When you register a company, you create a legal entity separate from the individuals who own and manage it. This provides liability protection for members and makes it easier to acquire assets, loans, and contracts. It also allows you to get a tax ID number (EIN) and open a bank account. You must register your company with the state where you intend to do business and any local or municipal offices that regulate it.

Registering a company is one of the most important early decisions you’ll make as an entrepreneur. The process requires consideration of all aspects of your business and can be complex, particularly if you have multiple shareholders. To ensure that you meet all the requirements and file all necessary paperwork, you should hire an experienced lawyer.

To register a company, you’ll need to choose an operating name that complies with state regulations and submit paperwork describing the company’s structure and purpose. The type of documentation you’ll need varies by state and by business structure, but it typically includes articles of organization, an operating agreement, and the name and address of the registered agent.

The final step is registering your company’s name with the IRS. This will give you a unique tax ID number that can be used to apply for banks, merchant accounts for payment processing, credit cards, Shopify and Amazon seller central accounts, and loan applications. Choosing a unique name is essential, and you should also ensure that the suffixes “LLC” or “INC” are not already in use in state records.

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