Causes and effects of failure to file annual returns with PACRA. a case of companies limited by guarantee in Lusaka

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Seta, Kelvin
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University of Zambia
Companies are required by the Companies Act No. 10 of 2018 to file annual returns with the Registrar of companies within ninety (90) days following the year end. However, most companies do not comply with this requirement. Therefore, this study is aimed at determining the causes and effects of failure by companies limited by guarantee to file annual returns with Patents and Companies Registration Agency (PACRA). The research study used a case study in form of descriptive to get in-depth and detailed information on the causes and effects of failure to file annual returns with PACRA by companies limited by Guarantee. The study had a total sample size of 151 respondents with 121 from companies limited by guarantee were selected within Lusaka district and 30 PACRA employees from the head office in Lusaka. The study collected both qualitative and quantitative and primary and secondary data. The primary data was collected using structured questionnaires using a simple random sampling technique. The analysis was done both qualitatively and quantitatively using the Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS). The study findings revealed that, failure to file annual returns by companies limited by guarantee was caused by a number of reasons such as; weak or non-existent penalties, knowledge gap on filing requirements by PACRA employees, complicated filing process, lack of understanding of the companies’ post incorporation obligations by companies and limited sensitization on the filing requirements for companies. Based on these results, the study made the following recommendations; PACRA should streamline the filing of annual return process to make it easier for the clients to file. Additionally, the penalties for non-compliance should be more punitive in order to deter any form of non-compliance and there is also need for PACRA to restructure their sensitization programs to ensure that all their target groups are covered. KEY WORDS: Annual Return, Limited by Guarantee, Post Incorporation and Filing  
Annual returns--Zambia