How to register a business in the UK (Part 2)


In the previous post of this two-part blog series, we looked at the types of company structures you should keep in mind when starting a business and here we pick up on ways you can register your business.

Once you’ve chosen the type of business you are, it is not uncommon to change your business structure as your company grows. For instance, if your business starts off as a sole trader but later you decide to expand your company you can choose to be a limited company and pay a corporation tax rather than an income tax you pay as a sole trader. One should keep in mind that starting a limited company isn’t an extension of being a sole trader and one will stop for the other to start.  

  1. Registering as a sole trader is a relatively simple process and you can do so on the website by providing basic documents such as your National Insurance number, details of your business and related personal information.  
  2. To register as a limited company, you will need to register with ‘Companies House,’ the executive agency of the company registrars in the UK, within three months of starting your business. There is a registration fee of £20 and a fast-track one day option that is £50. Once you register, your details will be sent over to the HMRC, and you will also have to call the HMRC to make them aware that your company exists, in order for the registration to be complete. When registering your company, you must also appoint a company director, who will be responsible for filing the accounts and ensuring the corporation tax is paid.  

    Documents required to register your company are: 
  3. To register your company as a partnership, where you and your partner(/s) will share the responsibility of your business, you will need to choose a name, a nominated partner who will be responsible for managing the partnership’s tax returns and register with the HMRC. In addition to this, all partners will have to send their own, individual tax returns as well. When your turnover is more that £85,000, you will also need to register for VAT.

Once you’ve assessed the type of business you want to set up, considering all pros and cons, you can follow our guidelines for the procedure. If you’re still unsure of what will suit you best, you can have a chat with our Start Up Loans Business Advisor. As well as providing financial assistance Business in Focus can offer FREE advice and mentoring with the Start Up Loans scheme.

If you have any questions on registering or getting started with your business, contact the team today.