JIS News

The Companies Office of Jamaica (COJ) has announced November 1 as the new date for implementing its new fee structure and the introduction of two new services.
The changes, which should have been effective October 19, have been pushed back to allow for a smoother transition and to give customers additional time to take advantage of the period leading up to the institution of new fees.
Deputy Chief Executive Officer of the COJ, Shellie Leon, told JIS News that there will be an increase/reduction in fees for some services and the introduction of other services to allow the COJ to operate more efficiently, while satisfying their customers’ needs as best as possible.
Under the new fee structure, the charge to register a limited liability company will increase from $12,000 to $15,000; registration of annual returns moves from $4,000 to $5,000, while the fee for appointment or change of directors or secretaries will be $3,000, up from $2,000.
Late fees will move from $1,000 to $2,000; public search, $500 per hour, up from $200 per hour; and company name reservation and statutory declaration charges will both be increased from $2,000 to $3,000.
Other fee increases will include registration of overseas companies to $25,000 up from $18,000; financial statements for local companies $3,000 up from $2,000 while financial statements for overseas companies will cost $7,000 up from $2,000.
Explaining the need for the increases, Miss Leon said that as an executive agency, the COJ is responsible for earning its keep and the most recent increases were implemented in February 2005.
She said that while the COJ is subsidising the services that it offers, its expenses over the years have been rising significantly as it has been faced with several increases in terms of cost. “Our operating expense for 2005 to 2006 was just over $120 million, while for 2009 to 2010 it is over $200 million,” she informed.
Meanwhile, the charges that apply to certain groups, such as charities, non-profit associations and Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) will be reduced.
Miss Leon said that for several years, charitable groups have made representation to the COJ, its parent Ministry (Industry, Investment and Commerce), and the Ministry of Finance and the Public Service about their inability to meet statutory obligations.
In response to the concerns, the COJ will reduce annual return fees for this group to $2,000, down from $4,000, and income and expenditure statement charges to $1,000, down from $2,000.
November 1 will also see the implementation of two new services, which have been demanded by customers.
A same-day express service for $6,000 will be introduced, as well as a charge of $1,500 for delivery of documents. In addition, if persons need a next day express service, they will be able to get that for $4,000.
“With the change in fees, this will mean that customers should file their returns on a timely basis, so that they will avoid late fees and penalties,” Miss Leon pointed out.
For further details on fees or new services, persons may call: 908-4419-24, or visit the website at: www.orcjamaica.com.

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