The Launch Blog: Expert Advice from the CorpNet Team

How to Apply for an EIN if You’re Not a United States Citizen

An EIN (Employer Identification Number), also known as Federal Tax ID Number, is a 9-digit number issued by the IRS that the United States federal government uses to identify a business for tax purposes. Every business with employees or registered in the U.S. as a partnership, multi-member LLC (limited liability company), or corporation is required to have an EIN. Foreign companies based in other countries that do business within the U.S. (including e-commerce or as an Amazon seller) must also have EINs to report income and pay taxes. But how do you apply for an EIN if you’re not a United...

EIN Application

Basic Tips for Building Business Credit

A business entity can have its own business credit record and score. Lenders, suppliers, vendors, and even potential customers might check a company’s credit score (which is publicly available) before providing funding or doing business with the company. Business credit stands as a sign of a company’s financial fitness and how responsible it is in handling its money. A business with a good credit history may benefit in several ways. Increased likelihood of getting funding Lower interest rates on loans Lower insurance premiums More favorable terms and payment arrangements with vendors and...

Credit Card Close Up

Understanding the Various Types of Nonprofits

What Is a Nonprofit? A nonprofit organization is created to fulfill a charitable, civic, religious, scientific, literary, or educational goal. Nonprofits do not have private owners, nor do they issue stock or pay dividends to shareholders. Aside from founders or staff being compensated a fair wage for their work in a nonprofit, the organization may not benefit individual stakeholders financially. The United States federal tax code recognizes over 30 types of nonprofits. Some nonprofits are either fully or partially tax-exempt, meaning they do not pay certain taxes. Also, some types of...

Foundation Sign Behind Business Woman Speaking

Does a Real Estate Agent Need an LLC?

Real estate agents, just like other self-employed professionals and independent contractors, should consider how to safeguard their personal assets from business-related liabilities. As a real estate agent, you may wonder if you need an LLC to get that level of protection. Setting up a registered business entity, like a limited liability company, for a real estate business is an excellent first step toward getting peace of mind. Unlike a sole proprietorship (or partnership), an LLC is a separate legal entity from its owners (a.k.a., “members”). So, if a home seller or buyer files a...

Real Estate Agent Talking on Phone in Front of For Sale Sign

Filing Annual Meeting Minutes Before Year End

Depending on a business’s entity type and the state it’s registered in, its owners may be required to hold annual meetings and record minutes from those meetings. But how do you know if that requirement applies to your company? In this article, I'm going to explain what annual meetings and annual meeting minutes are to help you get on the path to determining if you must fulfill those important business compliance tasks. If you're a professional services provider that coaches or gives direction to business owners, this information may be helpful to your clients, so feel free to share this...

Minutes of the Annual Meeting of the Board of Directors

What You Need to Know About Work From Home Tax Deductions

According to Global Workplace Analytics, 25-30% of the workforce will be working from home multiple days a week by the end of 2021. Already a trend before the pandemic, remote working became the “new normal” for businesses of all sizes struggling to stay afloat during safer-at-home directives. Today, both employers and employees have found the positives that remote working offers. However, only employers can claim work from home tax deductions on their income taxes. Let's review who can claim work from home tax deductions, what expenses qualify, and how you should calculation those...

Tax Form iPad Calculator

What You Need to Know About the Qualified Business Income Deduction

Tax considerations are a significant factor in how entrepreneurs structure their businesses. The qualified business income deduction (or QBI tax deduction) is an important tax deduction that allows eligible businesses to deduct up to 20% of their qualified business income from their taxes. As a provision of the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA), the QBI deduction was intended to help business owners of companies with pass-through tax elections lower their taxable income and receive additional tax benefits. In today's post, we'll cover all the essential details you need to know about the...

Man Cutting Tax With Scissors

Get Your Office Into the Holiday Spirit

I love the holidays. Celebrating with family and friends is very important to me and my husband, Phil. And we strongly believe in sharing that holiday spirit with our employees and contractors. Unfortunately, last year, like many of you, we couldn’t celebrate in person, but we still made sure our employees knew they were appreciated and valued. This year, we’re back to hosting a holiday party. Our company has employees and freelancers located all over the country, and we’re going to bring them here to Westlake Village to get to know one another and celebrate a great year. While it’s...

