reviewing identification documents

Why do we need identification?

Before we can activate any service you have purchased from us we must first comply with anti money laundering (AML) regulations. These regulations require us to identify our customer before we enter into a business relationship. As soon as we have identified our client and other persons connected to the order, for example all directors and shareholders, we can allow our service to be activated. Wherever possible we will attempt to do this using a soft check.

If you are purchasing an address service from us please do not start using the address until you have received confirmation your service has been activated.

If you have purchased services from us we may need to request identification from you. Company service providers, like us, adhere to Money Laundering Regulations (MLR). This applies to any business that provides company formations, mail or address services and other related services in the UK.

Whilst this may seem like an onerous task, it should be viewed positively. You can have faith that we are registered with both HMRC and the ICO. We register every year with MLR to ensure we meet the government’s requirements.

By checking the identity of our clients we reduce the opportunity for businesses to abuse our services. We protect our addresses from misuse so your company is registered at a reputable address.

You can read more about MLR and why we need ID on our MLR FAQ pages.

Question Mark, why is ID required?
Signing client registration form

What documents do we need?

In simple terms it is proof of address and photo identity. We typically request the following documents for any director, partner, shareholder or person with significant control-

1) Passport photo page or photo driving licence

2) Utility bill or bank statement in the person’s name showing their home address (NOT mobile phone bill)

3) Complete the ID section in your online account or complete and email us our client registration form. You can download the registration form here.

4) If we are forwarding mail to a third party address that is not your home address also please supply a utility bill for the address or additional proof that you use the address.

UK customers – We only require copies and would prefer you upload them to your online account. You can also email us scanned/photographed versions to [email protected]. Alternatively please post identification to us at our Coventry address as detailed below.

Non-UK customers – We require notarised or solicitor certified copies of your documents and a translation if not written in English. Please note we can not return the notarised documents to you.

Occasionally we may request UK customers provide original documents by post for checking. Alternatively, please provide copies of documents that have been correctly certified by a solicitor or notary public. Please post identification to us at our Coventry address.

SFS – Small Firms Services Ltd
Union House
111 New Union Street
United Kingdom

When renewing services we will review your identification documents.

What if customers do not provide ID?

The answer is simple! – No ID, no services.We cannot support any customer that refuses to provide identification on request. We are legally required to ‘know our client’ and face penalties if we have not conducted MLR checks.

What happens if we cannot verify ID?

As part of our AML policy we will attempt to verify the ID documents provided. If we are unable to do so initially we may request certified documents are provided.Similarly, if the documents relate to an individual from a high risk country we may not be able to provide the service.If we cannot verify the identity documents and/or if these do relate to an individual residing in a higher risk country we will not be able to set up the service and the fee will be refunded. We will contact you to discuss this should this be the case.