What should be on Company Stationery?

Certain facts are needed by law to be included in business letters and other business documents and correspondence. In the article below you will find the main rules of what should be on Company Stationery.

The full registered name of the company must be written legibly on all communications and official documents. This legal obligation includes:

  • all business letters and order forms for the corporation;
  • announcements and publications from the company;
  • bills of exchange, promissory notes, and endorsements, as well as bills of parcels, invoices, receipts, and letters of credit;
  • checks and money orders purporting to be signed by or on behalf of the company;
  • any other forms of business correspondence and paperwork for the corporation; and
  • all of the firm's websites - it is not necessary to display the company name on each page, but it must be shown in a legible manner.

When the required information is presented or revealed, it must be in readable characters to the naked eye.

Letterhead, order forms, and websites for businesses
There are further specifications for the company's business letterhead, order forms, and websites. In addition to the company's registered name, the following information must be provided:

  • the part of the United Kingdom where the corporation is registered — for example, England, England and Wales, Northern Ireland, Scotland, or Wales;
  • the registered number of the company; and
  • the registered office address of the company.

If the paper equivalent would be captured by the stationery standards, then the email is likewise caught. Most businesses will include the required information in the email footer that is automatically appended when the email is sent, or they will require all employees to use a standard email footer that includes these standards.

In addition to the necessity to disclose the company's registered name on communication, unless the firm has been dormant since incorporation, this must also be displayed at:

  • the registered office of the corporation
  • any location where the company's books can be inspected (for example, the SAIL address)
  • any site where the firm conducts business outside than its registered office or SAIL address

Certain sorts of businesses will be subject to additional rules
In some circumstances and for particular sorts of businesses, there are additional requirements for stationery and other documents:
  • when a limited company is excluded from the obligation to include the word "limited" in its registered name (under section 60 of the Companies Act 2006), it must state that it is a limited company;
  • a community interest corporation that is not a public firm must declare its status as a limited business;
  • an investment company, as defined by section 833 of the Companies Act 2006, must state that it is such a firm;
  • a charitable organisation whose name does not contain the terms "charity" or "charitable" must state that it is a charity;
  • where the name of a company director appears somewhere in the letter, other than in the text or as a signature, the letter must include the name of each director. There is no necessity to show director names at all, therefore the firm must effectively show either all of the directors' names or none of them unless stated in the text or as a signature; and
  • if the firm wishes to publish its share capital, it must only show the paid-up share capital and not the unpaid share capital.

If a firm fails to comply with these legal responsibilities, the firm and each of its officers may be charged with an offence and fined. The fine for the offence itself is up to £1,000, with a daily penalty of up to £100 for persistent violation. Specific industry regulators may also apply their own fines. Please contact Persona Finance at [] for business or accountancy advice.