Incorporating your business is EASY as 1-2-3

Incorporating your business is EASY as 1-2-3 pin it button

You may be thinking it’s time to incorporate your photography business.   If you are running a sole proprietorship or partnership, consider forming a Limited Liability Company, or LLC.

Incorporation is important because it ensures limited liability of shareholders and ensures that personal assets cannot be seized to repay debts.  It has become much easier to incorporate your business.

There are a few ways to incorporate: 1) contact your local attorney.  Fees vary from state to state.  2) you can incorporate yourself online using www.incorporatetime.com (I’ve used this company 3 times and have no affiliation with them. I’m not a paid sponsor, just a client).  The fees for New York State are $290 for an LLC plus $25 fee to obtain a tax ID.  It’s pretty affordable in my opinion.  All fees are listed on their website.

Here’s some helpful information if you choose to incorporate yourself.

Choosing a Name for your LLC

You can name your LLC anything you prefer however; it must not be the name of an existing LLC, in your state.  Incorporatetime.com will perform a preliminary name check for you.  When you choose your name, it must contain “LLC”, or “Limited Liability Company” at the end of your entity name (i.e. My Unique Business Name LLC or My Unique Business Name Limited Liability Company).

What is the organizational structure of an LLC?

The company may be directly by the members (you), or members may designate a manager. If management is by the members then each member is a manager of the company.

Having a registered agent for your LLC:

All states require that your corporation maintain a registered agent.  A registered agent is a person responsible for receiving any legal documentation on behalf of the corporation.  For my business, I personally act as my own registered agent (note: your address must be within the state that you are incorporating in) and I receive all legal documentation for my business.

Other important info:

When you incorporate using Incorporatetime.com there is a standard State Filing Service, which typically takes 15-20 business days.  You can expedite if you’d like.  Also, you have the option of getting an LLC Kit.  I’ve never purchased this, but it may be of interest.  Here’s some info about the kit:  https://www.incorporatetime.com/LLCKitPrompt.htm

All businesses need a tax ID (Federal Tax Identification #).  You can obtain this yourself or have incorporatetime.com do it.  In the past, I’ve had incorporatetime.com do this.

Incorporatetime.com will perform a name check and let you know if it is available.  They will send you a publication notice for your state.  Publication is your responsibility.  For New York State, they require that you publish a notice in two newspapers stating the formation of the LLC.

The following notice applies to NY State:

Section 206 of the Limited Liability Company Law of the State of New York states:

Upon the effectiveness of the initial Articles of Organization of an LLC, a copy of same or a notice containing the substance thereof shall be published once each week for six successive weeks, in two newspapers of the county in which the office of the LLC is located, one must be a daily newspaper and the other a weekly newspaper designated by the County Clerk. Proof of such publication by the Affidavit of the publisher or printer of each newspaper must be filed with New York State within 120 days after the effective date of the Articles of Organization of the LLC. You must contact your local county clerk for to obtain the designated newspapers for your county.
Limited liability entities that are formed or authorized to do business in New York after June 1, 2006, which fail to comply with the publication requirements within 120 days after their formation or qualification will have their authority to carry on, conduct or transact any business suspended.

Here is a sample letter sent to my local newspaper requesting publication of the notice: Chief publication sample

What’s next after you incorporate? Get insurance for your business! Click here.

Incorporating your business is EASY as 1-2-3 IMG 1695 5av3

Incorporating your business is EASY as 1-2-3 pin it button

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