Form a Company in Ireland

Limit Liability or not?

One of the most important questions to decide when establishing a new business in Ireland is whether to trade as a sole trader, partnership or a limited company.

The answer will depend largely on the nature of the business and your financial circumstances.


Why establish a Limited Company?

  • Tax advantages are one of the main factors in trading with a limited company in Ireland. Ireland’s corporate tax rate of 12.5% is one of the lowest in the world.
  • Many foreign companies such as Google and Microsoft are in Ireland to take advantage of these low rates.
  • Another major advantage is ‘limited liability’. Promoters of a company take shares in return for share capital. The company is a separate legal entity to the shareholder. If debts of the company remain unpaid, it is the company and not the shareholders that will be sued. The value of the share capital is the extent of exposure of the shareholders if things do not go according to plan. Therefore their personal assets are not at risk if there is a claim against the company.
  • Ownership of the company may, by issue of shares, be distributed to any number of family members or other partners or investors.
  • Tax incentives are available to limited companies such as the Business Expansion Scheme (BES) which offers individual investors tax relief for investing in certain categories of trade such as manufacturing, tourism, music etc.
  • Greater scope for pension planning through a company.
  • Tax breaks for directors of limited companies.
  • Protection of company name by registration in the Company Registration Office.


At O’Shea Legal we have helped many companies to get established over the past thirty years and will be able to advise on the most cost effective and flexible way for you to establish your new business in Ireland.


Download our ‘6 critical mistakes to avoid’ when setting up a company.

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