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Companies House

  • 2 min read

The Companies House is a government body that deals with all the limited companies (“LTDs”) and limited liability partnerships (“LLPs”) registered in the UK. Basically, if you go solo and launch your own business and you choose to be a limited company rather than sole trader, part of this process will be registering with Companies House.

When would you deal with the Companies House as an individual?

As an individual taxpayer, there are three reasons that you might have to deal with Companies House:

  1. You’re setting up an LTD or LLP
  2. You’re a company director and need to submit your company’s Annual Return, change of address, or statutory accounts
  3. You want to close an LTD or LLP

What if I’m a sole trader?

If you’re a sole trader (self-employed), you don’t need to register with the Companies House. Instead, you register as self-employed with HMRC and complete an annual Self Assessment tax return; however, you might have to file a Self Assessment with HMRC if you’re a company director as well.

In the following cases, you will need to register with Companies House:

  1. You’re taking out dividends (on which you need to calculate and pay dividend tax)
  2. You’re selling your company or closing it down and claiming Entrepreneurs’ Relief

In the case of selling or closing your company, you’ll no longer need to do a Self Assessment (as of 2018) because you’re a director only.

If you’re not sure whether you’re a sole trader or a limited company, you can read more about the differences here.

A few things to know about registering with Companies House

  • You pay to register
    • £12 if you do it yourself online
    • £40 yourself by post
    • £100 if you need to be registered the same day
    • Third party providers (if you choose this route) will have their own fees
  • You may need to register for VAT
  • Get your business name, address and names of directors/partners to hand to register
  • Register your limited company here
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