1. Appoint a Registered Agent. Businesses must maintain an address for service of process where legal documents can be received. Akalia provides Registered Agent service for all companies that we form. This is an important, often overlooked, task on a business startup checklist.

2. Satisfy insurance requirements. Incorporating or forming an LLC does not provide a company with business insurance. Most companies obtain general business insurance from an insurance provider. Corporations and LLCs that hire employees also typically obtain unemployment and workers compensation insurance.

3. Complete additional filings as needed. Companies that expand to do business outside their original state of incorporation or LLC formation generally register in those additional states. Akalia can assist with these registration filings, also called “qualifications.” Amendments can also be filed if the information listed on the formation document, like the legal name of the company or address, changes.

1. Register “Doing Business As” names. Will your corporation or LLC do business under a name other than its legal name filed with the Secretary of State? If so, it must file a DBA (Doing Business As) name. We can help you address this step to starting your business by filing your DBA name.

2. Draft internal documents for the business. Corporations are governed by their internal bylaws, whereas LLCs are governed by an operating agreement. Akalia can customize bylaws or an LLC operating agreement for your business. This is a step on your new business checklist that helps with organization.

3. Establish a business presence. Identify a location for the business and establish a business address. Akalia offers regular mail forwarding service in either Delaware or Nevada.

4. Get a business credit card. A business credit card helps separate your professional and personal expenses and can help you protect your personal assets from business liabilities. Akalia highly recommends this step to starting a business.

5. Get started. Schedule an opening day for your business. Giving yourself a goal helps keep things on track and can increase your productivity.

1. Write a business plan. Form goals and objectives for your new company. Start with a detailed outline of what you plan to accomplish. This is the first of many steps to starting a business.

2. Set up a legal business structure. Setting your company up as a corporation or LLC are popular entity structures for many small businesses. This protects owners’ personal assets from business debts and liabilities. Additionally, incorporating can provide credibility and tax benefits. Let incorporate.com help you cross this item off your business startup checklist.

3. Obtain start-up capital. Whether you use your own savings or obtain loans, starting a business requires money. The loan process can take months to check off your business startup checklist, so start early. Lenders often request a completed business plan prior to approval of funding.

4. Obtain a Federal Employer Identification Number. Otherwise known as an EIN, Incorporated businesses that hire employees must have one of these. They are issued by the IRS but incorporate.com includes this service in some of our formation package. You can also order an EIN separately.

5. Satisfy business licensing requirements. Most state, county, and local governments require businesses to obtain licensing before they begin to operate. incorporate.com provides a Business License Compliance Package to identify typical requirements for your business activities.

6. Establish a Web presence. A website is an essential item to complete on your small business startup checklist in today’s business world of internet searches and social media. Register a URL that is memorable and relevant to your company and/or industry. Not having an effective website eliminates opportunities for new customers and potential profit.

7.  Open a bank account and merchant account. To protect their corporate or LLC veil, businesses must maintain separate business and personal accounts and records. Establish a separate business bank account so that your personal assets are not co-mingled with business funds. Banks may also require an Employer Identification Number (EIN) in order to open a business checking account.

8. Identify where to get help. Know where and when to seek advice from other sources, such as attorneys and accountants, to assist you with specific questions about your business. Establish a board of advisors or mentors to help you along the way. This is one most entrepreneurs tend to leave off their new business checklist.

9. Follow government rules. Operating a business means satisfying ongoing government and legal requirements to maintain the company’s good standing. Stay aware of the steps needed to maintain your company’s status.
10. Congratulation  Now You Business Owner

So you’ve made the decision to form a corporation or LLC? Congratulations! One of the first things you’ll need in the formation process is a registered agent.

What is a registered agent?

A registered agent, or agent for service of process, helps to ensure your business maintains compliance. It is the state’s way of communicating with a corporation or LLC. This agent also receives legal and tax documents on behalf of a business or corporation, such as notifications from the Secretary of State, government notices, tax forms, notifications of lawsuits, and other materials.

Why do you need one?

  • It gives you freedom. With a registered agent, if you are located in the state where your business is registered, you won’t need to worry about updating the state if you move. Plus, this agent must be available during normal business hours. If your company doesn’t follow the traditional 9-to-5 work day, an agent can fill the time for you.
  • It’s the law. If you are incorporated in one state (for example, Delaware), but physically located in another state, you need a registered agent. Why? Each state requires corporations and LLCs formed within their borders to have an agent with a physical address located in that state where legal documents can be delivered during business hours. And P.O. boxes are not acceptable addresses.
  • It’s your right. A corporation or LLC has certain legal rights, including the right to due process. And a key component of due process is the right to be given state compliance notices in a timely fashion. An agent ensures your ability to receive information, such as wage garnishments, subpoenas, and court summons.
  • You’ll stay informed and on time. You’ll never miss an important notification. Third-party registered agent services will receive all communications on your behalf, so you don’t have to worry about tax forms, legal notices, and other business compliance documents getting lost in the shuffle.

How should you choose a registered agent?

Individuals can act as a registered agent, but we recommend using an experienced service provider–like incorporate.com. Why? We’re in the business of business compliance, and we’re in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Plus, Akalia offers CSCNavigator®, a state-of-the-art online online tool that provides you with alerts when filings are due, a calendar of required filings, order status and related documents, the ability to view and pay invoices, current business standing with the state, and more.

A third-party registered agent also offers:

  • Reliability. We’ll remind you of important deadlines and complete the paperwork for you. And we’re available during all business hours, so you’re free to attend meetings, travel for work, go on vacation, or even just eat lunch outside of your office.
  • Economy. When you partner with incorporate.com, you eliminate the need to pay an employee just to wait for documents from the state. With us, you will be covered 24/7. And our rates are competitive compared to other established registered agents.
  • Discretion. When you use incorporate.com for your registered agent services, you’ll never run the risk of your customers, vendors, or neighbors seeing a process server deliver legal documents to your place of business or home.

The bottom line? Using an experienced third party, like incorporate.com, to serve as your agent will give you peace of mind. And that’s priceless.