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Drawing up a balance sheet, a virtuous obligation for any company director

The year Z0Z0 starts: all companies whose financial year coincides with the calendar year will have to take stock of the year 2019.

But why exactly are we doing a balance sheet?

Article L123-12 of the Commercial Code stipulates that any natural person or legal entity exercising the capacity of trader must draw up annual accounts at the end of the financial year in the light of the accounting records and inventory. With this provision, the legislator is merely formalizing an obvious necessity for any entrepreneur: if one wants to manage one's business properly, it is essential to take regular stock of one's management. It seems to be a vital minimum to draw up accounts once a year to ensure that all our decisions and actions are in line with expectations and that there are no risks affecting the smooth running of the company that we are not aware of. As soon as the company grows, or when certain specific risks appear, it is not uncommon, even, for one or more interim balance sheets to be desired by the manager.

The balance sheet will also serve the entrepreneur more indirectly because it is useful to his stakeholders:

- the banker will be able to be reassured on the good use of the funds he has "invested" in the company or on the new financing he is about to put in place; - prospects/customers will be able to validate the credibility and sustainability of the services and/or products offered, seeing that the company is well managed; - suppliers will be reassured about the company's ability to honour its debts.

Beyond that, the balance sheet will serve as a basis, after some tax restatements, for the tax that will be levied by the State for the financing of our system.

What is the deadline for drawing up the balance sheet?

The deadlines for drawing up the balance sheet are governed by :

- on the one hand, for legal entities, the commercial code which obliges companies to file their annual accounts at the registry within one month of their approval by the meeting. The deadline for holding the meeting is 6 months, i.e. 30 June for companies closing on 31 December; - on the other hand, for all companies, by the tax authorities who are waiting for the tax return by the deadline of 15 May.

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