Financial statements - who draws them up?
The financial statements contain information on the annual financial result of a given entity. What's more, it is not a document intended only for internal purposes - it is also crucial when dealing with the tax office or the National Court Register, serving as the basis for the reported data.
Financial statement - obligation to prepare
Entities obliged to keep accounting books (in accordance with the Accounting Act) and those that have independently selected full accounting books as a recording method are required to prepare financial statements. It follows that the obligation to prepare a report may include both companies operating as legal entities, as well as sole proprietorships and companies of natural persons keeping full accounting records.
Financial statements and the National Court Register
Art. 69 sec. 1 of the Accounting Act obliges the entity's manager to submit the following documents to the appropriate court register:
- annual financial statements,
- a copy of the resolution or the decision of the approving body on the approval of the annual financial statements and the distribution of profit or coverage of loss,
- an opinion of a statutory auditor, if the report was audited,
- activity reports - units described in art. 49 sec. 1,
- within 15 days from the approval of the annual financial statements.
The deadline for submitting this document to the National Court Register for 2017 is July 15, 2018. According to Art. 53 sec. 1 of the Accounting Act - the annual financial statements of the entity must be approved by the relevant authority no later than six months from the balance sheet date, which is the last day of the tax year (usually on December 31, 2017).
Financial statements of natural persons and the tax office
This issue is different in the case of entities that are not subject to registration in the National Court Register - i.e. such as, for example, sole proprietorship of natural persons or civil law partnerships of natural persons. These entities are not required to submit reports to the National Court Register. The competent institution in their case is the Central Register and Information on Economic Activity - and there is no mention of it in the context of accepting reports in the Accounting Act.
Therefore, when it comes to natural persons, it is necessary to refer to Art. 45 sec. 5 of the PIT Act, which informs that taxpayers keeping books of accounts, obliged to prepare financial statements, are to attach them to the annual declaration. Therefore, natural persons running a business and not obliged to register with the National Court Register must know that the balance sheet, profit and loss account, together with additional information, must be submitted to the Tax Office by April 30. This date results from the deadline for submitting selected annual PIT returns.
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Simplified financial statements
When writing about financial statements, one should also mention the possibility of submitting them in a simplified form by some entities - which is allowed by the Accounting Act. The entities which, in 2016 and 2017, did not meet two of the following three conditions, are entitled to prepare one for 2017:
- average annual employment (full-time jobs) was no more than 50 people,
- the total assets of the balance sheet at the end of the financial year in PLN did not exceed the equivalent of PLN 17 million,
- net revenues from sales and financial operations in PLN did not exceed PLN 34 million.
The essence of the simplification is that these entities are not obliged to present precise information that makes up a specific point of the balance sheet or profit and loss account. Instead, they only provide the base values of the parent data.
When concluding the subject of reports, it should be borne in mind that entities-natural persons who do not register with the National Court Register should submit them by 30 April. In turn, other entities, such as limited liability companies, must fulfill this obligation by 15 July. In both cases, the institutions competent to accept the financial statements are different.