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How Much Tax Does a Limited Company Pay in Tax UK?

The tax rules for limited companies are slightly different to other company structures. We take a look at what constitutes a limited company, the types of tax they must pay and how much you as an individual or business owner will have paid by the end of the year in regards to your profits.
What is a limited company?

Limited liability is a legal concept that protects company owners from being held liable for all business debts. The term 'limited' in this context means the owner's assets are protected up to an agreed value, so they're unlikely (though not guaranteed) to go bankrupt.

There are two main types of limited companies:

‘Limited by shares’

These tend to be "for-profit" businesses with shareholders. The company can keep all profits made after-tax and reinvest them back into running the business or give some of it away as dividends - which might explain why people like these types of companies so much better than those without any accountability whatsoever!

‘Limited by guarantee’

These tend to be 'not for profit' businesses with a guarantee. The profits made are invested back into the company, so you know your money is safe and being put towards company growth.

What is corporation tax in the UK?

That is why we've written this post for limited company start-ups, to help you understand:

  • How corporation tax is calculated
  • When and how to submit a company tax return
  • When this tax liability needs to be paid

A corporation tax definition

Corporation taxes are imposed on UK limited companies and other organizations to varying degrees. The amount is based on the company's profits each year, which means all income from trading activities will be taxed as well- even if it started up with some funds raised through donations or grants! You may also have certain expenses that you can deduct so make sure to do your research first.

Corporation tax is applied to trading profits - earnings generated from doing business, investments, and selling assets such as land, property shares and machinery at market value or above with an intention of making a profit.

Who pays corporation tax?

These can include housing associations and membership organisations as well as clubs or societies which have memberships from several people

Corporation tax is a levy on the profits of UK incorporated companies. So, if you run your own business and have received some money for it in return (whether as revenue or profit), then this also involves paying corporation tax! It might seem like sole traders and partnerships would be exempt since they are not taxed at all when earning income; however, there are other organisations that could incur such an expense despite being non-incorporated entities. These can include housing associations and membership organisations as well as clubs or societies which have memberships from several people.

How much is corporation tax in the UK?

The main rate for all business profits has been set at 19%. For these next two years it'll stay this high too; reversing an earlier pledge by our current administration which had planned to bring down their rates from 17% in April of 2020.

How the corporation tax rate will change from April 2023

The government has announced that from April 2023 they will be changing the corporation tax rate. If your taxable profits are above £250,000 then you'll be subject to an upper limit of 25% for all income earned after this date. The rate for smaller businesses will range between 19% and 26.5%, with margin relief benefits provided if they're in-between those two limits.

Starting Up

When starting up through a limited company, you'll need to register for corporation tax. You can do this through HMRC on the Gov.uk website by providing details such as:

  • Name of Company (e.g., ABC Ltd.)
  • Registration Number ("00040")
  • Start Date(the day when accounting period begins)
  • Main Address (where business will be operated out of)
  • Type Of Activity (or industry about which a Registered Trade Mark is to appear)
  • Name And Home Addresses For Directors

The duty falls on all UK limited companies, but there are some other organizations that may be exempt. If you're running a non-profit organization or charity then you can contact HMRC for more information, since they'll need to check if your company should be paying corporation tax.

*Another thing to note is that if the corporation tax is not paid on time then you'll be slapped with a penalty which can reach up to £3,000 or 10% of total company profits (whichever is greater).

If two different companies share a director and they have formed a new business partnership, they will both need to notify HMRC about this change. If the other company that has a member on the board is a limited company then you'll need to provide them with the corporation tax number for this business.

Businesses might also pay corporation tax if they're registered as a Scottish Professional Limited Liability Partnership (SPLLP) or an Alternative Investment Fund Manager (AIFM). If you're an unincorporated association, such as a club or society, then you won't need to pay corporation tax.

Keep an eye on your business accounts and see if they require any corrections so you'll know whether or not there might be profits that need to be taxed. You can use an online tax calculator to get a quick glimpse of how much income might be taxed.

Filing a company tax return

If you want to remain compliant with the tax laws, it is important that your company files an annual return. You will need a CT600 and submit all of its information as well as any accounts from HMRC or Companies House for approval before filing them in order to avoid penalties and interest charges on incorrect returns which could amount up being thousands of pounds extra per year!

This will then inform you how much corporation tax your company owes. Remember, they have to file their returns 12 months after the accounting period that it covers even if there is a loss-making year in between.

