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Accounting Reference Date (ARD) Meaning in Finance

Accounting Reference Date (ARD) is a term popular among businesses in the UK.

Every company, including LLP-Limited Liability Partnership, is required to prepare annual financial statements for their Accounting Reference Period.

Accounting Reference Date (ARD) is the last date of Accounting Reference Period. Accounting Reference Period is the financial year of a company. The first accounting reference date is the last day of the month in which the company was incorporated.

How to determine the accounting reference date?

Newly Incorporated Companies - The last date of the month in which it was incorporated.

E.g. ABC Inc. was incorporated on 24th August, 2014. Then its first accounting reference date would be 31st August, 2014 and thereafter for subsequent years 31st August of each year will be taken as accounting reference date.

Change of the Accounting Reference Date (ARD)

In the UK, a company is allowed to change the ARD by sending the form AA01 - or form LL AA01 for LLPs to Companies House, which has to be done before annual accounts are due for delivery to Registrar of Companies at Companies House.


The Companies House can penalise or can even refuse to register the accounts, if a company fails to intimate the change in the ARD. In case the Companies House reject to register the accounts, then the company will have to prepare the fresh accounts.


  1. Ethan Diaz17 July, 2018

    Thanks for explaining the meaning! My doubts on the definition are clear now.

  2. It’s really such nice information to get advantage from.


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