The Launch Blog: Expert Advice from the CorpNet Team

When’s the Best Time of Year to Form an LLC?

Have you been thinking of launching a new business or changing your existing Sole Proprietorship to a formal business entity type like a Limited Liability Company, S Corporation, or C Corporation? Are you concerned that you might not be selecting the best time of year to form the new business? There's never a bad time to register your business as a legal entity because doing so helps protect your personal assets and might offer some tax advantages, as well. But filing your paperwork to make it effective before the New Year has its perks! So if you are considering starting a new business,...

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Year End Small Business Tax Tips

Before you let the hustle and bustle of the holiday season take over your business (and your life), now’s a good time to review your financial situation and explore some money-saving small business tax tips. Below is a list of my top tax tips entrepreneurs can still benefit from at year-end. 1. Deduct Startup Expenses Did you start your business this year? You may be able to claim some of your startup expenses on your tax return in the year you actually opened the business. To qualify as a startup expense (a capital cost), the IRS requires the expense to meet two requirements: The expense...

Man Running From Taxes

How to Change Your LLC Address

If you change the principal business address or mailing address of your Limited Liability Company (LLC), it’s critical to update your information with the IRS, state, and local tax and licensing authorities. If you don’t, important tax and legal documents might go to the wrong place — and you could even risk your LLC status by failing to inform government agencies of your new address. Fortunately, changing your LLC's address in the federal, state, and local records isn’t rocket science; however, it does demand some of your time and attention. 1. Update Your LLC Address With the IRS LLC...

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Is Your Business in Compliance? Seven Questions to Ask Yourself

Maintaining a C Corporation or Limited Liability Company (LLC) is an ongoing process that requires constant attention. Unfortunately, most small business owners don’t know what they don’t know and busy entrepreneurs often find it tough to carve out time to research what’s required, let alone follow through on it. Not maintaining compliance with all the rules and regulations might saddle you with fines and even expose your business to liability risks. I don't want that to happen to you and I’m sure you don’t either! Here’s a quick checklist of questions to ask yourself to assess your...

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Business Closures, Dissolutions, and Withdrawals

It has been a rough few years for businesses across the country, but especially so for small businesses. From COVID-19 to inflation, companies of all sizes have had to close some or many of their locations. Whether you’ve had to close down entirely or shutter locations in other states, it’s crucial you legally close your business so there are no repercussions down the road. In many cases, this means you need to take action before we close out the 2023 calendar year. I want to help keep you and your business in compliance. If you've had to close part of all of your operations, here are...

Closed Sign on Business Window

Don’t Be Nervous About Your Annual Business Review!

It's already November and we are rapidly approaching year's end. This means the time has come for an annual business review. What is an annual business review? You might think this is the annual report  C Corporations and Limited Liability Companies (LLC) must file each year with the state. In truth, that is one part of the annual review process, the annual compliance filings, however, there is more to consider when reviewing your business. The following are 10 areas of your business to review: the good, the bad, and the required to take your business into 2024 on solid ground. 1....

Year End Review Written on Pad

The Importance of Meeting Minutes

As the end of the year approaches, there are many things on a business owner’s plate that must be addressed. And while it may sound mundane, meeting minutes are one of them. Making sure proper minutes have been taken at meetings is critical for proving accountability, transparency, and legal compliance. Whether you’re an accountant making sure your clients are compliant or a business owner looking after your own concerns, it’s important to know about meeting minutes, which companies need them, how often they’re needed, and the details of what needs to be included. Why Meeting Minutes...

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How to Start a Business in Wisconsin

If you're considering starting a new business in Wisconsin, there are a lot of reasons why this is a great option. Wisconsin offers a robust business ecosystem with a skilled workforce, business-friendly policies, and a central location in the U.S. It provides a high quality of life, support from local organizations, access to research and innovation, and proximity to major markets. The state’s industry clusters, access to capital, and economic development incentives make it an attractive choice for entrepreneurs. Start-up businesses are core to my heart and our services here at CorpNet....

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A Guide to Small Business Taxes

No matter the type of business you operate, taxes are among the expenses you must anticipate and budget for. While not the most pleasant aspect of running a company, business taxes require an entrepreneur’s attention and follow-through because penalties exist for not reporting and paying them on time. Here’s a look at some federal, state, and local taxes small business owners should understand and prepare for. Federal Business Taxes Federal Income Tax Businesses must pay income tax on their taxable earnings. The income tax rate depends on how the business is structured. At the time of...

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How to Appoint a Registered Agent

Appointing a registered agent for your business entity isn’t terribly difficult, but it does require a little effort on your part. Whether you’re starting a brand new business and need to designate a registered agent for the first time or you want to change your existing registered agent services provider, it’s important to do it right. Here are the five steps to guide you through the process. 1. Compare and Choose a Registered Agent While some states allow individuals or business owners to serve as registered agents, that’s often not the wisest path. States have minimum requirements for...

