Incorporate a Business in Maryland

CorpNet makes it fast and easy to incorporate a business in Maryland. 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 Maryland. We stand by our services with a 100% satisfaction guarantee.

Start a Business

The power for incorporating in Maryland lies with the Maryland Secretary of State, Charter Division. This Division also keeps up with all corporate filings of record. The main location is in Baltimore. The chief types of business organizations structures in Maryland are Sole Proprietorships, General Partnerships, Corporations, Limited Liability Companies, Limited Partnerships, and Limited Liability Partnerships. Each type has distinct advantages and disadvantages, depending on the needs of your business. Selecting the appropriate organizational structure for your company is one of the most important decisions you will make.

5 Steps to Incorporate in Maryland

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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 Maryland will have to include one of the suffixes, Corporation (or Corp.); Incorporated (or Inc.) and for limited liability companies, LLC. Maryland 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.

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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.

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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.)

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Apply for an EIN

Apply for a Federal Employer Identification Number (EIN) under the corporate name. In Maryland, 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.

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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 Domestic Corporation is one that was incorporated in the state of Maryland. The Articles of Incorporation must be filed with the Secretary of State.

A Foreign Corporation is a business that was incorporated in another country, state or jurisdiction besides Maryland. When a non-Maryland corporation makes a preliminary filing with SDAT that creates an account, that filing must be joined by written proof of existence from the home state that it came from, which is usually the same as a Certificate of Status.

Officers and Documents

Officers in the corporation must be listed in the bylaws. A corporation is required to have at least a president, a secretary and a treasurer. An officer should serve for one year and then a successor should be elected unless noted in the bylaws.

Every Maryland corporation is required to have a resident agent. This is the person or office that is chosen to collect official state correspondence. The resident agent has to be either a resident of Maryland or a Maryland corporation.

The president, or other officer that is singled out in the bylaws, has to report a statement of affairs to the shareholders. This declaration must be presented at each yearly stockholders’ meeting and filed at the main office within 120 days after the end of the fiscal year.

Common Form

  • Articles of Incorporation – This is the articles of incorporation filed with the Division of Corporations. For foreign corporations, the filing is called: Foreign Corporation Qualification.
  • Application for Name Reservation – This form can be filed online. It results in a name search and reserves a business name for 120 days.
  • Notice of Change for Officers, Directors, Shareholders – This is one of several forms used to amend or change information about the corporation.
  • Corporation Change of Registered Agent – Since the registered agent is the point of contact between the corporation and the State of Maryland, any changes must be documented with the State.
  • Certificate of Election to Dissolve – Used to dissolve a corporation. There are other forms required for mergers and consolidation.

Forming a Corporation Online

Incorporation in Maryland can be conducted through our services in order to make things easier and less overwhelming. Although some filings are not available online (such as the Corporate Name Reservation) they can be faxed or mailed.

We offer complete packages that let you to establish your corporation or LLC without missing important steps or documents. Our professionals will help you through the process and unlimited customer support is included in our services. This allows you to concentrate on managing your business rather than getting stuck in state-mandated paperwork.

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