The Ultimate Companies House Website Guide

Companies House Website: A Guide to uncovering details about UK Limited Companies

Companies Jul 9, 2024

Companies House, the registrar of companies for the United Kingdom, is an essential resource for anyone looking to gather detailed information about limited companies. Whether you are a potential investor, a business partner, or simply conducting market research, the Companies House website offers a comprehensive range of data about UK companies. This article explores the type of information available on Companies House and how you can utilise this data to gain insights into a given company.

1. Basic Company Information

When you search for a company on Companies House, the first set of data you will encounter includes basic details such as:

  • Company Name: The official registered name of the company.
  • Company Number: A unique identifier assigned to each registered company.
  • Company Status: Indicates whether the company is active, dissolved, or in liquidation.
  • Incorporation Date: The date on which the company was officially registered.

2. Registered Office Address

Each company must provide a registered office address in the UK which is publicly available on Companies House. This address is the official location for receiving legal documents and correspondence. Knowing the registered office address can help you identify the geographical base of the company. It is possible to use the address of a third party if you want to keep your trading address confidential.

3. Nature of Business (SIC Code)

Companies House provides the Standard Industrial Classification (SIC) code for each company. This code categorises the company's business activities, offering insight into the industry sector in which the company operates. For example, a company with a SIC code of 62020 is engaged in "Information technology consultancy activities."

4. Filing History

One of the most valuable sections on Companies House is the filing history. This section includes all documents filed by the company since its incorporation, such as:

  • Annual Returns: Periodic statements confirming the accuracy of company information.
  • Annual Accounts: Financial statements including balance sheets, profit and loss accounts, and other relevant financial data.
  • Confirmation Statements: Annual updates of the company's information.
  • Director Changes: Notifications about appointments, resignations, and changes in directors.
  • Company Amendments: Changes to the company’s articles of association, name changes, and other significant alterations.

5. Officers and Directors

Companies House provides detailed information about a company's officers, including directors and company secretaries. For each officer, you can find:

  • Name: Full legal name.
  • Appointment Date: The date they were appointed to their position.
  • Role: Their official role within the company (e.g., director, secretary).
  • Nationality: Officer's nationality.
  • Date of Birth: Only the month and year are shown however for privacy reasons.
  • Occupation: Their professional background or current occupation.
  • Correspondence Address: Also called the service address, it's often the same as the registered office address but can also be a different address provided by the officer.
Please note that directors need to provide 2 addresses, one is the correspondence address, and it is available to the public. The other is the home address, and this one remains confidential.

6. People with Significant Control (PSC)

This section lists individuals or entities that have significant control over the company. A PSC is someone who meets one or more of the following conditions:

  • Holds more than 25% of the company’s shares.
  • Holds more than 25% of the company’s voting rights.
  • Has the right to appoint or remove the majority of the board of directors.
  • Exercises significant influence or control over the company.

7. Financial Information

The financial health of a company can be assessed through the annual accounts filed with Companies House. These documents typically include:

  • Balance Sheet: Provides an overview of the company’s assets, liabilities, and shareholders' equity.
  • Profit and Loss Account: Shows the company’s revenues, expenses, and profits over a specific period. Up until recently small companies were allowed to remove that statement from their accounts but under the newly passed Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Act, they are now required to disclose that information as well. However, rollout date has not been published yet so this requirement could change yet again.
  • Cash Flow Statement: Details the inflows and outflows of cash within the company. Typically, this is only available for larger organisations.
  • Auditor's Reports: If applicable, these reports provide an external audit of the company’s financial statements.

8. Charges (Mortgages)

Companies House records any charges or mortgages secured against a company’s assets. This information is crucial for understanding the company’s financial obligations and the security held by creditors.

9. Insolvency Information

If a company has faced insolvency proceedings, such information will be available on Companies House. This includes details about administration, liquidation, and voluntary arrangements, providing insight into the company’s financial difficulties and the steps taken to address them.

10. Company Documents

Companies House allows users to download various company documents, such as:

  • Memorandum of Association: A legal statement signed by all initial shareholders agreeing to form the company.
  • Articles of Association: The rules governing the company’s operations and management.
  • Resolutions: Formal decisions made by the company’s shareholders or directors.

How to Access and Use Companies House Data

To access information on Companies House, follow these steps:

  1. Visit the Companies House Website: Go to the official Companies House website.
  2. Search for a Company: Use the search bar to enter the company name or number.
  3. Explore the Company Profile: Click on the desired company from the search results to access its profile.
  4. Navigate through the Sections: Use the tabs and links to view different sections such as filing history, officers, PSC, and financials.
  5. Download Documents: Click on individual filings to view and download documents. If you've never read company documents don't hesitate to refer to our quick guide on how to read a balance sheet.
  6. Alerts: If you register on the website you can subscribe to a free service that sends email alerts of any changes to a selected company’s information, such as new filings or changes in directors.


Companies House is a treasure trove of information for anyone interested in UK limited companies. By exploring the data available, you can gain valuable insights into a company’s structure, financial health, management, and legal status. Whether you are conducting due diligence, competitive analysis, or simply researching, Companies House provides the transparency and details necessary to make informed decisions.

Another feature often overlooked on Companies House website is the name availability checker that allows you to check if the name of the company you wish to create is available as even if there is no company with the name you wish to use, some words are restricted.


Franck Sidon

With over 15 years of experience as a Managing Director at TaxAssist Accountants, I have helped thousands of businesses and individuals achieve their financial goals and optimize their tax efficiency.