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When starting a small business, one of the first things to be decided is the legal structure used for the business. It can either be a sole trader or limited company or a partnership. Setting up as a sole trader is the most popular legal structure in the UK, with approximately 3.5 million sole proprietorships in 2019. Sole traders accounted for 60% of small businesses in the UK. There were also 1.9 million limited companies, making it the second most popular legal structure.

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There are a number of ways in which you can set up and run your business in the UK. In this guide created by OrangeGenie, we look at the differences between sole trader, partnership, Ltd and PLC. We will focus on explaining what the type of company is, the tax implications, and the advantages and disadvantages of each.
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The alternative to setting up a limited company is to become a sole trader or a member of a partnership, for example, if you decide to trade a sole trader you will essentially be classed as ‘self-employed’. In this guide on how to register as a sole trader, you will be made aware of all the relevant taxes, optional taxes you can register for and how to actuallly set up as a sole trader/ sel-employed.
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If you are a limited company director, you are liable to pay both employers’ and employees’ National Insurance Contributions on any salaries you pay above the current threshold.
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There are several different kinds of limited companies available to set up in the UK. Limited companies are the second most popular business structure in the UK, only coming second to sole traders. The type of limited company structure chosen for a business will depend on various factors such as the number of shareholders, the responsibility that the shareholders have and the level of involvement by the public. Each has their own benefits, so each business will need to decide what is the most suitable structure for them.

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Remote working has in the recent past gained momentum among employers, more so for the benefits, it gives to a business. Besides reducing office expenses, it allows the employer to engage the right people regardless of where they are. However, these people can easily become demotivated because they work with all the distractions that come with working from home.

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If you decide to become self-employed, either on your own (as a sole trader), or with other people (as a partnership), you will be responsible for working out and paying your tax liabilities to HMRC.

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When your company turnover reaches the ‘VAT threshold’ (currently £85,000) in a twelve-month period, you must register for limited company VAT. Even if you don’t, there may be professional reasons why you would want to register anyway. So, how does the VAT registration for limited companies work?

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If the current situation has taught us one thing, it’s that businesses can no longer afford not to think online-first. While many large organisations are struggling to weather the storm, small businesses are facing the same problems with the additional challenge of limited resources – both in terms of finances and people.

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Given the number of potential misfortunes a typical limited company owner may encounter during the lifetime of a business, it will come as little surprise that insurance companies can provide dozens of different types of policy to cover pretty much any eventuality.
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April is the time when many businesses will take stock of the year just gone, whilst planning for the quarters ahead, however, the impact caused by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic may loom heavily over these plans.  Many businesses are attempting to balance outgoings and ensure cashflow remains intact for the next few months, which, for many, could bring a downturn in income.  To mitigate the deepening economic and social impact, the UK Government has introduced a package of support to help both employers and employees through the crisis.

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Readers question: How do I pay myself as an employee of my limited company?

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Many of us have been compelled to change the way we work and move our meetings, presentations, sales pitches etc. to an online setting. This takes some getting used to as I have found.  In the process of moving online, I have learned some valuable lessons as I have conducted meetings and coaching online. Here, Simon Day from Toastmaster International will share how small businesses can communicate with impact online.

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Small businesses succeed or fail based on their marketing decisions. The big fish are out there in everyone’s face. To gain the same level of brand recognition, you have to be front-of-mind at all times. One of the easiest and most cost-effective ways to do that is with a smart email strategy—or several.

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We made the decision to get our whole team working remotely well ahead of the Government’s advice to take this step. We called a morning meeting on 10th March and had transitioned to remote working by the time everyone left that day.

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Planning and implementing an SEO campaign can seem like a challenging undertaking. Fortunately, with the right tools and advice from SEO experts, your website can reach the top of Google’s search results pages.

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When starting his first business, a friend told me how he decided to use his personal bank account for all of his business transactions. This included the income he generated from his clients, along with all business expenses.

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To succeed in today’s market, a business needs a strong online presence in order to develop and grow. Gone are the days where yellow pages were everything and paying to get yourself listed on the front page meant you’re already ahead of your competition. Nowadays, you can get overtaken by a business that invested half of what you did in marketing, simply because they’ve got better SEO practices.

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Moving people to remote working can be stressful at the best of times. COVID-19 adds an extra dimension. For this reason, it is very important that business owners consider the impact on the mental wellbeing of their team as they adjust to the necessary changes.

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You may be just getting started with your business and need the right skills to help it grow. Or, maybe you have seed funding and need to scale your team quickly? 

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