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Limited Company Formation
Setting up a limited company

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Company Formation Made Easy with DNS Accountants

Need to form a company on priority? Come to DNS Accountants, one of the UK’s leading accounting service providers for small business owners, contractors, freelancers, self-employed and the construction industry. Setting up your company us will take a maximum of 2 hours, seriously!

Kick start your business and enjoy the below advantages:

  • Free Company Formation set-up with a Bank Account
  • Free Accounting Services for 3 months
  • Cashback offer

DNS Accountants is a member of ACRA, the Association of Company Registration Agents, UK’s only recognised association for company registration.

There are many service providers you’ll find can offer you lucrative packages for company formation process. But before you choose any you should make sure about the quality of services they’re offering you.

Why Choose DNS?

At DNS, we better understand your needs and offer you a complete, hassle-free and inexpensive company formation experience.

  • We have years of experience and experts who provide the most comprehensive Company Formation services
  • We offer cost-effective approach that’s specially designed for small business owners
  • We maintain simple and quick way of company registration service
  • We take care of VAT Registration, Tax Returns and HMRC related formalities
  • A Dedicated Account Manager for your support

What DNS Accountants can promise you?

We are sure you will be pleasantly surprised with the findings!

  • Company Formation with a Business Bank Account
  • All HMRC and Companies House compliances are taken care of
  • Free Accounting Services for first 3 months
  • Cashback offer for a limited time
  • Free Cloud Accounting Software

Company Formation with Business Bank Account

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Frequently Asked Questions

Limited company formation, or incorporation, is the process by which a business (new or existing) registers as a limited company.

A business can't operate as a limited company unless it's registered with Companies House under the Companies Act 2006. Limited company formation requires company directors to file documents each year, including annual accounts and a confirmation statement, as well as keep Companies House informed about any business changes.

A limited company is its own legal entity.

This means the company can own business assets, incur debts and sue or be sued. Its finances are separate from the personal finances of the company director or directors. For this reason, it offers limited liability and thus lower risk to personal wealth or assets if the business fails.

So who owns the company? Ownership of a limited company is divided among shareholders. It can be set up by a single individual who'll remain the sole shareholder, or by multiple shareholders.

Despite the fact that UK limited company formation is relatively easy, running a limited company isn't a task you should undertake lightly. It requires a lot of paperwork and accounting, more so than if you were to operate with a sole trader or partnership business structure. That being said, it offers extra protection for a UK company regarding financial liabilities, taxation advantages, and plenty of other advantages. Below are some of the benefits you could see if you set up your company as a limited company.

The advantages of limited company formation include:

  • Liabilities (eg. debt or legal action) are limited to the company so, as a company director, you're protected from bankruptcy if the business fails (which we're sure it won't!)
  • If your business is growing steadily and you think that you'll need to employ staff at some point in the future, it's much easier to do so as a limited company as you can pay salaries with the PAYE scheme.
  • You'll pay corporation tax on profits. This tax rate is lower than that of income tax (what a sole trader pays).
  • Limited company formation takes your business to a new level of professionalism. You're likely to see more clients as a result, as people generally place more trust in limited companies.

Read our guide limited company advantages & disadvantages for a full breakdown.

There are two types of UK limited company:

Limited by shares

This means the company has a share capital. In a company limited by shares, the liability of each shareholder is limited to the amount unpaid on their shares. A company limited by shares can't put its shares up for sale to the general public.

Limited by guarantee

A company limited by guarantee does not have a share capital. Instead, its members are guarantors as opposed to shareholders. This means the business members' liability is limited to how much they contribute to the assets of the company if it's wound up.

A company limited by shares is the most common kind of limited company in the UK, so we'll focus on that for the purpose of this section.

You might think that if you decide to form a limited company, you'll have to deal with lots of drawn-out bureaucracy. You'll be glad to know that this isn't the case! Registering a company isn't difficult, and it's made even easier if you set up your company with a trusted formation agent like DNS accountants. Below are the steps involved to register your business.

What you need before you register your UK limited company

There are a few things you'll need to do before you start the application process to register your company.

1. Choose your company name

First things first, choose your company name.

The company name must be unique and dissimilar to other companies currently operating in the UK. It needs to:

  • Be distinctive: Not identical or too similar to another company name.
  • Be free of sensitive words/expressions: For example, words that suggest national pre-eminence, government patronage, or suggestions of sponsorship.
  • Not contain words connected to royalty
  • Not contain particular characters and symbols: The name must contain numbers or letters of the alphabet. Some punctuation symbols are allowed (eg. @ or #).
  • Be inoffensive: No explanation necessary here! You want people to want to approach your business, right?
  • End with "Ltd" or "Limited" (or the Welsh equivalent).

Are you wondering: How do I pick and register a company name? Here are some tips:

  • Pick something unique and meaningful that encapsulates what your business is all about'
  • Keep your company name short, punchy, and easy to spell! You want it to be recognisable and memorable.
  • Check that the company name availability
2. Select your company officers

Before you dive in to incorporating your company, you'll need to select a company officer(s). All limited companies in the UK must have at least one company officer who is responsible for the company at all times. A private UK limited company must have at least one company director as well. This is usually the person who started and runs the business. Public limited companies, on the other hand, must have at least two directors and a secretary. Here's an overview of these roles:

  • Company directors: A company director is responsible for ensuring annual accounts and annual returns are completed and submitted on time, as well as ensuring any changes are officially reported to Companies House.
  • Company secretaries: They usually operate in larger companies, and are there to maintain statutory registers and ensure files and forms are completed.

