How to Form a Company
Company formation is the process of registering a new legal entity with Companies House.
The majority of business entities which provide incorporation services are companies themselves. These entities are known as company formation agents and there are several thousand such providers currently active in the UK.
Setting up a company does not usually require direct contact with a UK registration agent as the majority have systems which allow persons to complete the entire task of registering a company over the internet.
Company Formation Agents
In order to do this, company formation agents use technology to interrogate various Companies House databases, specifically the name search lists. They are able to return the search results to the person forming the company within a few seconds, which then allows the user to continue with their incorporation.
Once completed, the application is sent to Companies House for their scrutiny and eventual approval and then returned to the customer via the company formation agent.
It is possible to begin and complete an incorporation only during the hours which Companies House is open for business. This is from Monday to Friday, 9am to 5.30 pm. No registration requests will be processed outside these hours.
Types of UK Companies
Formations in the UK generally covers three types of companies:
UK Companies limited by shares
companies limited by shares make up the majority of business registration applications in this country. These types of company are general “for profit” companies which may carry on some trade or business with the view to making a gain. Companies Limited by shares are also used by persons wanting to protect the name of an unincorporated business.
Read more on companies limited by shares
Companies limited by guarantee
Companies limited by guarantee are generally non profit making organisations. Charities, clubs and associations are examples of such entities.
Read more on companies limited by guarantee
UK Public Limited companies
Public limited companies are usually larger business entities, some of which may be listed on a recognised stock exchange. These companies are generally profit making businesses.
Read more on public limited companies
Other Company Formations
Company formation covers the incorporation of all of the above types of company and other lesser know ones such as limited liability partnerships (although these are actually partnerships), unlimited companies and flat management companies.