Accounting obligation

The Accounting Act in Norway uses two terms to indicate that the accounting obligation is differentiated. This depends on the enterprise’s organisational form and the size of its turnover. An enterprise will either be subject to the bookkeeping obligation only, or both the bookkeeping obligation and the accounting obligation.


Enterprises that are only subject to the bookkeeping obligation do not need to prepare annual accounts for the Register of Company Accounts. However, an enterprise which is subject to the bookkeeping obligation only must still prepare accounts in accordance with the relevant bookkeeping rules. These are used as a basis for completing the income statement which is submitted to the Norwegian Tax Administration.

What is accounting obligation?

An enterprise which is subject to the accounting obligation must prepare a set of annual accounts comprising at least an income statement, balance sheet and notes. Larger enterprises must also prepare an annual report. The annual accounts must be submitted to the Register of Company Accounts using the form for annual accounts in Altinn, and will then be made publicly available to anyone who wishes to inspect them. Annual accounts must be submitted in addition to the tax return to the Norwegian Tax Administration.

Who has an accounting obligation?

It is the organisational form and the size of the enterprise that determines whether an enterprise is subject to the accounting obligation. For example, all limited liability companies have an accounting obligation. Small sole proprietorships normally does not have an accounting obligation. Some professions have an accounting obligation, regardless of the type of incorporation, such as accountants and lawyers.

The Brønnøysund Register Centre on accounting obligation (in Norwegian only)

Regnskapsloven (in Norwegian only)

Regnskapsloven om årsregnskap og årsberetning (in Norwegian only)

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