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How to Start My Own Corporation

1. Choose a name for your corporation. The name you select for the corporation must be different from other businesses in the state. The name of your corporation must end with a corporate identifier such as "incorporated," "limited," or "corporation," as indicated on the Citizen Media Law Project website. The corporation's name must not include words that indicate an affiliation with a bank or government agency. Conduct a business name search using the state's Secretary of State website. In some states, a business name search may be conducted by mail, telephonically, or in person.

2. Recruit people to serve on your board of directors. The directors of a corporation set company policy, and make major financial decisions for the corporation, according to the Nolo website. Most states allow a single shareholder to act as the corporation's only director. However, states such as Arizona will require at least three people to act as director of a corporation, unless there are fewer than three shareholders in the corporation. If there are fewer than three shareholders in your corporation, the number of directors may be equal to the number of participating shareholders.

3. Obtain articles of incorporation, also known as a certificate of incorporation. Most states will provide prospective corporations with fill-in the blank articles of incorporation. Depending on the state, articles of incorporation may be obtained on the Secretary of State's website, by visiting the Secretary of State's office, or by mail request.

4. Prepare articles of incorporation. Most states will require your corporation's articles of incorporation to include information such as the name and physical address of the business. Include the name and address of your corporation's resident agent. The resident agent must be an adult, or business that agrees to accept your corporation's legal documents. Your selected resident agent must provide a physical address where your corporation's legal documents can be delivered. The articles of incorporation must indicate the number of shares your corporation has the authority to issue. Some states may require additional provisions in your corporation's articles of incorporation such as the business purpose, and the names and addresses of the company's directors.

5. Submit articles of incorporation to the Secretary of State's office. Depending on your state of incorporation, articles of incorporation may be submitted by fax, mail, or in person. In a number of cases, you may submit your corporation's articles of incorporation electronically on the Secretary of State's website. Pay the appropriate filing fee. The fee to file your corporation's articles of incorporation may vary from state to state.

6. Issue stock to initial shareholders. At your corporation's first meeting, stock certificates will be issued to all the company's shareholders. Your corporation's board of directors must determine the price initial shareholders will pay for shares of your company. According to the Citizen Media Law Project website, initial shareholders of your corporation may offer cash, property or services in exchange for shares of your corporation. Money collected from your initial stock issue will comprise your corporation's initial operating capital.

7. Let us open and maintain all your business license and permits so you can focus 100% in your new business venture Many success.