Your great business idea and your professional business plan are ready…now what? Company registration in the UK is quick and easy. Most new business people choose to register a company with limited liability at this stage. We will explain, step-by-step, how the process works and what the requirements are to set up your company in the UK.
What is Company Registration or Company Formation
Simply put, company formation is the process of registering your business as a limited company through Companies House – the UK Government’s official registrar of companies. It’s the only body in the UK permitted to officially incorporate a company.
So, what does it mean to incorporate a company? By incorporating a company, you transform your business into its legal entity. That means your company is essentially a person in the eyes of the law. This is important because it will offer you some much-needed protection in the event of your business being unsuccessful.
By incorporating a limited company, you will drive a legal wedge between you and your company in terms of shared finances, liabilities, contractual agreements, and ownership of any property or assets.
As a company owner, you’ll only be liable up to the nominal value of the shares you issue in your company. Any amount of personal money you own beyond the value of those shares will be protected. This protection is referred to as ‘limited liability.’
The vast majority of private companies are limited by shares, which are set up to generate a profit for their shareholders, so that’s the type of company we’re discussing here.
How do I register a Company in the UK?
If you’d like to turn your new business into a company, you’ll be relieved to know the company formation process is quick and simple using Trade and Legal Ltd
Step-by-step company registration. We will guide you every step of the way!
A company name
Choose a name for your new company… it’s fun! Follow the prompts and rules as set out in Our Services
Get a registered office address
This can be anywhere in England and Wales, Scotland, or Northern Ireland, but it must be a real address – not a PO Box.
We offer a properly registered address service for Non-Residents. So, even if you do not live in the UK, you can still register your company in the UK using our address service.
A company director
This is the person responsible for managing your company. You must have at least one; however, you can have several if you’d like.
This is the owner of your company, and it can be the same person as your company director. That means you only need one person to incorporate a company, although you can have more than one shareholder if you so desire.
A memorandum and articles of association
The memorandum and articles of association are the founding documents of your company. However, there is no need to worry about obtaining these documents: Companies House will generate the memorandum as part of the company registration process, and attach it to the articles – which your company formation agent will provide as part of their service.
The share capital of at least one issued share
You must issue at least one share. The online company order form will make this easy for you to do.
There is no limit to the number of shares you issue; however, the more you issue, the greater your liability will be, should your business fall into financial difficulties.
We recommend you issue between 10 and 100 shares with a nominal value of £1.00 each.
A “Standard Industrial Classification” [SIC] code
This is a code the government uses to identify your business based on the type of industry you’re operating in. You can use up to four SIC codes to describe your business activity or activities.
Again, the formation agent’s company order form will make this easy for you and supply a comprehensive list of SIC codes to choose from.
Ordering your new company online
If you’d like a hand getting started, Trade and Legal Ltd offer a wide range of company formation packages tailored to suit most business needs.
Our simple online process means that you can choose your company name, and registration package, make a card payment and complete your company details in just 10 to 15 minutes.
Once you have finished completing your order, we’ll then check over your application and send it off to Companies House. It will typically take 3 to 6 working hours for your application to be approved; however, this will depend upon Companies House workload on the day, and sometimes it can take up to 24 hours.
As soon as your company’s been incorporated, we’ll send your company documents, VAT invoice, and WebFiling Authentication Code to you by email. You will then be ready to start trading. It’s that simple!