A sole tradership is easy to set up. It is not necessary to register the name of this type of business. However, you may need a license to conduct any of a wide variety of trades. You can find information on your particular type of business on the internet, including those licenses that might be required. You can generally get the relevant license from your local governing body.
Although the sole tradership is easy to get up and running, there are a few legal issues that you should consider. One is the protection of sensitive customer data. The Data Protection Act of 1984 spells out specific requirements regarding the registration of personal data that is kept by a business. You can get a registration form at your local post office.
There are several laws on the books to prevent you from making false claims about any goods or services you provide. Whether you sell an item or perform a service, you are required by law to ensure that the final product meets the description you gave and is of satisfactory quality. You can also be held liable for providing a faulty product that causes injury or damage.
If you have premises, there are specific legal requirements that must be met. Your premises will need to be inspected by the fire service. They must also be reasonably safe for both employees and customers. In most cases, if someone is injured on your premises you can be held liable. While insurance will protect you against most claims, your insurer may refuse to pay if the injury was caused by dangerous conditions. You could even be held criminally liable under such circumstances.
You will also need to be certain that you are in compliance with anti-discriminatory legislation, including disability access. These laws can be confusing and it is easy to make mistakes, so it highly recommended that you consult with an expert who specializes in disability access matters.
There may be additional requirements for your particular type of business and/or premises. There are numerous governing bodies that may have jurisdiction over your particular situation. The Department of Trade and Industry should be your first point of contact when setting up a new business. From there you will be directed toward the relevant authorities for your unique situation.
Although there are several legal issues of which you must be aware, starting a sole tradership is not inherently difficult. Working your way through red tape may be frustrating at times, but it is quite important. Spending a bit of time at the beginning to ensure that you are in compliance with all laws and regulations can save you a great deal of both time and money later on.
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