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How do I get a registered office address for a limited company?

Every limited company needs a registered office address. In this article we look at some of the different options available to trade businesses.

What is a registered office address?

When setting up a limited company, you need to provide a registered office address. This is a legal requirement, as it is where all written communication will be sent.

Communication that will be sent out relates to your business status, tax, accounts, and other important information. It is why the registered address needs to be able to receive post.

A registered office address is the official address of a company (or limited liability partnership). It is the listed location that gets registered with the government’s Companies House service.

A registered office address can arguably be anywhere. It does not need to be your home, showroom or office, but there are certain rules that need to be followed.

How do I get a limited company address?

The address to include in your limited company registration is up to you. But the government have given advice about what can be accepted.

Whatever address you use, it must be:

  • A physical address
  • In the United Kingdom
  • Able to receive post
  • In whichever country your company is registered (for example, a company registered in Wales must have a registered office address in Wales)

Getting a limited company address is as simple as declaring one in the registration process. Knowing the rules about what is/isn’t acceptable will make that process easier.

Business Office Address

Can I use my accountant for my registered office address?

If you don’t want to use your personal address for registering your business, you will be able to use a different address.

Current Companies House guidance says that this could be the address of the person who will manage your Corporation Tax, such as your accountant.

If your accountant is comfortable for you to use them, it is a method used by other businesses. However, as the information will be public you must get their permission first.

During the registration process, you may also choose to appoint a company formation agent or secretarial agent. As one of their services, they can give you a registered office address for a limited company.

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What about a virtual address for my limited company?

When you have registered company, your information will be publicly available. There are options to consider if you do not want your personal address to be included in that data.

Virtual business addresses are perfectly valid to use as an officially registered location. This is a feature they provide that often goes overlooked.

If you think about the requirements for limited company registration, virtual addresses offer a physical address that can receive post and forward it to you. You will need to make sure they forward all post, and not filter anything they consider spam or junk.

You must have the virtual address arrangement in place before you register your company.

What is the process for changing registered office of a private limited company?

Once you have registered your trade business, you can still update your details with Companies House.

There are currently two methods available for changing the registered office address of your limited company.

  • Online – Through the WebFiling service via Companies House -this will update your address online, and updated registration documents will be sent out
  • By Post – You will need to fill in the form AD01 and then return to Companies House, a process that may take longer due to the variables of the postal service

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Is there a limited company address service?

There is not one specific service that can provide your limited company with a registered office address. However, Companies House have a list of companies that can do this for you.

Guidance from 2022 outlines company formation agents and secretarial agents that can act on your behalf for this service.

Services that are usually offered by these agents offer can include:

  • Guidance on company type to suit your trade business
  • Guidance or assistance picking a name
  • Permissions relating to naming
  • Ongoing secretarial support surrounding company status
  • Registered office address services
  • Helping you set up a bank account for your business

Companies House do offer caveats with the agents they list. Most of them offer advice and assistance to register your company in the first place. Many will also offer services for managing your registration status.

With the limited company address services, you will probably want to speak to an agent that is nearest to your location. That way, they will be able to advise on the relevant guidance for your business location.

If you choose to use a third-party agent to handle your mail, they must send you all your company’s mail. As it is your official place of business, you must make sure you can receive all forms of communication.

Do sole traders need a registered office address?

As they do not need to register with Companies House, sole traders do not need to have an address of this type.

Tradespeople that operate as sole traders will still need to have a physical address. Communications from HMRC can be in written form and they will need to send them to you.

But you do not need to register your main place of business or home address for this purpose.

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