Change company name via NM01 form

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As a UK contracting professional and business owner, you may ask can I change company name? The answer to this question is yes, therefore how to change company name (UK)? If you decide a change is necessary, how long does it take to change limited company name? What’s more, when we consider can you change a company name and how to change business name (UK), where do we start when selecting the new name of a company? If we do our research, the good news is you can make a company name change (UK) via Companies House name change form NM01 form. Basically, this form enables you to change name on Companies House. Therefore, the next step is to look for available UK company names. In summary, private limited companies can go ahead with changing company name on Companies House anytime they choose.

When you’re a UK contractor, you may at some point look into changing a company name (UK). Therefore, we’ll consider the reasons why you may wish to amend your contractor company name. In addition, we’ll investigate and what else to consider when you’re amending your limited company contractor name. What’s more, we’ll also look at some good ways to research new ltd company names. Basically, when you investigate new UK company names, you may need some good ideas for your new choice of business name.

In this guide, we’ll look at how to check business name availability (UK) for a limited company. Once you’ve found some UK company names available and made your choice, we’ll explain how can I change my company name. In addition, as part of when you change business name (Companies House), we’ll cover the complete process involved when you amend your business name.

Initial thoughts

What to consider first

When we consider a new business name, you’ll need to make the amendment with an official government body. In the UK, the Registrar or Companies (also known as Companies) are a body that looks after company formation procedures. What’s more, they also look after the UK public register. This contains a list of all companies with their respective limited company names. Basically, this register of Companies House names also contains some basic details about all UK limited companies. However, when you change company details, the official record needs updating. As a result, the new details of such a recent company change will be recorded officially. Therefore, as the register includes company names, a business owner should inform the UK public body when they make a company name change (Companies House).

Every UK company has a name and its own company number. Basically, this number will never change during the company’s existence. However, the company’s owner can decide to change name of limited company at any time. Therefore, when we investigate how to amend your business name, what should we consider? Besides checking for UK company name availability, there’s a form to file with Companies House. This form is required when businesses make the amendment to Companies House company names (UK). In addition, when we ask how to change company name online, the same form is required. Therefore, you can file this either online or through the postal system. To sum up, many limited company contractors and small business owners let their accountants amend the Companies House business name on their behalf. Others who don’t have an accountant have the option of asking a formation agent to make the change.

Common questions

Many limited company owners may look to amend their business name at one time or another. As a result, they may have certain questions in relation to this. Therefore, these’ll include:

  • Can you change your company name?
  • How to change your company name?
  • Can I change my business name?
  • How to change business name on Companies House?
  • How much to change company name?

In this guide, we’ll research all of the above including the process involved. What’s more, we’ll also look at what else to do when you switch your business name as a limited company.

What to think about when you change a company name on Companies House

First thoughts

As a UK contractor or small business owner, you will need to choose a name for your company as well as choose a registered office when you first set your company up. However, at some future point during your contracting career, you may look into how you can go about changing ltd company name, for one reason or another. As a result, you’ll need to know how to change the name of a private limited company. Alternatively, you could ask your accountant to do this.

When you might look into changing company name

At some future point, when you run your own UK company, you may decide that the time has come when you’d like to choose a new business name. Indeed, when you amend your business name it could be for a number of reasons. Basically, you may feel the name is no longer appropriate for your current line of work. Alternatively, you may also think that the current business name is no longer suitable for the type of professional services that you’re now offering. Therefore, we’ll need to investigate how to change my company name.

Other tasks

Besides investigating how to change a company name (UK) with Companies House, there’s also other tasks to perform when you’re changing limited company name. Please see later in this guide for our business name change checklist of what else to do when you switch your business name.

Further considerations when changing a ltd company name

Companies House -check company name 

Before you make the amend the name of your company, you can do a Companies House company name check. Basically, you can perform the Companies House business name check (UK) by visiting the Companies House website. Next you can type the name in the search box and click the search icon to check Companies House for names. As a result, you can perform a UK company name search or check a limited company name. Consequently, you’ll discover if your proposed choice of new name is available. However, when you check ltd company names, if any already registered company names (UK) are in use by other companies, you can’t use them. Therefore, if a name is taken, you can repeat the process and check Companies House for names that are available based on what you are considering for potential new contractor company names.

Please also note, when you look for available company names (UK) and perform the limited company name check (Companies House), if you pick your new UK contractor company name which is very similar to that of another company, Companies House may reject this. Therefore, if the name is unavailable and you apply for this, Companies House will reject your request. In addition, as part of the UK company name change, your business will need the required permission to include sensitive words and expressions. These words include ‘international’, ‘bank,’ and `certified.’

Other guides

Besides this guide on how to change company name (Companies House), we’ve many other Companies House guides. Indeed, these help you navigate Companies House with regard to official filings and reporting. What’s more, these explain what this public body is and how to make a certain company change and report this correctly. Basically, we’ve covered in our guides:

How to change company name on Companies House -the process 

Initial steps

Let’s look at how to officially make a business name amendment at Companies House. Basically, in larger businesses, company secretaries will action the process of amending this. However, as a small contractor company, you’ll make the amendment yourself or ask your accountant to do this. In addition, some larger companies may also have to consider any Trade Mark implications of an amendment to their business name.

