New Business Checklist

Our business startup checklist includes the fundamentals you’ll need to consider when starting a new business, whether it’s a limited company, a limited liability partnership (LLP), or a sole trader.

While some of the items on our checklist may not apply to you right now, it’s crucial to think about each one to avoid neglecting important details. Many business launches fail for a variety of reasons, including a lack of research, bad strategy, and simple miscalculations.

Write up your business plan

Drafting a business plan is a significant stage in the startup process, particularly if you plan to contact investors, banks, lenders, or specialised consultants. They will look for a clear outline of your business launch idea that indicates what you want to do and how you intend to accomplish it.

You should be able to demonstrate the viability and sustainability of your business idea by including financial predictions for start-up and operating costs.

Even if you’re starting out on your own and won’t be seeking outside help, writing a business plan is still a good idea. It will assist you in staying organised, staying on target, and tracking your progress as you begin your business.

Choose a legal structure

In the United Kingdom, there are numerous legal business structures to choose from. The most well-known are:

  • Sole trader
  • Private company limited by shares
  • Limited-by-guarantee company
  • Limited-liability partnership (LLP)

Sole trader

Sole traders are persons who work for themselves and are personally liable for all business debts. If you want to work as a single trader, you must register with HMRC, file an annual Self Assessment tax return, and pay Income Tax and National Insurance on your revenues.

Limited company

Companies House is where limited companies are formed. This form of business structure allows for more ownership flexibility because it can be owned and run by one person or numerous persons.

A limited company exists as a legal ‘person’. This means it is alone accountable for its own debts. Limited liability protects business owners, meaning they are not personally accountable for business obligations beyond what they formally agree to contribute to the firm.

Limited liability firms are frequently more tax efficient than single traders. If you wish to maintain your business profits, a corporation limited by shares is the best option. Non-profit and philanthropic organisations benefit more from a limited by guarantee structure. W would urge you to check with your tax advisor as to your own circumstances.

Limited Liability Partnership (LLP)

A limited liability partnership may be an ideal structure for accountants and other professionals who want to build a firm with others. To form an LLP, you’ll need at least two people. In terms of ownership structure and taxation, this sort of business organisation is quite similar to a traditional partnership, but it has the added benefit of limiting the partners’ liability.


You should seriously consider how you will fund your new company. This comprises both starting and operating costs, as well as personal income management. Many small firms are self-sufficient, while others require outside funding. You may need to keep your current work while setting up and developing your new firm if you plan to self-fund.

Business addresses 

If you’re starting a business as a sole trader, you’ll need to supply HMRC with a trading address. If you’re selling physical assets, you’ll also need a business address for your clients and other contacts, as well as a return address. When appropriate, you can use the same address for all of these purposes.

A registered office address is required when forming a limited company or limited liability partnership (LLP). This will be the official contact information for your company. Each shareholder, director, administrator, and Person with Significant Control (PSC) must also provide a service address.

Lasting Power of Attorney for business owners

The necessity to prepare for unforeseen occurrences is especially crucial for business owners. Your firm could face possible gridlock if you become ill without a lasting power of attorney (LPA), and an LPA should be considered an essential aspect of risk management to avert a future disaster.

It is feasible to create an LPA that simply deals with personal financial matters and a separate LPA for business matters. In many circumstances, this would be advisable to secure the best attorney for each circumstance.

It is essential to select an attorney carefully. The person chosen should preferably be someone who is familiar with the company and, more importantly, someone who has the necessary skills and experience to take over the company’s operations or, if necessary, to close it down.

Next steps with Black Norman

If you want to create an LPA to safeguard your business, we can assist you on how to do so for your specific case. We can assist you through the process and help you make the best decision for your situation. Contact one of our expert solicitors today for more information or call us on 03300 167 847.