How to Register a Business

By Lanee’ Blunt

Starting your own business requires that you must have a marketable product or service that will reach your paying customers. Starting a business involves planning, making financial decisions, and following the steps to ensure that your company has the necessary licenses, permits, and registrations.

Determine Legal Ownership
You must set up your business as a legal entity. Decide which form of ownership is best for your particular business: sole proprietorship, partnership, Limited Liability Company (LLC), corporation, or S corporation.

Obtain Federal Tax ID
Apply for an employee identification number (EIN) with the federal government. Fill-out the necessary forms and send them back to the federal government and they will return it to you with your EIN number.  You will need this to hire employees. The EIN is also known as an Employer Tax ID and Form SS-4.

State and Local Taxes
Register with your state for a tax identification number, worker’s compensation, unemployment and disability insurance.

Obtain Licenses and Permits
Get the licenses and permits that you need to run your business. Most small businesses will need a general business license or specific operating permits from your state and local government.

SBA: 5 Steps to Registering your Business
Inc: How to Prepare to Launch Your Start Up; Matthew DeLuca; 2011


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