Photos of CorpNet's 2015 Holiday Party

How to Retire When You Own Your Own Business

How many small business owners think about retirement when starting their businesses? Not many, which is understandable since all efforts are generally focused on growing the business, not leaving the company. However, at some point, all entrepreneurs want to know how do you retire when you own your own business? The answer depends on what the business owner wants from the business, whether other people are involved, state regulations, and how the company is structured. Let’s break it down. Retiring Strategies Small business owner retirement strategies may include: Selling the company to...

Retired Couple Walking on Beach

How to Formally Close Your Sole Proprietorship or Partnership

Deciding to close a business that you’ve put your blood, sweat, and tears into can be an emotional experience. That’s especially true of entrepreneurs who have operated as sole proprietorships or partnerships. Essentially, they become “one” with their companies, making saying “goodbye” bittersweet even when the time is right for closing. Fortunately, the overall process for closing a sole proprietorship or partnership is relatively uncomplicated (compared to dissolving a corporation or limited liability company). That’s helpful for sure, particularly if you’re aiming to finalize your...

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How to Draft Meeting Minutes in the New Year

Along with other annual business compliance responsibilities, corporations (and sometimes LLCs) must hold various meetings and record minutes from those meetings. With the new year ahead, new entrepreneurs and existing business owners need to make sure they understand their responsibility to hold annual meetings and draft meeting minutes. Meetings that Require Keeping Minutes Corporate annual shareholder meeting (sometimes called “annual general meeting”) Board of directors meeting LLC annual member meeting Although not required, many organizations use Robert’s Rules of Order for...

Minutes of the Annual Meeting of the Board of Directors

Meet the Visionary Behind CorpNet: Phil Akalp, Founder and CTO

CorpNet could never have achieved what we have without our exceptional team members! We’ve recently created several videos to give you a glimpse behind the scenes of our company and allow you to get to know some of the people responsible for guiding our business and fulfilling our vision. In this post, we’re pleased to introduce CorpNet Co-Founder Phil Akalp and the video that features him. Who Is Phil Akalp? Phil says most people know him as “Nellie’s husband.” The couple has been building companies together for several decades. They sold their first company to Intuit in 2008 for $20...

Phil Akalp Video Cover

What Are Like-Kind Exchanges?

If you’re a property owner, you probably know how a like-kind exchange works, but in case the term is new to you, here’s what you need to know. According to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), a like-kind exchange (also called a 1031 exchange) is: When you exchange real property used for business or held as an investment solely for other business or investment property that is the same type or like-kind. The 1031 exchange, named for Section 1031 of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code, permits a property seller to avoid paying capital gains taxes on a property sale when the seller reinvests the...

Two Houses on Money With Exchange Arrows

Why You Should Keep Business and Personal Finances Separate

There’s a lot of misinformation out there about keeping business and personal finances separate. Truthfully, most entrepreneurs tap into their personal savings to start their businesses, so opening separate bank accounts isn’t their top priority when there are so many other things to handle. However, not maintaining independent business and personal bank accounts can cause all sorts of bookkeeping confusion and tax hassles—and who has the time to deal with all that? So here are some answers to the most frequently asked questions about having separate bank accounts for personal and...

Woman Using ATM

What Is an Annual Franchise Tax Report?

Not all, but some states require business entities to file an annual report and pay a franchise tax each year. While the name suggests that a franchise tax report might only apply to businesses that are franchises, that’s not the case! A franchise tax is a fee that companies pay for the privilege of being registered or organized in the state. As a registered business entity, a company gains personal liability protection for its owners, certain tax deductions, business name protection, and possibly other benefits. In exchange for this protection, the state serves a tax and it is managed...