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What Is a Registered Agent?

Many business owners will ask themselves what is a registered agent and then question if they really need one. The answer to both questions is yes! A registered agent is a person or company with the authority to accept service of process (legal documents and government notices) on behalf of a business. When selecting a registered agent, the business must designate one who has a physical location within the state where the business is registered to operate. What Does a Registered Agent Do? A registered agent (also sometimes referred to as a resident agent or statutory agent) has an...

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Noncommercial vs. Commercial Registered Agent

If you've been considering forming a business (or already have started one), you've probably have heard the term registered agent. Alternate names include statutory agent, agent for service of process, or resident agent. A registered agent is a designated party located within the state that a business has authorized to accept "service of process" (notice of lawsuits) and essential correspondence from the state on its behalf.  Essentially, there are two types of registered agents – commercial and noncommercial. So, what's the difference between a commercial and noncommercial registered...

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What Is an Agent for Service of Process?

An agent for service of process is an individual or business that accepts important legal and government notices on behalf of an LLC or Corporation. More commonly known as a registered agent, designating an agent for service of process is a requirement for LLCs, Corporations, and some other registered business entities. A state will require a registered business entity to have a registered agent if the business is located in (or is foreign-qualified to operate in) the state. If a Corporation or LLC is located in one state and conducts business in others, it must have a registered agent in...

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What Is Form 1023?

Filing formation paperwork with the state is just one step required to start a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt nonprofit organization. Federal income tax exempt status isn’t automatic. A nonprofit must file Form 1023, Application for Recognition of Exemption Under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, with the IRS to request federal income tax exemption. The form is quite long and involved, so it can be helpful to talk with an accounting professional for guidance as you prepare to complete it. The obvious benefit of 501(c)(3) status is being exempt from paying federal income tax. Also,...

Man Completing Form 1023

How to Start a Freelance Business

Starting a freelance business can put you on a path that leads to autonomy, creative freedom, and the opportunity to shape your professional destiny. Freelancing is not much different than building a small business, however, as a freelancer you work for yourself and you are considered self-employed. While your primary role is to work part-time for clients via projects or ongoing retainers, just like any other business, building a brand as a freelancer is also important. Of course, building a freelance business has additional challenges. It requires meticulous planning, strategic...

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What Taxpayers Need to Know About the IRS’s Extended Tax Deadline

Due to the severe winter weather conditions that impacted much of California and parts of Alabama and Georgia, the tax deadline for 2022 individuals and businesses, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) extended its tax deadlines to October 16, 2023. Some parts of Georgia were additionally affected by Hurricane Idalia—see below for updated tax filing information if you live in the impacted areas. In addition, October 16 is the final deadline for this year for those taxpayers who filed for regular tax extensions last April. That day is fast approaching, and with no additional extensions...

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What Is a DUNS Number and How Do You Get One?

A Dun & Bradstreet (D&B) D-U-N-S® Number is a unique nine-digit number assigned to a company to help potential lenders, partners, and suppliers assess the business’s stability, creditworthiness, and other qualities. Having a DUNS Number can help a company build a business credit history and demonstrate its credibility. A company’s DUNS number identifies it as unique from any other company in the Dun & Bradstreet Data Universal Numbering System database. DUNS Numbers are assigned through D&B’s proprietary verification process for confirming a company’s information. D&B...

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Can You Get a Startup Loan for Your Small Business?

Starting a small business is exciting, but that alone is not enough. Achieving your goals will often require a long list of needs with money being at the top of that list. While most startups are self-funded, many entrepreneurs want and need a small business loan. Obtaining a startup loan makes it easier to turn your business ideas into viable companies. They provide a solid financial foundation to build a business and make it easier to weather the initial challenges and uncertainties of a startup. Startup loans provide new small businesses with: Cash infusion - Having more available...

Money Bag With Coins and Paper Bills

What Is FICA?

Business owners who hire employees must withhold, deposit, report, and pay Social Security and Medicare taxes per the Federal Insurance Contributions Act (FICA). FICA taxes are applied to all of an employee’s taxable compensation, which includes salary, wages, commissions, bonuses, and certain fringe benefits. Eventually, an employee’s pay remitted to FICA (and the monies paid by their employer) will benefit the employee in the future. Social Security tax provides financial benefits to retired individuals, disabled Americans, and survivors of deceased citizens. Medicare tax funds the...

