How to register an LLC or Corporation | State links and resources

You must have an LLC, S-Corp or C- Corp when applying for an SBA loan


How to register an LLC or C-Corp

State links and resources

You must have an LLC, S-Corp or C- Corp when applying for an SBA loan

USA Business registration resources

Basic steps to register a legal business | Scroll down for registration links by state

Secretary of State Website

Business formation is always done at the state level through the Secretary of State website. Links to the appropriate State pages are listed below

    LLC or Corporation

    LLC's are formed via articles of organization. This is considered an easier structure to setup and maintain.

    Corporations are formed via articles of incorporation.

    If an individual is working with us or another company on a ROBS or Rollover of retirement funds, a C Corporation will need to be set up. This will be part of the service and will be completed on their behalf.

      Online or Paper formation

      Many States now allow electronic registration of businesses.  This saves time and eliminates business name conflicts.

      States that only allow paper registration (like California) may take several weeks to process the application.  Be warned, clerical errors or using a name already registered will cause delays and require reapplication.  

        Get an EIN number

        Once you get your corporate paperwork back from the State, you can apply for an EIN (employer identification number) on the IRS website. 

        You need an EIN to open a business bank account.

          Registration Tips


          Business Name

          Make sure your business name is unique and not too similar to another registered business in the State.  Most Secretary of State websites have a search feature.  Some states will allow you to reserve a name for a fee.  If you are filing electronically, the software usually prevents you from accidentally registering an identical or too similar a name.

          If you are buying a franchise, you can have a business name like Bob Smith's Company, LLC and also register a fictitious name / DBA (doing business as name) such as Subway of Columbus Ohio".  Using the franchise name as a DBA rather than your company name is considered a best practice.


          Need funding for your new business?

          Arizona


          http://ecorp.azcc.gov

          STEP ONE

          Check for name availability and reserve your name (reservation is optional, but holds the name for 120 days)

          http://ecorp.azcc.gov/Entity

          STEP TWO

          Create a new entity using eFile (C-Corp or LLC) 

          http://ecorp.azcc.gov/Entity

          Arkansas


          Register a LLC or Profit corporation online 

          https://www.ark.org/sos/corpfilings/index.php?form_id=63

          California


          Search for business names available in the state here:

          http://www.sos.ca.gov/business-programs/business-entities/name-availability/

          Make sure the name you choose is unique or the application will be rejected.

          Register your business in the State of California using by filling out and submitting by mail Articles of Organization for an LLC or Articles of Incorporation for a Corporation

          http://www.sos.ca.gov/business-programs/business-entities/forms/

          Colorado


          Search for business names available in the state here:

          http://www.sos.state.co.us/biz/NameCriteria.do

          Make sure the name you choose is unique or the application will be rejected.

          Register a LLC or Profit corporation

          LLC http://www.sos.state.co.us/biz/FileDocNameAvailCriteria.do?transTyp=ARTORG_LLC

          C Corp http://www.sos.state.co.us/biz/FileDocNameAvailCriteria.do?transTyp=ARTINC_PC

          Connecticut


          Search for business names available in the state here:

          http://www.concord-sots.ct.gov/CONCORD/online?sn=PublicInquiry&eid=9740

          Make sure the name you choose is unique or the application will be rejected.

          Register your business in the State of Connecticut using by filling out and submitting by mail Articles of Organization for an LLC or Certificate of Incorporation for a Corporation

          http://www.ct.gov/sots/cwp/view.asp?a=3177&q=392124

          Delaware


          Registering your business in the State of Delaware 

          General Instructions 

          http://www.corp.delaware.gov/howtoform.shtml

          Register a C Corp or LLC

          1. Search for business names available in the state and reserve (online) here:

          https://icis.corp.delaware.gov/Ecorp/NameReserv/NameReservation.aspx

          2. Register your C Corp or LLC (Fax or Mail in only)

          LLC Documents:  http://corp.delaware.gov/corpformsllc09.shtml

          C Corp Documents:  http://corp.delaware.gov/corpformscorp09.shtml

          Florida


          File Online

          Corporation or LLC:  https://efile.sunbiz.org/llc_file.html

          Georgia


          Search for business names available in the state here:

          https://ecorp.sos.ga.gov/BusinessSearch

          Once you have an account, you can register and LLC or C-Corp with the state.