Money Bag and Calendar

CorpNet Named to Inc. 5000 List for 2021

CorpNet is proud to announce that it has made Inc. Magazine’s prestigious “Inc. 5000” list for 2021. As an Inc. 5000 honoree, we have been recognized as one of the fastest-growing private companies in America. During a stretch when the economy experienced limited growth, CorpNet achieved 120% revenue growth over the past three years. “I am beyond thrilled about the growth of our company despite the economic uncertainties that have arose recently due to the pandemic.” shared CorpNet CEO Nellie Akalp. “As an entrepreneur, revenue growth is a top priority and I am proud of the strides...

CorpNet Inc 5000 Award Logo for 2021

How to Reinstate a Revoked 501(c)(3) Status

As a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, an organization does not have to pay federal income tax on its profits related to its business purpose. That’s an important advantage as it allows organizations to keep more of their profits and use them to further their causes. However, if a nonprofit organization fails to file the required reports and 990 series returns to the IRS, the IRS will revoke 501(c)(3) status. This revocation will negatively impact the nonprofit in multiple ways. Fortunately, the IRS does provide a path for nonprofit organizers to reinstate their revoked 501(c)(3) status. In this...

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How to Remove a Member from an LLC

Some limited liability companies undergo ownership changes as their businesses evolve. Members may come or go — either voluntarily or involuntarily — for a variety of reasons. So how do you remove a member of an LLC? Well, that depends! Different circumstances can affect the process and the outcomes for what happens to a member’s ownership interests in the company. Whether an LLC’s members want one of their members gone, a member wants to withdraw voluntarily, or a member passes away, the company must carry out the process lawfully. Ideally, an LLC’s organizational documents or LLC...

Businessman Getting Kicked Out of a Door

Independent Contractor vs. Employee

Before the pandemic (and all the havoc it created), small business owners were in an ongoing pursuit of sourcing the best workers for their company. Deciding between independent contractors and employees was a frequent question and this debate grew as some states considered enacting laws like California’s 2020 AB5 law. In 2021 "The Great Resignation" arrived and millions of employees have since quit their jobs in pursuit of more flexibility and happiness. This mass exodus has intensified the employee vs. independent contractor debate. With businesses settling into the “new normal” of...

Businesspeople Having Meeting In Modern Open Plan Office

Where to Form an LLC for an Online Business

When a limited liability company (LLC) has a physical location, owners usually register their business in their home state because that’s typically where they conduct most of their business. But what about forming an LLC for an online business? Having an online company provides some flexibility when selecting a domicile (home) state. Of course, that freedom of choice brings many questions! States’ LLC laws vary, so it’s important to consider how a state’s rules, regulations, fees, and taxes will affect the business and its owners’ liability risks, financial situation, business...

Woman Shipping Product for Online Store

What is a DBA?

Whether that name is legally registered with the business’s home state or not, every business has a legal name. A DBA (or “Doing Business As” is a name that is different from the legal name of the company. A DBA is also referred to as the “trade name,” “assumed business name,” or a “fictitious business name.” A DBA lets the public know the true owner of a business. DBA laws are consumer protection laws. They exist, so consumers have full transparency on which companies they are transacting business with. In other words, DBAs prevent dishonest business owners from running a company under a...

DBA With Question Marks

CorpNet Recognized as One of the Fastest-Growing Companies in California

CorpNet is proud to announce that it has made Inc.’s prestigious “Inc. 5000 Regionals” list in 2021 as one of the fastest-growing private companies in the state of California. Out of the 250 companies to receive the honor in the state, CorpNet was named number 213 on the list. Collectively, this year's award honorees demonstrated 137 percent median growth, had $6.7 billion in total revenue, and added 17,666 jobs in the state. Where companies ranked on the list was based on percentage growth of their annual revenue from 2017 to 2019. CorpNet achieved 65 percent revenue growth in that time...

INC 5000 CA Regional Award Logo

What Business Owners Should Know About the Arkansas Annual Franchise Tax

The Arkansas Secretary of State requires some business entities to report and file Annual Franchise Tax each year. The Annual Franchise Tax is a privilege tax that limited liability companies (LLCs) and corporations must pay for the opportunity to conduct business in Arkansas. The obligation to pay the tax begins the year after the business entity was formed and must be filed each year by May 1. Businesses may file and pay their Annual Franchise Tax as early as January 1. Arkansas LLCs LLCs (limited liability companies) and PLLCs (professional limited liability companies) must file an...

