Can I get business insurance before registering my business?

You can get business insurance before registering your business, and even before you’ve started trading. When you buy your business insurance you won’t usually be asked for your company registration number or any other business registration details.

Registering your business

When you’re starting your business you can set up as a sole trader or start a limited company. As a sole trader, the only business registration you generally need to complete is a registration for the HMRC self-assessment tax system. You can do this on the government’s website.

If you set up a limited company, there’s a bit more paperwork involved. You need to register your business with Companies House (this is sometimes called ‘incorporating’) and you’ll then be given a company registration number (CRN). Some businesses can complete the registration process online).

If you’re not sure which business structure you should use, this article goes into your options in a bit more detail.

Buying your business insurance

Although it’s really important to register your business and tick all the legal boxes when you’re getting started, you don’t need to register your business before you can buy your business insurance.

When you’re buying your policy, insurers need to know things like your business address, your trade type, and your actual or projected turnover. You may also be asked about your business structure (whether you’re a sole trader or a limited company, for example). However, you won’t be asked for your CRN or other business registration details.

This means that you can buy your business insurance while you’re doing all the other paperwork to set up your business.

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