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What is Corporate Identification Number (CIN)?

What is Corporate Identification Number (CIN)?

The Registrar of Companies (ROC) issues a special identification number called the Company Identification Number (CIN) to any company incorporated in India. The ROC indicates the CIN when issuing the registration certificate for a company.

The ROC issues the CIN (Corporate Identification Number) as a 21-digit alphanumeric code to companies incorporated within the country after registering them in various Indian states under the MCA (Ministry of Corporate Affairs).

CIN is provided to all companies registered in India, which include:

  • Private Limited Companies (PLCs)
  • One Person Companies (OPCs)
  • Companies owned by the Government of India
  • State Government Companies
  • Not-for-Profit Section 8 Company
  • Nidhi Companies, etc.

However, Limited Liability Partnerships (LLP) established in India are not given a CIN. For the LLPs, the ROC gives the LLPIN (Limited Liability Partnership Identification Number) that acts as a unique 7-digit identification number of the LLP.

Importance of Corporate Identification Number:

Companies use the CIN (Corporate Identification Number) to track all aspects and activities from their incorporation by the ROC (Registrar of Companies) and must provide it on all transactions with the respective ROC.

The 21 digit CIN has its own meaning which is easily translatable and which helps in finding basic information relating to a company. It is used for finding the primary details of the companies which are registered within the country under MCA.

CIN is a unique number that can be used for identifying or tracking companies for several levels of information that ROC / MCA holds. The CIN contains the identity of an organization and additional information regarding the registered company under the ROC.

Usage of Corporate Incorporation Number:

Every company established in India must quote its Corporate Identification Number (CIN) on various documents, including:

  • On invoices, bills and receipts
  • On notice
  • On memos
  • On letterheads
  • Annual Reports and audits
  • Every e-form submission on the MCA portal
  • Company’s official publications
  • Any other company publications

Penalty for Non-compliance of Mentioning CIN:

If the aforementioned standards are not met, the defaulting corporation and each failing official will incur a penalty of INR 1,000 per day until they remedy the default. The maximum fine for this default, however, is just INR 1,000,000.

Changing Corporate Identification Number:

CIN which is provided to every registered company for the purpose of identification can be changed in certain cases such as:

  • Any change in the listing status of a company
  • Any change in the location or change of state where the company’s registered office is situated
  • Any change in the industry/sector to which a company belongs

Frequently Asked Questions:

1.How to apply for CIN?

The Registrar of Companies allots an alphanumeric number to the company on the date of its registration. The company’s Certificate of Incorporation mentions its CIN (Corporate Identification Number). Therefore, when the Registrar of Companies approves the incorporation of a company, it automatically receives an allotted CIN number.

2.Does the Registrar of Companies allot CIN to LLP?

No. The Registrar of Companies allots a CIN (Corporate Identification Number) to companies registered under the Companies Act, 2013. The Registrar of Companies, on the other hand, assigns an LLPIN (LLP Identification Number) to Limited Liability Partnerships (LLPs). Therefore, CIN is exclusively allotted to companies registered under the Companies Act, 2013, while LLPIN is allotted to LLPs by the Registrar of Companies.

3.Are CIN and GST the same?

No, the Registrar of Companies allots a CIN (Corporate Identification Number) to registered companies at the time of issuing the company registration certificate. In contrast, companies and businesses registered under the GST law are issued a GSTIN (Goods and Services Tax Identification Number). Therefore, CIN and GSTIN are different identification numbers with distinct functions.

4.Is mentioning the CIN (Corporate Identification Number) on the company’s invoices, bills, and receipts mandatory?

Yes. As per section 12(3)(c) of the Companies Act, a company must print its name, address of its registered office and the CIN in all its business letters, billheads, letter papers, notices and other official publications. Thus, a company must mandatorily mention its CIN on its bills, invoices, receipts and e-mails sent to outside parties.


Name : Santhosh Gopinath G S


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