To ensure corporate transparency and compliance with UK company law, Companies House (the Registrar of Companies) is required to collect and disclose information about limited companies and the people who control them, including members, officers, and Persons with Significant Control (PSC).
In accordance with section 35 of the Companies Act 2006, the registrar must publish most of this data on the public register of companies, which is available to everyone online. It is possible, however, to keep your home address off the public record at Companies House.
Avoid using your home address as a Registered Office
Every UK limited company must have a registered office in its country of incorporation (i.e., England & Wales, Wales only, Scotland, or Northern Ireland). This is the official address where notices, letters, and reminders from Companies House and HMRC are sent. Most companies also choose to keep their statutory registers available for public inspection at a registered office, unless a SAIL address is set up for this purpose.
You may be tempted to use your home address as a registered office, which is perfectly legal. Bear in mind, however, that your registered office address will be published on the public record. This information can never be removed, even if you change your registered office details, dissolve your company, or make a data suppression request to Companies House.
To protect your privacy, we strongly advise that you do not use your home address as a registered office at any time. The best solution is to use a commercial (non-residential) registered office. This type of professional address service is available from a number of third-party providers, including company formation agents.
London Registered Office Address for £39.00/year
To protect the privacy of your home and project an impressive corporate image, Quality Company Formations provides a Registered Office Address Service in Covent Garden, London for just £39.00 plus VAT per year.
Available to new and existing companies and LLPs registered in England & Wales, all statutory mail will be received at your London Registered Office Address and forwarded to you via email within one working day.
When your Registered Office Address Service has been set up, our prestigious London address will be published on the public register at Companies House within approximately 3 working hours.
Avoid using your home address as a Service Address
A service address, sometimes referred to as a ‘correspondence address’, must be supplied to Companies House by every individual who assumes one of the following positions in a limited company:
- Subscriber – a person who agrees to become a member (shareholder or guarantor) during the company formation process
- Company officer (director or company secretary)
- Person with Significant Control (PSC)
- LLP member
A service address is the official correspondence address where the named individual agrees to receive their statutory mail from Companies House and HMRC. It can be located anywhere in the world – it does not have to be in the same country as the company’s registered office.
Introduced by the Companies Act 2006, service address requirements came into effect on 1 October 2009. Prior to this, individuals had to provide their home address for this purpose, unless a confidentiality order was in place. These new requirements better protect the privacy of certain individuals associated with limited companies and LLPs.
Being unaware of the potential privacy implications, many people are inclined to use their home address as a service address. Whilst this is permissible, please be aware that Companies House publishes all service addresses on the public register of companies.
To protect the privacy of your home and family, we would advise that you do not use your home address as a service address. A better option is to use a non-residential professional service address from a third-party provider.
London Service Address for £26.00/year
Keep your home address off the public record and boost your professional image with a London Service Address from Quality Company Formations for just £26.00 plus VAT per year. All statutory mail addressed to the registered individual will be received at this address and forwarded via email within one working day.
Situated in Covent Garden, this prestigious address service is available to all subscribers, company officers, PSCs, and LLP members of any new or existing company or LLP registered in the UK.
When your London Service Address has been set up, our London address will be published on the public register at Companies House within approximately 3 working hours.
Benefits of a non-residential Registered Office and Service Address
Using a non-residential address as a registered office and/or service address provides a number of significant benefits, both professional and personal. By keeping your home address off the public register at Companies House, you can:
- Shield your private residential address from public view
- Avoid being bombarded with junk mail
- Prevent unsolicited visits from other businesses, clients, and debt collectors
- Increase personal safety if you are at risk of intimidation or violence
- Boost your corporate image
- Enhance your own professional image and credibility
- Increase trust and confidence in your brand
- Protect your home from credit reference agencies
- Reduce the risk of identity theft – company directors are more than twice as likely to be the victims of identity fraud
- Adhere to the terms of your tenancy agreement (if you rent your home)
- Meet the legal jurisdiction requirements of a registered office if your home address is situated outside of your chosen country of company formation
- Establish a professional presence in the UK if you’re a non-UK resident
- Ensure all important mail is received and accessible when you’re travelling
Protecting your home address from credit reference agencies
Even if your home address is not on the public record at Companies House, it may be shared with other government departments, specified public authorities, debt recovery agents, credit reference agencies, and other predetermined organisations. However, this will only happen under strict circumstances within the confines of the law.
In some cases, you can ask Companies House to withhold your home address from credit reference agencies. Requests to restrict the disclosure of certain information are usually only granted if you are at serious risk of intimidation or violence as a result of your company’s activities.
Company directors and PSCs can apply for protection under sections 243 and 790ZF of the Companies Act 2006. Additional protection is also available to PSCs under section 790ZG of the Act.
Removing a home address that is already on public record
If your home address has already been published on the public record at Companies House, it is possible to remove it if it was used as a service address. Simply file Companies House form SR01 and pay £55.00 for each document containing the address that you want to remove.
Unfortunately, there is no way to remove a home address if it was used as a registered office or SAIL address. Whilst you may change your registered office or SAIL address at any time after company formation, the old address(es) will still appear on the ‘Filing History’ on Companies House’s public register of companies.
Removing a home address from dissolved company records
Companies House has stopped publishing dissolved company records over 6 years old on the free online public register, but they can still be accessed through other search services.
Furthermore, Companies House retains records of dissolved (closed) companies for 20 years, after which time they are transferred to the Public Records Office at The National Archives. These records include all information relating to officers of dissolved companies.
Once a company has been dissolved, it is no longer possible to make filings for that company. However, if you used your home address as your service address and wish to remove those details from public record, you can still file Companies House form SR01 after company dissolution.