Section 343(2), Companies Act 2014, places the responsibility on 
    the company itself for ensuring prompt delivery of annual returns 
    to the Registrar.  Therefore, where a document is delivered to the 
    CRO after its filing deadline as a result of being lost or delayed 
    in the postal system, the law leaves the CRO with no option but to 
    treat it as being late.

    The only circumstance where CRO will consider making an
    exception to this rule is where the company has sent the document 
    using a time guaranteed service on a date which, under the guarantee, 
    should have resulted in on-time delivery to the CRO and where the 
    service provides proof of delivery or tracks the document to its 
    destination. In such circumstances, CRO will require independent 
    documentary evidence of the date of despatch of the document and 
    proof of delivery.

    There are a number of service providers offering this type of time 
    guaranteed delivery service. For example, An Post has confirmed to 
    CRO that EXPRESS POST offers a guaranteed next day delivery service 
    with tracking facilities within the State. 

    However, An Post makes it clear that REGISTERED POST DOES NOT 
    GUARANTEE NEXT DAY DELIVERY. Therefore, if a document is sent to 
    the CRO by Registered Post and is delivered after the filing 
    deadline, CRO has no option but to treat it as being late. 

    If a company finds itself in this situation, it can apply to the 
    District Court for extra time to file its annual return under 
    Section 343(5), Companies Act 2014. The Court may, if it is 
    satisfied that it would be just to do so, make an Order extending 
    the time in which the annual return may be delivered to the 
    Registrar. Where the Court makes such an Order, and the company 
    delivers the annual return to the CRO in accordance with the Order, 
    that annual return will be deemed by the CRO to have been received 
    on time and the consequences of late filing (late filing 
    penalties / loss of audit exemption) will not apply to that annual 

    For further information on the District Court process, see CRO 
    Information Leaflet No.39 or CRO website: