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How To Set Up A Limited Company

Wednesday 15th May 2024

What is a Limited Company?

A Limited Company, often abbreviated as LTD, is a type of business structure that offers limited liability to its owners and shareholders. In a Limited Company, the liability of the owners (shareholders) is limited to the amount of money they have invested in the company. This means their personal assets are protected in case the company incurs debts or liabilities beyond its assets. 

Check if Setting Up A Limited Company is Right For You

Deciding whether setting up a Limited Company is right for you depends on various factors, including your business goals, financial situation, risk tolerance and long-term plans. Here are some key considerations to help you determine if a Limited Company is right for you:

  • Liability Protection: If you want to protect your personal assets from debts and liabilities, a Limited Company can offer Limited Liability Protection.

  • Tax Implications: Limited Companies are subject to Corporation Tax on their profits, which is typically lower than income tax rates for sole traders and partnerships. Additionally, you may have more flexibility to manage your tax liabilities through strategies such as salary vs. dividends for company owners. 

  • Professionalism and Credibility: A Limited Company structure can enhance your business’s credibility and professionalism in the eyes of clients, suppliers and investors. 

  • Regulatory Requirements: Operating as a Limited Company involves certain regulatory obligations, such as registering with government authorities, filing annual accounts and tax returns, and complying with company law requirements. 

  • Flexibility and Control: Operating as a Limited Company provides flexibility in terms of ownership structure, shareholding and management. Consider whether you want full control over decision-making and operations or are open to sharing ownership and governance responsibilities with others.   

Choose a Company Name

You must choose a name for your business if you’re setting up a private limited company. 

Your name cannot be the same as another registered company’s name. If your name is too similar to another company’s name or trademark you may have to change it if someone makes a complaint. 

Your name must usually end in either ‘Limited’ or ‘LTD’.   

Choose Directors and A Company Secretary

Your company must have at least one director. Directors are legally responsible for running the company and making sure company accounts and reports are properly prepared. A director must be 16 or over and not be disqualified from being a director. 

A Company secretary is an officer responsible for ensuring that the company complies with legal and regulatory requirements and maintaining corporate records and filings. While appointing a Company secretary is optional for private limited companies (LTDs), it is a common practice to have one to assist with administrative and compliance duties.   

Decide Who The Shareholders and Guarantors Are

Deciding who the shareholders and guarantors are for a limited company is a crucial step in the formation and governance of the company. Here is why it’s important to make informed decisions about shareholders and guarantors:

  • Ownership and Control: Shareholders are the owners of the company and have ownership rights proportional to their shareholdings. 

  • Investment and Funding: Shareholders may contribute capital to the company in exchange for shares, which provides necessary funds for growth and operation.

  • Governance and Decision Making: Shareholders typically have rights to vote on significant company matters, such as the appointment of directors, approval of major transactions, and changes to company articles

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