          Make sure you choose a unique name.

          Register your business in the State of Georgia  by creating an account at GEORGIA CORPORATIONS DIVISION https://ecorp.sos.ga.gov/Account

          Illinois


          Search for business names available in the state here:

          http://www.ilsos.gov/corporatellc/

          Make sure you choose a unique name.

          If you have any other questions about registering your company the Illinois Secretary of State Business Services Page has other helpful links  http://www.cyberdriveillinois.com/departments/business_services/home.html

          For a c-corp

          http://www.cyberdriveillinois.com/departments/business_services/incorporation/corp_instructions.html

          For a LLC

          http://www.cyberdriveillinois.com/departments/business_services/organization/llc_instructions.html

          Iowa


          Register your business in the State of Iowa

          YOU WILL NEED TO CALL to get correct form to upload online

          File Online by uploading your signed documents for a Corporation or LLC: https://sos.iowa.gov/file/origination/

          Kansas


          Search for business names available in the state here:

          https://www.kansas.gov/businesscenter/

          Make sure the name you choose is unique or the application will be rejected.

          File Online

          Corporation or LLC: https://www.kansas.gov/user/login?service=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.kansas.gov%2Fbusinesscenter%2Fj_spring_cas_security_check

          http://www.sos.ks.gov/forms/forms_results.aspx?division=BS&orderBy=Type

          Or by mail

          Register your business in the State of Kansas using by filling out and submitting by mail Articles of Organization for an LLC or Articles of Incorporation for a Corporation

          Kentucky


          Search for business names available in the state here:

          https://app.sos.ky.gov/ftsearch/?path=nameavail

          Make sure the name you choose is unique or the application will be rejected.

          Register your business in the State of Kentucky using their online system.

          http://onestop.ky.gov/start/Pages/default.aspx

          Maryland


          Register your business in the State of Maryland (LLC or For profit corporation online
          https://egov.maryland.gov/businessexpress

          Massachusetts


          STEP 1:

          Make sure the name you choose is unique or the application will be rejected.

          Search for reserved business names here:

          http://corp.sec.state.ma.us/CorpWeb/NameReservation/SearchNameRes.aspx

          Search for active business names here:

          http://corp.sec.state.ma.us/corpweb/CorpSearch/CorpSearch.aspx

          STEP 2:

          Register online and select either domestic for profit corporation (C-Corp) or domestic limited liability company (LLC)

          at https://corp.sec.state.ma.us/corp/loginsystem/login_form.asp?NewFiling=True

          Michigan


          Search for business names in the state here:

          http://www.dleg.state.mi.us/bcs_corp/sr_corp.asp

          Make sure the name you choose is unique or the application will be rejected.

          Register your business in the State of Michigan by filling out and submitting by mail:

          http://www.michigan.gov/documents/lara/700_08-15_528193_7.pdf for an LLC or

           http://www.michigan.gov/documents/lara/500_08-15_527667_7.pdf for a Corporation

          Missouri


          Register your business in the State of Missouri  online here:

          https://bsd.sos.mo.gov/loginwelcome.aspx?lobID=1

          Directions for filing online - For-Profit Corporation

          http://www.sos.mo.gov/CMSImages/Business/Step-by-StepGuides/For-ProfitDomesticCorpFilingGuide.pdf

          Directions for filing online - Domestic LLC

          http://www.sos.mo.gov/CMSImages/Business/Step-by-StepGuides/LLCDomesitcFilingGuide.pdf

          Montana


          Create an ePass Montana Account and

          Register your business in the State of Montana  online here:

          https://bsd.sos.mo.gov/loginwelcome.aspx?lobID=1

          New Jersey


          Search for business names available in the state here:

          https://www.njportal.com/DOR/BusinessNameSearch/Search/Availability

          Make sure the name you choose is unique or the application will be rejected.