If your profits exceed £1.5 million, you will need to pay the bill in instalments and due dates depend on company size as well as the length of the accounting period for that year (12 months). The payments are usually quarterly with two instalments coming before the end of each quarter; this is the estimated amount of tax liability which may change once the final tax figure has been calculated after closing out bookkeeping from previous quarters.

When is the deadline for paying corporation tax?

Be aware of the different deadlines for paying your corporation tax bill. The due date depends on when you filed and how long an accounting period is, but it has to be paid nine months after last year's end date.

You'll need to settle your bill by the deadline date, as per the previous section. Failure to do this will likely result in fines and penalties.

Tax Reliefs


There are certain specific business expenses that help keep your company running, which means they won't eat up any profits and therefore reduce the amount owed in corporation tax. See here for a full list of included deductibles.

Super Deduction

If your company has been allocating funds for investment, then you could qualify and benefit from a 130% write off against taxable profits on expenditures made during April 1st of next year.

Your accountant will need to consider the new changes which come into effect on April 2023. They're going to affect you, as a business owner and what your profitability looks like in the near future or maybe even now!


Do you have projects that develop new products, processes or services? If so the government has a program for supporting businesses in their endeavours.

The tax relief is provided in one of two different ways. In instances where your business is profitable, you can get an enhanced deduction from taxable profits at 130% for qualifying R&D expenditure and this would allow more money back into the pockets as cash with no strings attached. While if it's loss-making then 14.5% repayable credit will be given instead which means they receive payment straight from HMRC themselves.

Patent Box

The patent box is a tax regime that can reduce your liability for corporation taxes. It works by allowing you to attribute profits from patented products, services and processes in the UK or Europe as if they were generated here - which means it could save 10% of what should be paid!

The Annual Investment Allowance (AIA)

A unique tax allowance, the Annual Investment Allowance (AIA) can be used to invest in tools and machinery. It works whereby you deduct this specific expenditure from your taxable profits for that particular year by subjecting it to limits set out by law or regulation.

Capital Allowance Claims

The Capital Allowances Act allows you to claim for certain expenditures on your commercial property. This includes the cost of installing equipment, improvements and fixtures that will increase its value or improve its efficiency but do not include things such as repairs needed because something has been broken (not due to wear-and-tear). You should review all expenses incurred with a view towards whether they qualify under capital allowances before filing taxes so it's worth looking back at previous years too.

Employee Shares

There are a number of ways to help your employees and make money in the process. One way is with an employee share scheme, which can give you tax benefits if used correctly. Make sure that you seek out professional advice before beginning this type of investing though - it may be best suited for some businesses but not others!


Training is an expense that many companies have to budget for. Business costs are tax-deductible for the company, and employee training can be paid by them.

Staff Gatherings

A staff party is a great way to thank your employees for all their hard work. We recommend that you provide an annual event during the holidays, which can cost up to £150 per person but will be tax-free and deductible as a company reward so long as this expense falls within the set guidelines in place by HMRC.


Losses are an unfortunate reality of any business, and it is important to make use of the loss reliefs where this may be relevant. For instance, if a company experiences big losses in one year they can carry those back to previous years which generate tax refunds or even be used against future profits.

Maintaining records will help when filing taxes at year-end so keep careful tabs on these documents!

Late filing and payment penalties

Accountancy Cloud will not hesitate to take any action necessary when it comes to collecting their debt. They can use a collection agency, seize funds from your bank account or even sell whatever is left of what you own if they deem fit!

In extreme cases where there's been embezzlement at work (such as fraud), they might sell off all assets including your possessions for what’s owed in losses.

The company tax return is a legally binding document that has to be filled incorrectly. If you make an error, however small it may seem at first glance (or perhaps even if HMRC finds out!), there could potentially be stiff penalties for your mistake - up to 30% of the total owed! In some cases HMRC will only fine those who have intentionally concealed their errors but not others; this means 20%-70%.

If you know that there's been a mistake on your company tax return, then it is better to get everything corrected before the deadline. HMRC will charge 50-100% if an error was deliberate and attempts have been made to conceal; 30-100% otherwise! You can also make changes with these adjustments having become effective within 12 months after filing them in relation to their respective deadlines.

The team at Accountancy Cloud is here to assist you with any tax queries and help guide you through the process.

We're here to assist you with your company tax return as well as any other related matters. We also have accountants who are experts in this area and understand all the necessary regulations that you must adhere to. Contact us today to find out more about what we can do for you.

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