How to register a business with the government
You have a few official steps to walk through before you’re in business:
- Register a business name: You must check your business name is available and register it with BizFile+.
- Figure out GST: Businesses that expect annual taxable income of more than $1 million must register for GST. Businesses with less income can voluntarily register. Learn more from IRAS.
- Register a company: To set up as a company, you must register with the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority.
There may be other departments to speak to for things like:
- Permits and licences: You may need special permission for certain types of business activity. Check your situation with GoBusiness Licensing.
- Employing people: If you’re hiring staff, the government will want to tax your workers’ pay, and they’ll expect you to comply with employment rules and regulations. Learn more about employment practices at the Ministry of Manpower.
Where to get help
If you’re unsure of your obligations to the government, there are people who can help. Look for industry associations for your type of business, search around for a Chamber of Commerce and other local business advocacy groups, find businesses like yours and ask the owners what regulations they have to comply with, or simply speak to a local accountant.
Xero 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.
How to start a business
Thousands of new businesses open every day. If all those people can do it, why not you? Here’s what to do, and when.
- How to do market research
Your business idea is clearly inspired. But it helps to check you’re not the only one who thinks so.
- How to write a business plan
Writing a business plan will help nail down your idea and give you a blueprint for executing it.
- Budgeting and forecasting
It’s time to run some numbers on your business idea. Budgeting and forecasting help with that.
- Pricing strategies and cost of goods sold
Your prices can influence the number of sales you make and the profit you earn on each transaction.
- Types of business structure
Your business structure can affect how much tax you pay, and how you're treated by the law.
- Small business accounting
If you’re starting a business, then you’ll need to get familiar with some accounting basics.
- Registering a business and other admin tasks
After all the excitement of deciding to start a business, you’ll have some paperwork to do.
- How to create a business website
Treat your website like an online version of a storefront. It’s the first impression for many customers and prospects.
- Tools and guides for your business
Now that you’re in business, you want to stay there. Xero’s got resources and solutions to help.
Download the guide to starting a business
Learn how to start a business, from ideation to launch. Fill out the form to receive this guide as a PDF.
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