Glossary

Acquisition Date
The acquisition date is the date that shares were obtained by the shareholder.
Allotment
Allotment is the process by which people become members of a company. Subscribers agree to take shares on incorporation and the shares are regarded as 'allotted' to each member on incorporation. Later more people may be admitted as members of the company and be allotted shares. However, the directors must not allot shares without the authority of the existing shareholders. The authority is either stated in the company's articles of association or given to the directors by resolution passed at a general meeting of the company.
Annual Return

The Annual Return is the snapshot of certain company or Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) information at the made-up-date. It is separate from the company's or LLP’s annual accounts.

The Annual Return of a company must contain:

  • The name of the company
  • The registered number
  • The type of company e.g. private or public
  • The date to which the annual return is made-up (the made-up date)
  • The registered office address of the company
  • The address (single alternate inspection location - SAIL) where the company keeps certain company records and details of those records that are kept there
  • The Principal business activities of the company
  • The details of the company secretary (corporate or individual), where applicable
  • The details of all the company directors (corporate or individual)

If the company has share capital, the annual return must also contain:

  • The nominal value of total issued share capital
  • The names and addresses (if applicable) of shareholders and the number and type of shares they hold or transfer from other shareholders.

The Annual Return of an LLP must contain:

  • The name of the LLP
  • The registered number
  • The date to which the annual return is made-up (the made-up date)
  • The Registered Office Address of the LLP
  • The address (single alternate inspection location - SAIL) where the LLP keeps certain records and details of those records that are kept there
  • The details of the LLP members (corporate or individual), and whether they are a designated member
Appointments
An appointment is where an individual is either a Director or Secretary of a company,or LLP member of a Limited Liability Partnership (LLP).
Articles of Association
The Articles of Association document sets out the rules for the running of the company's internal affairs.
Authentication Code
Authentication Code is a 6 alphanumeric code on WebFiling which enables the submission of data for an individual company. The Authentication Code is the electronic equivalent of a company officer’s signature. It enables the submission of data for an individual company and is linked directly to the company number.WebFiling requires two codes to submit data, a password and Authentication Code. The Authentication Code is sent by post within 5 working days to the Company Secretary at company's registered office address.
Barclaycard SmartPay
Barclaycard SmartPay are a secure payment gateway used by Companies House for the collection of your payment card details.
Class of Shares
The class of shares is the name attached to the shares e.g. ordinary, preference and redeemable.
Company Records
These are records and registers (e.g. register of members, register of directors etc.) held by the company and available for inspection at either the company’s registered office or SAIL address. There are 12 different types of company records and some are all may be kept depending on the company’s type and circumstances.
Confidentiality Order
Confidentiality Orders ceased on 01/10/09, but were previously granted under Section 723b of the Companies Act 1985. Once granted it allowed an individual to provide a service address, rather than a residential address, for display on the public record. From 01/10/09, the legislation changed for address details displayed on the public record and a Confidentiality Order was no longer required to display a service address on the public record. Any individuals who had a Confidentiality Order in place on 01/10/09 will be considered to have a Disclosure Exemption in place under section 243 of the Companies Act 2006.
Corporate Entity
A corporate entity is when a company rather than an individual is appointed as an officer of a company.
Country/State of Residence
The Country or State of residence of the natural person director or LLP member. The Country or State provided should be consistent with the residential address details of the director.
Credit or Debit Card
Companies House accept the following Credit or Debit Card - Visa, MasterCard, Maestro and American Express.
Cumulative Preference
Cumulative Preference shares carry a right that if the dividend can not be paid in one year it will be carried forward to successive years.
Currency
A company can have its share capital in any currency it wishes, however a PLC must have an authorised minimum of at least £50,000 (Sterling) or €65,600 (Euros). Any company limited by shares can (subject to prohibition or restriction in its articles) re-denominate its share capital, or any class of its share capital, into other currencies by passing a resolution.
Designated Member
see Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) member
Director
A director is a person, natural or corporate entity, appointed by the company members to run the company on their behalf. A director can act as both director and secretary. All companies must have at least one natural person director that is at least 16 years of age.
Disclosure Exemption
