[FAQs] Company Secretary (CS) – Training Questions

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  • Last Updated on 25 July, 2022

Company Secretary Training

FAQ 1. Which are the various trainings to be undergone by a CS student under the New CS Training Structure?

There are three trainings which a student has to undergo during the CS Course. They are:-

1. After passing the Executive Program examination, a candidate will have to enroll in the Executive Development Program (EDP) for one month. It is for a period of 30 days, out of which 15 days EDP needs to be completed in classroom mode while remaining 15 days e-EDP through online mode at the ICSI e-learning portal. The students can do both the classroom mode EDP as well as the e-EDP at the same time.

2. Practical Training for 21 months after completion of Executive Development Programme (EDP), on a whole-time basis during normal working hours:

a. in a company having a company secretary in whole time employment or any other company fulfilling such criteria as may be determined by the Institute; or

b. under a Company Secretary in whole-time practice fulfilling such criteria as may be determined by the Institute; or

c. in any other body corporate or institution or organisation or entity fulfilling such criteria as may be determined by the Institute.

Candidates undertaking Practical Training must work during normal business hours, which must be at least 8 hours per day for 5 days or 40 hours per week for the duration of the Practical Training and a total of 52 leaves are allowed in 21 months of training with a stipend of Rs. 3,000 or Rs. 4,000 depending upon whether he/she is undergoing training under PCS or other entities.

3. A Corporate Leadership Development Programme (CLDP) spanning not less than thirty days but not more than sixty days after passing the Professional Programme Examination.

FAQ 2. What is the fee structure for different trainings to be undergone during the CS Course?

A student has to undergo several trainings and programmes during the CS Course period. Fees for such trainings and programmes as prescribed by ICSI are as follows:

Particulars

Fees (Amount in Rs.)

One Day Orientation Programme

(to be paid at the time of registration for CS Executive Programme)

600
Executive Development Programme (Class-room mode) 7,000
E-EDP 2,000
Practical Training Exemption Fee 20,000
Corporate Leadership Development Programme 15,000

FAQ 3. When should a student begin his/her CS Practical Training?

This question is very important and decision has to be taken carefully by every CS Aspirant. It can decide how early a student can clear his/her exams and get the CS degree. CS training offers CS students a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to grow, study, and gain professional expertise in order to become future leader of the field. Students must be aware that organized training will assist them in gaining the necessary information and skills to execute the function of company secretary. Working with an experienced company secretary having wide exposure of the profession is always beneficial to the students.

Before introduction of the New Training Structure 2020, it was beneficial to do training after CS Professional examination because a student would save not only time but also would be able to focus more on studies, which can be made evident as below:

Particulars Duration
After registration to CS Executive Programme 3 years’ training required
After passing CS Executive Programme 2 years’ training required
After passing CS Professional Exam 1 year training required

The duration of practical training under New Training Structure as per Company Secretaries (Amendment) Regulations, 2020 is 21 months which can be done only after passing CS Executive.

Let’s analyse the two situations with examples and see which decision would be better:

A candidate has passed CS Executive in February 2022, and would be eligible to appear for exams from December 2022. He has two options:

1. Decide to join training immediately after clearing CS Executive and he/she would be able to complete the training by around February 2024. So the candidate can appear for CS Professionals exams in December 2022, June 2023 or December 2023 attempts along with the ongoing training.

Candidate can even choose to appear for 3 modules in 3 attempts which would be easy to manage with the office. As per this assumption, candidate would become CS by February 2024.

2. Decide to join training after completing CS Professional examination, i.e. appearing for CS Professional examination and clearing all the 3 modules by February 2023. Now the candidate joins the training, and will become CS Professional by February 2025.

With this analysis, we can conclude that situation 1 is beneficial as it will save 1 year for the student besides being able to manage exam pressure. Whereas in situation 2, if the candidate is unable to clear in 1st or 2nd attempt, there can be delay in becoming  Company Secretary.

Note: If a student is aiming for rank, then giving three modules together shall make more sense. However, it is subject to a student’s decision and his/her caliber.

FAQ 4. Will the New Training Structure apply to a student who has registered for CS Executive in 2019 but has not yet started any training?

Students who have not started their training within the time frame prescribed in notification ICSI/Trg/2020 dated 3rd Aug, 2020, which was extended up to 2nd Feb 2021, will be forced to switch to the New Training Structure under the CS (Amendment) Regulations, 2020, w.e.f. 3rd Feb 2021, regardless of the date of their registration to the Executive Program or Professional Program.

