What you need to know to register your business

Starting your own business can be a scary step. This crucial moment requires you to be diligent and aware of several guidelines. We make it a little easier for you by giving you an overview of what you must know. There are several things to consider, particularly when registering your business as a company.

Business Structure

You’ve decided to register your business. But now you must decide whether it will be a company. This falls under understanding your business structure. You must also remember that registering a company is different to registering a business name. To quote the ASIC, a company is its own legal entity and lets you conduct business throughout Australia.

Registering a company can entitle you to corporate tax rates or limited liability. There are different “types” of companies including not for profit organisations, registerable Australian bodies, and special purpose companies.

Company Name

You must decide a company name that is not already taken by another company or business. The ASIC provides a handy name availability search for you to check if your desired name is available.

It is also important to remember that some words or phrases cannot be used in your company name without government approval. For example, “bank”, “trust”, “Incorporated” etc. Your name may also be refused if it’s considered offensive or suggestive of illegal activity by the ASIC.

Once you settle on a name, but aren’t yet ready to register, you can reserve your company name for two months.

Company Governance

You need to decide whether your company will be governed by replaceable rules, its own constitution or a combination of both. Replaceable rules are a basic set of rules to manage your company, given in the Corporations Act. Using these means that you don’t require your own written constitution. These guidelines differ for sole traders.

Your obligations

Firstly, you must remember that, as a proprietary company (Pty), you cannot have more than 50 non-employee shareholders, and you must either be limited by shares or be an unlimited company that has share capital. For more information on this bit, refer to the ASIC.

Having your own company also means following the requirements in the Constitution Act. Your legal obligations are to ensure that your company details are up-to-date, company records and details are maintained on the register, and that you pay the appropriate lodgement fees and annual review fees as required.

Residency Status

The company’s Director must be over 18, and the company must have at least one member. At least the Director (of a proprietary company) must ordinarily reside in Australia. 

Registering your Company

Register your company using the Australian government’s Business Registration service (BRS). You can also register through a private service provider PSP. For instance, Solution In is a PSP offering business registration services. PSPs are usually accountants, solicitors or businesses providing services with the ASIC.

Keeping the details up to date

You must ensure that your company has a valid ABN/ACN at all times. It must be displayed on any documents published by the company and details must stay up-to-date.

If you want more information or have any questions, leave a comment below and we’ll get back to you! 

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We understand that the registration process can be daunting. This is why you can rely on us to help you with your business registration and setup. For more information, contact us or book a free consultation, if you’re looking to get your business registered.

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