How To Register A Company
Ok, let's assume that you know you need a limited company and that you've got a name which isn't being used by anyone else: what's the next step to register a company in the UK?
Well, you need to have certain details to hand. These are:
- Company name;
- Registered Office Address (which we can provide);
- SIC code (a number which defines roughly what niche the company will operate in);
- Shareholdings (who gets shares, how many and at what value);
- PSC (persons with significant control, usually the majority sharesholder);
- Directors (who they are and what their home and correspondence address is to be);
- Memorandum and Articles of Association* (you can use templates).
(*The Articles of Association are the company's statement of the rules of its' operation; how it will operate. 99.999% of companies do not need to make up their own Articles. It's expensive. It should only be done if your company has some non-standard composition or purpose and after taking legal advice.)
Be careful who you give shares to. Many people give 50% to a family member, friend or colleague only to find out later that:
1. This gives them 50% of the company and ...
2. The right to 50% of the dividends (profits paid out) ...
3. Without being obliged to contribute to the company in any way!
This can cause significant problems later on. Many company owners have found themselves saddled with a useless director or shareholder who is not contributing to the company or is even actively working against the company's interests!
A shareholder can assert their legal rights and cannot be easily removed by the other shareholders. They are a co-owner of the company; it's not just about dividends.
Anyway, assuming you are a sole owner or your fellow shareholders are upstanding individuals, you then file the incorporation at Companies House. You can use an agent like us or go direct to the the Companies House website.
You would use an agent like us if you weren't sure about what you were doing and/or you wanted more documents related to your formation (Companies House just gives you the Incorporation Certificate.) See here: https://www.registeredaddress.co.uk/registrationoptions
Persons who are quite sure about what they want and what the legal terms mean can form the company themselves here: https://www.gov.uk/topic/company-registration-filing/starting-company
You then wait for the formation to be approved. This currently takes about 24 hours, but could be quicker.
Depending on who you use you can get the Incorporation Certificate, Share Certificates, Memorandum and Articles of Association auto-generated as soon as your company approval comes through. You can print these of yourself from the digital files supplied.
It can take longer if Companies House rejects your formation: this can be:
- If the name is too close to one existing in their database,
- If you have a reserved word like 'Society' in the name or ...
- You make a clerical error, like selecting the wrong country to match the rest of your home address.
Human beings will check your submission. You can't just submit any old thing you want and expect to get it approved. Companies House has to keep its database clean of junk and dodgy listings. Lots of people would like to register a name which is close to that of a major company or government institution, or just register something rude! The British government cannot allow this.
Next: You hold the company's first board meeting. If you are the only shareholder, this is a formality and some formation agents will generate the initial meeting documents for you.
Likewise, the production of share certificates. Some agents make these for you automatically, as they are a mere formality.
After that, you 'get on with business', like getting a bank account: https://www.registeredaddress.co.uk/blog/how-non-residents-can-get-a-uk-bank-account/
Get a company formation here today: http://www.registeredaddress.co.uk/company-formation
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Let our accountancy team file this with Companies House within 24 hours!