The Companies Amendment Act, 2017 read with Notification S.O. 1833(E) dated 7th May 2018 amended law related to fee for the filing of forms. This may be considered most strict amendment introduced by the Amendment Act. As a result, companies need to pay an increased filing fee calculated on daily basis. Presently only first proviso related to additional fee for annual forms has been notified. The second and third proviso may be notified soon. The third proviso is harsh in nature.
Effect of non – ratification of the appointment of the auditor was one of the wonders of the Companies Act, 2013. There were so many queries regarding effects of non – ratification of auditor and removal of an auditor. Now, all these long discussions came to end. The Companies Amendment Act, 2017 read with Notification S.O. 1833(E) dated 7th May 2018 deletes provision of annual ratification of the appointment of auditor.
Recently, after the Companies (Audit and Auditor) (2nd) Amendment Rules, 2018 some section of media reported that an audit firm shall be criminally liable under the company law for a fraudulent act of an audit partner, while few others have view that there is some new position of law regarding criminal liability of audit firms. Both of these are slightly wrong interpretations.
With three Notifications S.O. 351(E) dated 23rd January 2018, S.O. 630(E) dated 9th February 2018 and S.O. 1833(E) dated 7th May 2018 most provisions of the Companies (Amendment) Act, 2017 (1 of 2018) come into force. Here is a bird’s eye view.
The Companies Act, 2013 like most other laws dealing with offences did not have any scheme to determine the level of punishment. This is always the discretionary power of a court to determine a punishment within minimum (if any) and maximum punishment provided under law. Presently, the legislature and executives of the country want to control discretionary powers of the third organ – judiciary to all possible extent. Though discretion may result in higher corruption, subordinate courts governed by precedents and do very little use of discretion. The companies Amendment Act, 2017 introduces new Sections 446A to guide the discretionary powers. Amount of fine and/or imprisonment also reduced in several cases.