Existing firm applications

Updated 25 November 2019

Apply to change the legal entity of your firm

What is this application for?

  • To change a recognised sole practice to a limited company
  • To change a partnership to a LLP or limited company or vice versa


There must be no other material changes to the existing management, ownership or structure.

The existing body must cease at the time the new one starts to trade.

To make material changes, apply using our full new firm FA1 application form.

What are material changes?

  • splitting into two or more new entities
  • adding new managers and/or owners who are not deemed to be approved
  • changing your compliance officers
  • any change that prevents the firm meeting the eligibility requirements to be authorised
  • changing entity from a body corporate to a new body corporate (LLP / Ltd to LLP / Ltd)
  • changes to authorisation status (eg recognised body to licensed body)

What are non-material changes?

A non-material change does not require us to approve new role holders and does not create a need for us to risk assess the new entity.

Example of non-material changes include:

  • adding managers that meet the deemed approval criteria set out in rule 13.2 of the SRA Authorisation of Firms Rules.
  • the departure of individuals that will not affect the firm’s eligibility to be authorised

Help with your application

Contact us if you have any queries before you submit your application

How to apply


You need to complete a FA1b Change of Legal Entity (CLE) application form. Save the form before you start completing it. The application form is an editable PDF document and needs to be filled in electronically.


The forms are editable PDF's and must be completed electronically. You must save a copy of the form to your computer before you start to fill it in. These forms are not compatible with Mac computers.

If you undertake financial services you may need to notify us about the services you deliver, you can submit a form (FA8) with your application.

If you carry out services that are subject to money laundering regulations you need to apply for Anti Money Laundering authorisation, you must submit a form (FA10) with this application.


Send your application to the email address on the form. Please specify "CLE firm authorisation" in the subject line.


The fee is £200.


Recognised body applications - send payment with your application (ways to pay).

Licensed body applications - we will issue an invoice after we have accepted your application.

What you can expect from us

We will acknowledge your application within one working day. We will let you know if your application is incomplete or ineligible.


We aim to make a decision about your application within 30 days.


Your application is confidential.

Withdrawing an application

You can withdraw your application at any time before we make a decision.