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Coddan CPM Ltd. – Company Registration Agent in the UK
Home Limited Companies Opening a Branch Office or Representative Office

Opening a Branch Office or Representative Office

Register a branch office in the UK, or open a representative office: setting up a branch or representative office with Coddan is a great way for overseas companies to generate business growth within the United Kingdom while ensuring the legal entity of the firm remains outside of the country. Branch offices are treated as an extension of a foreign corporation, and the corporation remains liable for all activities from its home domicile – this is particularly beneficial for companies who wish to operate a branch from the UK but still do business at home (although representative offices are only permitted to earn profits within the Great Britain).

If you've any enquiry then please get in touch with us! Mail: info@coddan.co.uk. We aim to reply to all emails within 24 hours. If you are rushing please feel free to call us between 9.30am-6.00pm Monday to Friday by telephoning + 44 (0) 207.935.5171 or (0) 330.808.0089 (national rates) and chat further.

Register a branch or permanent establishment




This UK branch registration package is particularly for non-UK residents, who are requiring opening a branch of a foreign company in the UK with a prestige legal address in London for one year.

The following services are included into this branch start-up offer:

    • The certificate of registration;
    • The registered office address in London;
    • The government mail forwarding & the secretarial compliance service.
    • The registration of UK permanent establishment takes from 4-6 days.



This UK permanent establishment registration package is especially for non-UK residents, who are requiring establishing a branch with a legal address in London and VAT registration.

This UK branch of an overseas company creation offer includes all services mentioned in the first option, plus:

  • The assistance with the VAT registration;
  • The communication with the HMRC;
  • The VAT registration certificate;
  • The additional services are available.



This opening the UK branch package is especially for non-UK residents, who are requiring open a UK permanent establishment with a prestige business address in London, a secretary & secretarial support.

This UK branch creation offer includes everything in the second option, together with the advantages of:

  • The appointment of the legal secretary of your branch;
  • The provision of telephone and fax numbers;
  • The telephone answering service and associated services.



This is one of the most popular UK permanent establishment startup packages with a nominee director, as an additional option to the nominee secretary, & registered office address in London, on Baker Street.

This UK branch setting up offer includes everything in the third option, plus the following enhancements:

  • The appointment of the nominee director;
  • The signed power of attorney;
  • The signed, undated resignation letter from a nominee director & agreement for the provision of the nominee service.

Register the permanent establishment across the UK

Register a branch or open a permanent establishment in the UK: you are required to register a UK branch if you are a non-UK company that is enacting business via the permanent establishment. This means you have a physical presence in the United Kingdom, which is enacting business transactions for you. If this is the case then you will be required to provide documentation to Companies House within one month of establishing the branch. Failure to do so may result in penalties, so it's important to make sure you have the right help from the start. The documents that you need to provide include an completed application form, a certified copy of the company's constitutional documents, and a copy of the latest set of accounts. These will require translation into English where necessary for key information and these in turn needs to be certified.

Tax and permanent establishments: if your business is being conducted through a fixed establishment it will be subject to taxation. Your permanent establishment - or 'PE' - will have its profits assessed for corporation tax accordingly. In addition, if a representative is concluding contracts on behalf of your business within the UK - even without a fixed place of business - this will also be regarded as representative of a permanent establishment. These are the main tax rules, although there are also exceptional rules and tax thresholds to consider.

UK branch start-up conclusion: it can seem a little overwhelming to consider forming a branch at first, but it's easy to get help from professionals such as those at Coddan, where all enquiries are welcomed. Whether it's in filing, accounts or tax, they can assist with every step of the process to help make your business a success on these shores.

Opening a branch office in the United Kingdom

Online Branch Start-Up in the UK


Opening a branch or representative office with Coddan Formations Agency: the benefits: there are a number of reasons that overseas companies should choose to register a branch or representative office with Coddan. The process is hassle-free and takes a matter of minutes – simply fill in an application and let the experts do the rest.

Branch and representative offices are perfect for established companies and otherwise low-risk ventures looking to begin trading in the UK but wishing to keep their base on home soil. One of the main reasons for such companies is that there are fewer obligations to present accounts to HMRC and Companies House, which is perfect for businesses already steadily operating abroad. Upon registering a branch or representative office, your business can enjoy the benefits of UK commerce. With the lowest corporation tax rate in the developed world, conducting business within the UK can bring with it many financial rewards and essentially opens up your company to a whole new market.

Creating a branch office need not be difficult, either – with Coddan, you can expect professionalism, expertise, and a package tailored precisely to your needs.

Registering a UK branch of an overseas company: companies that set up a place of business or carry out regular business activities within the United Kingdom should open a UK branch with Companies House. By registering a UK branch of an overseas company, no separate legal identity is created and the obligations of the branch will remain the same as those of the parent organisation.

For tax purposes, your branch will be considered as a permanent establishment of a non-resident company, but a UK resident or another company must be appointed to represent your branch when dealing with the tax authorities. Along with your representative, you will need to produce certified copies of your articles or statutes, share capital, names of the directors and your registered office.

Setting up a branch office of a foreign company in the Great Britain

Opening a Branch Office

A large number of companies take their business to the United Kingdom each year. This can yield countless opportunities, but also a fair few challenges that must be thought about carefully before being overcome. Here are a few things to consider if you’re planning to set up a branch of your company in the Great Britain.

Branch or subsidiary? Depending on the size and scale of your intended operation in the UK, you will want to pick one of these options for the legal status of your base in the country. A branch (otherwise known as a representative office) is a point of contact between customers in one country and the headquarters of a company that is primarily based in another.

The role of a branch is chiefly informative: i.e. as a bureau for customer service, an address for mail, a place where certain kinds of meetings can be held. For legal purposes, branches are considered non-resident entities within the UK, and generally answerable to its parent company.

A subsidiary is a separate legal entity which acts as an arm of your company. If you expect to manufacture or supply goods within the UK, or base your board or any of your directors within the UK, this would be the appropriate choice. Both subsidiaries and branch offices have to pay corporation tax on profits, and must register for VAT if their turnover is higher than the VAT threshold (currently £83,000 a year).

Registration: a company must register with Companies House within a month of opening an office in the UK. This is a relatively simple process: just fill in an ONS INO1 form and post it to Companies House with the registration fee. Subsidiaries must also submit a full set of accounts to Companies House no later than nine months after the end of the financial year (6th April), or six months if they are part of a public limited company.

Visas: in addition to checking your legal status as a company, it is worth seeking advice on the appropriate visas for any overseas staff you are bringing to the UK. They will also need to provide proof of competence in spoken and written English.