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The Requirements for Starting a Corporation

The Requirements for Starting a Corporation


If you are thinking of creating an S corp in California or any other kind of corporation in the state of California, you will need to have access to a valid source of information. First and foremost, you need to know what happens when you incorporate and how an incorporation functions.

Among other things, you need to figure out what the requirements are for anyone looking to embark on the process of setting up a corporation so as to prepare ahead of time and know what to expect down the line. Here’s a brief overview.

How do I incorporate myself in California?

The following list sums up the process of becoming incorporated in California:

  • Unique business name and DBA (Doing Business As name, entirely optional) registration with the Secretary of State
  • Filing Articles of Incorporation
  • Hold the initial meeting and adopt bylaws
  • Applying for an Employer Identification Number with the IRS
  • Applying for permits and licenses that may be needed
  • Submitting the Statement of Information (the initial report) within 90 days

What do I need to start a corporation in California?

In general, these are the most important documents you are required to create, prepare and/or submit:

  • prepare and file Articles of Incorporation
  • set up the Corporate Records Book
  • adopt the Corporate Bylaws
  • submit Statement of Information.

These are the steps you need to take when starting a corporation, after going over the options (S corp, C corp, LLC) and deciding on the corporation type:

  • choose an available business name;
  • identify the location of the business (in this case, the State of California);
  • appoint the Registered Agent;
  • appoint members of the Board of Directors and hold the first meeting;
  • decide on the type of shares and, by extension, stock availability;
  • issue stock to shareholders;
  • get a certificate of incorporation from the state’s corporate filing office;
  • ensure compliance with California’s regulatory and tax requirements
  • ensure compliance with any other regulatory and tax requirements.

If you have any concerns or dilemmas, it might be best to consult an experienced professional beforehand, especially if they are in the know about the domain of taxes. Each corporation type has different tax implications. Needless to say, hiring a professional is also the most convenient course of action as it makes the process go much faster. Besides, it feels reassuring to know nothing was overlooked.

How do you register a business name in California?

In order to incorporate, you need to register a business name with the Secretary of State office. However, your business name must not be the same or even overly similar to an existing business name that the California Secretary of State has on file. Another thing to bear in mind is that there is the DBA name we already mentioned. This is not the official business name, but it is a name a business has registered and goes by.

How do I know if my business name is already taken?

There are various factors to take into consideration when choosing a name for your business. Your gut instinct will obviously tell you to go for something catchy and memorable. But this seemingly simple and creative process gets more complicated once you realize just how many business entities there are out there.

Your name has to be distinguishable, that is, it cannot be identical or overly similar to the name of another business. If it is, you run the risk of encountering problems during the formation process, as well as that of copyright infringement. For this reason, it is essential that you check the availability of your desired business name with the Secretary of State.

The same goes for your chosen DBA. To make sure you’ve picked out a unique DBA for your own business, you need to check the DBA registrations in the area.

Creating an S Corp in California State? We can help

David York’s Tax Service is your trusted ally if you are an entrepreneurial spirit looking to start an S corp or any other type of corporation in California. Starting a business sometimes feels like a long and treacherous path, not unlike the Cedar Creek Falls hiking trail, but it can be just as rewarding if you know what you’re doing.

Our team will gladly step in and help you take all the necessary steps, often without requiring any engagement on your part. After all, it is up to you to focus on developing your business. Leave it to us to handle the technicalities and ensure compliance with the applicable laws. We’re at your service.