This is a term used by the Inland revenue for the estimate of your tax bill for the year (on form sa323)

Direct Costs

Also known as variable costs, cost of sale. These are the costs that are directly incurred when you sell your product, or service, for instance stock in a retail shop, plumbing materials for a plumber, bricks, sand and cement for a builder. They also include materials purchased for resale, raw material, work in progress and sub-contracted labour used to produce the items for sale. These costs are deducted from your sales figure to arrive at a gross profit.


These are people, or companies, that owe you money as a result of carrying out business with you. They may have been issued with an invoice or they may have incurred the debt as a result of work in progress or an order not yet dispatched.


 A design refers to the features of shape, configuration, pattern or ornament which can be judged by the eye in a finished manufactured article or set of articles.

In the United Kingdom designs are protected by three legal rights;

Registered designs

Unregistered design right

Artistic copyright

Design registration gives the owner, a monopoly on his or her product, i.e. the right for a limited period to stop others from making, using or selling the product without their permission and is additional to any design right or copyright protection that may exist automatically in the design.


A security issued by a company on which the interest is payable whether or not the company makes a profit. Companies issue securities in order to raise capital. The loan is usually secured by the general credit worthiness of the company rather than any specific item.


Monies paid out to shareholders.


Directors are officers of the company and manage it in behalf of the shareholders. Every company must have at least one director. The secretary may be a director but not the sole director.


Once a company is struck off the Companies Register it ceases to exist and is dissolved. The company will be dissolved when the Registrar publishes a notice to that effect in the London Gazette. At the time of striking off a letter will be issued to the contact name on Form 652a confirming the proposed date of dissolution.


A company is dormant during a period if it has had no "significant accounting transactions" during the period, (ie transactions which are required to be entered into its accounting records).

Many dormant companies may pass a special resolution exempting themselves from the need to have their accounts audited, and from the duty to appoint auditors.

A dormant company is not exempt from filing accounts but the accounts to be filed are much simpler than for a trading company.

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