What are the registration formalities relating to LLPs?

LLPs shall be registered with the Registrar of Companies (ROC) (appointed under the Companies Act, 1956) after following the provisions specified in the LLP Act. Every LLP shall have a registered office. An Incorporation Document subscribed by at least two partners shall have to be filed with the Registrar in a prescribed form. Contents of LLP Agreement, as may be prescribed, shall also be required to be filed with Registrar, online. Contents of LLP Agreement or any changes made therein, if any, may be filed in Form 3 and details of partners/designated partners may be filed in Form 4 in accordance with LLP Rules, 2009.

Whether foreigners can incorporate LLP?

Yes, the LLP Act 2008 allows Foreign Nationals including Foreign Companies & LLPs to incorporate a LLP in India provided at least one designated partner is resident of India. However, the LLP/Partners would have to comply with all relevant Foreign Exchange Laws/ Rules/ Regulations/ Guidelines.

What are the broad provisions of the Act in respect of names of LLPs?

Every limited liability partnership shall have either the words “limited liability partnership” or the acronym “LLP” as the last words of its name. LLPs would not be given names, which, in the opinion of the Central Government, are undesirable. Registrar would be under obligation to follow such rules, which would be framed by the Central Government in connection with allotting names to LLPs. There are also provisions in respect of ‘rectification of name’ in case two LLPs have been registered with the same name, inadvertently.

For what period a name can be reserved by Registrar?

The name can be reserved by ROC on approval of Form 1, for a period of 3 months from the date of intimation by the Registrar. However, Foreign LLP/Companies have an option to reserve their existing names, under which they are operating outside India, for a period of 3 years in India, which can be further renewed on application to Registrar in Form 25.

Can LLP give any other address (besides its registered office) for the purpose of receiving communication from Registrar?

It has been provided in the Act that a document may be served on a LLP or a partner or designated partner by sending it by post or by any other mode (to be prescribed under Rules) at the registered office and any other address specifically declared by the LLP for the purpose in such form and manner as may be prescribed (in the rules). Thus, an LLP shall have option to declare one more address (other than the registered office) for getting statutory notices/letters etc. from Registrar.

Change in Partners

How can a person become a partner of an LLP?

Persons, who subscribed to the “Incorporation Document” at the time of incorporation of LLP, shall be partners of LLP. Subsequent to incorporation, new partners can be admitted in the LLP as per conditions and requirements of LLP Agreement.

How can an existing partner cease to be a partner of an LLP?

A person may cease to be a partner in accordance with the agreement or in the absence of agreement, by giving 30 days notice to the other partners.

A person shall also cease to be a partner of a limited liability partnership-

(a) on his death or dissolution of the limited liability partnership; or

(b) if he is declared to be of unsound mind by a competent court; or

(c) if he has applied to be adjudged as an insolvent or declared as an insolvent.

Notice is required to be given to ROC when a person becomes or ceases to be partner or for any change in partners.

What will be the obligation of a partner in case he changes his name or address?

Every partner shall inform the LLP of any change in his name or address within a period of fifteen days of such change. The LLP, in turn, would be under obligation to file such details with the Registrar within thirty days of such change in Form 4.

Conversion of other entities into LLPs and vice versa

Whether other business entities like firm or company would be able to convert themselves into LLP?

The LLP Act contains enabling provisions pursuant to which a firm (set up under Indian Partnership Act, 1932) and private company or unlisted public company (incorporated under Companies Act) would be able to convert themselves into LLPs. Provisions of clause 58 and Schedule II to Schedule IV to the Act provide procedure in this regard.

Whether LLP would be able to convert itself into company under the Companies Act, 1956?

This would not be allowed under LLP Act. However, enabling provisions would be required to be made in the Companies Act for such conversion. Necessary action in this regard would be taken when Companies Act would be revised.

What is the treatment for stamp duty issues, both in terms of original incorporation and conversion from other business structures? Would there be any stamp duty exemption in case of conversion?

Since Stamp Duty is the subject reserved for the States, the LLP Act does not contain any provision for treatment of stamp duty issues. The stamp duty payable will depend upon the relevant Stamp Act prescribed by the State Government/Union Territory.

What are the requirements and consequence provided in the Act in respect of licences, permits, approvals etc obtained by a firm, private company or an unlisted public company, prior to its conversion into LLP?