Welcome to Arkansas Highway Sign

The Corporate Veil: What it is and Why You Don’t Want to Pierce it

What Is Piercing the Corporate Veil? Businesses that are registered as limited liability companies (LLCs) or corporations provide their owners with protection against being held personally liable for the company’s debts and claims. That legal shield of separation between a business and its owners is known as the “corporate veil.” Under that shield (under most circumstances) the owners’ personal assets (home, property, bank accounts, retirement savings, etc.) cannot be taken to settle debts and lawsuits brought against the business. However, personal liability protection is not guaranteed...

Shelter from the crisis

What Is a Certificate of Authority?

You may have heard the term Certificate of Authority, but what is it? Well, it can refer to a few different things! I'll discuss the various types of Certificates of Authority in this article to give you some general information about what they are and when they are typically required. I encourage you to check with your attorney and accountant or tax advisor for legal and tax advice to determine if your business needs any of them. 1. Conducting Business in Another State Certificate of Authority is known as a foreign qualification when speaking of a business entity getting approved to do...

Stamped Certificate

Fathers Know Best: Entrepreneurial Dads Share Their Business Wisdom

Some people are lucky enough to grow up in an entrepreneurial family. I am one of the lucky ones. I learned so much from working with my grandfather at his small businesses when I was younger. I mean, what could be better than working at an ice cream store? Inspired by that, my husband Phil and I make sure we share the lessons and joys of entrepreneurship with our children. With that in mind, and in honor of Father’s Day, we talked to several entrepreneurial fathers to find out what they learned from their dads and what valuable business lessons they’ve passed on to their children. Barry...

Nellie, Phil, and Kids

What You Need to Know About the EIDL Application Process and Document Requirements

If you haven’t yet applied for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL), you have until December 21, 2020 to submit your application. There is no need to apply again if you’ve already applied, as the loans are vetted on a first-come-first-serve basis. At the latest count, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has approved 3,612,236 EIDL applications, totaling $191,994,805,796 for small businesses affected by the pandemic. Unfortunately, so many small businesses continue to suffer losses, so the need for relief funding is ongoing. Let's do a recap of the Economic Injury Disaster Loan...

SBA Loan Application

What You Need to Know About the Flexibility Act and PPP Loan Forgiveness

There’s good news for recipients of the CARES Act Payroll Protection Program’s (PPP) loan. The loan, which provided funds for small businesses to retain employees through the pandemic, has been altered with more generous terms for forgiveness. The Flexibility Act was signed into law on June 5, 2020, and amends the CARES Act, changing PPP loan terms and requirements. Here’s how to make sure you follow the new rules for forgiveness. How the Flexibility Act Modified PPP Forgiveness The amount of money each business received from the Payroll Protection Program was based on the number of...

SBA PPP Loan Logos

How Should Real Estate Investors Structure Their Businesses?

Owning investment properties can be exciting and lucrative. However, investments in real estate, whether vacation rentals, long-term rentals, or properties for resale, can also create liabilities. That's why it's critical for real estate investors to wisely choose how they will structure their businesses. For example, a renter might trip on an unstable staircase. A guest could slip on an uneven sidewalk. Faulty electrical wiring could shock a tenant or cause a fire. Or a slow leak in a building's plumbing might cause mold that affects a tenant's health. Accidents happen and they can...

Mini Houses on Stacks of Coins

Everything You Need to Know About Starting a Partnership

What is a Partnership? A partnership is a formal legal entity where two or more parties agree to manage and operate a business and share its profits and losses. Like a sole proprietorship, each partner is responsible for the assets and liabilities of the company. However, in a partnership, the parties create a partnership agreement that dictates ownership, responsibilities, and decision-making authority. While there are no specific filing or registration formalities needed to start a partnership, partnerships must comply with the registration, filing, and tax requirements required of any...

Partnership Agreement on Clipboard

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