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What is a Person of Significant Control (PSC) in a Company?

What is a Person of Significant Control (PSC) in a Company?
Feb 27, 2024 Erin Fogarty Updated On: March 5, 2024

Understanding what and who a Person of Significant Control (PSC) is within a company is important for any business.

A PSC is an individual who holds substantial influence or ownership in a company. No matter what size they are, businesses must comprehend who qualifies as a PSC and the legal obligations that come with it. Understanding these specifics will help you maintain transparency and ensure regulatory compliance within your company.

Identification criteria

To establish a person of significant control (PSC), you need to consider their extent of ownership, voting rights, and ability to exert substantial influence or control over a company’s operations.

It’s up to companies to collect and maintain accurate information on individuals who meet these criteria, to ensure a comprehensive understanding of who holds significant power within the organisation.

This level of transparency is paramount for regulatory compliance and fostering trust in the integrity of the organisation’s structure. By adhering to these standards of information gathering and dissemination, you can demonstrate your commitment to good governance and ethical business practices, this will build trust between your company and anyone you do business with.

Under UK law a PSC is someone that has:

  • more than 25% of shares in the company
  • more than 25% of voting rights in the company
  • the right to appoint or remove the majority of the board of directors

Legal obligations

In the United Kingdom, companies are required to comply with legal obligations related to Persons of Significant Control (PSCs). The Companies Act 2006 outlines these obligations in detail, emphasising the importance of accurately identifying, verifying, and recording PSC information.

Compliance with these regulations is important not only to meet legal standards but also to promote transparency in corporate governance, which is essential for maintaining trust and accountability in a business environment. It is, therefore, imperative for companies to maintain accurate and updated records of PSCs as a part of their corporate social responsibilities and ethical business practices.

Registering PSCs

A PSC must be registered at Companies House, the official register in the UK. To achieve transparency and accountability, companies need to provide relevant details about individuals meeting the PSC criteria, including their:

  • Name
  • Address
  • Nature of their control

The registration process helps maintain a clear public record of a company’s ownership structure and ensures the integrity of corporate records. Businesses must take this process seriously and strive to provide comprehensive and accurate PSC information, or they will not be compliant.

Consequences of non-compliance

Ensuring compliance with the regulations surrounding Persons of Significant Control (PSCs) is crucial for businesses. Failure to do so can lead to serious consequences, such as:

  • Financial penalties
  • Legal actions
  • Restriction of certain corporate activities.

The significance of this highlights the need for companies to diligently fulfil their obligations in identifying, recording and reporting PSC information accurately.

Compliance with PSC regulations will help you mitigate potential penalties. With the amount of risk involved in the current business climate in the UK, stakeholders place a premium on ethical and responsible business practices; this should encourage businesses to view compliance with PSC regulations as integral to their long-term sustainability and creditability.

You must understand the regulations surrounding PSCs and take the necessary steps to comply with them. This includes:

  • Appointing a PSC
  • Recording their details accurately in the company’s PSC register
  • Updating the register as required
  • Submitting the information to Companies House within the prescribed timeframe

Companies must view compliance with PSC regulations as a vital component of their overall governance framework. Doing so can enhance their reputation, safeguard their financial standing, and contribute to a transparent and accountable business.

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