Starting a new business

Starting a new business

There are many reasons for thinking of starting a new business. It could be because you are currently not working or it could be as a more flexible alternative to regular employment. Some will take this path because they plan to do so. Others may be forced to, because of redundancy or because it is difficult to find work on any other basis.

Whatever the reason for thinking about starting a business, there are a number of issues to consider before you finally make a decision about whether it is the right choice for you. Tax is only one of the aspects, but it is important to understand the tax consequences of a new business. Ignoring tax can mean significant and unexpected tax bills which could put the future of your business at risk.

TaxAid does not advise on VAT. For information on VAT, see

If you are unsure if you are employed or self-employed, please see the employed or self-employed section

There is a lot of useful information on starting in business on the Government’s services and information website at and on the HMRC website at and

In this section:

    • The structure of your business Sole trader, Partnership or Company
    • Forming a company
    • Is running a business the right choice for me?
    • Accounts, tax and finance
      • Paying tax
      • Filing tax returns
    • Business expenses – what you can claim
    • Regulation
    • Books and records
    • Registering your business with the tax authorities