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Registering your new business.

Thank you to our accounting software partner Xero for this great content.

There is a bit of paperwork and people who need to know about your new business. Here are a few fundamentals you need to know.

How to register a business with the government.

There are a few government departments that need to know about your business:

  • MBIE (Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment): Once you’re officially in business, tell MBIE and they’ll issue you with a business number. You may be asked to quote it in your dealings with the government (and others). It will make things faster and easier.
  • IR (Inland Revenue): You may have to pay income tax and GST, so the tax office will need to know about you. They’ll provide you with a tax number. It’s not all one-way traffic, though. When your business is GST registered, you can claim back GST on business expenses.
  • ACC (Accident Compensation Corporation): As a business, you have a workplace – even if it’s your home and you’re the only worker in it. ACC provides cover for workplace accidents. You need to register and pay a levy.

You’ll have some extra formalities to complete if you choose to set your business up as a company.

How do I register a company?

If you’re setting up as a company, you need to register with the Companies Office, which is run by MBIE. This can be quite an involved process.

For example, you’ll need to register shareholders and directors. You may even need to provide a company constitution. Companies are required to report their activities to the Companies Office every year.

How to register as an employer?

You’ll need to give The NZ Companies Office some extra information if you want to register as an employer for tax purposes, including:

  • your contact details — if they’re different from the contact person for your company
  • the date you’ll start employing staff — this date can be up to 2 months in advance and will be the date you’ll be registered as an employer
  • how frequently you intend to pay your employees — e.g. weekly, fortnightly, etc
  • the first date of your normal pay cycle
  • whether you would like help with your PAYE obligations and responsibilities — if you answer yes, you’ll be ased to confirm which areas you need help with and Inland Revenue will contact you to provide that help
  • who you currently expect to be completing your payroll returns — the company owner, accountant or bookkeeper, in-house worker or administrator or a payroll intermediary — if you need to, you can update this later by contacting Inland Revenue.
Do I need to tell any other regulators?

There may be some more to do if you’re entering a regulated industry. A caterer, for example, needs to be registered and have a food control plan – and possibly a liquor license. Speak to friends in the industry, or your industry representative body to find out if there are special requirements.

Should I trademark a business name?

You can legally protect a business name and logo to prevent others from mimicking your identity. This can be a valuable step for businesses that plan to invest a lot in making their brand widely known.

This area of the law can get complicated – especially if you expand into overseas markets and find there’s a business there with a similar name. Ask for advice from a legal professional with experience in this area.

At the very least, use trademark registries (and search engines) to check that no one already has your business name. It’s an easy way to save yourself a lot of hassle.

Make sure your business is protected.

Ensuring you have documentation such as Terms and Conditions of Trade in place is really important for a new business.

They will help you mitigate risk, and ensure you have a robust onboarding system in place to protect your cash flow.

We can tailor your contracts to your operation with our end-to-end solution.

We are here when you need us. Request your call back If you want to have a chat about any of the services we provide, we are only a phone call away. Request a call back and we will be in touch as soon as possible.

Disclaimer:  EC Credit Control does not provide accounting, tax, business or legal advice. This guide has been provided for information purposes only. You should consult your own professional advisors for advice directly relating to your business or before taking action in relation to any of the content provided.