A change of company name refers to a change in a company’s legal registered name at Companies House. It is a formal procedure which only becomes official once Companies House approves the change and issues a name change certificate called a Certificate of Incorporation on Change of Name.
There are two stages to a company name change. The first part is the decision to submit a name change application to Companies House. This is made by the company’s members passing a special resolution, although it can sometimes come from a decision by the directors.
The second stage is the submission of the name change application to Companies House. Only when Companies House approves the name change, and issues a name change certificate does the change become official.
You can check the availability of a company name using our name checker facility on the Rapid Formations homepage. The name checker will also let you know if there are any other requirements to the use of that name – for example, you may have included a sensitive word that requires approval from a specified body.
It normally takes 3-4 working days for a company name change to be completed. This includes:
No. Your company registration number will not change as it is assigned to your company for the duration of its life. Only your company name will change.
You will receive a ‘Certificate of Incorporation on Change of Name'. This certificate confirms the company’s old company, the new name, the date the change occurred, the company’s registration number, the jurisdiction the company was registered in, and the act under which it was incorporated.
This certificate does not replace the original certificate of incorporation which you must retain with your company records.
No. You do not need to register a new VAT number when you change your company name. However, you will need to update your VAT registration details with HMRC to reflect the name change within 30 days.
You can update your VAT details through your online VAT account, by post using the form VAT484, or by contacting HMRC directly by webchat or phone.
It is important to tell HMRC about a change to your company as soon as possible. If you are registered for VAT, you must update your VAT account within 30 days. You must also inform your bank and utility providers to ensure continued access to their services.
Finally, you should advise any other relevant stakeholders of your name change. This can include investors, employees, customers, suppliers, and any third parties who have an interest in a change in your company’s name.
Yes. Our Company Name Change service can be used to change the suffix of your company name from ‘Limited’ to ‘Ltd’ (or vice versa). The process is the same as if you were to change any other part of the company name.
Yes. A sensitive word can be used in your new company name, provided the relevant requirements of that sensitive word are met – for example, permission from the appropriate body. The supporting evidence for use of the sensitive word will need to be submitted together with the form NM01 to Companies House.
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