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How to register a business in the UK

Do I register as a limited company or as a sole trader?

There are countries where registering a business is a tough consignment. UK, has a small number of formalities, compared to other countries and is way ahead in ensuring that businesses across the country are given a non-bureaucratic, logical and orderly processes to adhere to in order to get their business registered in the UK in the shortest time possible.

Different types of businesses require different processes –

  • A sole trader or proprietor – This type of registration is done when only a single person owns a business and can work alone or employ a few people for the business, but stakes are 100% for the sole owner. A sole trader also must apply for a self-assessment tax which means that the calculations pertaining to tax liabilities must be done by the trader himself/herself or his/her accountant.

Here are 3 requirements to be met for registered as a sole trader-

  • Register as a self-assessment candidate with the HM Revenue and Customs
  • Having a National Insurance number during the process
  • Choosing a business name or the sole trader’s name.
  • A Business Partnership -A partnership is another legal body which looks after the interests of partnership of two or more partners having stakes based on agreements. A business partnership considers the contributions of each partner and important to understand the importance of following regulations during the registration phase –
  • Sharing profits amongst partners via a partnership deed
  • Naming the business based on its availability.
  • Registration for self-assessment tax.
  • A Private Limited Company – Another easy way to register a business is to register as a private limited company. A private limited company can consider the investment into the business. Hence several individuals who have qualifying shares are nominated or elected as directors who run it as a separate legal entity from the shareholders.

Here are a few requirements that need to be taken care of –

  • Registration with the Company House
  • Have at least one director and one shareholder
  • Fill up the memorandum and articles of association.
  • Corporate tax measures must be taken and registered for the same.
  • Having a name and address
  • And finally, a common seal in mind to represent the signature of the company on documentation.

Some added information may be required based on the type of business and its registration process involved –

  • Insurance – some businesses require an active insurance before and after registration. Insurance could be done for the property or for the inventory.
  • Permits and Licenses – Businesses which are in products or services which are secretive or volatile in nature may require licenses. Smoke intensive products might require a permit from the environment board before the commencement of production.

Either way registrations do not take more than a month in the UK and in some cases takes even less, however what is complex is the type of differential requirements which must be met and therefore all require a professional guidance in some cases. In easily registrable cases, it can be done personally as well and therefore registering a business in the UK is not tough. A proper name and address is also a requirement of the same and therefore needs to be looked into with great detail before registering a business in the United Kingdom.

All the above factors, UK has become the financial hub as well a major commercial capital in the Western Europe.

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