Starting and Managing a Business
You have a choice of different business structures for your new venture and choosing the right one for you is fundamental to the future growth and successful operation of your business as it will affect things like who makes the management decisions, the tax you pay, the types of records you need to keep, how you raise money and your personal financial liability. The most popular legal structures are:
- Sole Traders - where you as an individual have the right to make all decisions affecting your business, but you are also personally responsible for any debts and obligations of the business, without any limit.
- Limited Liability Partnerships - a structure that works much like a partnership, but with the liability for the debts of members, or partners, are limited. A majority of LLPs are professional firms such as lawyers, accountants and surveyors.
- Partnerships - where a business is structured equally between one or more individuals. There are few formalities required to set up a partnership, however, it can be difficult to raise capital.
- Private Limited Company – a very common business structure, where a company has a legal identity in its own right, as opposed to the individual as a Sole Trader. The main benefit of a “Ltd” company is that the shareholders are not automatically liable for the actions or debts of the company.
- Public Limited Company– similar to a private listed company, except there are further rules and requirements surrounding a PLC, including the minimum capital of the company and corporate make up. PLCs tend to be larger companies, which publically trade shares on the Stock Exchange or AIM.
Therefore you must make sure you register under the right structure. If you get it wrong it could be an expensive and complicated mistake to rectify. If you are in any doubt as to which is the best legal structure for your business speak to a member of our Corporate and Commercial team for advice.
More from the Downs Blog
The Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy undertook a report into domestic abuse and the workplace. The report identified that the number of domestic abuse cases had increased during the pandemic and that 1 in 5 victims of domestic abuse had time off work. Sadly, research found that few employers were able to identify the signs of domestic abuse and/or had policies or procedures available to help support survivors.
As the UK eagerly tuned in to the most anticipated Budget for a generation, many were left wondering what the Chancellor’s traditional “rabbit out of a hat” might contain - especially as several big measures had been announced beforehand.
The WHO defines good mental health as: “a state of wellbeing in which every individual realises his or her own potential, can cope with the normal stress of life, can work productively and fruitfully and is able to make a contribution to his or her community.”
Under new government guidance, you should work from home if you can effectively do so. However, some employers may ask their employees to return to work whilst restrictions are in place - particularly if it is not reasonable to carry out that work at home. For those who are concerned about health problems, or juggling childcare, where do you stand in the eyes of the law?
The third lockdown in England legally came into force on 6 January 2021. How long it will last is uncertain. At least until mid-February and possibly until late March. Vaccination provides a route out of the pandemic, but businesses need to survive this final and possibly longest of the lockdowns.
During these uncertain times, it is good to know you can count on us.
Even after the recent Government announcement of another national lockdown we remain open for business and are here to help you.
On Thursday 5 November 2020, the Chancellor announced that the furlough scheme is to be extended until the end of March 2021. During this period you will be able to claim up to 80% of an Employees salary up to a cap of £2500.
The Chancellor announced over the weekend that the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) that was due to end on 31st October will be extended until 2nd December. The level of support available under the extended scheme will mirror that of what was available under the CJRS in August, with the Government paying 80% of wages up to a cap of £2,500.
The Chancellor announced on Thursday 22 October that the Government contribution to employers’ wage costs under the Job Support Scheme (JSS) will be increased. Employers will be expected to pay 5% of the cost of unworked hours instead of the 33% originally announced.
Back in the summer the Chancellor announced that employers could receive a one-off payment of £1,000 for every employee who had previously been furloughed under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme provided they remained continuously employed to the end of January 2021. Businesses will be able to claim the Job Retention Bonus from 15 February 2021 and the Government has stated that further guidance will be provided by the end of January 2021.
What is a family investment company (FIC)?
FICs are companies limited by shares (an “Ltd” or “Limited”) often setup by parents or grandparents (“Founders”) to benefit both themselves and their family as shareholders. Their popularity has increased in recent years, being seen as a corporate alternative to the more common discretionary trust.
With new government guidance on Covid coming into force today and the current furlough scheme coming to an end next month, as expected, the Chancellor has today announced a new scheme to help businesses.
You must meet certain day-to-day responsibilities if your business is covered by the Money Laundering Regulations or if you just want to protect your business from such risks and work on a best practice basis. These include carrying out ‘customer due diligence’ measures to check that your customers are who they say they are.
We've woken up to the news this morning that, following a public vote in a general election, the Conservative party will be forming a government after winning the biggest majority vote in over 30 years.
With the General Election looming on 12th December what are the main parties saying in their election manifesto's on workers' rights. David Seals, Head of Employment, takes a look at the key messages.
Improving the conversation about the menopause at work is important for both workers and employers. For the worker experiencing symptoms, the onset of the menopause can be a challenging time and one that is a sensitive and personal matter. For an employer, menopause is a health and well-being concern for their workers and one that needs managing sensitively.
Whilst many see flexible working as an opportunity to juggle a work life balance more successfully, a lot of work needs to be done around overall wellbeing for the employee – and ways in which the employer can help facilitate that.
Talks surrounding the possibility of a shrinking economy are increasing by the day, however, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS), the UK might just avoid a recession.
No sooner have we published a blog about British Airways’ largest GDPR fine on record, we find another story in the news.
British Airways (BA) looks set to face the largest GDPR penalty by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) of £183m for last year’s data breach that put 500,000 customers’ details at risk.
According to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), stress, depression and anxiety were the main factors for time off work in 2017/18, equating to 15.4 million working days lost.
In all the excitement of a new partnership or business venture, sometimes we forget the serious side too. Fact is, without a non-disclosure agreement, or NDA as it is more commonly known, you risk exposing some of the valuable, and saleable, secrets of your success
When you start a business, there is a phase at the very beginning when you are trying to do several things at once. All of a sudden, you are a business consultant, an accountant, a marketer and a writer - as well as being the expert in your chosen field. It can be easy to lose sight of a few things along the way, but here are five top tips to help you stay on track and help turn your start-up into a thriving business.
One of the biggest IT changes on the horizon for us as professionals is the impact blockchain technology will have on the way we work. This note attempts to shed a little light on what it is and how it may be applied.
This week, 13 - 19 May 2019, is Mental Health Awareness Week. So, what better time to talk about mental health within the workplace.
The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is nearly one year old, having come into effect on May 25th 2018. Many businesses in the UK and abroad have made amendments to elements of their practices to ensure GDPR compliance. As with any substantial change, there has been a steep learning curve and inevitable growing pains. With the one year mark fast approaching it seems an appropriate time to look at the impact and success, if any, of GDPR.
When do you have a “right” to cancel your contract – and does that right to do so actually exist?