I am in the UK.

I am signing up to be an Android developer. I am going to have some In App Purchases in my program. This means I need a Merchant Account with them.

We have a limited company which has been earning nothing. It is a pain to keep going so we have discussed if we do or don't shut it down. However, any money earned at the moment we want to put through the business.

However, I want to set up this Google Merchant account for the long term, covering all possible decisions we make.

So I am faced with the option of a personal or business account in the Android Developer sign up. Ideally I would like to say a personal account for Android developer, but then put the money through the business accounts. Is that allowed?

An extra question: Last year I signed up to the Microsoft Store, and received about £20 from them after about an £8 fee in May, for the entire year. They said they would be collecting VAT for me, but they say no taxes have been taken off.

Can I put that through the business?

Does the fact they have taken no tax off mean there have been no EU customers?

This is all very complicated.

I do not want to spend loads to ask an accountant, as this will just eat up the pennies I have received.

  • Finances aside, having a company structure protects you from personal legal liability. Patent trolls go after small-time developers for settlements. If your apps are by "someCorp LLC" instead of "Rewind the human person," you're personally more protected from lawsuits or shady practices, and won't lose your home or personal assets. ... I got rid of my LLC because it was an overpriced waste of money (in California) & I wasn't actively publishing at the time. If/when I do again, I'll create a new LLC. If your company is cheap to maintain and you're actively publishing apps, keep it.
    – mc01
    Commented Sep 4, 2018 at 23:33

1 Answer 1


The company's money is not your money, and vice versa. If you put the money into the company's account, and you want to get at that money, then you need to either pay yourself, or declare a dividend. If you just take the money and spend it, then you're essentially stealing the company's money.

If you get it wrong, you risk getting into even more trouble if you ever get audited by the tax man.

So either choose to be self-employed and leave the company out of it. Or else the company sells the software, the company gets paid, and the company pays you.

  • you say ' If you put the money into the company's account, and you want to get at that money, then you need to either pay yourself, or declare a dividend.' Yes that is what I want to do. I want to get Google to pay me in a personal account, just in case we shut the company. I put the money immediately into the company account. Then the business pays for all its typical expenses, with its own money. Ie web site fees, etc. The company is basically just a company that covers the running of the asscociated website related to the app. I want to do it by the book. It would just be easier.
    – Rewind
    Commented Jul 6, 2018 at 22:42
  • @Rewind You'll need to get a very clear record, which you're prepared to justify to the tax man if needs be, of why you are paying money into the company's account and what the company is doing in return for that payment. If it's paying the company for web services, then that needs to be documented somewhere.
    – Simon B
    Commented Jul 6, 2018 at 22:51

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