of Annual Return. If you have subscribed to a registered office address, the renewal fees are subject to your joined plan.


4. I Am the Director of the Company, Can I Act as the Company Secretary?

No, the Companies Ordinance prohibits the sole director from acting as the company secretary. The Ordinance also stipulates that if the sole director of a limited company is the same person, a third party must be appointed as the company secretary. The position of company secretary shall not be held concurrently by the sole director of the company.


5. Will the Company Secretary Remind Me to File My Annual Return?

The Companies Ordinance requires all limited companies to prepare and submit their Annual Return within 42 days after the anniversary date of incorporation. The Companies Registry will not remind you of this important submission, and not every company secretarial service provider in the market will do so. However, if you appoint us as your company secretary, we will issue you the reminder notice to carry out such function before the deadline, so as to avoid penalties on late submission.

If you choose us as your tax arrangement service provider, we will even remind you when it is time to file your tax returns like Employer’s Return and Profits Tax Return to comply with these responsibilities properly.


6. Benefits of Using the Company Secretary Firm’s Registered Address?

This could be an important beneficial strategic move of yours. If your registered office address is provided by your company secretary firm (in a virtual office package for example), which means all your Government letters will be posted to this address, the company secretary firm can remind you promptly when it receives the Government letters and give you useful advice on how to handle the letters appropriately. Under this arrangement, all your Government deadlines will not be missed.

Since your Government mail might contain sensitive information, choosing a professional service provider to manage all these is undoubtedly crucial. Our professional specialists have years of experience who are capable to handle your letters and keep a close eye on the Government schedule to help you deal with different compliance duties and deadlines when you are busy with onerous operational work.


7. Will the Company Secretarial Service Provider Handle My Tax Filing Issues?

At BRIDGES, we have our own company secretarial team and qualified accounting team to handle your various corporate needs. If you appoint us to be your tax arrangement service provider on top of being your company secretary, our in-house qualified accountants and tax specialists can give you proficient advice on your tax filing, tax-efficient planning and tax optimisation with eligible deductions if any. Thus, not only your Employer’s Return, Profits Tax Return and even Personal Tax Return can be handled and filed on time, your accounting and audit reports can also be arranged under a good financial report structure, and you will then stand a good chance to execute a tax efficiency plan when you start to make profits.

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