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Do I have to register my business name with Companies House?

If you are operating your freelance business as a sole trader then no. As a sole trader you can choose pretty much any name you like, but once you register the name as a formal business entity there will be some restrictions – so even if you are only setting up as a sole trader now, you might want to register your name straight away, to protect it in the future if you do choose to go limited at a later date. Also, by registering your name you will make your details present at Companies House, which provides credibility and helps to build client confidence.