Keeping records and notifying changes of details
A limited company has to keep records, including:
registers of shareholders (showing all issues of new shares, details of share transfers, and current shareholders)
registers of option holders (if you have them)
minutes of general meetings of shareholders
minutes of meetings of directors (detailing all resolutions that were passed etc)
registers of charges created by the company over company property, and
financial records that enable an assessment of the company’s financial position and performance, and could if necessary be used for financial statements to be prepared (and audited if necessary) for at least seven years after the transactions are completed. All public companies need to file audited accounts with ASIC annually. ASIC can require proprietary companies to file audited accounts too, so it is important to keep good financial records.
Any change in directors (including a change of residential address), secretary, shareholders, registered office, company name, or Constitution has to be notified to ASIC. Every issue of new shares has to be notified, as does the creation of a charge (such as a mortgage) over company property. For most of these items there is no ASIC filing fee if the notification is filed within 28 days. Late fees apply if filed outside time limits.
Annual reports and annual fee
All companies will receive from ASIC an Annual Statement showing current registered details. Any changes to those details must be notified to ASIC. Every company also has to pass a directors' solvency declaration each year around the time of the Annual Statement. There is an annual fee (currently $212) payable to ASIC to maintain company registration.
In addition to the Annual Statement, a public limited company has to lodge audited financial statements (balance sheet, profit and loss statement, cash flow statement) with ASIC each year. Public companies which are listed on ASX have even more onerous reporting obligations, and specialist advice should be sought.
A "large proprietary company" also has to publicly file audited financial statements in the same way as a public company. A "small proprietary company" does not have to prepare and file audited financial statements, unless ASIC or its shareholders require it to.