Q:

How do you register a business?

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Quick Answer

According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, registering a business involves a business owner complying with the business laws of a state where the business is formed or located. The steps associated with business registration depend on the legal structure of the business and the state's specific requirements.

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How do you register a business?
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Full Answer

If a business is organized as a corporation or limited liability company, registration involves filing articles of incorporation or articles of organization with a state business registrar, notes SBA.gov. Some states and localities require businesses or owners to process additional registrations or obtain a license if the business engages in regulated activities, such as selling liquor, cutting hair or delivering professional services.

Most states do not require businesses organized as sole proprietorships or partnerships to register the business at the state level. However, according to Nolo, these businesses may be required to register a trade name with a locality or register with the state tax authority if they collect sales or payroll taxes.

Based on federal tax code and Internal Revenue Service regulations, corporations, limited liability companies and partnerships are required to register with the IRS by obtaining a tax identification number to file annual federal tax returns, explains SBA.gov. Sole proprietors are allowed to file taxes under the business owner's Social Security number or obtain a separate taxpayer identification number.

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