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What You Should Know About Changing Your Company’s Registered Office Address

Author Renee YangRenee Yang

4 min read
Running My Business

If you’ve ever wondered what the administrative things you need to do when you move offices, read on.

What You Should Know About Changing Your Company’s Registered Office Address

Moving offices is common for companies today. You might be relocating due to the rising costs of your current registered office, or your company plans to consolidate your business and move to another country. Whatever the reasons it may be, you will have to change your company’s registered office address.

Also, if you want help in getting your UK company registered in the first place, you’re in the right place.

What is meant by a registered office address?

A registered office address refers to a place where companies receive official mail correspondences from Companies House and HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC).

It serves as a communication point between the company and the government agencies. According to the UK Companies Act, Section 86, it is mandatory for every company in the UK to have a registered office. It has to be a physical address, and not a P.O Box. However, you may use a P.O Box if you give the full address with the postcode of the physical building.

What happens if you move your business to another part of the UK?

This is important. A company’s registered office must be in the same part of the UK where the company incorporates.

The UK is comprised of three jurisdictions: England & Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. If the company is incorporated in England, his company’s registered office has to be in England. You cannot change from one jurisdiction to another.

Tommy Davis owns an accounting firm in Edinburgh. As his company grows, he decides to move his business operation to London. Given that his company was previously registered in Scotland, he cannot just change from one jurisdiction to another. Tommy will have to re-incorporate his company in England.

What about companies that relocate within the same part of the UK? In this scenario, if a company that is originally based in Southampton and the business owner decides to relocate to Manchester, the company does not have to re-incorporate with the Companies House, as the business is still operating within the England & Wales’ region.

Can you use your home address as the registered office address?

You can use your home address as the registered office address.

However, there are risks. Your registered office address will appear on the public records. This means that everyone is able to access this information. If you do not feel comfortable receiving any junk mail or cold calls from random strangers, it’s better to not to use your home address.

How do you change your company’s registered office address?

To change your company’s registered office, here are the steps:

  1. If you have not used the Companies House service, you will need to register for Companies House Webfiling.
  2. On the portal, you will need to give your email address and create a password.
  3. Once you fill in the necessary details, the Companies House will post an authentication code to your registered office address.

The authentication code is a 6 digital alphanumeric code. It is used to authorise information filed online. It will take up to 5 days for the code to arrive. But the delivery may take longer during busy periods.

Just remember to request for the authentication code before you move!

How long will it take?

Changes to your registered office address will only take effect after Companies House has registered it. The online application process will take about 24 hours for Companies House’s approval.

However, if you prefer to submit a paper form, you can download this AD01 - Change of Registered Address form and return it to Companies House. Do note that it will take longer for physical application forms to be processed.

How much do I have to pay to change the address?

There is no fee for changing your registered office address.

When does your company need to notify the authorities?

You will need to inform Companies House within 14 days after the changes have taken place. This is so that Companies House can update the changes in their records.

What documents do you need?

During the submission of your application, you will need to give the following information:

  1. Your company name in full
  2. Your company number
  3. Your new registered office address in full

Who do you need to notify after the change of registered office address?

When you’ve changed your registered office address, you will need to inform and update government agencies, relevant people and other documents.

Here is a non-exhaustive list of people to notify:

  1. HMRC - You will need to inform them of any changes to your registered office address within 30 days. If you fail to report any changes within that time frame, you are liable for a financial penalty.
  2. VAT – This is important, as this will affect your VAT registration. You may apply changes to your registered office address through VAT online form. Alternatively, you may download VAT484 form and send it by post.
  3. PAYE & National Insurance
  4. Banks & auditors
  5. Accountants
  6. Insurance providers
  7. Customers & suppliers

Apart from informing people about the change of registered office address, you will need to update your address on these company communication channels:

  1. Company’s website
  2. Company’s email correspondences
  3. Company’s letterheads, envelopes and name cards

By doing this, you are making sure that all your official documents will be delivered to the correct address. According to Companies House, they receive over 100,000 returned mail each year. Similarly, by notifying your relevant customers, clients and suppliers, it helps you to run your business effectively without any miscommunication.

Summing Up

In conclusion, changing your company’s registered office address is a fuss-free process. You may handle the administrative work on your own. Yet in the midst of the relocation of your office, there are many business matters you will need to sort it out. To help you to focus on the running of your business, our experienced team is here to provide any form of assistance, from accounting for e-commerce business to bookkeeping.

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