This is an exemption from disclosing the director's usual residential address to credit reference agencies. It only applies to director's who have been granted a disclosure exemption under section 243 of the Companies Act 2006. The disclosure exemption will also apply to those who have a Confidentiality Order (section 723b of the Companies Act 1985) in place on 01/10/09.
European Economic Area (EEA)
It is an economic area encompassing European Union (EU) members and many of its regulations, including company law. The countries currently comprising the European Economic Area (EEA) are: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, United Kingdom
EEA Company (European Economic Area)
An EEA company is one to which the First Company Law Directive (68/151/EEC) applies. For EEA companies, you are required to give details of the register where the company file is kept (including the relevant state), plus the register (central register, commercial register, company register) as mentioned in Article 3 of the Directive. An EEA company is not determined by whether it is geographically situated within one of the countries comprising the EEA.
Event Date
The date on which an event occurred, such as a date of appointment or the made up date of an Annual Return.
Former Names
Previous names that have been used in the course of business.
Incorporation Date
The incorporation date is the date the company was registered at Companies House.
Issued Capital
The Issued capital is the value of the shares issued to the shareholders. This is the nominal value of the shares rather than their actual worth.
Legacy Currency
The legacy currencies are those in circulation before the Euro in Austria, Finland, Italy, Belgium, France, Luxembourg, Germany, Greece, The Netherlands, Spain, Ireland and Portugal.
Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) member
An LLP member is a person, natural or corporate entity, appointed to run the affairs of the Limited Liability Partnership (LLP). An LLP member will be appointed as either a Designated Member or a non-Designated Member. A Designated Member has the same rights and duties as other (non-designated) members, but has extra responsibilities, such as authorising the submission of documents to Companies House. A member can change their designation status.  An LLP can opt to have only designated members appointed or only certain designated members and the rest (non-designated) members. All LLPs must have at least two, formally appointed, designated members at all times.
Limited Liability Partnerships
A Limited Liability Partnership is an alternative corporate business that gives the benefits of limited liability but allows its members the flexibility of organising their internal structure as a traditional partnership. The LLP is a separate legal entity and is liable for its assets but the members liability is limited.
Made-Up Date
The made-up date is the date at which all the information in the Annual Return must be correct. The made-up date is usually the anniversary of the incorporation of the company, or the made-up date of the previous Annual Return registered at Companies House.
New Forms
Forms relating to the Companies Act 2006 are referred to as "new forms" and should only be used if the event date is on or after 01/10/09.
Nominal Value
The nominal value is the face value of the shares. It is also the minimum amount that must be paid for shares. The nominal value is used to calculate the aggregate nominal value of shares by multiplying the nominal value by the number of shares.
Non-Designated Member
see Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) member.
Non-EEA Company (European Economic Area)
A non-EEA company is one to which the First Company Law Directive (68/151/EEC) does not apply. A non-EEA company is either a body corporate or firm that is a legal person under its governing law, such as a UK Limited Liability Partnership, Scottish Limited Partnership, United States LLC etc. An EEA company is not determined by whether it is not geographically situated within one of the countries comprising the EEA.
Number
This is a unique number (company number or LLP number) allocated by Companies House to every company or LLP incorporated.
Officers
The term Officer refers to either a Secretary, Director or LLP member. The term Company Officer refers to only Secretary, Director or both.
Old Forms
Forms relating to the Companies Act 1985 are referred to as "old forms" and should only be used if the event date is before 01/10/09.
Ordinary Shares
These are shares of the company with no special rights or restrictions. They may be divided into classes of different value.
Password
Password (also known as security code) is an 8-32 character alphanumeric code that enables the submission of company information on WebFiling. The password is created by the presenter and is linked to their email address. To use Webfiling a password and an Authentication Code are required.
Position of person authorising the submission
The position held by the person authorising the company information being submitted (e.g. director).
Preference Shares
Preference Shares normally carry a right that any annual dividends available for distribution be paid preferentially on these shares before other classes.
Prescribed Particulars

These particulars are defined in legislation as:

  1. particulars of any voting rights, including rights that arise only in certain circumstances;
  2. particulars of any rights, as respects dividends, to participate in a distribution;
  3. particulars of any rights, as respects capital, to participate in a distribution (including on winding up); and
  4. whether the shares are to be redeemed or are liable to be redeemed at the option of the company or the shareholder and any terms or conditions relating to redemption of these shares.

