A limited company is a separate legal entity. It owners ie the shareholders, are only liable for the money the have invested in the company. This is in comparison to a sole trader who is personally liable for the liabilities of the business. This is one of the major benefits of a limited company.
To set up a company in Ireland is relatively easy. You can hire a Dublin accountant or you can do it yourself for ?50.
To set up a company you need to complete an A1 form and the companies constitution. You can setup two type of companies:
- A single member limited company (only one shareholder)
- A private limited company.
Even for a single member limited company you need a minimum of two people. One director and one secretary. The director of both types of companies must be an EEA resident. If you are a non EEA resident you must acquire non resident bond to the value of ?25,000 which costs ?1,950 + VAT. This bond acts as insurance for any breaches in statutory returns to the CRO or Revenue for 2 years.
What do you need to setup a company in Ireland?
- A unique name – This is to prevent you from trying to pretend to be another company or using another company?s goodwill (passing off). You can check this on the CRO website. Also, if you will be trading under another name other than the company?s legal name you will also need to register a business name (cost ?20). This can be done through www.core.ie
- Form A1 completed – This can be done through www.core.ie
- Company Constitution – Template provided by the CRO. Articles of Association and Memorandum of Association are no longer required.
- Registered office in Ireland. This can be your accountants or solicitors office. Or you can use a private company which charge roughly ?29 + VAT per month.
- One EEA Director – If none a non resident bond (cost ?1,950 + VAT)
- One company shareholder
- One company secretary
It is possible if you are a EEA resident with an address in Ireland you can setup a limited company by yourself for ?50. However, there are plenty accountants in Dublin or agents who can setup a company for you for roughly ?300 + VAT.
What to consider next
- Please ensure you register for taxation with revenue
- Please ensure you do not miss any of your statutory returns. For example, if you miss your CRO annual return you will lose your audit exemption. This will mean you accounts now need to be audited which even for a company with no transactions can cost ?1,200 to ?2,000 + VAT.