Company Formation Scotland

Scotland is a European country that is part of the United Kingdom. The country has a population of more than 5.4 million people, whose main language is English. This makes it the second-biggest country in the UK after England. Since the country is part of the United Kingdom, the ease of doing business is relatively great. According to the World Bank, the country is ranked at position 9 out of 190 countries. 

Reasons to Start a Company in Scotland

There are several reasons why you might consider registering a company in Scotland. These are:

  1. Scotland is one of the least-corrupt places in the world. The UK is ranked at position 11 on the world’s corruption perception index.
  2. Scotland has a vibrant youthful well-educated population.
  3. The cost of living in most Scottish cities like Edinburg and Glasgow is relatively cheaper than that of London.
  4. Lower corporate tax rate than the EU average.
  5. Easy process to incorporate a company.
  6. Scotland’s three main cities are in the top ten places for investment in the UK.
  7. Scotland has the second financial services investment after London.

How to Set Up a Company in Scotland

The process of forming a company in Scotland is relatively easy and can be done online. You should follow the following steps.

  1. Select the type of business you want to set-up. This can be either sole traders or proprietorship, limited companies, and business partnerships. You can also register as an overseas company.

A sole trader is the easiest way to start a business in Scotland. To do this, you must have a National Insurance (NI) number, register for self-assessment  with HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC). You must also have a unique business name.

A limited company can be limited by shares or a guarantee. Those limited by shares have shareholders while those limited by guarantee have guarantors and a guaranteed amount. It invests profits back to the company.

In partnerships, you and your partners share responsibility for your business.

  1. Chose the company name. To do this, you need to check the rules that apply for business names, check whether the name is available, and check the existing trademarks.
  2. Chose the company director and company secretary. 
  3. Decide who the shareholders or guarantors are. All companies need at least one director or guarantor. You should also identify the people with significant control of the company.
  4. Prepare the memorandum of association.
  5. Check and confirm the records you need to keep.
  6. Register the company at the Company House. This is the stage you register for Corporate Tax.
  7. Register for operating licenses. You can use this online tool to find the licenses you need to register. You need to register for insurance also.


How long does it to register a company in Scotland?

It is possible to register a company within 24 hours. However, for international companies, the process can take up to four weeks because of the additional documents that are required.

What is the corporate tax in Scotland?

The standard corporate tax in Scotland is 19%. This is set to reduce to 17% from April 2020. These are the lowest corporate taxes in the G7.

There is also a standard VAT of 20%. A reduced rate of 5% applies to certain goods while some goods have zero percent VAT.

Do I need to be physically present to register the company?

No. You can use services of an attorney to have the business registered.

Is it possible to register the company online?

Yes. Most of the processes an be done fully online.

How GFSC Can Help

GFSC is a fast-growing consultancy firm in corporate and banking industries that helps clients from around the world. We have some of the most experienced professionals in the industry. We will help you draw the memorandum of association, register and protect your intellectual property, open and maintain your corporate bank accounts, deal with immigration issues, and set up your office in Scotland.

Apply for our Scotland Company Formations Services

Please complete the form and an expert will get back to you within 24 hours.

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