Please note: only particulars of any voting rights are required to be disclosed within an Annual Return.

Presenter
The presenter is the person who submits documents to Companies House on behalf of the company.
Principal Business Activities
The Principal Business activities of a company are shown by the SIC Code. The company can have up to a maximum of four codes / activities displayed on the Annual Return.
Redeemable Shares
Redeemable Shares are issued with an agreement that the company will buy them back at the option of the company or the shareholder after a certain period, or on a fixed date. A company can not issue redeemable shares only.
Register of Debenture Holders
The Register of Debenture Holders is the legal record of all debenture holders in the company. The Register is normally kept at the registered office but may be kept at an alternative address.
Register of Directors
This is a register maintained by the company containing details on each director (person and corporate) such as name, service address and general details. The ‘Register of Directors’ must be available for public inspection.
Register of Directors' Residential Addresses
This is a register which only contains the usual residential address of each director (person only). The ‘Register of Directors' Residential Addresses’ should not be revealed or made available to the public. The company should only use the information within this register to communicate with the director and to update records held at Companies House
Register of LLP Members
This is a register maintained by the LLP containing details on each member (person and corporate) such as name, service address and general details. The ‘Register of LLP Members’ must be available for public inspection.
Register of LLP Members' Residential Addresses
This is a register which only contains the usual residential address of each LLP Member (person only). The ‘Register of LLP Members' Residential Addresses’ should not be revealed or made available to the public. The LLP should only use the information within this register to communicate with the members and to update records held at Companies House.
Register of Members
The Register of Members is the legal record of all share transactions in the company. The Register is normally kept at the registered office but may be kept at an alternative address.
Register of Secretaries
This is a register maintained by the company containing details on each secretary (person and corporate) such as name and service address. The ‘Register of Secretaries’ must be available for public inspection
Registered Office Address
The registered office address is the 'home' of the company to which all official documents, notices and court papers have to be sent by law. The registered office address can be anywhere in England, Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland depending on where the company is registered. When a company changes its registered office address the new address must be notified to Companies House on Form AD01.
Same as
An address which is regarded as the 'same as' another address and is entered in the company’s (or LLPs) own register with the statement "same as" - rather than entered as a full address (e.g. in the director's register, the service address entry has the statement "same as the registered office address"). If an address is "same as" an address which is changed, both addresses will be considered to have changed situation.
Secretary
A secretary is a person appointed to be the chief administrator of the company. A company secretary is optional for a private limited company but mandatory for a public limited company. The secretary can be a natural person appointment (of which there are no age restrictions) or a corporate entity. A secretary can act as both director and secretary.
Security Code
Security Code (also known as password) is an 8-32 character alphanumeric code that enables the submission of company information on WebFiling. The password is created by the presenter and is linked to their email address. To use WebFiling a password and an Authentication Code are required.
Service Address
The service address is a location where official documents and notices can be delivered (serviced) for the attention of the company officer. The service address information provided will appear on the public record. Since legislative changes affecting address details, an individual no longer requires a Confidentiality Order to provide a service address for the public record.
Share Capital
When a company is formed it must decide whether its members' liability will be limited by shares. The memorandum of association will state the amount of share capital the company will have, and the division of the share capital into shares of a fixed amount. The members must agree to take some, or all, of the shares when the company is registered. The memorandum of association must show the names of the people who have agreed to own shares and the number of shares each will own. These people are called subscribers.
Share Types
The most common share types are Ordinary, Preference, Redeemable and Deferred. A company can create any share type they require with any rights that they decide upon.
Shareholder

A Shareholder is a company member who owns shares in the company.

