What is a virtual office
Sometimes called a mail forwarding business or an accommodation address, it is an address which is, in effect, rented to a business or individual to use as their own, despite the business or individual not actually being there. There are many prestigious addresses in the City of Westminster and often a business will acquire a trading address there and use that address in its advertising. Mail will either be collected from the address or forwarded on to another one.
How to register
A guidance note and the application form can be downloaded below.
The application form should be completed and returned along with a one off registration fee of £100. A certificate will be issued on receipt of the application.
The City of Westminster introduced legal controls under the London Local Authorities Act 2007 which requires a virtual office to register with the Council, keep records of all clients who use their services and a copy of their identification and proof of address.
Failing to register with the Council, keep records as required or make false entries could result in a maximum fine of £5,000. The legislation applies London-wide but is adoptive so a local council can choose whether or not to implement the Act in their area.
If you have any questions please contact us.
The Virtual Office Focus Group
The Virtual Office Focus Group was formed in 2011 with members of the industry; the Business Centre Association, Operation Sterling (the Metropolitan Police Unit dealing with economic crime) and Westminster Trading Standards.
The objectives of the focus group include:
- To encourage compliance and develop best practice guidelines
- To define the rigorous ethical and business standards required to operate in the sector
- To create a strong collaborative network of companies and organisations
- To promote cross industry information sharing
- To lobby on issues affecting the sector
Industry members of the focus group are both major and independent operators.
For further information visit www.bca.uk.com/virtual-office/virtual-office
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