News

19/08/2018
New - Court Docket Service

Following the withdrawal of Bloomberg Law’s UK Court Docket Services on the 1st of August, we have created our new Court Docket service to bridge this gap for our clients. Our service provides alerts when a key word or company name appears at specific courts. You can also search for cases and monitor cases for claims forms or any other filings that are available for public inspection. We also provide a service that provides the retrieval of office copy documents relating to case filings.

The service covers Courts covered by CE-File (HM Courts & Tribunals Public Search & Office Copies) for England and Wales at the High Court of Justice relating to cases that are dealt with at The Business and Property Courts and Queen’s Bench Division of the High Court.

The following services have been created in in relation to our new service:

1. Court Docket Alerts

Provides an alert service for a party/participant name or names. We will monitor on schedule dates the name or names for any future case listings and provide an alert when any cases appear containing the party/particiant name or names.

2. Court Docket Prospect Alerts

Provides an alert for new case listings at a specific court or courts. We will monitor on scheduled dates the selected court(s) for all case listings and provide an alert when any new cases are listed.

3. Court Docket Search

A Party/Participant or Case Number search of the CE-File records showing any cases, filings and what office copy documents are available.

4. Court Docket Monitoring

Provides a monitoring service for any new office copy case document filings. We will monitor a case and let you know when any new office copy case documents become available.

5. Order Case Documents

Provides an office copy case document ordering service for office copy documents that are available for public inspection for any case.

02/07/2018
CHS Beta – Latest news from Companies House

A further update from the Applications Support Manager at Companies House:

"The CHS filing history and resolutions fix was successfully implemented on 19th June, we are currently correcting the re-registrations going back to when CHS went live, there are 6500 in total and this will be completed over the coming weeks. We are also in the process of identifying the resolutions that need to be corrected in the past, this is a more complex process and I’ll give an update when we know rough timescales.

The meeting with GDS went well, as in the technical people we spoke to completely understand why our site is more complex and the approach we’ve taken. We have presented them with three options to progress the issue, one of which is go-live as-is (remove the beta status), the others involve varying amounts of work for us to do before we can go-live. We await a response from GDS, the decision is still with the assessment team."

05/06/2018
CHS Beta – Latest news from Companies House

Hers is the latest update/statement from the from the Applications Support Manager at Companies House.:

Resolution and re-registration display issue with CHS filing history

Development work is complete on both of these issues and they are in test, we aim to get them implemented by the end of June pending successful testing. We’ve slightly changed the way CHS performs the filing history listing for this which is why it wasn’t as straightforward as we would have liked. Following the implementation we will be looking to correct the historical data starting with the most recent first, once we start this we will be able to give firmer timescales on how long it will take to complete.

CHS degradation issue

Resolved, no occurrences since Monday 23rd April when it was fixed, site also performing better on average. No further service issues have occurred with CHS and we maintain 100% service availability this far for the financial year.

CHS Live assessment

Assessment has been delayed due to issue with domain migration, we are the first to move to the GDS domain with a multi-service website so it’s not a straightforward migration, it is an issue we’ve been discussing with GDS for many months so it was unexpected that it’s a must do for the assessment. We have a meeting with GDS architects next week in an attempt to progress. We’ve also made the CHS website code repository public on GitHub so this covers off the public code aspect of the assessment. Other code repositories will be made public in due course and we will progress on a “public by default” basis going forward.

CHS Search

We have been working on improvements to the main search facility on CHS to improve how the results are returned, this has in part been driven by an essential update to the software used but we have taken the opportunity to further improve the searching as part of the upgrade. This change is currently being tested.

Statistics

As mentioned in our catch up the number of CHS data requests averaged at just over 17 million per day in April (data requests, image requests and searches), just to give an indication of the volume of access to free data. We also now have over 510,000 companies being followed using the follow service.

Search product pipeline

As discussed recently we have high level plan to have a dedicated team working on developing CHS search further, following on completion of current work they’ll pick up prioritised backlog. The initial high level work plan has the streaming API development and improvements such as items raised on the developer forum in the backlog.

Filing product pipeline

Following the addition of abridged accounts to the CHS platform, work has now started on developing small full accounts, accounts for companies limited by guarantee and Community Interest Company (CICs) accounts. The CIC accounts will also include enabling the annual report filing (CIC34) and payment of £15 fee. For this we are working with GDS to integrate the GOV.UK pay platform into CHS. The CIC accounts alpha assessment has taken place and we await the result."

03/05/2018
CHS Beta – Latest news from Companies House

Here is the lastest update/statement from the Head of the Chief Executive's Office at Companies House. We have provided a narrative to some of points below, so as to interpret some of the terms used and provide some clarity to the statement.

