Get help and support for your business

Your business can get advice and financial help from government-backed schemes. Enter your details and select the type of support you need.

You can also get:

If you’re unemployed or on benefits you may be able to get extra help through your Jobcentre Plus work coach.

England

You can contact the government’s Business Support Helpline for free advice.

You can also find free support, advice and sources of finance through your local ‘growth hub’.

Business Support Helpline (England)
Telephone: 0300 456 3565
enquiries@businesssupporthelpline.org
Monday to Friday, 9am to 6pm
Find out about call charges

The Business Support Helpline for England is also on:

Scotland

Get free advice from Business Gateway online, or over the phone.

Business Gateway (Scotland)
Telephone: 0300 013 4753
Textphone: 0800 023 2071
Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm
Find out about call charges

Wales

Get help with your business online, or by calling the Business Wales Helpline.

Business Wales Helpline
Telephone: 0300 060 3000
Monday to Friday, 8:30am to 5:30pm
Find out about call charges

Northern Ireland

Find advice and support for starting a business. You can also contact the Invest Northern Ireland helpline.

Invest Northern Ireland
Telephone: 0800 181 4422
Monday to Friday, 8:30am to 5pm
Find out about call charges

  1. Step 1 Check if setting up a limited company is right for you

    1. Check what a private limited company is

    How you set up your business depends on what sort of work you do. It can also affect the way you pay tax and get funding.

    Check if you should set up as one of the following instead:

    1. You are currently viewing: Get help deciding how to set up your business
  2. Step 2 Choose a name

  3. Step 3 Choose directors and a company secretary

    You must appoint a director but you do not have to appoint a company secretary.

    1. Find out what directors are responsible for
    2. Check who can be a director or company secretary
  4. Step 4 Decide who the shareholders or guarantors are

  5. and Identify people with significant control (PSC) over your company

    For example, anyone with voting rights or more than 25% of the shares.

    1. Find out what counts as a PSC
  6. Step 5 Prepare documents agreeing how to run your company

    You need to prepare a 'memorandum of association' and 'articles of association'.

    1. Find out how to create a memorandum and articles of association
  7. Step 6 Check what records you'll need to keep

  8. Step 7 Register your company

    You'll need to register an official address and choose a SIC code - this identifies what your company does.

    1. Check the rules for company addresses
    2. Check what your SIC code is
    3. Register your company with Companies House

    Most people can register for Corporation Tax at the same time as registering with Companies House.

    If you cannot, register separately with HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) after you’ve registered your company with Companies House.

    1. Register with HMRC for Corporation Tax