Have you decided to trade as a Limited Company? Great!
As a limited company you have a few more responsibilities in terms of registrations and submissions. Make sure you understand it. Because, even if you have an accountant, it is still your responsibility as a director to make sure you register, file and pay on time!
You must register for Corporation Tax WITHIN 3 MONTHS of starting to do business, and that includes buying, selling, advertising, renting etc. To register for Corporation Tax (CT) you will need your company’s Unique Tax Reference (UTR) number which would have been sent to you a few days after incorporating the company at the company’s registered address. It’s generally in the top right side of the page.
How to register for Corporation Tax
The process to register for CT is pretty straight forward and you can do it online https://online.hmrc.gov.uk/registration/newbusiness/introduction.
You will need the following information:
– UTR number.
– Company registration number (it is the number your company is registered with at Companies House)
– The date you started to do business
– The date your annual accounts are made up to
If you don’t have a Government Gateway account, you need to create one. Don’t worry it’s an easy step by step process and you can’t get it wrong. You can always get an agent to deal with it if you are unsure.
Once you have an account, you can register your business for Corporation Tax as well as other taxes as needed: PAYE for employers (if you are employing staff), VAT (see my article Introduction to VAT), CIS (Construction Industry Scheme) if you operate within the Construction industry.
After you apply to register
You will receive a letter from HMRC with an authentication code which must be activated as stated in the letter. If you have registered for more than one service you will receive a letter for each service which must be activated separately. If HMRC needs additional information they will email or write to you.
I can’t tell you exactly how long it takes to receive the letters from HMRC, some registrations take longer than others. It also depends how busy they are.
Once registered, you must ensure you submit your returns and pay on time. There are hefty fines for late filings/payments. And remember, it is still your responsibility as a director!
Lastly, depending on the industry you operate in, check if you are required to register for anything else like ICO (check out my article about Data Protection), REC etc etc
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