A registered office is the official address of an incorporated company, association, limited liability partnership (LLP) or other legal entity. When you incorporate, it becomes part of your public record.
The main purpose of a registered office is to provide Companies House and HMRC with an official address they can send statutory mail and legal notices to. This includes official letters from various government departments, tax records and bank statements.
Because it becomes public information, most people will choose to maintain a registered office separate from their residential address, in order to increase their privacy and security. A registered office is also a way to have greater corporate transparency.
Companies House puts restrictions in place regarding how to select a registered office address and what must occur within its premises. It's important to note that the registered office must be a real, physical location where statutory documents from HMRC and Companies House can be delivered securely. This means it can't be a PO box or a DX number.
You don't have to work from or even visit your registered office, but you will need to store official documents and display your company name there. Statutory records and registers must be made available for inspection at the location at any time, in accordance with the Companies Act 2006. The only exception to this rule is for businesses that establish a Single Alternative Inspection Location.
Your registered office must be in the same part of the UK where your company is registered: namely England and Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland. This doesn't mean it has to be in the same part of the country where you conduct your primary trading activities. You might even do business outside the UK or online!
A registered office is different from a director's service address or your business address, but it's entirely possible to have them in the same place, it just depends on how you run your business and how many locations you have.
You can use your residential address as your registered office, but it's not a great idea. Because it's a matter of public record, it could result in unwanted visitors or junk mail showing up at your house. It's also wise to maintain some separation between home and work life.
Some people choose to use their accountant or solicitor as a registered address, but think about the timely manner in which you might need to receive the documents sent there. Is your accountant or solicitor convenient and accessible whenever you need access to your official post?
Picking a non-residential address for your registered office is an excellent way to expand your reach and convey a sense of prestige. It will often make potential customers or investors take you more seriously.
At POBoxes.com, we offer a great service for businesses in need of a registered office address. When you sign up for one of our virtual office packages, we'll give you both a registered office address and a director's service address entirely free! Although it's a virtual office presence, it is a physical location that meets the Companies Act requirements.
Our virtual office packages are surprisingly affordable. With quarterly, 6-monthly or annual fees, we make it easy for you to obtain the addresses you need in order to incorporate.
With your virtual office package, we even include a mail scanning and forwarding service, so any post that's delivered to you will be made available for viewing online in a secure account. We then forward you the hard copies or shred them securely. If your solicitor or accountant does offer the same service for your statutory documents, it's unlikely to be as affordable as our virtual office presence!
If you'd like to discuss the benefits of using one of our locations in either London or Darlington for your registered office, please get in touch. We look forward to helping you with all your incorporation needs.
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