It has been provided in the Act that on conversion of a firm/private company/unlisted public company into LLP, any approval, permit or licence issued to the firm/private company/unlisted company under any other Act shall, subject to the provisions of such other Act under which such approval, permit or licence was issued, be transferred in the name of converted entity viz LLP.

Merger and Winding-up of LLPs

Whether two LLPs would be allowed to merge?

Provisions of section 60 to 62 of the Act provide for the manner in which compromises or arrangements including mergers and amalgamations involving LLPs shall be allowed.

What is the date of implementation of these Guidelines?

It is proposed to provide the provisions and procedures required to be complied with when the affairs of an LLP are to be wound-up and dissolved, by enabling the Central Government to make rules under the LLP Act, 2008.

Miscellaneous Provisions

What are the provisions being proposed in the Act for striking off defunct LLPs? Whether LLPs would be allowed a less stringent framework for closing of business?

The Act empowers Registrars to strike off names of LLPs which are not carrying on any business or operation. They will be under obligation to give an opportunity of being heard to LLP concerned. Details for manner of striking off would be prescribed through rules. Since LLPs would be governed by LLP Agreement it would be possible for LLPs to make suitable clauses in such Agreement prescribing time limits or duration of LLPs. In such cases, provisions for striking off names could be used.

Besides, the Act empowers Central Government to make rules in respect of winding up and dissolution of LLPs. It is proposed to prescribe a simple procedure for voluntary winding up of LLPs under such rules.

Whether electronic filing of documents with ROC would be allowed? How far MCA-21 e-Governance initiative will be extended and be useful for LLPs structure under the Act?

The LLP Act contains enabling provisions for use of electronic mode for filing of documents with Registrars. Details have been specified in the LLP Rules, 2009. Authentication of documents as per Information Technology Act, 2000 has also been recognized in the LLP Act.

At present , Office of Registrar for registration etc of LLPs has been set up at Delhi (3rd Floor, Paryavaran Bhavan, CGO Complex, New Delhi-3). The filing and inspection of documents with the Registrar pursuant to LLP Act, 2008/ LLP Rules, 2009 can be made through website

Whether provisions of the Companies Act, 1956 would be applicable to LLPs?

Since LLP shall be in the form of a body corporate, it is proposed that to address various situations applicable to LLPs as such, the relevant provisions of the Companies Act, 1956 may be made applicable to LLPs at any time in the future by Notification by Central Government, with such changes or modifications as appropriate.

Whether, amendments will be required in the Regulatory Acts governing the various professional services so that these can be aligned with the objectives of the Act?

Yes. Amendments to various such Acts would be necessary which can be considered by concerned Ministries/Departments.

Investigation of Affairs of LLPs and Role of Government to check Unscrupulous LLPs etc.

What are the measures, which can be taken against an LLP, which has engaged in fraudulent activities?

Central Govt may appoint inspectors to investigate the affairs of an LLP. The manner and procedure for conduct of investigation has been specified in the Act.

What will be the role of Government in regulation of LLPs? How will the Act able to prevent ‘fly-by-night’ promoters or LLPs vanishing after incorporation?

LLP structure is proposed to allow entrepreneurs and businessmen/servicemen to combine themselves with a view to run a business/service for profit in a more flexible manner than companies. The internal processes of LLPs shall be governed by the LLP Agreement. To protect interests of various stakeholders, following approach has been followed in the LLP Act:-

  • imandatory incorporation of LLPs with registrar with suitable due diligence to be followed by promotes/professionals at the time of incorporation. Provisions for mandatory Designated Partners Identification Number (DPIN) to be obtained by every designated partner (similar to DIP for directors of companies) have been proposed in the Act.
  • MCA-21 e-Governance process will be used for incorporation purposes which will help to track any unscrupulous promoter/partner of an LLP.
  • Details of partners and any changes made therein shall be required to be filed with the registrar
  • Filing of annual documents like (SAS and Annual Return) with the Registrars will be mandatory. Such documents will also be open for public inspection.
  • Audit of all LLPs (except small LLPs which may be exempted by way of notification by Central Govt) shall be mandatory.
  • Provisions have been proposed in the Act to empower Registrar to conduct scrutiny of documents filed with him and for calling of any other relevant information from LLP or its partners/officials and also for summoning of LLPs’ partners/officials in certain cases.
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