How to set up a Ltd company

If you start a business and have decided that forming a Ltd company is the right choice for you, you will need to register your business with Companies House.

Once your company has been registered you’ll receive a Certificate of Incorporation. This shows the company number and date it was formed, and is proof your company legally exists.

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What do you need to register a Ltd company?

To register your Ltd company with Companies House you will need:

  • Your company’s name and registered address.
  • At least one director.
  • At least one shareholder.
  • Details of your company’s shares (known as ‘memorandum of association’).
  • Rules about how the company is run (known as ‘articles of association’).

How do you register a Ltd company?

You can register your Ltd company with Companies House:

  • Online (as long as your company is  limited by shares and uses articles of association).
  • By post using form IN01.
  • Using an accountant.
  • Using an agent.

How much does it cost and how long does it take?

If you register your Ltd company yourself online will take 48 hours and cost you £15. You can pay by debit or credit card or Paypal.

If you register your application by post will cost £40 and take 8-10 days. You’ll need to pay by cheque, made out to ‘Companies House’.

You can also get a same day service by post, provided your application is received by Companies House by 3pm. A same day registration service will cost you £100.

Setting up a Ltd company through an accountant or formation agent

The easiest way to set up a Ltd company is through an accountant or agent. They’ll fill out all the forms for you, and submit them to Companies House. How much this will cost depends on your accountant or agent.

Some accountants charge their fee upfront, while others are happy to include the costs in a monthly fee programme.

Need more Ltd company advice? Download your free guide here!