As part of the requirements for incorporating a company in Singapore, the Companies Act provides that every limited company (and LLP) shall have a registered office address in Singapore from the date of the company incorporation and throughout its existence.
A registered office address is a valid address lodged with the ACRA at the incorporation of the company. As official address of the company, it is where all communications and official notices are addressed and also the place where the company’s or LLP’s registers and records are kept.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
What conditions for the registered office address?
The registered office address must be open and accessible to the public for at least three hours during ordinary business hours on each business day. The company may receive at his registered office the public, notice from governmental agencies, bank and legal documents.
Consequently, the registered office address must be a physical address office in Singapore, therefore are excluded the postal office box addresses.
The registered office address is not necessary the same place where the activities of the company are conducted.
Update the change
The registered office address may change anytime during the company’s existence by passing a resolution of the company’s board of directors. Any change must be updated with the ACRA within 14 days from the date of the change.
As this address appears on the official documents of the company this change also has to be updated with various institutions (governmental agencies, banks etc.).
The company and the directors that fail to register a valid registered office address are guilty of an offence and may be fined up to $5,000.
Other alternatives may be considered, especially by SMEs, for their flexibility and conveniency. Note that these options still need to comply with the registered office address conditions.
Home Office scheme
For Singapore residents, the Home Office Scheme allow owner, tenant or occupant of HDB flats to use their residential address as registered office address for their company upon a successful application with the authorities.
Occupants who are not the owner, have to obtain the written consent from the owner before to apply for the Home Office Scheme.
After a successful application, a permit valid for the duration of the home office business is delivered by the authorities. The permit may be revoked if the home office business conditions are breached.
Restrictions and Conditions for the Home Office Scheme
The Home Office Scheme is allowed only for operate a small-scale office or run the administrative function of the business, without disturbing the neighbourhood. The use shall respect some conditions including the following:
- The nature of the business must be permitted. It must be an administrative activity in nature, such as:
- Accountancy services
- Architectural services
- Consultancy services (business, engineering, IT, management, or education)
- Design/Advertising services
- Insurance/Financial planning services
- Real estate agencies
- Technology based and knowledge intensive businesses
- Trading office (excluding car trading office)
- The unit where is conducted the business continue to be use as a place of residence,
- Not hiring more than 2 non-resident employees,
- Not displaying any external business signage or advertisements
- Not affecting the environment of the residence, generating noise, smoke, odour, waste matter or dust.
Note that using a residential address imply also losing privacy as the address will be a public information displayed on the official documents of the company.
Virtual office is the choice of most foreign company in Singapore, usually they prefer to use the office address of their company secretary as their registered office address and also the place for the company’s records to be kept. This facilitates communication with the authorities who will send the communications directly to the corporate secretary offices.
Virtual offices offer flexibility to business owners in the choose of the address without having to bear the rent of an office in Singapore. A prestigious address may also offer credibility in the related corporate industry and be more attractive for investor, partner or customers.
Note that as corporate secretary provider in Singapore, we are able to offer you a registered office address at the heart of the Singapore business centre.
If you need to register your business, open a new branch or subsidiary. Of if you are looking for more specicif services like bookkeeping services or withholding tax informations, you can contact us here.
Do you want to register your business in Singapore ? Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any further questions.