The process of amending the limited company’s name is straightforward enough. What’s more, when we look at the official process of amending a contractor’s company name, the most common way is to pass a special written resolution at a general meeting. This is a formal decision that at least 75% of the company’s members votes agree to. Basically, the special resolution can be passed in writing or in a general meeting to approve the change.

As part of considering how to amend business name, a company must complete Companies House form NM01 -notice of change of name by resolution. Indeed, the Companies House change of name form is used by UK limited companies to give notice to Companies House of a written resolution on amendment of business name. Therefore, you can complete the Companies House NM01 form and change company name online. As an alternative, you can send a completed form through the post. Either way will ensure the Companies House registers are updated correctly.

We’ve a separate guide which covers choosing a name for your UK company. What’s more, selecting a business name is relevant when you’re forming your company for the first time.

How much does it cost, and how long does it take to change company name?

When you make the business name amendment, what’s the cost of changing company name and how long does a name change take (UK)? Indeed, when changing business name take, the first option is to submit a paper NM01 form to Companies House. As part of making a postal application, the fee for the change of name form (Companies House) is £10. In addition, this is straightforward enough to complete. What’s more, when you complete the form NM01 (Companies House), you can pay by cheque or Postal Order. In addition, you can send the NM01 and payment to the address on the form.

On the other hand, the more popular option is to amend your business name via Companies House online. Indeed, you can do this by filing NM01 form online via their WebFiling service. Basically, when you use this method, the Companies House fee is £8. What’s more, there’s an alternative cost of £30 for a NM01 same day name change (Companies House). Therefore, if you’re in a rush for the name change, the same day service will be preferable. However, in most cases will use the normal £8 company name change service.

If you use the £8 service, the Companies House change name process will happen within a couple of days. Furthermore, the process will be complete once Companies House approve this. To sum up, most UK contractors and small businesses will use the online service when making the amendment.

Complete the forms to change ltd company name

The Companies Act 2006 (sections 77-79) allow a company to amend its name by:

  • Passing a special resolution of the members, or
  • By other means, provided for in the articles of association.

When you’re changing a limited company name, the company can pass the special resolution at a board meeting. Therefore, if you’re a limited company contractor with your own company, you can hold a director’s general meeting, and the shareholders can sign a written special resolution. However, your Articles of Association may also define another method to do this.

After you pass the resolution, you can submit the NM01 with the correct fee to Companies House. Indeed, they’ll process the business name amendment within a working day or two.

If you’re to select a new business name via the second method above, as defined in your company’s Articles of Association (this is not likely if you’re the owner of a contractor limited company), you can use form NM04.

Once you’ve sent the change of name (Companies House) form through the post or filed online and the Registrar of Companies have processed the amendment, you’ll receive a Certificate of Incorporation on Change of Name.

More thoughts

Changing company name checklist (UK) -other things to do

When you update your new contractor limited company name with Companies House via NM01 form, there’s also some other tasks to perform. Therefore, once the amendment to business name via NM01 process has taken place, as part of a changing your company name checklist, you should also:

  • Inform your accountant.
  • Update the company statutory registers -if your accountant looks after these, they’ll do this for you.
  • Change business name on bank account -advise your company’s bankers so that they can update your bank account or accounts.
  • Update your company’s insurance company so they can update your policy.
  • Let any clients and contacts know.
  • Update your business website and any social media. If you have a business email address that contains your company’s name, you’ll also need to update this too.

Once the amendment in business name is made

Once the Companies House name change has taken place, the official body will send you a Notification of Change of Company Name and a new Certificate of Incorporation. Basically, this’ll include the date of change of name. Besides the amendment to your business name, nothing else will have changed as the registered number remains the same. However, you or your accountant must inform the tax authorities (Corporation Tax, VAT and PAYE) and you should also update the bank and any other professional contacts. In addition, your business website, invoices and any official company stationery will need to include the new name in future.

Final thoughts

When you consider can I change my ltd company name the answer is yes. What’s more, you may decide on a change due to a number of reasons. However, there’s a certain process to follow via the NM01 for such an official change. We explain in this guide the process of how to search online for company name availability (UK). We also cover how to change company name and the process to follow when you do this. Indeed, once your business receives approval of the new name, you can then inform all relevant contacts and third parties of the change.

First, you can inform your business bankers and insurance companies. Next you should inform professional organisations that your company is a member. Further, you must advise the VAT, PAYE/NIC, and Corporation Tax offices. However, in many cases, UK contractors rely on their contractor accountant to make the changes with the tax authorities. What’s more, an additional step is to tell any clients or contacts of your new limited company name. Finally, you can update any online profiles, such as social media and your own business website, if you have one.


Step by step, when you look to change a company name, you should:

  1. Decide on your new business name.
  2. Choose the method you want to use to make the change.
  3. Apply to make the change.
  4. Once you receive confirmation, inform other relevant parties.

Link to Contractor Advice UK group on


Published On: January 4th, 2024 / Categories: Running Your Own Company /

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