What is a director’s service address?
Quite simply put, this is an official address that all company directors need to have when they are appointed to a directorship of a limited company during or after incorporation. It is a correspondence address that is placed on public record. However, the Companies Act 2006 now allows a director to have a ‘service address’ where they can have all their correspondence directed. This was introduced in an effort to protect the personal details of company directors.
Only the service address will be made public, and the only people able to see a directors residential address will be public authorities and credit agencies. This layer of added protection gives directors a better level of privacy, and for convenience it is possible to use the registered office address of the company as the directors service address. This means that company directors can receive their legal notices and statutory post directly from HMRC and Companies House at their service address.
A directors service address is only required by company directors, so company secretaries and shareholders do not need to have one. They must, however, supply Companies House with a valid contact address. Any new shareholders that join once the company formation is complete do not have to provide any address details to Companies House.
Does My Directors Service Address Have To Be In The UK?
Your service address doesn’t have to be in the UK – you can choose to have your address anywhere in the world, as long as it is a physical address. It may also be a residential or non-residential address, so if you live in one country but operate your business in another, you can have all your legal correspondence and paperwork sent to your most convenient address.
Directors quite often don’t work from their service address, and their role in the company may not require them to visit the main operational site, so there would be no sense in registering a directors address at a place that they may never visit. The main purpose of a directors service address is simply for receiving official personal mail.
A Managed Directors Service Address
Many company directors choose to use their residential address for the convenience of it without fully realising that their address will be made public, and can be discovered by anyone.
The obvious benefit of having a professional managed service address, other than keeping your residential address private and not appearing on the public record, is that it gives you a prestigious address to include on your company paperwork. This helps you to look more professional, respectable and well-established in the eyes of new and prospective clients.
If you started out by registering your residential address with Companies House as your directors service address, then you choose to take up a professional managed directors service address instead, you can amend the change of address with Companies House to have your private address removed from the public domain and replaced with your new managed one.
You can notify Companies House of your change of address by using form CH01 (for a natural director) or form CH02 (for a corporate director). You can print off and manually complete the form and post back to Companies House, or you can complete it to be filed online via WebFiling.
Is There A Difference Between A Service Address And A Registered Office Address?
Where a service address is a requirement by law by HMRC and Companies House for statutory mail for directors, a registered office address is the official address of the limited company or LLP. This address must be located in the same area of the country where the company or LLP has been incorporated. So for a UK company, a registered office address cannot be outside of the UK.
As a company director, if you live and work within the same area as your company, or even work out of an office within the business premises, then you can use your companies registered office as your directors service address. It is perfectly acceptable to use the same address for both, as long as your premises meets the legal requirements of a registered office.
A registered office cannot use a PO Box as an official address. It has to be a proper postal address to be acceptable by HMRC and Companies House. However, you can use a PO Box as a directors service address as long as you can provide a full postal address, including a post code. A PO Box Number is not acceptable.