The date of incorporation of a UK limited company is the date it is registered at Companies House in England and Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland. This is when it comes into existence as a distinct legal entity.
A company is ready to begin trading from the moment it is incorporated. However, it is possible to register the trading status of the business as ‘dormant’ (inactive) for corporation tax purposes for an indefinite period of time after incorporation. This means you can set up a company for the purpose of protecting or reserving a name or preparing a business for future trading.
Companies House will issue a certificate of incorporation as evidence your company’s legal registration. This document will display the following details:
- Date of incorporation.
- Full company name.
- Registration number.
- Country of incorporation.
- Registered office address.
- Company Form (limited by shares, limited by guarantee etc.).
- Legislation incorporated under.
All of this corporate information will also be displayed on the official register of companies, which can be viewed online by all members of the public via Companies House WebFiling.