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Stationery and premises: disclosure of details

This toolkit provides quick, practical guidance on what you need to disclose on your stationery and at your premises. 

See tables 1 and 2 below for the main requirements for limited companies 

See tables 3 and 4 for the main requirements for sole traders and partnerships 

Non-compliance is a criminal offence, punishable by fines. The company is legally liable for any breach of the rules. Its officials or any person acting on behalf of the company, who distribute or sign non-compliant documentation, can be personally liable. 

The rules are different for charities. A charitable company does not have to include the word 'charity' or 'charitable in its name. However, if it chooses not to, it must state it is a charity on a variety of its correspondence and other documentation. 

Table 1 

 

NOTES TO TABLE 1

  • 'Company name' means the name of the company as on the company's certificate of incorporation, including 'Limited', 'Ltd', 'public limited company', 'plc' (or their Welsh equivalents) and 'where registered' means 'England & Wales' or 'Scotland', depending on where your company's registered office is located.
  • 'Companies with a trading name' means companies with a place of business in Great Britain and carrying on business in Great Britain under a name other than their company name, eg Acme Worldwide Limited, trading as 'Bits & Pieces'.
  • There is no need to list directors' names on stationery but, if you do, every director must be listed. The first name(s) or initial(s), and surname, of individual directors, and the full name of corporate directors, must be given. There is no need to mention share capital on stationery but, if you do so, it must specify the company's paid-up share capital.
  • If you are at serious risk of violence or intimidation because of the activities of a company or LLP of which you are an officer, you can apply for your service address to be made unavailable for public inspection.Table 2 

 

NOTES TO TABLE 2 

  • 'Companies with a trading name' means companies with a place of business in Great Britain and carrying on business in Great Britain under a name other than its company name, eg Acme Worldwide Limited, trading as 'Bits & Pieces'.
  • The company name must be painted or affixed to the outside of the premises, conspicuously and legibly.
  • For companies with a trading name, the name should also appear in a prominent place inside the premises, so it can easily be read by customers and suppliers.
  • 'An address for service' means an address at which service of any document relating in any way to the business will be effective.
  • There is no law saying the company must display its certificate of incorporation at its registered office or any other premises. 

Table 3 

 

NOTES TO TABLE 3 

  • A trading name means any name used for business purposes that is not the name of the sole trader or all of the partners, eg Peter Piper trading as 'Pickled Peppers'.
  • 'An address for service' means an address at which service of any document relating in any way to the business will be effective.
  • If a partnership has more than 20 partners, it may (instead of including all partners' names on documents) keep a list of the partners at its principal place of business, and include a (legible) statement on each document that the list is open for inspection at that place, and the address.
  • That list must be available for inspection during office hours. If a person, during the course of doing or discussing business with the sole trader or partnership, asks for the name(s) and address for service in writing, these must be given to him immediately. 

Table 4 

 

NOTES TO TABLE 4 

  • A trading name means any name used for business purposes that is not the name of the sole trader or, in a partnership, of all the partners, eg Peter Piper trading as 'Pickled Peppers'.
  • The name should appear in a prominent place inside the premises, so it can easily be read by customers and suppliers.
  • 'An address for service' means an address at which service of any document relating in any way to the business will be effective.