Doing Business in the UK Legal & Commercial Guide

Doing Business in the UK | Legal & Commercial Guide

Doing business in the United Kingdom can be as exciting as it is complex. Every business owner has to understand the market regulations. The UK has a long history in international trade. So, if you want to be successful, you must be aware of the commercial issues. Here are the most important aspects to consider.

Defining Your Corporate Structure

To set up a business in the UK, you have to decide on a corporate structure. Depending on what your company’s goals are, you may go for three different options. You may set up a limited company (also known as a subsidiary), a limited liability partnership, or a branch. The choice will be made based on the number of partners or employees, as well as the financial institutions you wish to work with.

Immigration and Visas

If you plan on employing individuals of different citizenship, you need to ensure that they have an appropriate visa to work for you. Failing to do so may result in a fine. You should look into immigration options early on so that you avoid any potential issues or surprises in the future.

Employment Law Regulations

Compared to other countries in Europe and even the United States, the United Kingdom does not have as many labor regulations. Due to the flexibility of the labor market, you may easily acquire talents so that your business may thrive. Even with the recent revoking of the EU employment law, it’s still easy to find suitable employees for your business.

Regulations for Trading

While employment law is very relaxed in the UK, other sectors have slightly more regulations. The financial services sector is one of these industries. As a business owner, you must get all of your necessary licenses for legal trades. Forex brokers in the United Kingdom should keep their attorneys close, to ensure they are not accidentally sidetracking the law.

Property Models

Depending on the type of business that you want to start, there are several models of office space that you may choose from. The most common are serviced offices, but you may also go for managed offices, office leasing, or co-working spaces. The rights to the property that you get will depend on the office model that you go for. For example, if you run an online casino from a leased space, you will have little rights to the property.

Tax Regime

Like every other corner of the earth, business owners are supposed to pay taxes. Regardless of the company structure, business owners are expected to register their information with Her Majesty’s Revenue & Customs. This allows them to cover all of their tax obligations. Government updates may come in the future but are still more competitive compared to other countries. 

The Bottom Line

Starting a business in the United Kingdom is quite straightforward, but will require a few legal steps. If it’s your first time doing business in the UK, you might want to have an attorney by your side. Even if the company is registered in another country, the regulations may be different in the UK.

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