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Tips on Forming a California Corporation

Jan 2, 2018 | Business

Forming a Corporation in California for Startups and Small Business Owners

Not all businesses are made alike. Choosing the right business entity formation is a huge step for any business owner because there are many different entity forms of businesses one can form.

A Glendale business entity formation attorney can help you determine which entity form would be the best for your type of business. However, before a business owner considers which entity form h/she wishes, you must determine what name you wish to use for the corporation and check whether or not that name is available to use.

Where Can I Check if a California Corporation Name is Available to Use?

The California Secretary of State website provides a tool for business owners to check for corporation name availability.

In determining name availability, the database checks only against names of like entities registered with the California Secretary of State. Thus, before you are set on a name, check with the California Secretary of State website for corporation name availability.

Types of California Corporation Entity

There are many corporation entity types and each type have different forms that must be completed with the California Secretary of State. The following are corporation entity types a business owner can choose from:

  • Corporations
  • Limited Liability Companies
  • Limited Partnerships
  • General Partnerships
  • Limited Liability Partnerships
  • DBA

California Corporate Filing Tips

Often times, many business owners are unable to finalize their corporate filings due to name issues, errors, missing forms, or misstatements in the proposed filings. The following filing tips are designed to help you meet the minimum filing requirements of the California Corporations Code. If you have specific legal questions or concerns regarding to corporate filing we invite you contact a Glendale corporate filing lawyer for a consult. Our business lawyer at KAASS LAW is experienced with many cases involving business law.

Check Name Availability

As mentioned above, the preliminary task is to check of the availability of a name with the California Secretary of State’s office.

Corporation Requirements

Under California law, a corporation must have at least three directors, unless there are less than three shareholders. In that case, the number of directors may be equal to or greater than the number of shareholders. California does not set forth a minimum age or residency requirement for directors. Either the articles of incorporation or the corporation’s bylaws must state the number of directors that will constitute the corporation’s board of directors. Finally, prepare and file articles of incorporation with the Secretary of the State.

Do I Need a Employer Identification Number (EIN)

If you will be paying at least $100 to an employee or employees in a quarter (this includes corporate officers), you are subject to California employment taxes and must register for a California employer account number within 15 days of paying that $100. You can register for employment taxes and get your account number online using the Employment Development Department’s website. These taxes must be paid quarterly.

Ensure All Applicable Forms Are Completed

When preparing and filing articles of incorporation with the Secretary of the State, ensure that you have correctly completed the Articles of Incorporation form. A Statement of Information Form SI-550 must also be filed with the California Secretary of State within 90 days after filing the Articles of Incorporation. The Statement of Information must be filed each year thereafter during the applicable filing period. Furthermore, most corporations are required to pay a minimum tax of $800 to the California Franchise Tax Board each year.

This content is intended for educational purposes only. KAASS LAW is authorized to practice law in California. The above content is intended for California residents only. This content provides only general information, which may or may not reflect current legal developments. KAASS LAW expressly disclaims all liability in respect to actions taken or not taken based on any of the contents of this website. The above content DOES NOT create an attorney-client relationship. KAASS LAW does not represent you unless you have expressly retained KAASS LAW in person at the KAASS LAW office.

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