LATC Company Secretary
More and more councils are considering setting up arms-length local authority trading companies (LATCs) in response to austerity measures and as a way to protect and develop their services, particularly in social care. These LATCs were originally set up for specific projects and then extended into housing and education. More recently, they have become a popular model for the delivery of social care services as they create opportunities for a number of authorities to work together to reduce costs by shared procurement of equipment and services.
LATCs are limited by shares or guarantee, under the provisions of the Companies Act 2006.
Officers of the company (directors and secretaries) must ensure compliance with the Companies Act 2006, while also meeting the requirements of the Local Government Act 2003 and Localism Act 2011 to incorporate a LATC.
Before embarking on a trading operation, a council must satisfy itself that it has considered all the risks of such an undertaking. While the business plan will cover how the company will operate, the council must also decide on the governance structure. This will include the composition of the board and how the council will be represented, usually through a mix of councillors and officers. Trading companies can and do get into financial difficulties. Therefore, councils should ensure that there is an exit strategy written into the company’s constitution, covering what will happen if the company becomes insolvent and limiting the liability of the company’s directors.
The role of the company secretary
Although the role of the company secretary is not specifically defined in the Companies Act 2006, the company secretary plays a pivotal role in the governance and compliance of any company, but particularly in this type of company and includes:
- supporting, informing and advising directors of the restrictions and responsibilities imposed upon them by the company’s articles of association, company law, and any applicable codes of best practice
- protecting the interests of the company as a whole, including its members and employees
- representing the interests of other parties, such as creditors and local communities
Why select London Registrars as your LATC company secretary
London Registrars specialises in providing company secretarial support to a wide variety of companies. Thanks to our highly qualified team of company secretaries and our many years’ experience of company secretarial work, we have the knowledge and skills to advise boards on compliance and good corporate governance which in turn lets the directors concentrate on running the business along commercial lines and making the company financially and reputationally successful. Above all, we are in a position to help the board avoid incurring liabilities found in situations where proper systems and procedures have not been put in place and thus protect the individual directors from risking falling foul of legislation relating to health and safety, corporate manslaughter, data protection violations, bribery, etc.
Finally, as an ISO 9001 accredited company we are committed to ensuring that our services meet the highest quality standards.
The following are just some of the services we can offer you:
- Company searches and incorporation
- Providing advice on company law, employment law and commercial law
- Maintenance of electronic statutory registers
- Notifying Companies House of changes in officers
- Preparation and filing Annual Confirmation Statements (formerly Annual Returns)
- Amendments to articles and preparation of bespoke articles
- Assistance with organising meetings and drafting minutes
- Share registration
- Share reorganisations
- Name changes
- Re-registration from private company to PLC
- Issue and allotment of shares
- Strike off and dissolution