          Register your business in the State of New Jersey online at https://www.njportal.com/DOR/BusinessFormation/Home/Welcome

          Select either domestic for profit corporation (C-Corp) or domestic limited liability company (LLC)

          Nevada


          File Online for a For Profit Corporation or LLC

          https://nvsilverflume.gov/home

          Select:  Start Your Business (Online Wizard)

          New York


          North Carolina


          STEP ONE

          Check for name availability (make sure your chosen business name is unique and not to similar to other registered LLC’s or C corps)

          http://www.sosnc.gov/search/index/corp

          STEP TWO

          Download filing document for a Corporation Articles of Incorporation for Business


          OR an LLC Articles of Organization (EFFECTIVE USE JANUARY 1, 2014)

          STEP THREE

          Create an account and submit the scanned PDF online here: https://www.sosnc.gov/Account/Logon

          Oklahoma


          Oklahoma Business Filings main page: https://www.sos.ok.gov/corp/filing.aspx

          Register either a For Profit Corporation or a LLC

          Filing online - For-Profit Corporation

          https://www.sos.ok.gov/cart/contact.aspx?ReturnUrl=/cart/work.aspx?f=351

          Filing online - Domestic LLC

          https://www.sos.ok.gov/cart/contact.aspx?ReturnUrl=/cart/work.aspx?f=369

          Oregon


          Register your business in the State of Oregon online

          Create an account and Register a LLC  or For Profit corporation 

           https://secure.sos.state.or.us/cbrmanager/index#stay

          Pennsylvania


          Search for business names available in the state here:

          https://www.corporations.pa.gov/search/corpsearch

          Make sure the name you choose is unique or the application will be rejected.

          Register your business in the State of Pennsylvania using by filling out and submitting by mail (Articles of Organization) for LLC

          http://www.dos.pa.gov/BusinessCharities/Business/RegistrationForms/Documents/RegForms/15-8913%20Cert%20of%20Org-Dom%20LLC.pdf

          Or a For Profit Corporation

          http://www.dos.pa.gov/BusinessCharities/Business/RegistrationForms/Documents/RegForms/15-1306%20Art%20of%20Incorp%20For%20Profit.pdf

          http://www.dos.pa.gov/BusinessCharities/Business/RegistrationForms/Pages/default.aspx

          South Carolina


          Register your business in the State of South Carolina online

          Enter the full business name you wish to use and click "Search." If the name is available, click the "Add New Entity" button to select the type of business you want to create

          https://businessfilings.sc.gov/BusinessFiling/Entity/Search

          Register a LLC or Profit corporation

          South Dakota


          Search for business names registered in the state here:

          https://sos.sd.gov/business/search.aspx

          Make sure the name you choose is unique or the application will be rejected.

          South Dakota doesn’t have an online registration system, you need to download the Articles of Incorporation PDF and mail it into the secretary of state.

          For a LLC

          https://sdsos.gov/business-services/corporations/corporate-forms/limited-liability-companies.aspx

          For a C Corp

          https://sdsos.gov/business-services/corporations/corporate-forms/business-corporations.aspx

          Tennessee


          Search for business names available in the state here:

          https://tnbear.tn.gov/Ecommerce/NameAvailability.aspx

          Make sure the name you choose is unique or the application will be rejected.

          File Online

          Corporation or LLC:  https://tnbear.tn.gov/Ecommerce/RegistrationType.aspx

          Texas


          It is recommended that you create a SOSDirect Account, even if you file by mail, because it’s the only way to search business names.  Make sure the name you choose is unique or the application will be rejected.

          Request a SOSDirect Account to register online

          https://direct.sos.state.tx.us/acct/acct-subscribe.asp

          Login with SOSDirect Account and follow instruction to register a LLC or C Corp

          https://direct.sos.state.tx.us/acct/acct-login.asp

          Utah


          Search for business names available in the state here:

          https://secure.utah.gov/bes/

          Make sure the name you choose is unique or the application will be rejected.

          Register your business using the State of Utah's OneStop Business Registration System https://secure.utah.gov/account/log-in.html

          Utah Secretary of State Corporation Page

          http://www.corporations.utah.gov

          Virginia


          1. Register a C Corp or LLC Online

          https://sccefile.scc.virginia.gov/NewEntity

          Washington


          Search for name availability first here:

          https://www.sos.wa.gov/corps/search_advanced.aspx

          Filing online - For-Profit Corporation

          https://corps2.sos.wa.gov/Profit/Pages/StartPage.aspx

          Filing online - Domestic LLC

          https://corps2.sos.wa.gov/LLC/Pages/StartPage.aspx

          Wisconsin


          Register your business in the State of Wisconsin online
          https://openforbusiness.wi.gov


          Register a LLC or Profit corporation