  • Private and Public companies with an Annual Return made-up-date before 1/10/08 must provide all shareholder’s names and addresses.
  • Private and Public companies; traded on a regulated market with an Annual Return made-up-date on or after 1/10/08 must only provide shareholder names; shareholder addresses must not be provided.
  • Public companies traded on a regulated market with an Annual Return made-up-date on or after 1/10/08 must only provide names and addresses for shareholders with holdings of 5% or more in any share class; those less than 5% must be removed before submission.
SIC Code
The SIC (Standard Industrial Classification) is the principal business activity of the company. A company can have up to a maximum of four SIC codes displayed.
Consent to Act
'consent to act' information - in place of a signature you will need to provide 3 items of personal information from the following 7 categories: Town of birth, Last 3 digits of telephone number, Last 3 digits of National Insurance number, Last 3 digits of Passport number, Mothers maiden name, Eye Colour, Fathers first name.
Single Alternative Inspection Location (SAIL)
Each electronic document is filed using a company Authentication Code known only to Companies House and the company. The Authentication Code takes the place of the signature on the document.
Single Alternative Inspection Location (SAIL)
The SAIL (Single Alternative Inspection Location) is an alternative location to the registered office, where company records can be kept and made available for public inspection. A SAIL address is notified to Companies House on form AD02, while movement of company records to the SAIL address is notified on form AD03. A form AD04 is used to notify of company records moving from the SAIL address back to the registered office.
Software Filing
Software Filing is a service that allows information for certain documents to be filed at Companies House, via 3rd party software, as formatted data rather than on paper.
Status
Awaiting Customer Completion
This filing is currently awaiting submission. To complete a company incorporation please log back in to the Web Incorporation Service, or for a set of accounts finalise the accounts and submit to Companies House.
Processing Payment
We are currently awaiting confirmation of payment for this submission. If you have not completed payment through Barclays SmartPay and you wish to proceed with this submission please click the link to re-attempt payment.
Processing
This submission is currently being processed. You will shortly receive confirmation of acceptance or rejection.
Accepted
This submission has been accepted.
Rejected
This submission has been rejected. You will be sent an email to inform you your data has been rejected. The reject reasons are included in this email.
Cancelled
You have cancelled this filing prior to submission.
Failed payment
The payment for this submission has failed. If you wish to proceed with this submission please click the link to re-attempt payment.
Cancelling Submission
This submission is currently being cancelled. You will shortly recieve an email to confirm this.
Failed
A critical error has occurred please contact us.
Submission Number
The Submission number is a unique number linked to your data. Make a note of this number. If you have not received an email confirming data receipt within 3 hours ring the Companies House Contact Centre on +44 (0)303 1234 500.
Traded on a regulated market / traded company

This is public company that has any of its shares admitted to trading on a regulated market (traded company). Traded public companies are required to provide names and addresses for those shareholders holding 5% or more of any share class.

Private and non-traded public companies are only required to provide names of shareholders address details are not required.

