Company Secretary as a Profession

A company secretary is a senior position in a private company or public organization, normally in the form of a managerial position or above. The company secretary ensures that an organization complies with relevant legislation and regulation, and keeps board members informed of their legal responsibilities. Company secretaries are the company’s named representative on legal documents, and it is their responsibility to ensure that the company and its directors operate within the law. It is also their responsibility to register and communicate with shareholders, to ensure that dividends are paid and to maintain company records, such as lists of directors and shareholders, and annual accounts.

In the case of companies listed on recognized stock exchanges, the annual returns are to be signed by a practicing company secretary. Further, the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) also recognizes the Company Secretary as the Compliance Officer and the practicing company secretary to issue various certificates under its Regulations. Further, the practicing Company Secretaries are also authorized to certify compliance of conditions of corporate governance in case of listed companies.

The Reserve Bank of India also authorizes company secretaries to issue various certificates.

The Institute of Company Secretaries of India, is the premier professional body to develop and regulate the profession of Company Secretaries in India. It was set up by an Act of Parliament in 1980.

Career Prospects for Company Secretary?
As per the Companies Act, 2013, every company with a paid-up share capital of Rs. Two Crores or above has to appoint a whole time Company Secretary.
A Company Secretary can:
1. Get employment in Government account or Law Departments..
2. Become a chairman or Managing Director of a company or be a part of esteemed board of a company.
3. Become an expert in corporate laws, Securities Law & Capital Market, and Corporate Governance.
4. Chief Advisor to the board of Directors on best practice in corporate governance.
5. Corporate Planner and Strategic Manager.
6. Go for independent practice.
Company Secretary has a great scope of employment in Private Companies, Consulting Firm, Financial Institutions, Bank, Department Of Company Affairs and Other Regulatory Bodies.

The minimum eligibility to gain entry in the Foundation Course is a pass in 10+2 examination or its equivalent in any stream. Candidate who has enrolled for the 10+2 examination can apply with the proof of passing the examination within 6 months.
Student of any discipline in Arts, Commerce and Science (excluding Fine Arts) can pursue Company Secretary Course.

Different Stages of CS Course:
Entry Level :
Foundation Programme
First Stage : Executive Programme
Final Stage : Professional Programme
Pathway to CS:
1. Enroll/Register with Institute of Company Secretaries for Foundation Programme
Minimum Qualification: Pass in 10 + 2 from a recognized Board.

2. Appear for Foundation Exam
Eligibility Criteria:

Completed a period of a 9 months after registration. Thus a student should register on or before 31st March for appearing in December attempt (in the same year) and 30th September for appearing in June attempt (in the next year).
Note: Students of any stream (excluding fine Arts) can pursue Foundation Course for appearing in Foundation Examination.

Enroll/Register for Executive Programme
Eligibility Criteria:

Qualified CS Foundation
Subjects of Executive Programme Module I
(i) Company Laws
(ii) Cost and Management Accounting
(iii) Economics and Commercial Laws
(iv) Tax Laws and Practice

Module II
(v) Company Accounts and Auditing Practice
(vi) Capital Markets and Securities Laws
(vi) Industrial, Labour and General Laws

4. Join Practical Training*

5. Appear in Module I & II Examination of Executive Programme

Eligibility Criteria:
Completion of 9 months of study course.
Join Practical Training*

7. Enroll/Register for Final Course i.e. Professional Programme
Eligibility Criteria:

Pass in Both Modules of Executive Programme

The subjects of Professional Programme are:
Module I

(i) Advanced Company Laws
(ii) Secretarial Audit, Compliance Management and Due Diligence
(iii) Corporate Restructuring Valuation and Insolvency

Module II
(iv) Information Technology and System Audit
(v) Financial, Treasury & Forex Management
(vi) Ethics, Governance and Sustainability

Module III
(vii) Advance Tax Laws and Practice
(viii) Drafting Appearance and Pleadings
(ix) Banking Law & Practice
(x) Capital, Commodity and Money Market
(xi) Insurance Law and Practice
(xii) Intellectual Property Rights-Law and Practice
(xiii) International Business Laws and Practice

8. Appear in Final Examination i.e. Professional Examination

9. Join Practical Training*

10. Enroll for Membership

Eligibility Criteria:
(i) Pass in Professional Examination
(ii) Completion of Practical Training
(iii) Completion of Management Skills Orientation Programme.


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