Although it is relatively simple to form a limited company, closing the company can be a more complex matter. Dissolving the limited company may be necessary if you can no longer keep the business trading, or don’t want to trade any longer. If you decide to dissolve the company, you should cease trading immediately, only carrying out those transactions which are necessary to wind the company up.
Any monies owed should be paid before any business accounts are closed, including loans to or from shareholders or company directors. There are four conditions which have to be met in order for the company to be closed; the company shouldn’t have traded for at least three months, the company name shouldn’t have changed in the last three months, the company hasn’t made a disposal for value of property or rights and isn’t subject to any present or proposed legal proceedings.
An application for the limited company to be closed may be submitted to Companies House using form DS01, which costs £10. The majority of the directors must have signed the completed form before being sent to Companies House. A copy of the form must also be sent to any parties which may have an interest, including HMRC, employees or creditors, within one week.
At the time of acceptance, Companies House will place a notice in the London, Belfast or Edinburgh gazette to provide a minimum of three months notice that the company is to be removed. If any of the parties with an interest object to the winding up of the company, the closure of the company will be suspended.
For more information on how to dissolve or restore a limited company, see our guide here.
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