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Should I keep my limited company? Change of direction

(5 Posts)
Collectorofcookbooks Sun 26-Feb-17 21:47:06

I've freelanced for some time and have had my own limited company for about 5 years. It's dormant at present. I've been employed part time for year and am now looking at doing something completely different to what the limited company was originally set up to do. Whatever freelancing I've picked up has gone through the limited company, but I've not done anything with it since I started working part time a year ago.

The name doesn't match for a start (don't think you can change the name of a limited company?) so would I be best to close it down and start a new one? Or go with setting up as a different type of company?

The plan is to run my new business alongside my part time employed role. Until I can give up the salaried role.

Not sure what is best to do?

EnormousTiger Sun 26-Feb-17 22:07:19

You can easily change the name or you can keep the same registered name and put that in small letters on your invoices but add in bigger ones your trading name. Eg Dolls' House Seller Ltd trading as Jane's Cup Cakes (if you changed from dolls to cakes).

If you keep the company you will probably save some national insurance and will have limited liablity (are you likely to get sued) but will probably need to pay an accountant to do the accounts. Some of the tax advantages of a limited company went last year by the way as dividends are taxed differently now. If you have liabilities in the old company you want to leave behind that might be a reason to start a new one but otherwise I woudl either just fold the other and be a sole trader or else keep the same company going.

Collectorofcookbooks Tue 28-Feb-17 09:57:25

Thanks Enormous - my accountant has told me I can't change the name so I'll look into it. No liabilities to leave behind.

Maybe I need to look into getting a new accountant - I wasn't up on the NI and tax changes - he's supposed to look after all that for me.

Badbadbunny Tue 28-Feb-17 19:37:23

If you're "accountant" told you that you can't change the name, it really is time to get a new one - it's basic 101 stuff and very simple/cheap to change. Is your "accountant" actually qualified or are they either unqualified or a glorified book-keeper pretending to be an accountant.

EnormousTiger Tue 28-Feb-17 21:46:38

It costs £`10 to change the name. However yyou n eed 75% of the shareholders to agree and you file at companies house. If you are the only shareholder and you agree then the name can easily be changed. You then have to make sure your invoices, website, emails, notepaper etc all show the new name once it is formally changed and let HMRC know too.

It is very very easy indeed to change a company name although sometimes you lose some value if people know you by the name eg Virgin trains if it changed to Joe Bloggs train would be wasting a value asset in its name.

www.gov.uk/government/publications/change-a-company-name-nm01

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