You need to register a new limited company at Companies House. You can do this online via the Companies House Online website. New applications are usually approved within two working days from receipt. You should check that your intended name is ***** ***** in use and is not misleading. For example, your company name should not include “Solicitor” or “Law Firm” if you do not provide legal services and are not authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority.
As a limited company, you will enjoy the protection of separate legal personality. Your business and personal assets will be entirely separate, and your business’s creditors will not be able to pursue your personal monies and property for business debts and other liabilities.
However, in return for the benefit of separate corporate legal personality comes the onerous requirements of openness, transparency and a certain degree of publicity in your company’s affairs. You must file Annual Returns and Accounts at Companies House in accordance with their deadlines.
I strongly recommend that you retain the services of a qualified accountant. They will be able to register you at HM Revenue & Customs as “self-employed” and be able to manage your accounts and tax liability via a secure cloud-based provider such as Xero, Zoho and Free Agent. Your accountant will prepare your Annual Returns and Confirmation Statements and file these at Companies House.
A commercial solicitor can also draft business, employment and property contracts for you and manage your business affairs and deal with any potential disputes that may arise.
If you are starting out on your own, you can be a sole director and shareholder of the company. The company will be incorporated with the Model Articles of Association of the Companies Act 2006.