How to deregister a company
Updated over a week ago

There are 2 main ways a company can be deregistered with the government (CIPC).

  1. Automatically deregistration, by failing to file CIPC annual returns.

  2. Voluntary deregistration, by submitting a deregistration request to the CIPC.

Tip: If you'd like to skip these steps, Govchain offers a company deregistration service for a small fee.

Automatic Deregistration

If a company fails to submit two or more CIPC annual returns, the CIPC will begin the deregistration process automatically. Once a maximum of five annual returns are outstanding then the company will be officially deregistered.

Important note: Although this may seem like the easy option. The company would be seen as active over those 5 years. This means that the company can incur penalties and late payment fees from both the CIPC and SARS for missing important compliance dates. The government may then require these fees to be paid at a later date.

Voluntary Deregistration

In order to voluntarily de-register a company, you will need to follow these steps:

Step 1: Get your company's annual returns and tax returns up to date.

When submitting a request to deregister the company. Your CIPC annual returns and SARS tax returns should be up to date.

Step 2: Gather supporting documents

You will need the following supporting documents to submit to the CIPC:

  • Tax clearance certificate (pin) or any other written confirmation from SARS that no tax liability is outstanding;

  • Certified ID copies of the directors

  • Deregistration letter (see next step)

Step 3: Create a deregistration letter on your company letterhead

The letter must have:

  • Date: <todays date>

  • Attention: Companies and Intellectual Properties Commission (CIPC)

  • Name: <your registered company name>

  • Registration Number: <your company registration number>

  • Tax Number: <your company income tax reference number>

It must also include the following statement:

The company is dormant (not carrying on business); and has no assets, or because of the inadequacy of its assets, there is no reasonable probability of the company being liquidated;

The letter must also be signed by at least 50% of the active directors of the company.

Step 4: Submit the deregistration request to the CIPC

The deregistration letter along with supporting documents must be emailed to [email protected].

Important Notes:

  • Your company's SARS tax returns must be up to date.

  • Your company's CIPC annual returns must be up to date.

  • The CIPC deregistration process can take some time to be processed (up to 6 months). It's best to follow up with them to make sure they have received the deregistration and are busy processing it.

  • If you have a company that is in the deregistration process, you may still register a new company.

  • Although it may seem like the easy option to not pay your CIPC annual returns in order to start the automatic deregistration process, this can be risky as SARS could charge penalty fees for late/unsubmitted tax returns.

Tip: If you'd like Govchain to handle the process, visit our deregistration service to learn more.

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