Appoint directors and a company secretary

Your company must have at least one director. Directors are legally responsible for running the company and making sure company accounts and reports are properly prepared.

A director must be 16 or over and not be disqualified from being a director.

Directors do not have to live in the UK but companies must have a UK registered office address.

Directors’ names are publicly available from Companies House.

Directors must provide a service address (or ‘correspondence’ address), which will also be publicly available. If they use their home address, they can ask Companies House to remove it from the register.

Company secretaries

You do not need a company secretary for a private limited company. Some companies use them to take on some of the director’s responsibilities.

The company secretary can be a director but cannot be:

  • the company’s auditor
  • an ‘undischarged bankrupt’ - unless they have permission from the court

The restrictions placed on a person when they’re made bankrupt usually end when they’re free from their debts (known as ‘discharged’). You can check if someone has been discharged using the Insolvency Register.

Even if you have a company secretary, the directors are legally responsible for the company.