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  • Writer's pictureDavid Manes

How do you Incorporate your Business in PA?

How to incorporate your business in PA.

You can incorporate your business in PA by contacting an attorney and having him or her guide you through a few important steps.

Picking the corporate entity

The first decision you will have to make to incorporate is deciding which corporate entity to select. Many different entities exist in Pennsylvania such as the Corporation (Inc.), the Limited Liability Company (LLC), and several other options. A handful of considerations must be taken into account when choosing the corporate form. For example, an LLC can provide many of the liability protections of the Corporation without the burden of the double taxation that is placed upon the Corporation. However, an LLC cannot become a publicly traded company, so if you wish to expand your business in the future, you may want to create a corporation. With the advice and expertise of an attorney you can make sure that you choose the entity best tailored to the goals of your business.

Choosing a corporate name

Next, you will have to select a name for your business that meets PA’s requirements. It may sound a bit absurd that you cannot choose just any name when you incorporate your business in PA but the law places restrictions on name selection. For example, in PA the name must have certain “magic words” at the end of it such as “incorporated” or “company.” Picking the right name also involves a search of state and federal databases to make sure that the name you picked has not already been used. Here, the advice of an attorney can be invaluable.

Filing the paperwork

Once you have chosen a name, the proper paperwork must be drafted and filed with the state. This includes completing articles of incorporation and submitting them for approval. Once you are approved and properly registered the state will send you a copy of your paperwork along with an Employer Identification Number. Most attorneys will complete this process for you and then explain to you the meaning of the documents and your new state recognition.

Legal recognition

After your business is recognized by the state it is considered it’s own legal entity. It can be sued, it can be a partner in a business venture, it can even make charitable contributions. This is why you may have heard that corporations are treated like individual people by the law. There is a host of legally significant changes that occur when you incorporate your business, and a good attorney can explain all of them to you to make sure you have an understanding of where your business is headed.

In a nutshell, to incorporate your business in PA you must 1) select an entity, 2) select a name, 3) file the proper paperwork, and 4) wait for approval from the state. The steps themselves are not complicated, but ensuring that you make the right decisions on how to incorporate can be. With a proper plan, and the help of an attorney, incorporating in Pennsylvania can be smooth and hassle free.

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