A Comprehensive Guideline for Foreigners to Start a Business in the UK
3E Accounting offers a condensed version of a comprehensive guideline for foreigners to start a business in the UK.
The United Kingdom is a vibrant and exciting place to start a business. It has over six million private sector enterprises and one of the most straightforward companies formation processes globally. Its established legal framework supports a well-developed infrastructure complemented by good governance. Add in a lively culture and a robust consumer market, and you have a dynamic commercial ecosystem in which to trade. A comprehensive guideline for foreigners to start a business in the UK highlights all the salient points to consider.
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Starting a company in the UK requires registration with Companies House. Irrelevant of whether you are a British national or a foreign entrepreneur, the process is the same. The primary condition is to have a UK registered address. This is required for correspondence, especially with the authorities, and accountability.
A UK registered address can be acquired by leasing or purchasing a property. However, the most popular, and the economical, route is to engage the services of reliable business solution firms such as 3E Accounting. We have ready-made UK registered business address that can be used for company formation purposes.
This makes it relatively easy for entrepreneurs, which includes any person from any country in the world. International entrepreneurs do not even need to live in the UK or have any residential status. As for visas, foreign entrepreneurs do not need a visa to start a business in the UK. However, this does not apply to working in the UK as non-residents must have visas to join the workforce. The friendly professionals at 3E Accounting will be happy to explain how your business can turn a profit without a visa.
Other requirements include providing the company’s constitutional documents, i.e., the articles of association and memorandum of association. You will also need to provide information on shareholders and directors, of which you will need at least one each. Finally, you will need to name your company in accordance with the Government’s business naming rules.
Most importantly, your company will need to register with HMRC, the UK’s tax authority. Corporation tax and values added tax or VAT stands at 20% each. Annual filings must be done within the determined financial year-end for your business. It is also advisable to check if your home country has a treaty agreement with the UK. Double taxation agreements exempt foreign entrepreneurs from paying taxes in both the UK and their home country.
It is not a legal requirement for foreign entrepreneurs to have a UK business bank account. However, it is a prudent move to have one as banks tend to charge steep international fund transfer fees. Business insurance is another issue to consider and do bear in mind that minimum wage rules apply to all employees.
You should also ensure that all licenses and permits are obtained before you start trading. The type of approvals you need will depend mostly on your business location and activity. It’s best to engage business solution firms to get all this done and ensure full compliance.
Conversely, foreign companies looking to operate in the UK have a different route than a foreign entrepreneur. Foreign companies need to register with Companies House as an overseas company and open a branch or subsidiary.
A comprehensive guideline for foreigners to start a business in the UK can only provide a framework for comprehension. To ensure full compliance and facilitate seamless incorporation, 3E Accounting offers exclusive company formation services. Contact 3E Accounting today to find out more about our innovative and customisable business solutions.