Taking the Steps to Properly Set Up a New Business Enterprise
When you’re looking to go into business for yourself, one of the most important decisions you’ll need to make focuses on the legal structure of your business—do you want to operate as a sole proprietorship, partnership or other business form. If you’re looking for the protection of your personal assets, minimal tax burden and simplified creation and legal maintenance, a limited liability company, or LLC, may offer exactly what you need. You’ll get the limited liability that comes with the corporate form, but you won’t have to pay taxes at the corporate level. Creating an LLC is relatively easy, and you won’t have as many annual filing requirements, won’t have to prepare and maintain certificates of stock, and won’t have the same requirements for meetings of owners and boards of directors.
What Are the Steps for Creating a Limited Liability Company?
The first thing you’ll need to do, before you file anything with the state of New Jersey, is settle on a name for your business. If you operate as a limited liability company, the name of your business must include those specific words, or the abbreviation “LLC.” You must also choose a name that consumers won’t reasonably confuse with other existing commercial enterprises. You can check name availability with the New Jersey Business Record Service, and can reserve a name for 120 days by filing the appropriate documentation with the New Jersey Division of Revenue and Enterprise Services.
It’s important to understand that you can actually conduct business under a different name than your business’s legal name, but you must also register that name (your DBA, or “doing business as” name) with the state of New Jersey.
Once you have determined the name and/or DBA of your business, you must appoint someone to act as your “registered agent.” That person must agree to accept all legal documents on your behalf. Your registered agent must provide a valid street address—a P.O. Box will not be acceptable.
You are now ready to file the required documents with the state of New Jersey to create your new legal entity. We will look at the steps involved in that part of the process in Part Two of this series.
Contact Attorney Howard N. Sobel
At the office of Howard N. Sobel, we provide comprehensive legal counsel to businesses and business owners. Contact our office online or call us at 856-424-6400 to set up a free initial consultation. Evening and weekend appointments can be arranged upon request. We accept all major credit cards.
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