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Until the coming into force of the 1980 Companies Act every company which had limited liability was obliged to put the word ‘limited’ or a recognized abbreviation thereof after its name. Since 1976 Welsh companies, i.e. those registered in Wales, have been able to use the Welsh equivalent. Since the 1980 Act the same rules have applied to all private limited companies, but a public company must, instead of the word limited, put the words ‘pubUc limited company’ after its name and as part of its title. This may be, and usually is. abbreviated to P.L.C. or p.I.c.

There is one exception to this general requirement. A private company limited by guarantee may dispense with the limited if it is essentially a charitable organization and its memorandum prohibits any distribution of surpluses of either income or capital to its members. Such companies, which employ all income in furtherance of their charitable objects, are also released from the obligation to supply lists of members to the Registrar.

Reference: The Penguin Business Dictionary , 3rd edt.