Business Legislation

All businesses need to ensure that they are adhering to their legal obligations. Depending on the type of business activity, you may need to comply with additional requirements. Here are just some of the main areas you will need to consider.

General Requirements

Keeping up with up to date regulations which may affect your business can be tricky; from licensing, food standards and health and safety; many areas of legislation may affect what you do in your business.

UK Tax Law

You must comply with UK Tax law – you'll need to visit HMRC registering your business for tax depending on which legal entity you choose.

Health and Safety

You must comply with all Health and Safety requirements – this is specifically important if you employ staff in your business or have visiting members of the public.

Company Name

Ensure you can use and operate under your chosen business name and you are not breaching any existing copyright or trademark legislation;

Employment and Recruitment

You need to comply with employment legislation and recruitment, including;

  • Contracts of employment and working hours
  • Dismissals and redundancies
  • Payroll
  • Pensions
  • Recruiting and hiring
  • Statutory leave and time off
  • Trade unions and workers rights

Planning Laws

Use Classes - Ensure your business premises can be used for the purpose which you are using them.

Product Safety Requirements and Trading Standards

If you are making and selling a product, ensure that it meets all the safety regulations. Trading Standards provide information on standards that have to be met for any trading business, whether selling a product or service.  The Business Companion website is a useful place to check this area of legislation.

Food Businesses

Specific requirements are required if you are making or serving food.

Dispose of Business or Commercial Waste

Ensure you dispose of your trade waste in accordance with legislation.


If you operate from business premises you will need to ensure they are registered for business rates.


Some business activities require a licence to operate, such as a taxi driver, tattoo parlour, or sale of alcohol, etc.


If you play music in your business, you may need to consider obtaining a licence;