Guide

Legal structures for businesses - an overview

Introduction

If you are considering setting up a business, it's worth thinking carefully about which structure best suits the way that you intend to do business, as this will affect:

  • which authorities you have to notify that your business exists
  • the tax and National Insurance that you pay
  • the records and accounts that you have to keep
  • your financial liability if the business runs into trouble
  • the ways your business can raise money
  • the way management decisions are made about the business

There are several structures to choose from, including starting a private company, becoming a sole trader or entering business partnerships. This guide will help you understand the differences between them.

Free business start-up support

Access free start-up business support from your local council. They will organise one-to-one mentoring sessions with your local business adviser and provide tailored guidance to develop your business plan.

Complete a short enquiry form or call 0800 027 0639 to register for this free advice and guidance.