> Formation FAQ

How long does it take to complete a company formation?

Once you have completed the shareholder and director details for your company we will submit your new company to the government for you. On average it takes around 3 to 5 hours for the company formation to be completed and for us to provide you with a company number.

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However, the government only work between 9am and 5pm Monday to Friday so company formation orders placed outside of this time will be processed on the next working day. The time it takes to get a company number back from the government can vary depending on the day of the week and the time of the year. If you are in a particular rush to get a company formed, or need your company number by a particular date, please contact us before placing your order and we will be able to give you a more accurate estimate on timescales. 

How much does it cost to form a company?

For entrepreneurs who are based in Essex and starting a business in Essex we currently provide a free company formation service. If you are based outside of Essex and don’t qualify for the free company formation service we can register a limited company for you for as little as £9.99 + VAT. This makes our service one of the cheapest ways to register a limited company in the UK.

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Who can register a limited company in the UK?

Almost anyone can register a limited company in the UK. The only real rules are that you have to be over 16 years of age and that you can’t have been banned from being a company director. (The most common reason to be banned is being declared bankrupt or as the result of a court case).

You can start a limited company as an individual. It is very common for new limited company formations to be done with one person acting as both the company director and shareholder.

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What paperwork do I need to start company formation?

Company formations done through our website are completed electronically so there is no need for you to sign or complete any paperwork. You will just fill out a simple form on our website giving us details of your company directors and shareholders (both can be you if you are forming a limited company on your own). For each company director or shareholder you will need to provide an address as well as some personal details such as their date of birth, town of birth and eye colour.

In most cases that is all of the information that we will need to register your limited company. If you take out additional services such a registered office or accountancy support you may be required to provide additional ID documents but we will ask you for those if they are required.

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Will people be able to find me on the internet?

When you register a limited company in the UK your details will be published online. This will include your name and any addresses you have provided. As well as being published on the Companies House website you information will often be copied and published on other websites as well. If you do not want your home address listed on the internet then you can use a registered office address and a service address to keep it private. We offer a registered office service as an option on all of our company formation packages and you will be able to specify a service address when you complete your company details. If maintaining your privacy is a big concern for you when registering your company please contact us and we can talk you through the different options.

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Can I reserve a company name?

The only way to reserve a company name in the UK is to register a limited company with that name. If you are not ready to start trading, or simply want to stop anyone else from registering a company name, then you can register the company to protect it and then keep that company dormant. Keeping the company dormant protects the company name at a low cost, helping you to secure your intellectual property. Our Online Company Formation package is a popular option for people looking to reserve or protect a company name.

Online company formation

Do you provide a company registration with a VAT number?

You will be offered our VAT registration service when you place a company formation order through our website. We can also offer VAT registration as a standalone service for companies which have already been registered.

Using our VAT registration service typically cuts at least a week off the process of getting a VAT number. If you use our VAT registration service our accounts team will also file your first VAT return for you and can help you get to grips with VAT procedures including creating a VAT invoice.

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Can you provide a business bank account for my company?

We can’t directly provide you with a business bank account but we can refer you through to our banking partners. These include a bank who specialise in opening business accounts for people with poor credit as well as big high street brands.

When you do a company formation with us we can provide you with all of the documents you need to get your business bank account open. We can also help with any changes to your business structure that your bank may request.

Can you register my new company with HMRC?

When you register a limited company HMRC will be automatically told. They will then write to you after  3 to 4 weeks to ask what the company will be doing and if you want to appoint an agent to deal with them on your behalf (this letter is known as a GT41G). We can act as your agent with HMRC which means our accountants will be able to deal with HMRC for you and help sort out any issues about tax.

As well as making HMRC aware that your business exists you may want to register for PAYE so that you can pay yourself and any employees a regular salary from the company. Similarly you may also want to register the company for VAT depending on your industry and projected turnover. Both PAYE and VAT registration will be give as options when you place a company formation order through our website. If you aren’t sure whether you need these registrations our business consultants and accounts team will be happy to discuss it with you.

How much tax will I have to pay on my company?

The main tax UK limited companies have to pay is Corporation Tax. This is paid on any profits the company makes after all expenses have been taken into account. Currently the Corporation tax rate is 20% but it does change every few years.

Because Corporation Tax is only paid on profits after expenses it is important to make sure that all expenses are properly recorded through the company so that you don’t end up paying more tax than you need to. Our accounts team can provide you with help on what expenses you are allowed to claim and can provide you with cloud based bookkeeping software to make it easier and quicker to record.