"The abridged accounts development work has been continuing with the recent addition of save & resume, related party transactions, and the ability to change the accounting reference date. The GDS beta assessment was completed on 12th March and over 10,000 sets of abridged accounts have been successfully filed using the service." GDS stands for 'Government Digital Service'.

"Progress towards the live assessment for CHS search and output is ongoing but has been pushed back while EU exit service assessments take priority." This refers to the GDS live assessment. The assessment was due to take place in March/April. However, following this statement we were subsequently informed at the Companies House working meeting that the assessment will take place on the 9th of May and providing Companies House pass the GDS assessment, the CHS website has the potential of going live a few days later.

"The development work to address the accessibility issues has been completed and the retest undertaken." This refers to CHS code check which was required to be completed by a third party (The Digital Accessibility Centre), whereby a number of medium and low priority issues were raised, and have now been addressed.

"Follow usage continues to increase with over 400,000 companies being followed."

"In February the work was completed to ensure that resolution images are available from the CHS Filing history going forward." This has fixed the Resolution indexing and image issues for all filings going forward but Companies House have yet to schedule a fix for previous years. At our subsequent working meeting, we were informed that they are actively trying to schedule in some time to provide a fix for previous years.

Furthermore, at the working meeting, we also brought up the issue surrounding missing documents for re-registrations (re-registrations from private to public and visa versa). Following this meeting we received the following statement from Kean Jones the Companies House Application Support Manager:

"I’ve ensured that we have some resource agreed to progress this and the team believe they have identified a fix, they are progressing this now but it will need thorough testing. I’ve spoken to the analyst this morning and based on our discussion and other work that’s ongoing I estimate that we’ll be able to implement a fix by the end of June. It may be before this but as you know we need to be cautious pending successful testing. I’ve also engaged with the support team regarding correcting historical records for both resolutions and re-registrations, this is currently under investigation."

"At the end of February packages of pre1995 documents and mortgage documents for companies and Limited Partnerships pre2014, have been made available on the CHS Filing History, as a single pdf containing multiple images e.g. LP011004 & 2220410." This refers to the fact that all scanned pre 1995 document images (pre 2014 for Limited Partnerships) are now available free on the CHS system. However, any pre 1995/2014 documents that have not been scanned remain available on the CHD system at a cost of £4.

"The next addition to the CHS platform is Small Full Accounts for private limited companies and Community Interest Companies which is currently in the Discovery / Alpha stage."

25/01/2018
CHS Beta – Latest news from Companies House

Hers is the latest update/statement from the Head of the Chief Executive's Office at Companies House:

Please note that there are two interesting and significant news items made in the statement:

  • That subject to GDS (Government Digital Service) assessment of the CHS Beta site, due to be held in April or May of this year being successful, will result in the CHS beta site status moving from 'beta' to 'live'.
  • That all scanned pre 1995 (pre 2014 for Limited Partnerships) documents will be made available on the CHS site, with implementation scheduled for February 2018.

The full statement from Companies House reads as follows:

"Having checked with my colleagues in Policy we have nothing further to report on the retention policy for dissolved companies as yet, we will keep you informed.

Latest CHS Update

At the start of November all remaining elements of CHS were successfully moved to the Cloud.

The CHS development work for abridged accounts filing was completed and implemented on 15th November as a private beta. The abridged accounts GDS Assessment is scheduled for 28th February. Over 6,500 set of abridged accounts have successfully been filed using the service so far.

Progress towards the live assessment for the CHS search and output is ongoing. The CHS live assessment will take place after the abridged account beta assessment. We are on the list for a scheduled date from GDS and are planning for March or April 2018.

An independent accessibility audit has been completed by The Digital Accessibility Centre and there are a number of medium and low priority issues that are being investigated. The development work to address the accessibility issues has been completed and the service will be retested shortly.

Work is continuing on making the codebase public – ongoing

Follow usage continues to increase with over 320k companies being followed

The development work to ensure that images are available for resolutions is complete, we identified a few issues which is why it has taken a little longer than originally expected. It is currently undergoing testing with the aim to implement shortly. This will correct resolution images going forward, and we will start on a programme of work to resend the images for previous years.

Packages of older document images

When packages of pre1995 documents for companies and for Limited Partnerships pre2014, are requested by customers they are currently scanned and maintained on our internal CHIPS service. These will now be made available as a single pdf containing multiple document images on the filing history of CHS. If they are available for a company they will be displayed in the filing history on 1st January 1995 and 5th April 2014. This work is currently in test and the implementation is scheduled for February 2018."

In addition, we have received an update from the Policy unit of Companies House stating that they have nothing further to report on the retention policy.

