The chart of accounts for businesses

All businesses that are subject to the code of commerce must keep accounting records according to an appropriate chart of accounts and produce annual accounts. Other businesses may be subject to specific or reduced requirements.

As such, not all businesses are subject to the Luxembourg standard chart of accounts (plan comptable normalisé - PCN).

For businesses subject to general accounting rules, the different accounting obligations may vary and are determined according to certain criteria, such as the size of the company, its legal form, its place of establishment, the sector of activity, the issue of securities, the notion of public interest, etc.

The content of the Luxembourg standard chart of accounts (PCN) has changed from the financial year starting 1 January 2020. The general functioning of the new chart of accounts and the reconciliation table (tableau de passage) also change and take effect on 4 January 2021.

In order to facilitate an overall understanding by the companies of all the changes made to the PCN, a comparative table will be made available to companies on the website of the Accounting Standards Commission.

Who is concerned

The obligation to keep appropriate accounts and draw up an inventory applies to the following businesses:

In principle, these businesses are required to use the Luxembourg standard chart of accounts (PCN).

Since 1 January 2020, financial holding companies (SOPARFI) are also subject to the PCN.

The following businesses however are not required to use the PCN:

  • sole traders and partnerships (SENC, SCS) with an annual turnover of less than EUR 100,000 excluding VAT;
  • special limited partnerships (société en commandite spéciale), whatever their annual turnover;
  • credit institutions;
  • insurance and reinsurance companies;
  • SEPCAVs (société d'épargne-pension à capital variable - pension fund company with variable capital);
  • SICAVs (Société d'investissement à capital variable - open-ended investment company);
  • companies subject to prudential supervision by the CSSF, with the exception of support professionals of the financial sector (support PFS);
  • temporary business associations and participating business associations;
  • companies keeping their accounts in IFRS.
Please note: a summary table called " Dépôt des données financières au RCS et publicité des comptes annuels au RESA" made available on the website of the Accounting Standards Commission clarifies the scope of application of the PCN, the collection of data on eCDF, the filing with the RCS and the publication of the accounts in the RESA.

How to proceed

Obligations

Companies not subject to the PCN must keep their books in accordance with the general rules of double-entry accounting.

The law does not require computerised accounting, but the accounts must be:

  • chronological;
  • complete and cover everything.

Furthermore, all book entries must be made without delay and in an accurate manner.

These businesses must file the required accounting documents with the Trade and Companies Register (RCS) in accordance with the terms and conditions applicable to them.

Businesses which are subject to the PCN must:

Using the Luxembourg standard chart of accounts

Luxembourg businesses are not required to use the structure of the PCN for their internal accounting needs, in particular if they have:

  • their own chart of accounts; or
  • a chart of accounts used within a group to which they belong.

These businesses shall annually report the balance of their accounts as shown in the standard chart of accounts for the purpose of filing them with the RCS, indicating that their current accounts are kept according to their own internal chart of accounts.

They must adequately document the correspondence between their internal chart of accounts and the PCN. This documentation must be kept at their head office.

Businesses concerned can request an electronic copy of the PCN from the House of Entrepreneurship - One-Stop Shop under info@houseofentrepreneurship.lu.

Structure of the Luxembourg standard chart of accounts

The PCN structure is presented in the form of a catalog of accounts with 7 different account types. Accounting operations relating to the balance sheet or the abridged balance sheet are reported in the classes 1 to 5.

Accounting operations relating to the profit and loss account or the abridged profit and loss account are reported in classes 6 and 7, i.e.:

  • equity, provisions and financial liabilities accounts;
  • formation expenses and fixed assets accounts;
  • inventory and work-in-progress accounts;
  • third-party accounts (debtors and creditors);
  • financial accounts;
  • charges accounts;
  • income accounts.

Who to contact

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