Set up as a sole trader

Sole traders must register with HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) and follow certain rules on running and naming their business.

If you’re a sole trader, you run your own business as an individual and are self-employed. Check what counts as self-employed if you’re not sure about your status.

Your responsibilities

You’ll need to:

VAT

You must register for VAT if your turnover is over £83,000. You can register voluntarily if it suits your business, for example if you sell to other VAT-registered businesses and want to reclaim the VAT.

Working in construction industry

Register with HMRC for the Construction Industry Scheme (CIS) if you’re working in the construction industry as a sub-contractor or contractor.

Naming your business

You can use your own name or trade under a business name – read the rules for naming your business.

Help and support

You can sign up for business support emails from HMRC to help you if you’re working for yourself.

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