What’s my business/company type?

During sign-up, we ask for an employer’s business/company type as we need to know about the legal structure or formation of the employer. Types of businesses can be generally categorised as follows:

Private Limited or Public Limited Company — a limited company is registered with Companies House and has a company registration number. With effect from April 2016, these companies are required to keep and update a register of ‘persons with significant control’ (known as the PSC register) and file a confirmation statement with Companies House. Some of the differences between a private and public company are that a public company must include the words ‘public limited company’ or the shortened version, ‘PLC’ at the end of its legal name and the shares of a public company are freely traded to the public in order to raise capital.

Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) — a limited liability partnership is registered with Companies House and has a company registration number. Just like the private and public company, LLPs are also required to keep and update a register of ‘persons with significant control’ (known as the PSC register) and file a confirmation statement with Companies House. The members (usually called partners) are separate from the LLP and they are not personally liable for the debts of the LLP.

Individual — an individual may hire persons who are not self-employed or paid through an agency to perform services in the home and these persons could include carers, gardeners or housekeepers.  Such an individual is required to register as an organisation with HM Revenue & Customs and would be responsible for meeting the employee’s rights and deducting tax and National Insurance contributions.

Sole trader — a sole trader is a person who owns and controls 100% of a business. There is no distinct separation between the sole trader and the business, and the sole trader is personally liable for the debts of the business. A sole trader is also required to register as an organisation with HM Revenue & Customs and would be responsible for meeting the employee’s rights and deducting tax and National Insurance contributions.

Partnership — a partnership is a business carried on by two or more people. Where a partnership agreement is in place, this will set out the proportion of the business that each partner owns. Where there is no partnership agreement, all partners are deemed to have an equal proportion of the business and are entitled to share the profits equally. The partners are personally liable for the debts of the partnership. Typical examples of partnerships are professional GP and dental practices.

Registered charity — a registered charity is an organisation that is registered as a charity with a Charity Commission in the UK. Registered charities can be found on www.gov.uk/find-charity-information.

College or educational establishment — a college or educational establishment is an organisation that is dedicated to promoting education and the advancement of knowledge. It may fall under one of the other business types, and where this is the case, please select the other business type as the preferred option.  A register of establishments providing compulsory, higher and further education can be found on www.education.gov.uk/edubase/home.xhtml.

Government or public body — a government or public body is an organisation that is responsible for providing government or public services which include making policies and putting these policies into practice for the benefit of the general public. Examples include small local parish councils and political parties. A list of government departments, agencies and public bodies can be found on www.gov.uk/government/organisations.

Overseas company — an overseas company is a company that is incorporated and registered outside of the UK. An overseas company could establish a place of business within the UK and/or employ staff who are deemed to be working or ordinarily working within the UK.

Unincorporated association – an unincorporated association is an organisation set up through an agreement between a group of people who come together for a common non-commercial purpose which is often of a social nature, eg voluntary groups, societies, community associations, or clubs. An unincorporated association (excluding charities) doesn’t need to be registered with any regulatory body, and it is the simplest way for a group to set itself up. It has no separate legal entity which means that its members are personally responsible for any debts and contractual obligations.

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