FAQs

Frequently asked questions

We charge £65 (+VAT) for setting up a company and for arranging all the necessary documentation.

Thereafter, we charge a basic annual fee of £1,200 (+VAT). This is payable in quarterly instalments of £300 (+VAT). There are fees for some additional services that are detailed in our fee structure. Additional services fees will be invoiced, and payable separately either at the time, quarterly or annually according to service.

The basic annual fee covers the provision of annual accounts, preparation of corporation tax returns, full paperwork for two dividends, full payroll administration, preparation of form P11D and company secretarial services. The majority of our clients only ever pay this fee. Our full fee structure can be found here.

Yes. When bringing an already incorporate company under our control, you also have the opportunity to change the company name, directors and shareholders. The cost of this service is £65 + VAT.

There are five key reasons as to why potential clients often insist that contractors operate under a limited company structure:

  • Avoiding employment agency legislation including possible PAYE complications
  • Avoiding the legal burden of employing a permanent member of staff (minimum wage, redundancy, SSP, maternity leave etc.
  • Reducing hidden employment costs (pensions, holiday pay and other long-term overheads)
  • Eliminating responsibility to operate PAYE on your consultancy fees. This is extremely important since, if you are a sole trader, HMRC could dispute your status and, in certain circumstances, look to your client for income tax and National Insurance on your fees long after employment has ceased
  • Being employed by your own company is indisputable proof that you are not employed by your client (although not for IR35 purposes)

A limited company is a separate legal entity, for which you become both an owner and an employee. Your company charges fees to your clients for services provided, and in turn pays you via a combination of salary and dividends. PAYE must be paid on salaries, and the company may meet any other expenses that relate to the operation of the company. The company must have its own bank account to keep company expenditure separate from personal expenditure.

Every director must provide Companies House with both a service address and their usual residential address. The service address is where personal documents relating to the director can be delivered and where an acknowledgement or receipt can be provided if required. Your service address will be visible on the public register, whereas your residential address (if different) will be protected information and will not be visible.

You are not obliged to have a separate service address, but if you decide to use a single address for both, this information will be visible through search engines and various third party web sites.

You may choose any address as a service address except a PO Box or a DX number. We do allow the Competex address to be used as a service address, for which there is a small annual fee per address.

By acting as company secretary and providing the registered office, we can ensure all of your deadlines are met effectively through our tight compliance processes.

The company secretary has the ability to sign off accounts, registration documents with the statutory bodies (VAT, PAYE and Corporation Tax) and annual returns to Companies House. The location of your registered office also determines which HMRC office handles your corporation tax affairs, allowing us to deal with the same tax office for all our clients, meet client deadlines easily, and handle routine mail quickly and easily.

No. The Company Secretary is not involved in the day-to-day running of the company and is not a signatory on the bank account.

Online applications at Companies House normally take no longer than 24 hours.  As soon as we receive your application form and payment we will verify your identity and process your company incorporation.

 

The company can remain dormant for as long as you like. At the end of the accounting year we will need to produce and file dormant accounts.  For this we will charge a fee of £300 (+VAT), payable in quarterly instalments of  £75 + VAT.  Alternatively, the company could be struck off the register at Companies House for a fee of £80 + VAT.

This is your choice, although we usually recommend that you set your business up as early as possible once you have decided to work independently.

Setting it up early will mean that your affairs are in order for when you start your first assignment. Once your company has been incorporated you will need to approach a bank to set up your company bank account. Setting up a bank account normally takes in the region of 3 weeks.

It will allow you adequate time to prepare your marketing materials, such as business cards and headed paper, and secure a domain name to match your chosen company name.

Yes, provided any invoices for the work you have done are dated after the date of incorporation.

No. You cannot enter into contracts in the name of a company before the company has been incorporated. However, you could check with Companies House that the company name is available and draw up a contract in the proposed name of the company, leaving the date to be inserted when the certificate of incorporation is received

Yes. It is perfectly feasible for another person to use your company, provided they are working to the same pattern, i.e. selling their knowledge and skills and not using it for trading/investment.

Under certain circumstances, there may be a tax advantage if a partner/spouse is made a shareholder, but this depends upon individual arrangements. If you would like further advice, please get in touch with our team.

We strongly recommend that children under the age of 16 are not shareholders.

You are obliged to register for VAT only if your income exceeds a certain limit in a full year. However, if your income is below this limit you may still register on a voluntary basis, as it may be beneficial to do so and can appear more professional to potential clients. If you would like further information on VAT, our team can advise on this.

If the majority of your clients are not registered for VAT or you work mainly abroad, and your company income does not exceed the annual limit, you might choose not to register the company for VAT.

We will normally register you for VAT from the date you started your first contract.

Your business can join the flat rate scheme if, in the next year, your turnover is estimated not to exceed a set threshold (currently £150,000). The FRS simplifies your VAT accounting, as you pay over to HMRC a reduced percentage of VAT on your net sales, but you do not reclaim any VAT on your purchases. Therefore, it is suitable for those with fewer expenses. For further information about VAT and to discuss which scheme is right for you, please give us a call.

B2B sales of services to other EU countries is deemed to be based in the place of supply and therefore outside the scope of UK VAT.

This type of sale must be dealt with under the reverse charge scheme. Law states that when your customer has multiple establishments then the place of supply is the place that receives and benefits from the service provided. The customer has to declare and pay the VAT in their own country.

The reverse charge scheme means that your invoices must not have any VAT on them but state ‘Subject to reverse charge in the country of receipt’. It must also have the company VAT registration number, preceded by GB, your customer’s VAT registration number and their country code.

You will be able to open the company bank account as soon as you receive the certificate of incorporation, but it is a good idea to contact your chosen bank as soon as possible after your company has been set up to complete all the necessary documentation.

Each month you decide what funds should be allocated to pay salaries, inclusive of employer’s national insurance, before transferring the total amount into our Client Salaries Trust Account, according to a pre-specified timetable.

We then calculate how much of this represents the employer’s NI contribution, deduct tax and employee’s NI, and pay your net salary into your personal bank account. We pay the tax and National Insurance directly to HMRC under Real Time Information regulations and liaise with HMRC on all other PAYE matters. You may increase or decrease your salary whenever required.

It is essential that you ascertain whether IR35 applies to your contract. If it does, you are obliged to take 95% of your income, minus certain expenses, as salary. We provide you with a simple template to calculate your IR35 salary liability on a month by month basis. IR35 is a complex piece of legislation and it is important to establish your status correctly. For detailed guidance on IR35, please give us a call.

In the accounting year in which you resume permanent employment, you will still need to pay the annual fee of £1200 + VAT.  However, if you have only been active in one quarter of your accounting year, there is a reduced fee of £800 + VAT.  After the year end, you will have the option of keeping the company and paying a reduced annual administration fee, or having it struck off the register at Companies House, in which case there is a fee of £80 (+VAT).

No. It is no longer necessary for small companies to be audited.

Because of the income tax, national insurance, VAT and corporation tax implications, our package does not allow for company cars. It is advisable for you to own your car, but to charge your company for business miles at the agreed HMRC mileage rates.

Our contracts are rolling, allowing client to make alternative arrangements at any point.

Our package is not suitable for clients who buy and sell goods and hold stock or investments. Because the vast majority of our clients fit a particular profile and keep their records in exactly the same way, as detailed in our client handbook, we are able to standardise our work and keep our fees to a minimum, whilst still offering a personal service.

adminFAQs