FAQ 5. What is the training duration of EDP under New Training structure as per Company Secretaries (Amendments) Regulations, 2020?

The EDP is for a period of 30 days, out of which 15 days EDP needs to be completed in classroom mode in CCGRT/CoE/ROs/ Chapters (upto the level of Gold Chapter) and 15 days e-EDP through online mode at ICSI e-learning portal. The students can do both the classroom mode EDP as well as e-EDP simultaneously.

FAQ 6. How to register for and undergo e-EDP?

The Institute has launched e-EDP through its e-learning platform which works on anytime, anywhere basis. The instructions related to e-learning are available on the website of the Institute. The fee for e-EDP is Rs. 2,000.

The registration can be done by logging in at the link provided: https://smash.icsi.edu.

FAQ 7. Can a student undergo 15 days of e-EDP along with his/her Practical Training?

No. Students are required to complete their e-EDP before joining their Practical Training. However, it must be noted that students can do both the classroom mode EDP as well as e-EDP simultaneously.

FAQ 8. Is it possible for a student to begin Practical Training on clearing the first module of CS Executive Programme?

No, as per the New Training Structure Company Secretaries (Amendment) Regulations, 2020, CS aspirants have to clear both the modules of CS Executive as well as complete their 30 days Executive Development Program (EDP) Training in order to be eligible to begin their Practical Training.

FAQ 9. From where should a student complete his/her CS Practical Training – a company, other entity, or a practicing CS?

Although the selection varies from student-to-student, some pros and cons that should be considered before joining Practising CS (PCS) or a company for Practical Training are given below:

Pros of Training at a PCS:-

1. Exposure – Even if the firm is medium-sized, there will be gain of knowledge from exposure. There will be a lot of clients, and at least 3–4 clients’ work will be assigned to the trainee to assume ownership of the work allotted. A trainee shall come across various kinds of work like incorporation of the company to its winding up, stock exchange compliances, secretarial audit, incorporation of LLPs, etc.

2. Networking – A candidate will have the opportunity to visit a variety of clients and work on their premises, which will result in an increased network and prove to be beneficial in his/her career.

Cons of Training at a PCS:

1. Pressure – Working in PCS can become extremely hectic and loads of work could be landed on the trainee.

2. Work – Generally “Work Quantity” is preferred over “Work Quality”, hence it can  become a habit which is not good.

Pros of Training at Listed Companies/Other Companies:-

1. Culture – A candidate will get to learn a lot about Professionalism and Corporate culture, which is immensely crucial.

2. Stipend – The pay structure is generally as per the Industrial Standards, which is quite decent.

Cons of Training at Listed Companies/Other Companies:-

1. Work – A candidate may get specialized in one area but won’t get variety of work exposure which can lead to monotony.

2. Networking – May not be able to work with clients directly.

FAQ 10. Which entities are eligible to provide CS students with practical training?

Entities in which CS students can undergo their Practical Training are enlisted below:-

    1. Practising Company Secretary (PCS) having Certificate of Practice from ICSI.
    2. Companies (whether public or private; listed or unlisted) having paid-up share capital of Rs. 50 lakhs or more.
    3. Company Limited by Guarantee having gross annual receipts of Rs. 1 crore or more as per last audited financial report.
    4. MCA and its Offices (ROC, RD & office of OL, etc.)
    5. General Law firms with a minimum of 5 partners and a minimum of 5 years of experience.
    6. Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) with at least half of its partners being ICSI members and a net worth/capital contribution/turnover of not less than Rs. 50 lakhs.
    7. All banks recognized by RBI.
    8. Financial institutions with a minimum of Rs. 10 lakhs in gross fixed assets and a minimum of ten years of experience.
    9. Universities recognized by UGC.

FAQ 11. Is it possible to get more leaves before CS Professional exams and to serve the firm later after the exams for the extra leaves taken?

The concept of leaves is not much relevant in the CS curriculum as it won’t be affecting exams. A candidate has to complete 21 months of training after considering all leaves. Excess leaves will extend the training which will ultimately lead to a delay in getting CS degree, but it won’t create an issue for CS Professional exams.

FAQ 12.How many leaves are allowed in 21 months training under the New Training Structure?

As per the guidelines, a total number of 52 leaves are allowed in 21 months training under New Training Structure.

