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11 December 2018 You are not logged in. Login now.

Limited or Ltd in your company name?

When registering a UK company you have several options when selecting the ‘ending’ of your company name. This is a simple choice and we do not believe you should worry too much when deciding on your preference.

ltd or limitedOne of the first questions you are asked when forming a limited company is whether to add LIMITED or LTD on your company name. This forms part of your official company name and is placed on the public register at Companies House. It is also added to your certificate of incorporation and other incorporation documents.

You can choose either
  • Limited
  • Ltd
  • Ltd. (with a full stop)
  • Or the Welsh equivalents
  • Cyfyngedig
  • Cyf
  • Cyf. (with a full stop)

You can only choose the Welsh versions if your company is going to be registered in Wales. It is not common for companies registered in Wales to select these options as Limited is a recognised legal term worldwide whilst the Welsh language is not as well-known and may cause confusion.

In our opinion we do not believe you should worry over this point. Whether you choose limited or ltd at the time of incorporation you can use either on your own stationery, letterheads, websites and other forms of communication.

For example, SFS LTD is exactly the same as SFS LIMITED. It can be displayed in either format as required.

What if you want to change the ending?

If you registered your company with Limited and would prefer Ltd (or vice versa) then you can change this at Companies House. This is done by submitting form NM01 either by post or online.

We do not see many companies change their name like this post formation but a few international customers have preferred the abbreviation LTD and created the company with LIMITED in full in error.

Limited by Guarantee companies

Companies that are limited by guarantee can choose not to use LIMITED or LTD in the company name. This falls under section 60 of the Companies Act 2006.

This will depend on your preference and the type of Mem and Arts that you use. Some people like to see the word limited on a not for profit company name as it provides some assurance that the company is registered at Companies House. This may be useful if you are applying for funding. However, any organisation that is offering funding should be able to check your status at Companies House. On the opposite side the general public may be wary of a company with LIMITED in their name as they may think you are a profit making company. However, many people will understand that not for profit organisations are often registered companies. This is a rather simplistic overview but it may help you with your decision.

If you form a Limited by Guarantee Company with model articles then you cannot omit the word limited. Your Mem and Arts will not contain the required not profit clauses and Companies House will insist you include Limited or Ltd.

For more information on company names do not hesitate to contact us or visit our company FAQ pages.

About the Author Mike Harris:
I have been providing advice and support to companies for over 15 years through my company Small Firms Services Ltd. You can follow me on Google+ and also twitter