What is a company registration number?

What is a company registration number?

Quick Answer

A company registration number (CRN) is a unique eight character reference assigned to a company upon its incorporation. Companies House provides this identifying number and it is printed on the certificate of incorporation.

A company registration number is a unique number issued by Companies House when a limited company or Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) is incorporated. It is usually abbreviated as ‘CRN’ and is sometimes referred to as a Companies House Number.

Your CRN will consist of 8 numbers, or 2 letters followed by 6 numbers. It will be displayed on your certificate of incorporation and any statutory company mail sent from Companies House. It will also appear on the public register next to your company details.

You cannot choose or change your CRN. It will be computer generated on a sequential basis depending on your country of incorporation and the type of company you set up:

  • Companies formed in England and Wales have CRNs beginning with 0 (zero).
  • Scottish companies are given CRNs with the prefix ‘SC’.
  • Limited Liability Partnerships (LLPs) are issued with CRNs beginning with ‘OC’.
  • Scottish LLPs have CRNs beginning with ‘SO’.

Please click here to view the full list of Uniform Resource Identifiers for UK companies on the public register.

Find your CRN using Companies House WebCHeck

To view your company on the Companies House register and locate your CRN, simply enter the registered name of your business into the bright yellow section on WebCHeck. Your details will appear on the screen with your CRN on the left-hand side of your company name. Very handy if you can’t find your certificate of incorporation and you have somehow managed to lose every piece of official correspondence from Companies House.

When will I use my company registration number?

Generally, you should expect to provide your CRN in the following situations:

  • Changing your company name.
  • Changing your registered office or SAIL address.
  • Adding or removing a company director or secretary.
  • Changing the details of directors and secretaries.
  • Filing annual returns.
  • Filing annual accounts.
  • Registering for business taxes.
  • Paying Corporation Tax.
  • Filing Company Tax Returns.
  • Filing copies of resolutions.
  • Increasing share capital.
  • Issuing share certificates.
  • Issuing dividend vouchers.
  • Changing your accounting reference date (ARD).

You must also display your company registration number on all forms of business stationery, including:

  • Official letters, faxes and emails.
  • Compliments slips.
  • Order forms.
  • Invoices and receipts.
  • Websites.

Related: Company filing and reporting requirements

About our services

In addition to online company formation and company address services, Rapid Formations provides Software Filing through an Online Admin Portal. You can view your company details, including your CRN, report changes to Companies House, download incorporation documents, and file annual returns and resolutions.This facility is available free of charge to clients and non-clients – click here to find out more.



  1. Hi
    Is it necessary to change registration number of the company when this company changes it name ??

    • Dear Yousef,
      Thank you for your message.
      A company’s Registration Number never changes during its life and you do not have any option to change it.
      Best regards,
      Rapid Formations Team.

  2. Hi Rachel,

    I was just wondering, is a ‘Registration Number’ the same as a ‘VAT Number’ when it is displayed on a letterhead, or are they two different things?


    • Hi Gill,

      They are both different numbers. All companies are given a unique resignation number by Companies House. A VAT number, on the other hand, is issued by HMRC only when a company has been registered for VAT. If you require a VAT number, you can easily register your company online – a VAT number will be issued to you within 1-14 days.

      You can find out more here: https://www.gov.uk/vat-registration/overview

      I hope this clarifies matters, but please do get back in touch if you have any more questions!

      All the best,


  3. Hello Rachel,

    First of all, thank you very much for your informative article. I was quite pleased to have stumbled upon in while seeking information regarding this topic. Would you be so kind as to inform me whether or not I would need to seek receiving a CRN as an American LLC doing business via a .co.uk website? I noticed that most of my competitors as well as my London based associates have a CRN in their website’s footer.

    Any information on the topic of creating a new web based venture in the UK from the US would be greatly appreciated. I would prefer to do some due diligence before speaking with my UK associates. Thank you for your time and attention.

    • Hi there,
      You can only get a company registration number by incorporating a limited company or limited liability partnership with Companies House in the UK. It should be possible for you to register your existing LLC in the UK, but I would advise speaking with an accountant to find out exactly what your options are – we are not accountants so we cannot offer any specialist advice in this instance.
      All the very best,

  4. Hi Heidi,
    No, you do not need a company registration number if you are a sole trader. You can only get a company registration number by incorporating a company at Companies House.
    As a sole trader, you need to be registered with HMRC for Self-Assessment. You will then complete a Self-Assessment tax return at the end of every tax year and pay Income Tax and National Insurance on your earnings.
    Take a look at this link for more information about sole traders: https://www.gov.uk/set-up-sole-trader/overview
    I hope this helps. Best wishes,

    • Hi Rachel thank you so much for your help, it was really appreciated can 🙂

  5. Hi I am trying to find out who owns three pubs in London, vague I know so I asked for the registered company number and was given 167634286, nine numbers! I am chasing non payment of invoice dating back to 1 March 2015 and the pubs concerned are The Rose, 35 Albert Embankment, SE1 7TL and The Duke & Duchess, 2 Creed Lane, EC4V 5BR. The invoices have been emailed, statements sent, reminders, every month since, the company accounts person ‘Anita’ will not give me any information about when payment will be made, asked for owner contact details, she refuses to help and put the phone down, and now will not answer at all. Said she did not have the cheque book, although they do not need a cheque book, to pay. The Owners name is John O’Donnell, and thus far that is all the information I have managed to glean from anyone. No managers around ever in the pubs and when I do speak to them, they can’t help or make some excuse not to pay, say the owner will be back on such a day, and I don’t hear back. Is there anything you can suggest?

    • Hello Sarah
      Thank you for your message.
      I note the number you have been given is not a company incorporation number and therefore I cannot give any advice. It may be that the number is a vat number (as UK vat numbers are 9 digits) and you can check these details out at http://ec.europa.eu/taxation_customs/vies/vatRequest.html
      If the businesses you are trying to contact are Limited Companies you can search the company details on Companies House website at the following link https://beta.companieshouse.gov.uk/ The directors and ownership details will be available there.

      Kind Regards

  6. So If I go from LLP to Ltd, does my number change?

    • Dear Ivelina
      Thank you for your message. The information on the blog above is for people in your situation where they do not have a residential UK address. The banks are aware that you will not have this information and will ask for other information to allow them to proceed with an application on your behalf.
      Kind Regards

    • Hello Shirley
      Thank you for your message.
      It is not possible to convert an LLP to a limited company. In order to change a business from a company to an LLP, you will have to register a new company then dissolve the LLP.
      If you would like more information on this subject please read our blog attached – https://www.rapidformations.co.uk/blog/blog/can-i-change-a-limited-company-to-a-llp/

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