FAQ 13. How many transfers are allowed during the period of 21 months Practical Training under New Training structure as per Company Secretaries (Amendment) Regulations, 2020?

Maximum 2 transfers shall be permitted during the entire duration of training under New Training structure as per Company Secretaries (Amendment) Regulations, 2020.

FAQ 14. What is the procedure of taking transfer from one trainer to another trainer in CS Practical Training?

A student has to give a notice of minimum 45 working days to his trainer in writing by giving the reason for the same. Resignation letter must be handed over personally against proper acknowledgement receipt. It can also be sent by speed post/ registered post.

FAQ 15. How many days’ notice is required for obtaining transfer in CS Practical Training? What is the maximum number of transfers allowed in practical training?

A student has to give notice of a minimum 45 working days to his trainer in writing for taking a transfer for his CS Practical Training, by giving the reason for the same. The resignation letter must be handed over personally against proper acknowledgment receipt. Maximum two transfers shall be permitted during the entire duration of training under the New Training structure as per Company Secretaries (Amendment) Regulations, 2020.

FAQ 16. Can a student immediately start his/her practical training under the New Training structure?

The students can start their practical training only after completing one month EDP.

FAQ 17. What is the minimum amount of stipend payable to the students during training period under the New Training structure?

Monthly stipend to be paid is given herein:

    • If undergoing training under PCS – Minimum amount of Rs. 3,000 per month.
    • If undergoing training at Company /other entities – Minimum amount of Rs. 4,000 per month.

However, the stipend has to be paid through cheques or online transfers only.

FAQ 18. What is the time limit provided by the Institute for submitting training related documents under New Training structure as per Company Secretaries (Amendment) Regulations, 2020?

The time limit for submission of training contract/appointment letter is 100 days of commencement/joining of training. Any delay in training registration with the Institute, which is more than 100 days will be considered as Dummy Training and Training of such candidates will not be considered by the Institute.

FAQ 19. When to submit the Project Report in CS Practical Training?

A candidate needs to prepare a Project Report on the basis of his/her Practical Training under the guidance of his/her trainer and submit the Report to the Institute (https://stimulate.icsi.edu). However, the trainees will be required to submit the Project Report at the time of Corporate Leadership Development Programme (CLDP). The Project Report shall be assessed by a panel of experts at the time of CLDP; and the assessment shall be made through a five-point grading system

FAQ 20. What is the procedure for qualifying the viva voce for the Project Report in CS Practical Training?

The Project Report/ Research Report shall be prepared by the candidate under the guidance of his/her trainer and there shall be a viva voce on that Project Report during the CLDP by the experts. The Project Report and viva-voce shall be graded as:-

A+ : Outstanding A : Very Good B+ : Good B: Satisfactory C: Needs Improvement & Resubmission

FAQ 21. What is the process of submitting Quarterly Report in CS Practical Training?

The trainer through the online mode shall submit Quarterly Report to the Institute regarding the progress of the trainee. The trainer has to submit the Quarterly Report within 30 days of ending of each quarter. However, the trainee will pursue the matter with the trainer to get it completed in time.

FAQ 22. Is there any exemption from Practical Training on the basis of three years of CA Articleship/work experience in CA Firm or Law Firm?

No, there is no such exemption.

FAQ 23. How to manage both CS Practical Training and CA Articleship together? Is there any exemption available for CS Training to CA students [as otherwise there would be 57 months (36 + 21) training for a student]?

Doing CA and CS together can prove to be challenging as it will test the dedication and hard work of a person from time-to-time.

A student cannot have any exemptions relating to the CA Articleship as well as CS Training framework as per the norms and regulations. Further the work exposure in both the trainings is totally different, thus skipping any is neither possible nor desirable.

The only way left is to clear either CS Executive or CA Intermediate as soon as possible and to start the training. Generally, it is preferred to complete CA Intermediate first and then join Articleship while preparing for CS Executive. As soon as CA Articleship is completed, student can start CS Training. Although vice versa is also possible. Student can also choose to clear CS Executive and then start Practical Training along with preparation for CA Intermediate as CA course may need more time to study, being more lengthy and comparatively demanding.

Disclaimer: The content/information published on the website is only for general information of the user and shall not be construed as legal advice. While the Taxmann has exercised reasonable efforts to ensure the veracity of information/content published, Taxmann shall be under no liability in any manner whatsoever for incorrect information, if any.

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