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Fall Tips To Help Your Business Have A Strong End-Of-Year Finish

Although most of the year has already passed and we’re now into the autumn season, don’t panic if your business has fallen a little bit behind on its goals. It’s not too late to make changes that can help lead to a strong finish in 2023. Whether you’ve just started your business or have been running yours for years, the key is to take action sooner rather than later—and to focus on efforts that will improve your bottom line now and into 2024. Nurture Customer Relationships If you’ve fallen out of touch with some customers, now’s the time to reconnect. Just be careful to do so with their...

Woman writing in planner

How to Sell Your Business Idea to Investors

Whether you’re in the early stages of a startup or looking to scale your existing business, the one hurdle many small business owners face is obtaining funding. While entrepreneurs in some industries may have an easier time, typically, it is challenging to sell your business idea to investors. Convincing someone to invest in your business is not just about showing potential profitability. There’s a whole process involved. You have to sell your vision, team, and ability to execute. Here’s a step-by-step guide for small business owners interested in selling their business ideas to...

Two Men Pitching Inventors in Offic

12 Steps for Closing a Corporation by Year End

As difficult as it may be to make the decision to close a business, things can become even more challenging if a business’s owners don’t tie up all the loose ends. If you’re thinking of closing your corporation by year-end, realize that there’s more to the process than halting the sale of products and services. Merely stopping business activities doesn’t officially close a company, there are steps that must be taken to legally end the business entity’s existence. The exact actions a corporation’s owners must take will depend on where the business is located, whether it has employees, or...

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12 Steps for Closing an LLC Before Year End

If you’re thinking of closing your LLC before the year ends, you may be feeling overwhelmed. And you are probably wondering what you must do to exit the business without leaving any loose ends behind. Indeed, there is more to shutting down a business than merely ceasing to sell products and services. The exact actions a Limited Liability Company’s members must take depend on where the business is registered, whether it has employees on its payroll, and other factors.  It can be tricky to determine all the requirements, so LLC owners (a.k.a. members) should carefully research the things...

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How Do I Maintain a Business?

After a business is up and running, it's critical to maintain it by fulfilling all of the required business compliance tasks on time. Of course, businesses grow and evolve over time, and therefore, the actions they must take to maintain a business entity also may change. Fortunately, CorpNet is here to help you learn how to manage your business effectively every step of the way. What are some of the business considerations entrepreneurs should keep in mind? Below, I’ve listed several situations where changes in a business will involve business compliance filings. 1. Hiring employees...

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What is a Registered Office?

You'll likely encounter some unfamiliar terms when forming and managing your business. One phrase is a registered office, which refers to the physical address where a company receives service of process, which are legal documents and government notices that need immediate attention. Compliance can be confusing, so let's review what a registered office is and why you may need one. Common Law vs. Statutory Entities One of the first things you need to do when starting a new business is to decide on a business structure. There are two different types of business structures that would pertain...

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Can an LLC Owner File for Unemployment?

Can an LLC owner file for unemployment? The quick answer is yes, but not in every situation. There are advantages to owning a Limited Liability Company (LLC), with tax flexibility, serving as one of the major benefits. How you elect to structure your LLC for tax purposes is what makes the difference in being able to file for unemployment. What is the Unemployment Insurance? Payroll taxes are incurred at the state and federal level. Employers must register for the appropriate tax accounts to hire employees, to process payroll, and to file returns. Unemployment Insurance Tax (UI) is a...

Unemployment Benefits Form

A Guide for Starting a Business in Maryland

Maryland’s strategic location on the east coast of the U.S. is within easy reach of major metropolitan cities like Washington, D.C., Baltimore, Philadelphia, and New York City. This proximity can give your business access to a large customer base and supply chain networks. In addition, Maryland is home to several top-notch universities, research institutions, and a highly educated workforce. You can tap into this talent pool to find skilled employees in various fields, from technology and healthcare to finance and biotechnology. Today's post is a thirteen step guide to starting a new...

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How to Withdraw Money From an LLC

How does a Limited Liability Company (LLC) owner withdraw money from their business? Whether these funds are for personal use or it is considered compensation from the LLC, how they may do that depends on three things: Whether the Limited Liability Company is a single-member LLC or multi-member LLC How the LLC is treated for tax purposes Whether the LLC member actively works in the business As with all other legal and tax aspects of operating a business entity, it’s important to withdraw money from an LLC correctly. Getting guidance from an accounting professional will help ensure you...

ATM Withdrawal of Cash

Checklist for Launching a New Business in Indiana

Launching a new business in Indiana can be a smart move due to the state’s favorable business environment. Characterized by relatively low corporate taxes, reasonable regulatory requirements, and a comparatively affordable cost of living, Indiana’s central location gives it easy access to a broad customer base. The state also boasts a skilled and diverse workforce supported by renowned universities and vocational institutions, providing a talent pipeline for various industries. Below is a checklist of what you need to know to start your Indiana business. 1. Fine-Tune Your Business Idea...

Downtown Indianapolis Indiana at Night

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