01743 271071 tax@morganjones.co.uk

companies house logoNew regulations, concerning ‘Sensitive Words and Expressions’ and ‘Names and Trading Disclosures’ came into force on 31st January, following consultation on the rules for company and business names.

A long consultation process, called The Company and Business names: Red Tape Challenge, sought views on the future of names regulations in general and invited comments on the options for improving and simplifying them.

It considered the need to maintain the current regulations which set out rules regarding ‘same as’ names and ‘sensitive’ words and expressions. According to Companies House the widening of the ‘same as’ consent provision now makes it easier for companies in the same group to grant permission to register a proposed name.

Amendments to trading disclosure requirements also means that any company located in an office or other location occupied by six or more companies may make its registered name available for inspection on a register.

Now fewer words are disregarded for the purposes of deciding whether one name is the ‘same as’ another on the register to allow more choice and make name swaps within groups of companies easier.

The words to be removed include:

  • exports
  • group
  • holdings
  • imports
  • international
  • services

Amendments to the list of expressions to be disregarded for the purposes of ‘same as’ are:

  • ‘& Co’
  • ‘& Company’
  • ‘and Co’
  • ‘and Company’

The list of words and expressions now disregarded includes where they are used with brackets, meaning a name which was previously not the ‘same as’ because of the inclusion of brackets is now treated as ‘same as’.
red text reading banned
There are also fewer ‘sensitive’ words and expressions. The list no longer includes:

  • abortion
  • authority
  • banknote
  • board
  • data protection
  • disciplinary
  • discipline
  • European
  • giro
  • group
  • holding
  • human rights
  • international
  • national
  • oversight
  • pregnancy termination
  • register
  • registered
  • registration
  • registry
  • regulation
  • rule committee
  • United Kingdom
  • watchdog

Theas changes have unfortunately come too late for Cardiff engineering firm Taylor & Sons Ltd which collapsed into administration last year because of a spelling error by Companies House.  Last week a High Court judge ruled that Companies House was to blame for causing the 124-year-old Welsh family business to fail after it was wrongly recorded by Companies House as being wound up in 2009. This blunder is likely to cost Companies House £8.8M.

If any of you would like more detailed information on any aspect of Companies House Rule Changes, send me an e-mail and I’ll be pleased to advise further.