Simple Steps to Forming Your Company
Easy to Follow Guide on Starting a Company
To form a limited company you must first select a name which is not considered the same as or too similar by Companies House regulations to any company which is already on the public register. You can search here
There are a number of words which are ignored such as 'Services', 'The', 'International', 'Holdings' etc. There are also a number of words which are classed as sensitive or protected and require special applications. For further guidance please visit our sensitive names page or contact us.
Choose your preferred company name
Specify your registered office address
Once you have selected your preferred name you must then enter the registered office address for your company.
This is the address official government organisations in the UK will use to contact your company such as Companies House and HMRC. The address must be a physical location and cannot be a PO Box address as you will receive important notifications such as filing reminders, if action is not taken it can result in your company being struck off and removed from the public register.
If you do not have a suitable UK address which can be used as the registered office of your company we will be pleased to provide one of our office locations. Please see our registered office page for further details.
The next step in forming your limited company is to appoint the directors.
The directors are officers who are appointed to act on behalf of the shareholders (owners) who will take care of the day to day running of the company. There is no limit to the number of company directors you can appoint and you can appoint both people and other companies as directors.
However, it is a legal requirement that each company must have at least one physical person appointed as a director and they must be over the age of 16 to act in the capacity of a company director.
Appoint the directors
Choose whether to appoint a secretary or not
Once your company Directors have been appointed you can then choose to appoint a company secretary.
It is no longer a legal requirement to appoint a company secretary after the Companies Act 2008 was introduced. If you do not wish to appoint a company secretary it is the director’s responsibility to complete the filling duties with Companies House. We can offer a secretary service which will allow you to appoint our corporate nominee secretary at the time of incorporating your company. Further information about our service can be found on our secretary service page.
The penultimate step to form your limited company is to confirm the share details and who will be the shareholders.
The shareholders can also be referred to as the members or subscribers and are the owners of the company. The shares issued to each shareholder represent the percentage of the company they own. For example if there are 100 shares created at the time of incorporation and 2 shareholders who own 50 shares each they own 50% of the company each.
It is common in new company formations for directors to also be the shareholders. There is no legal age limit for a shareholder however please remember the shareholders own the company and have legal responsibilities. The company shareholders enter into legal contracts and it is likely credit checks will be performed when opening a company bank account therefore we do not recommend appointing an infant as a shareholder.
Confirm the share details and shareholders
Appoint the PSCs
The final step is to appoint the Persons of Significant Control also know as the PSCs.
Companies House define a person of significant control as someone who:
- Owns more than 25% of the company's shares
- holds more than 25% of the company's voting rights
- holds the right to appoint or remove the majority of directors
- has the right to, or actually exercises significant influence or control
- holds the right to exercise or actually exercises significant control over a trust or company that meets one of the first 4 conditions