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How do I register a limited company?

Part of the process of setting up your limited company is registering your business with Companies House. Here we give you a guide to the process.

How do I register a limited company?

You can register your limited company by:

  • applying online via GOV.UK
  • Completing form IN01 and popping the form in post. Paper applications should be sent to the address on the form.
  • You can use a courier to deliver your application to Companies House. There are offices in London, Cardiff, Edinburgh and Belfast. 
Region Address
England Companies House 
4 Abbey Orchard Street 
Wales Companies House
Crown Way 
CF14 3UZ
DX 33050 Cardiff
Scotland Companies House
4th Floor 
Edinburgh Quay 2 
139 Fountainbridge
Northern Ireland Companies House
2nd Floor 
The Linenhall 
32-38 Linenhall Street


Checklist: What information do I need to register?

To register your business you will need to do the following. Login to save this checklist to your profile for future use – as you work through the list, any checkboxes that are ticked or unticked will be automatically saved to your profile. (To register to join and enjoy the benefits of membership click on the link at the top right of the page. It will only take a few minutes to create your profile).

You must be logged in to use this checklist

Login or Register

How much does it cost to register a limited company?

There are different costs depending on which method you use to register (these are accurate as of January 2016):

  • Online applications cost £15, you can pay by debit or credit card or with a PayPal account.
  • Postal applications cost £40,  this is paid by cheque made out to ‘Companies House’ 
  • There is also ‘a same day service’; you must get your application to Companies House by 3pm, the cost for this is £100. Your envelope (and any courier’s envelope) must be marked ‘same day service’ in the top left-hand corner.

How long does it take to register a limited company?

  • Online applications are usually registered within 24 hours
  • Postal applications take between 8 – 10 days.

How do I update these details if they change?

You must tell Companies House about any changes to your limited company.

These changes might be:

  • directors and company secretaries, for example new appointments, resignations or changes to personal details
  • changing your company name
  • changing your registered office address
  • changing your accounting reference date
  • changing where your company records are kept, if this is different from your registered address
  • which records you’ll keep at an alternative address
  • changes to your company’s share structure, for example if you issue new shares.

Check on the Companies House website to see the full list of changes that need to be notified. You can update changes online via Companies House.

You will also need to tell HM Revenue & Customs (HRMC) of any changes. 

Do I need to register for Corporation Tax?

You need to register for tax within three months of starting to do business. ‘Doing business’ includes:

  • buying
  • selling
  • employing someone
  • advertising
  • renting a property.

If you register late you may incur a penalty.

To register you will need your business 10-digit Unique Taxpayer Reference (UTR). This will have been posted to your business address by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC). This is usually usually within a few days of the company being registered with Companies House.

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