Incorporate a Business in Alabama
CorpNet makes it fast and easy to incorporate a business in Alabama. You can register your business online or have one of our experienced filing experts assist you.
Save time, enjoy personalized service, and get peace of mind by working with our filing experts who have experience helping entrepreneurs in all 50 states, including Alabama. We stand by our services with a 100% satisfaction guarantee.
Start a Business
The authority for incorporating in Alabama is the Corporations Division of the Alabama Secretary of State. This is the government agency responsible for all forms, filings, and record keeping. It acts under State Authority granted by the Alabama Business Corporation Act.
The Corporations Division also maintains all corporate filings of record. The types of business structures available are For-Profit and Not-For-Profit Corporations, Limited Liability Companies, Limited Partnerships, and Registered Limited Liability Partnerships.
5 Steps to Incorporate in Alabama
Choose a Name for the Corporation
Search to make sure your company name is available. You can use the free CorpNet company name search. Your corporate name in Alabama will have to include one of the suffixes, Corporation (or Corp.); Incorporated (or Inc.) and for limited liability companies, LLC. Alabama has reserved the words: Bank, Trust, and Engineer/Engineering – these can be used in your name if you have the appropriate certificates and licensing, but otherwise are prohibited. Your corporate name cannot imply a service or business which conflicts with the purpose stated when you register.
Register Your Corporation
Register your corporation (or LLC) with the Secretary of State. CorpNet offers filings of the Articles of Incorporation (for corporate structures) and for LLCs, Articles of Organization.
Hold an Official Meeting
Hold the first official meeting for the corporation or LLC and adopt the Bylaws (corporations) or Operating Agreement (LLCs). This is a legal meeting and must be recorded as such. (See section below about officers and documentation.)
Apply for an EIN
Apply for a Federal Employer Identification Number (EIN) under the corporate name. In Alabama, this will also serve as your State Tax Identification Number. You will also have to arrange for a bank account under this number for accounting purposes. Your financial institution will want a copy of the EIN as well as a certificate of registration from the Secretary of State.
Obtain Licenses and Permits
Obtain any specific licenses and permits required, either statewide or for the county in which you will do business. Some examples would be: Electrician’s license, trucking licenses and permits, Liquor license, etc.
Foreign and Domestic Corporations
A foreign corporation is a corporation registered in another State that does business in Alabama. Foreign corporations are required to register in Alabama and obtain a Certificate of Authority to Transact Business in Alabama.
Domestic corporations are those formed in Alabama itself. While there is no residency requirement for directors or officers of Alabama corporations, a registered agent (who can also be a corporate officer) must have a physical address in Alabama along with regular business hours. They have to be available to take phone calls and respond to legal matters. Hiring a Registered Agent will protect your privacy and meet the requirements of incorporation in Alabama.
Officers and Documents
Corporations in Alabama must have one or more directors whose names and addresses will appear in the articles of incorporation. All must be at least 19 years old.
Corporate officers do not have to appear in filings, but information about officers, stockholders, minutes of required meetings, and annual reports have to be maintained at the corporate offices. Other records required at the principal place of business include a copy of the articles of incorporation along with any amendments.
- Domestic Business Corporation Application – This is the articles of incorporation filed with the Division of Corporations, Business and Professional Licenses. It requests an Alaskan Entity Number. For foreign corporations, the filing is called: Application for Certificate of Authority.
- Application for Name Reservation – This form can be filed online. It results in a name search and reserves a business name for 120 days. There is also a version for foreign corporation name registration.
- Notice of Change for Officers, Directors, Shareholders – This is one of several forms used to amend or change information about the corporation. Others include Articles of Amendment, Certificate of Correction, and Restated Articles of Incorporation.
- Registered Agent or Registered Agent Address Statement of Change – Because the registered agent is the point of contact between the corporate entity and the State of Alaska, any change must be documented with the State.
- Certificate of Election to Dissolve – Used to dissolve a corporation. Foreign registered corporations have an equivalent form called an Application for Certificate to Withdraw. There are other forms required for mergers and consolidation.
Forming a Corporation Online
Incorporation in Alabama can be handled remotely through our services. We offer complete packages that allow you to start your corporation or LLC without missing key steps or documents.
This lets you focus on managing your business instead of getting stuck in state-mandated paperwork.
Incorporating online is as easy as providing some initial information and deciding which type of corporation best fits your needs. CorpNet is available to help you start a corporation in Alabama and one-year Registered Agent Services is standard in our packages. We also include unlimited customer support.