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AP04 Appointment of Corporate Secretary

A company secretary is an official of a company who has a number of statutory responsibilities. These include ensuring that the company complies with all of its legal and regulatory obligations. The secretary may also have custody of the company seal, and is the person on whom legal proceedings and official documents may be served.

Before the Companies Act 2006 came into force, every company was required to have a company secretary. However, the new Act only imposes this requirement on public companies, there is no obligation on private companies to have a secretary, and where a private company chooses to dispense with this requirement, the secretary’s functions can be carried out by any person authorised by the board.

There is no requirement for a company secretary to be a natural person (i.e. an individual human being) and it is possible to appoint a company to act as a corporate secretary. This has the advantage of allowing a company to delegate the functions of company secretary to a professional services firm.

The identity of a company’s secretary is registered with Companies House and where the company appoints a corporate body to act as its secretary, it should give notice of the appointment using this form.

This form can be downloaded directly from the government website here.

Please note, if your company is a member of Companies House’s web filing scheme, this form can be completed and submitted online at the Companies House website.

A different form, form AP03, should be used where the company is appointing a natural person to act as company secretary.