Once you've decided who they're going to be, you're ready for step three.

3. Choose a registered office address

When it comes to registering your UK limited company, you'll need to have chosen a registered office address (also referred to as a service address). You'll need to provide an address based in the UK, which can be a residential or home address.

Many companies choose to use registered address services instead.

The purpose of selecting a registered office is that it's where official documents and legal notices are sent. Your registered office service address is publicised on the official Companies House Register. So, even though the service address might be the same as your home address, it's important to be aware of the fact that this data will no longer be private as the information is available to the general public. Although using a home address is fine, you should be aware that you might receive a lot more junk mail!

It's also important to note that if the company wants to change their business address they have to provide notice to Companies House with an AD01 worm which can be filed online or via the post.

4. Decide how to register your UK limited company with Companies House

It's not particularly difficult to register a limited company with Companies House independently. You'll need to complete a series of documents and make sure you have the right information to submit your application. Alternatively, you can opt to incorporate your business through an experienced agent.

An Ltd company formations agent offers formation packages and can make the whole process quicker and easier, as well as reducing the likelihood of mistakes being made. A professional agent like DNS Accountants can take the stress out of UK limited company formation. So you can sit back, relax, and rest assured that your business is in reliable hands.

How to register a limited company yourself?

Independently register your company with Companies House.

The process to register your company via online application takes 24 hours, and the total cost is £12. To complete the application you'll need to have selected your company structure, company name, chosen your officers, and chosen a UK business office address as the registered office (the steps we mentioned above!)

You'll have to submit Memorandum of Association documents, which include the name of your company officers and directors and other people with significant control (PSC). You'll also need to provide documentation about the share capital amount and how it's divided among shareholders; and the company's trading activities.

Next, you'll need to check which records you need to keep. These include UK company and accounting records. Here's a closer look at what those include:

Company records

  • Directors, shareholders, and company secretaries
  • Records of shareholder votes and resolutions
  • Debentures and indemnities
  • Share transactions
  • Loans/mortgages secured against assets belonging to the company
  • A register of PSC

Accounting records

  • Money received and spent by the company
  • Details of any assets owned or sold by the company
  • Debts
  • Stock owned by the company
  • All goods and services bought and sold and who they were bought from or sold to
  • Any other financial records that will need to be filed with your annual tax return (invoices, petty cash, business bank account statements, correspondence, etc)

If you'd rather not handle all the paperwork yourself, you can select an agent to set up a company on your behalf. There are countless company formation packages out there to choose from, so make sure you weigh up your options before putting your limited company formation into someone else's hands.

A quick Google search will reveal countless company formation packages available in the UK. You can also find a comprehensive list of agents and their company formation packages on the Companies House Company Formation Agents Directory.

Although it might cost slightly more to opt for an agent, they're professional and specialized and know how to guide you through the process while keeping stress levels to a minimum. Moreover, you're likely to have a lot of questions as you register your business with Companies House. Agents have done countless company formations before, so they're the experts!

At DNS Accounts, we've got years of experience undergoing company formations for various clients.

We'll handle all the paperwork and submit all of your company documents to Companies House for you. The best part of choosing DNS Accountants as your limited UK company formations specialist? Setting up your company will take a maximum of two hours!

We've got lots of company formation packages to choose from, so you're guaranteed to find one with no hidden costs that suits your needs. We can also provide guidance to other services you might need after setting up your UK limited company like online portals for administration management, or the use of a registered office. Moreover, we can help you understand and set up your business bank account.

You'll need to provide Companies House with company details like:

  • Your company name
  • Details of company officers, directors, and shareholders and details of their home address
  • Registered office address of your business

Regardless of whether you choose to register your business as a limited company independently or with an agent, there are some specific company documents you'll need to submit:

  • A Memorandum of Association: document signed by all parties involved in the company formation.
  • The Articles of Association: Legal document stating the rights of shareholders and the power held by directors.
  • Form IN01: Document listing details of the company officers and shareholders, as well as the shares issued and share capital.

Surprisingly, setting up a UK limited company is an efficient process. If you opt for the online application route, all you need to do is collect the required documents, pay the service fee, and complete your order. Once you have submitted all the information, your UK limited company could be registered within 3-6 working hours. Obviously, this depends on the workload of Companies House.

Once your new company has been registered, you'll receive a certificate of incorporation from Companies House including a unique company registration number. This is your evidence that the company has been officially registered and can be presented to third parties who might ask to see your certificate, for example when setting up business banking. The certificate also determines the date of your company’s first confirmation statement, which is usually filed 12 months after the date of company formation.

Once you've received your certificate of incorporation, you can start enjoying the benefits of operating as a limited company like limited liability, corporation tax, and much more!

Join us and make your company registration simple and reliable

Contact DNS Accountants and register your business in just a few simple steps! Once your company is registered, we will also provide our expert guidance to help you manage your business.

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