Virtual offices are ideal for many business owners keen on reducing the expenses associated with operating a traditional physical office space. Virtual offices provide many benefits – but can you use them as your registered office?
No. In the UK, for example, sole proprietors and unincorporated businesses do not always require a registered office location. This means that although a virtual office isn’t always necessary, it’s still a worthwhile consideration.
Virtual office providers often provide customers with an acceptable office location that may or may not be different from your virtual address. This is done to satisfy the legal requirements of a registered office. In our example of the UK, it should suffice for HMRC to correspond with your business.
Most virtual office services can help with using a virtual office address as your registered business address. Ideally, you should be looking for a virtual office that provides you with an address appropriate for your needs. This includes the type of business formation that you’re operating.
In other parts of the world, you can’t register limited companies, limited partnerships, and limited liability corporations without a physical office location. For example, an LLC in the UK or a GmbH in Germany requires a registered office location. Virtual offices often provide legally acceptable addresses for these types of business formation.
You risk exposing yourself to unwanted guests when using your home, so it makes sense to register a business address elsewhere. PO Boxes are not an acceptable alternative. This is because may not be able to receive parcels, and you’ll also leave a negative impression on clients.
Furthermore, in many jurisdictions, you cannot use a PO Box. Companies House in the UK requires a physical address to register a business, so consider a virtual office instead of a PO Box.