Making your vision a reality
- Customer demand
- Company name
If you already have all of the above, then you're ready to call A & T for your free consultation.
This is one of the exciting times in the life of every company. You've got a fantastic idea and the research to back it up. You can see there's already demand in the market for your product or service. You've even chosen a company name with which your brand will earn its reputation. Now you'll need to secure that name before anyone else thinks of it too, provided you've chosen the ideal legal structure.
Choosing the right legal structure
If you've not already considered the structure your business should be founded upon, you should be aware that each has various advantages and pitfalls.
Sole‐Traders are, in the simplest definition, sole owners of a business. There's no need to register with Companies House and therefore no need to complete an annual return of accounts. The only responsibility of a Sole‐Trader is to ensure that a Self‐ Assessment Tax Return is submitted before the end of every financial year. Furthermore, you can even employ staff as you would do in any other form of company.
There's little wonder why being a Sole‐Trader is so popular amongst small business owners. It does have a significant drawback, however. Because a Sole‐Trader is legally viewed as the person who owns the business as opposed to the business itself. That person is therefore fully liable for all charges and fines placed on the business.
A Partnership in this sense is simply two or more Sole‐Traders forming and acting as one company. All partners equally share all liabilities and are deemed responsible for their own and each other's negligence or misconduct.
Limited liability partnership
At least some if not all LLP Partners choose to protect themselves from the actions of their Partner(s). A legally binding agreement between all Partners, stating the terms of how the company will be managed, must be signed by all involved. Also, the company must be registered with Companies House and are therefore required to file their annual accounts. It will become a separate legal entity, allowing it to even survive the death of all its Partners.
If, in the unfortunate event, that your LLP was ever deemed financially bankrupt, all assets owned by the company must be sold or seized. For this reason and others, most entrepreneurs choose not to register a residential address as a place of business and for legal reasons must not be rented accommodation. Whichever address you choose to register your business with, it will become freely visible in the public domain.
Limited companies offer the highest level liability protection for its Directors as the accountability for negligence and misconduct falls to the company itself, while the Directors are merely individually responsible for the monies they have invested in the company.
Like an LLP, a Limited company is formed via Companies House, is required to annually submit a statement of its financial accounts, has its own legal identity. However, the biggest advantage that is unique to all Limited companies is that no person within the company, not even its Directors, may lose their personal property were the company to ever suffer bankruptcy.
Your next step
The process is simple. After our initial consultation and with your approval, we can begin the process of registering your business as an LLP or a Limited company. Once a company is legally registered with Companies House on your behalf, a unique 8 digit number will be assigned to it and will be publicly visible on the Companies House website along with your name listed as a Director. Regardless of which legal structure you have founded your company upon, if you have subscribed to our Taxation service, we will register it with HM Revenue & Customs and register yourself and all other Directors for self‐assessment.
We recommend your company be registered with our office, which means we will act as your Financial Secretary, dealing directly with all your financial correspondence including those from HMRC and Companies House as well as invoices and customer payments. As an added benefit of this, all junk mail addressed to your company will usually to be sent to the registered office and we will filter this out on your behalf. However, if you wish to do so, you will still be able to publish an alternative trading address, where your customers can find you directly, on all your marketing material.
With almost 20 successful years of assisting local businesses to get up and running.A & T would be proud to give you and your company more time every day in order to achieve its goals.