Your ‘accounting period’ for Corporation Tax is the time covered by your Company Tax Return.
It can’t be longer than 12 months and is normally the same as the financial year covered by your company or association’s annual accounts. It may be different in the year you set up your company.
Your accounting period affects your deadlines for paying Corporation Tax and sending (‘filing’) a Company Tax Return.
Check your accounting period
Sign in to your business tax account using HM Revenue and Customs’ (HMRC’s) online service to check the dates of your accounting period.
Your first accounting period
You’ll get a letter from HMRC giving you dates for your accounting period after you register your company for Corporation Tax.
Tell HMRC if you think the dates are wrong.
If your accounting period and financial year are different
Check what to do if your accounting period is different from your financial year:
- in your first year of business
- when you restart your business
- if you stop trading and become dormant
Your accounting period can also be different to your financial year when your accounts cover:
- more than 12 months, for example after you lengthen your company year
- less than 12 months, for example after you close your company or shorten its year
If your accounts cover more than 12 months
You must file 2 returns because your accounting period can’t be longer than 12 months.
If your accounts cover less than 12 months
Your accounting period normally ends on the same day, so will also be shorter than 12 months.
If you use HMRC’s online service to file your Company Tax Return, contact HMRC to update your accounting period dates before you file your return.
If you use accounting software to file your Company Tax Return, enter the new dates for your accounting period before you file your return.