Reading time: 5 minutes

Unexpected events can occur in the life of your business, leading you to consider deregistering your company. Such events can include selling your business, merging your business with another company, or closing down your business entirely. Your business or company may have ceased trading, has little to no assets and has paid all its outstanding liabilities, including employee entitlements and superannuation. In that case, you should consider voluntarily deregistering your company to avoid having to pay any ongoing company costs. This article will discuss the process of voluntarily deregistering your company through the Australian Investments and Securities Commission (ASIC).

What Is Voluntary Deregistration?

If you are eligible for voluntary deregistration, you can close your company and cease to be an office of the company. In effect, this means that your company will cease to exist. Your obligations and duties as a director and officeholder also cease. Therefore, it can significantly reduce your personal risk of liability. If you voluntarily deregister your company, you are not required to:

  • continue paying the annual review fee; 
  • fulfil reporting requirements; or 
  • keep the company details up to date with ASIC.

Am I Eligible to Voluntarily Deregister My Company?

Before ASIC allows you to deregister your company voluntarily, your company must meet certain criteria. For example, you must ensure that your company:

  • assets are worth less than $1000;
  • is not conducting business;
  • has no outstanding liabilities, like unpaid employee entitlements;
  • is not involved in any legal proceedings; and
  • has paid all fees and penalties payable to ASIC.

Likewise, all members of the company must initially agree to deregister the company. If your company does not meet the above requirements, ASIC will reject your application.

Are There Other Essential Steps?

ASIC also recommends additional steps to take before lodging your application. One such step is to close any company bank accounts and review all company records. In addition, you want to ensure that all company property (such as vehicles, land, shares, trade marks, intellectual property, leases, permits) are have been appropriately transferred or sold. Likewise, ensure that no property remains registered in the company’s name and that all transfers of company property are registered. 

Additionally, if the company is a trust, ensure you appoint a new trustee, and that company legally owns no trust property. Essentially, you want to transfer or cancel all registered business names the company holds, plus any licenses the company holds. 

I Am Eligible. How Do I Voluntarily Deregister My Company?

You can apply for voluntary deregistration by lodging an Application for voluntary deregistration of a company (Form 6010). Currently, it costs $42 to apply. This fee is non-refundable if you do not meet the eligibility requirements and ASIC rejects your application. You can lodge this form online or submit it via post. When lodging a paper form, a director or member of the company must sign the application. A liquidator of the company can also sign the form. 

I’ve Lodged My Application. What Happens Next?

There are two possible outcomes of applying for voluntary deregistration of your company. These are:

  • approval – ASIC will write to you to confirm your company’s impending deregistration and publish a notice on their website; or
  • rejection – ASIC will write to you to advise why it has rejected your application.

What Are the Effects of Deregistering Your Company?

Deregistering a company is a big decision with many flow-on effects. Hence, it is essential to weigh these up before submitting your application. Of course, each company is different. Typically, once you deregister your company, it ceases to exist as a legal entity and can no longer operate or do anything. 

Likewise, any property that the company owned (except for trust property) vests in ASIC. Also, property held by the company on trust vests in the Commonwealth with ASIC as the trustee. The former officeholders (including directors) no longer have the right to deal with company property.

Additionally, a party cannot continue any legal proceedings in which the company is a party, and no party can start legal proceedings against the company. 

Key Takeaways

If your company has ceased trading and satisfies additional elements, it is possible to begin voluntary deregistration of the company. It is one of the most straightforward processes for officially putting an end to a company’s life and ending your obligations as director and officer of the company. You can do this online or by mailing the completed form to ASIC. If your company does not meet the tests and requirements for voluntary deregistration, ASIC will reject your application. However, you can still wind up your company in other ways. There are many effects of deregistering your company which you should consider before submitting your application.

For more information on the process of voluntary deregistration, contact LegalVision’s business lawyers on 1300 544 755 or fill out the form on this page.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is voluntary deregistration?

If your company meets certain criteria, you can apply for voluntary deregistration. This means your company will close, and your obligations as a company officeholder will cease.

Can all companies apply to deregister voluntarily?

No. There are specific eligibility requirements you must meet before you can apply for voluntary deregistration. If you do not meet these, ASIC will reject your application, and they will not refund your application fee.

How do I voluntarily deregister my company?

You can apply for voluntary deregistration by lodging an Application for voluntary deregistration of a company (Form 6010). Currently, it costs $42 to apply. You can lodge this form online or submit it via post.


Redundancies and Restructuring: Understanding Your Employer Obligations

Thursday 7 July | 11:00 - 11:45am

If you plan on making a role redundant, it is crucial that you understand your employer obligations. Our free webinar will explain.
Register Now

How to Sponsor Foreign Workers For Your Tech Business

Wednesday 13 July | 11:00 - 11:45am

Need web3 talent for your tech business? Consider sponsoring workers from overseas. Join our free webinar to learn more.
Register Now

Advertising 101: Social Media, Influencers and the Law

Thursday 21 July | 11:00 - 11:45am

Learn how to promote your business on social media without breaking the law. Register for our free webinar today.
Register Now

Structuring for Certainty in Uncertain Times

Tuesday 26 July | 12:00 - 12:45pm

Learn how to structure to weather storm and ensure you can take advantage of the “green shoots” opportunities arising on the other side of a recession.
Register Now

Playing for the Prize: How to Run Trade Promotions

Thursday 28 July | 11:00 - 11:45am

Running a promotion with a prize? Your business has specific trade promotion obligations. Join our free webinar to learn more.
Register Now

Web3 Essentials: Understanding SAFT Agreements

Tuesday 2 August | 11:00 - 11:45am

Learn how SAFT Agreements can help your Web3 business when raising capital. Register today for our free webinar.
Register Now

Understanding Your Annual Franchise Update Obligations

Wednesday 3 August | 11:00 - 11:45am

Franchisors must meet annual reporting obligations each October. Understand your legal requirements by registering for our free webinar today.
Register Now

Legal Essentials for Product Manufacturers

Thursday 11 August | 11:00 - 11:45am

As a product manufacturer, do you know your legal obligations if there is a product recall? Join our free webinar to learn more.
Register Now

About LegalVision: LegalVision is a commercial law firm that provides businesses with affordable and ongoing legal assistance through our industry-first membership.

By becoming a member, you'll have an experienced legal team ready to answer your questions, draft and review your contracts, and resolve your disputes. All the legal assistance your business needs, for a low monthly fee.

Learn more about our membership

Need Legal Help? Submit an Enquiry

If you would like to get in touch with our team and learn more about how our membership can help your business, fill out the form below.

Our Awards

  • 2020 Innovation Award 2020 Excellence in Technology & Innovation Finalist – Australasian Law Awards
  • 2020 Employer of Choice Award 2020 Employer of Choice Winner – Australasian Lawyer
  • 2020 Financial Times Award 2021 Fastest Growing Law Firm - Financial Times APAC 500
  • 2020 AFR Fast 100 List - Australian Financial Review
  • 2021 Law Firm of the Year Award 2021 Law Firm of the Year - Australasian Law Awards
  • 2022 Law Firm of the Year Winner 2022 Law Firm of the Year - Australasian Law Awards