By Denise A. Valdez
THE Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) will be requiring regulatory filings to be sent via courier to protect its personnel from contracting the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).
The corporate regulator has issued a new memorandum circular outlining new procedures for all corporations in submitting audited financial statements and general information sheets.
Companies must now send reports through the SEC Express Nationwide Submission (SENS) to any courier of their choice. The files must be delivered to the SEC Head Office located at the Philippine International Convention Center in Pasay City. All satellite offices remain closed for receiving reports.
While under enhanced community quarantine (ECQ), the SEC will allow submission of both financial statements and general information sheets via email. But once ECQ is lifted, a hard copy of the filings must be submitted through SENS. Financial statements that will be sent must be stamped by the Bureau of Internal Revenue.
To use SENS, corporations must download and accomplish the SENS form accessible through sens.secexpress.ph. The form should be included with the reports in the envelope that will be sent to the SEC via courier.
Submission of the filings will be from June 29 to August 7 and will follow a schedule based on the last digit of a corporation’s SEC registration or license number. Those whose registration numbers end with 1 or 2 must submit within June 29–July 10; with 3 or 4 within July 12–17; with 5 or 6 within July 20–24; with 7 or 8 within July 27–30; and with 9 or 0 within August 3–7.
Corporations may choose to submit their filings before the schedule assigned to their registration numbers. Those that will not be able to submit within schedule may submit late filings starting August 10 and will be subject to penalties.
The mailing date of the filings as reflected in the registry receipt of the courier will be recognized as the date of submission of filings. If submitted through the Philippine Postal Corp. (PhilPost), the date of receipt will be the date when PhilPost receives the files.
Old rules as indicated in the Securities Regulation Code will be followed for the basic components and reporting requirements of audited financial statements.
The SEC said these guidelines will be adopted during the period of filing after ECQ, “to provide adequate protection to the frontline service personnel…from undue exposure to the risk of COVID-19.”
The government has started easing quarantine measures over the weekend in an effort to oil the economy after about two months of shutdown. Metro Manila is under modified ECQ until the end of May.