How to Register a New Limited Liability Partnership (LLP)
Let's start with the basics first - what exactly is a partnership? A partnership is a business structure set up by at least two people. You can have traditional partnerships, or Limited Liability Partnerships (LLP).
So, what's the difference? The main difference comes down to the amount of liability the partners have. With a traditional partnership, it's run more as a multiple sole traders, in the way that each partner is personally liable for the business. An LLP offers more financial protection and they are similar to Limited Companies - they're still registered and they go through a formation process but can adopt more flexible tax requirements and organisational structure than what a limited company can.
Does an LLP differ from a Limited Company?
In short - yes. They are both different business structures, but are both incorporated at Companies House. They do share similarities such as limited liability for members and both require certain reports to be submitted on a regular basis.
The differences between them lie with the flexibility in their structure, profit sharing and the tax rules that apply to them. For example, a limited company can be used by non-profit organisations, whereas an LLP cannot; you need just one person to start a limited company, but at least two people to start an LLP; It's recommended to have a chat to your accountant or business advisor before deciding which one is best suited for your business.
Who can register a new LLP?
Any one can set up an LLP providing it's set up with a view to making a profit. There is also a minimum requirement of two persons to incorporate the business (a 'person' includes companies, firms and individuals).
How do I register a new LLP?
To start the process, you would need to fill in a Companies House Form LL01 to apply by post. Alternatively, you could use an online service such as the one offered by The Company Wizard (there's more on that here).
To fill in the form, there are a few details you need, such as:
- A name
- A registered address (such as an office). Bear in mind that this will be public
- Details of the members (minimum of 2, and may also be public to an extent)
Are there any rules on LLP names?
There are a few rules on the names of LLPs, such as what's not allowed. These include:
- A name that suggests it's connected to the UK Government
- An offensive word
- A name that is similar to another organisation
- And more (check out the Gov UK rules here)
How long does it normally take?
Setting up an LLP normally takes around 3-4 hours if it's done online. This can vary with the number of applications being handled by Companies House or by the time of day. Generally, the earlier in the day you submit the application, the sooner it is likely to be completed.
I'm ready to go!
Ready to incorporate your new LLP? Let Company Wizard help! We've been incorporating companies for over 10 years and would love to help you set-up your new LLP.
I have more questions
If you're unsure or have more questions, check out some of the links below, or contact us.
- Gov UK Guide - Set up & run an LLP
- Gov UK - LLP Member's Responsibilities
- Company Wizard LLP Formation Service
- 10 Mar 2017 - When is the right time to hire?
- 02 Mar 2017 - 10 More Mistakes Entrepreneurs Make
- 23 Feb 2017 - What is a Virtual Address and should I use one?
- 17 Feb 2017 - Time management - Are You Making The Most Out Of Your Week?
- 09 Feb 2017 - How do I make an employee redundant?