05/12/2017
CHS Beta – Latest news from Companies House

Here is the lastest update/statement from the Head of the Chief Executive's Office at Companies House relating to the 'Beta status', and the progress relating to their plans to phase out CHD (Companies House Direct). We have provided a narrative to some of points below, so as to interpret some of the terms used and provide some clarity to the statement.

"At the start of November all remaining elements of CHS were successfully moved to the Cloud." (The cloud being Amazon Web Service)

"The CHS development work for abridged accounts filing was completed and implemented on 15th November as a private beta. A number of sets of accounts have since been filed."

Progress towards the live assessment for the CHS search and output is ongoing. An independent accessibility audit has been completed by The Digital Accessibility Centre and there are a number of medium and low priority issues that are being investigated." (It is a requirement by GDS (Government Digital Service) that an independent accessibility audit is carried out before 'live' status is granted).

"Work is continuing on making the codebase public." (It is a requirement by GDS that the codebase is made public. The Government Digital Service Standard can be viewed here: https://www.gov.uk/service-manual/service-standard ).

"A catch up meeting with the GDS Assessment Team to discuss the availability of possible live assessment dates in the new year. Follow usage continues to increase with over 52k unique users following over 270k companies.

Development work is currently underway to fix the CHS issue with resolution images and this should be implemented by the end of the year. This will enable images to be displayed going forward and then we will agree a schedule to address the previous years." (This is the issue where resolutions appear to be me missing from CHS, which is created when there is more than one resolution on a single document. The resolution which is shown as not being available will in fact appear on the previous resolution image of the same date. The fix they are referring to is make sure that the image for all resolutions are showing as available whilst fixing the indexing problem).

As you can see there appears to be a fair amount of progress towards dropping the 'Beta status' and a going live. Please note that Companies House have also confirmed that any new documents filed for companies, can appear on the CHS system up to 24 hours prior to appearing on the CHD system.

09/10/2017
CHS Beta – Latest news from Companies House

Here is the latest update/statement from the Head of the Chief Executive's Office at Companies House relating to the 'Beta status', and the progress relating to their plans to phase out CHD (Companies House Direct):

"A key area of interest has been the progress towards removing the beta status. As we’ve discussed previously there are a number of factors that need to be taken into consideration. Progress towards the live assessment for the CHS search and output is ongoing. Work has started on making the codebase public, and we are aiming to move the remaining elements of CHS to the Cloud by November. In October the service is also undergoing an independent accessibility assessment by the Digital Accessibility Centre. When these elements are complete we can begin the transition work onto the gov.uk sub domain, which is required prior to an assessment date for moving to the live status.

‘Follow’ usage continues to increase with over 42k unique users following over 220k companies. We have been actively migrating the larger Companies House Direct and WebCHeck monitor accounts to Follow on customer request.

Surveys have been placed on both WebCHeck and CHD for users to tell us why they still use the services. To date 1000+ surveys have been completed. These results will inform the prioritisation of the activities required to migrate users onto CHS and close CHD accounts.

We are continuing to have discussions with GDS (Government Digital Service) to move from beta to live but do not yet have a definite date. There are no firm plans for closing WebCheck and CHD at this stage. However we understand how important this is and are committed to ensuring customers are given adequate notice."

As part of our programme of work to identify data issues, in September we added the function for users to report if there is anything wrong with a CHS page. This will enable us to make the register as complete and accurate as possible.

The abridged accounts filing functionality on the service will be available in October as a private beta. Any assessment to move the CHS search and output to live is separate to this."

18/07/2017
CHS Beta – Latest news from Companies House

Following on from our recent discussions with the Head of the Chief Executive's office at Companies House, please note the following important and significant response we received regarding a question we posed:

Q: "You mention that you need an approach for discontinuing your other services. We may be able to help you with that. We have noticed that CHS tends to be more up-to-date than CHD. Whether that's simply the result of the sequence of updating or whatever, that is a reason why customers should move to CHS.

If you can say officially that CHS is your most up-to-date record we would be happy to promulgate that and see if that can help increase the speed of the transition to it."

A: "In relation to you supplementary query we are happy to confirm that under normal operation new company data and digitally filed images will be available on CHS prior to CHD, other transactional data and paper filed images will be available at approximately the same time."

12/06/2017
Award Winning Service!

On Friday night CRO Info won the prestigious award of "Supplier of the Year" at the annual British and Irish Association of Law Librarians awards dinner held in Manchester.

This is an exceptional achievement given that we beat our direct industry rivals and other related industry giants. Although CRO has been around for over 24 years, the information division was only introduced just over 2 years ago and it is unprecedented for a relatively new company to win this award.

Our go to knowledge, customer service and can-do attitude as clearly been recognised by our customers and we would like to thank all who voted for us.

This award is dedicated to our teams in Cardiff, London and Bramhall, whose outstanding efforts have resulted in this award.