Starting a Business in


Below is a detailed summary of the bureaucratic and legal hurdles faced by entrepreneurs wishing to incorporate and register a new firm in Ireland. It examines the procedures, time and cost involved in launching a commercial or industrial firm with between 10 and 50 employees and start-up capital of 10 times the economy's per-capita gross national income.

This information was collected as part of the Doing Business project, which measures and compares regulations relevant to the life cycle of a small- to medium-sized domestic business in 190 economies. The most recent round of data collection was completed in June 2016.

Compare Ireland to 189 other economies.

  • No. Procedure Time to Complete Associated Costs

    File necessary materials with the Companies Registration Office (CRO)

    Agency: Companies Registration Office

    A founder may register a company at the Companies Registration Office (CRO) by three methods:
    1. The CORE registration system, in which the papers for incorporation are lodged in print and electronic form. Under this scheme, the memorandum and articles of association must be submitted in CRO• preapproved format. After the documents are filed, the CORE incorporates the company within 5 working days (typically within 3 working days).
    2. A “Fe Phrainn” system, in which (as detailed in the first method) the incorporation documents are submitted to the CRO in a preapproved format. Under this method, however, documents are submitted in print form only, and the CRO incorporates the company within 10 working days.
    3. An alternate system in which the incorporation documents are submitted to the CRO in print form, but the memorandum and articles of association are not in a preapproved format. In this instance, the CRO incorporates the company in 2–4 weeks.

    To access the first two systems, to the company founder must apply to the CRO for an access number and have the memorandum and articles of association approved in advance. Usually only professional agencies use the expedited systems.

    Necessary documents for limited companies:
    • Memorandum and articles of association.
    • List of directors, secretary, and subscribers.
    • Statement of nominal (authorized) and issued share capital and consideration paid.
    • Notice of registered office.
    • Statement of the main business activities and the address where they will be carried out, contained in a statutory notice sent to the CRO.

    Forms can be downloaded from the CRO Web site. For all methods, a CRO Form A1 must be submitted with details of the company name, the first election of directors and secretary, and the subscribers to the memorandum and articles of association; the authorized and issued share capital; and the registered office and the details of the location in the state where the central administration and the main company activities are proposed to be undertaken. The memorandum and articles of association, signed by the subscriber shareholders, will also be submitted to the CRO.

    As of April 2006 professional incorporators do not have to reregister the preapproved memorandum and articles of association - When using the CORE system only those pages that are company specific of the pre-approved memorandum and articles of association need be submitted with an application to incorporate a company. The Company Law Enforcement Act 2001 had already made provisions for the registration of a pro forma or model memorandum and articles of association. Pursuant to the new provisions, these documents, once registered, may be referenced and need not be filed with every new incorporation.

    Since September, 2009, it is possible to reserve the proposed company name in advance of submitting the incorporation papers. The advantage of this is that it avoids the rejection of the proposed name by the Companies Registration Office either because it has already been taken or because it is inappropriate for some other reason (such as public policy). There is a fee charged of EUR 25 but this fee is then taken off the incorporation fee meaning that there is in effect no cost.

    A registration fee of EUR 100 is charged for each model memorandum and articles of association registered with the Office. However, the use of the model company incorporation documents, using the CRO disk system, will result in a reduced incorporation fee of EUR 50. The company registration fee for procedures other than the new ones is EUR 100.

    3 days EUR 50 for with pre-approved memorandum and articles, EUR 100 for standard registration

    Obtain a company seal

    Agency: Sealmaker

    In addition to getting a company seal, the company must keep the statutory registers for the directors and shareholders.

    1 day EUR 20.28

    Register for corporation tax, social insurance (PAYE/PRSI), and VAT with the Revenue Commissioners

    Agency: Revenue Commissioners

    To register for corporation for VAT taxes and for social insurance (PAYE/PRSI) with the Revenue Commissioners, the company must file Form TR2. The Tax Identification Number is needed only when the company must pay year-end taxes. Upon entering form data into the Commissioners database, the company is immediately registered for PAYE/PRSI.

    1 day no charge