Transfer of Shares
A transfer of shares occurs when a shareholder decides to sell some or all of their shares. The company will receive a stock transfer form and informs Companies House on the next Form AR01, after the transfer has taken place.
WebFiling
WebFiling provides a secure system for users to submit company information to Companies House. A WebFiling link is on the Companies House homepage or use the WebFiling website address: https://ewf.companieshouse.gov.uk/
28 day rule
When submitting an Annual Return, the company can alter the made-up date to an earlier one. Where the date selected is more than 28 days prior to the submission date the company will be required to submit a further return to the made-up date.
AP01 Appointment of director
This form is submitted to Companies House to notify of an appointment of a person as a company director.
AP02 Appointment of corporate director
This form is submitted to Companies House to notify of an appointment of a corporate entity as a company director.
AP03 Appointment of secretary
This form is submitted to Companies House to notify of an appointment of a person as a company secretary.
AP04 Appointment of corporate secretary
This form is submitted to Companies House to notify of an appointment of a corporate entity as a company secretary.
CH01 Change of director’s details
This form is submitted to Companies House to notify of any changes to the details of a person appointed as a company director.
CH02 Change of corporate director’s details
This form is submitted to Companies House to notify of any changes to the details of a corporate entity appointed as a company director.
CH03 Change of secretary’s details
This form is submitted to Companies House to notify of any changes to the details of a person appointed as a company secretary.
CH04 Change of corporate secretary’s details
This form is submitted to Companies House to notify of any changes to the details of a corporate entity appointed as a company secretary.
TM01 Termination of appointment of director
This form is submitted to Companies House to notify of the termination of appointment (resignation) of a company director (person or corporate).
TM02 Termination of appointment of secretary
This form is submitted to Companies House to notify of the termination of appointment (resignation) of a company secretary (person or corporate).
AA01 Change of accounting reference date
This form is submitted to Companies House to notify of a change of accounting reference date of the company.
AD01 Change of registered office address
This form is submitted to Companies House to notify of a change to the company’s registered office address.
AD02 Notification of single alternative inspection location (SAIL)
This form is submitted to Companies House to notify of a SAIL address.
AD03 Change of location of the company records to the single alternative inspection location (SAIL)
This form is submitted to Companies House to notify of company records which are kept at the SAIL address.
AD04 Change of location of the company records to the registered office
This form is submitted to Companies House to notify of company records which are moved from the SAIL address and kept at the company’s registered office.
SH01 Return of allotment of shares
This form is submitted to Companies House to notify that the company has issued additional shares and that these have been allotted.
AR01 Annual Return
This form is submitted to Companies House as a snapshot of company information as of the made up date. A company must submit at least one Annual Return document each year within 28 days of legal return date (made up date).
NM01 Notice of change of name by resolution
This form is submitted to Companies House to give notice of an unconditional change of name by the company members.
Special Resolution
A resolution is an agreement or decision made by the members, a class of members, or the directors of a company to carry out certain changes. This could include resolving to change the name of the company, to alter its share capital or to change its articles.
LLAD01 Change of registered office address
This form is submitted to Companies House to notify of a change to the Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) registered office address.
LLAP01 Appointment of member of an LLP
This form is submitted to Companies House to notify of an appointment of a person as a member of a Limited Liability Partnership (LLP).
LLAP02 Appointment of corporate member of an LLP
This form is submitted to Companies House to notify of an appointment of a corporate entity as a member of a Limited Liability Partnership (LLP).
LLCH01 Change of details of a member of an LLP
This form is submitted to Companies House to notify of any changes to the details of a person appointed as a member of a Limited Liability Partnership (LLP).
LLCH02 Change of details of a corporate member of an LLP
This form is submitted to Companies House to notify of any changes to the details of a corporate entity appointed as a member of a Limited Liability Partnership (LLP).
LLTM01 Termination of appointment of member of an LLP
This form is submitted to Companies House to notify of the termination of appointment (resignation) of a member of a Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) (person or corporate).
LLAD02 Notification of the single alternative inspection location (SAIL) of an LLP
This form is submitted to Companies House to notify of a SAIL address for a Limited Liability Partnerships (LLP).
LLAD03 Change of location of the records to the single alternative inspection location (SAIL) of an LLP
This form is submitted to Companies House to notify of company records which are kept at the SAIL address of a Limited Liability Partnership (LLP).
LLAD04 Change of location of the records to the registered office of an LLP
This form is submitted to Companies House to notify of company records which are moved from the SAIL address and kept at the registered office of a Limited Liability Partnership (LLP).
LLAA01 Change of accounting reference date of an LLP
This form is submitted to Companies House to notify of a change of accounting reference date of a Limited Liability Partnership (LLP).
LLAR01 Annual Return
This form is submitted to Companies House as a snapshot of the Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) information as of the made up date. An LLP must submit at least one Annual Return document each year within 28 days of legal return date (made up date).
88(2)
The Form 88(2)(Revised 1988) is submitted to Companies House to notify that the company has issued additional shares and these have been allotted. This is a Companies Act 1985 form and should only be used if the event date is before 01/10/09.
288a
The Form 288a is submitted to Companies House to notify of the appointment of an officer, Director or Secretary. This is a Companies Act 1985 form and should only be used if the event date is before 01/10/09.
288b
The Form 288b is submitted to Companies House to notify that an officer ( Director or Secretary) is ceasing to act (resignation, removal, death etc.). This is a Companies Act 1985 form and should only be used if the event date is before 01/10/09.
288c
The Form 288c is submitted to Companies House to notify of a change in details of an officer (Director or Secretary), e.g. a change of name or new residential address. This is a Companies Act 1985 form and should only be used if the event date is before 01/10/09.
363
The Form 363 is the Annual Return document. This is a Companies Act 1985 form and should only be used if the event date is before 01/10/09.