Step 1 Choose a Corporate Name: I know you think this is an easy process but be sure to think of Branding, Trade Marking and what names are already taken by other businesses within the state you are going to establish your Corporate Structure with. Think about McDonald’s and why we go for the Burger when McDonald’s doesn’t really say “Great Burgers Here”.
Step 2 Get it all together Prepare and File Articles of Incorporation: Sounds complicated but really it’s just knowing your chosen state’s requirements, number and type of shares you’ll be issuing, choosing a registered agent and incorporator information.
Step 3 Set up a Corporate Records Book: I can’t emphasize this enough. You have to have your Corporate Records Book with Corporate Data, Resolutions, Ratifications, Meeting Notes and Conformed Banking Resolutions available for shareholder review and to establish a strong corporate structure.
Step 4 Prepare your By-Laws: By-Laws establish formal articles of operation that your corporation must follow to protect itself from being considered a alter ego. The By-Laws cover Stock issuance, officer selection, meeting rules, corporate policy and scheduling of annual meetings.
Step 5 Appoint Initial Directors & Officers: I know a lot of people think that this is a simple process, but take a minute to consider every shareholders potential contribution to the Corporation and how your corporation will benefit from a varied board of directors.
Step 6 Prepare Minutes: Again, a very important step… Annual meetings and their minutes are your opportunity to share and record your corporations progress, goals and financial position. They will also show shareholders and auditors alike that you are operating as a corporation and give you the best protection.
Step 7 Issue Shares of Stock: A little research and knowledge will help you to know how many shares to establish and issue and what type or types of stock your corporation will benefit from.
Tips & Warnings
Finalize your Corporation with
- New Bank Accounts
- Corporate Record Book
- Business Licenses
- Fed & State ID numbers
- Register your documents with the county registrars office