1. Choose a Name for Your Arkansas Corporation
Check on Available Names in Arkansas: You will need to choose a unique name for your corporation in order to incorporate your small business in Arkansas. The name that you choose cannot be in use by another corporation. You should conduct a thorough search of the Internet and other corporate and legal records to determine that the name that you have chosen is not already in use. You can check a state database online at Arkansas Corporation.
Reserve a Corporate Name: Once you have arrived at a unique name for your corporation, you can reserve the name that you have chosen by submitting an application to Arkansas Secretary of State. You can submit an application online at Reserve Arkansas Corporation Name. The name that you have chosen will be reserved for a period of 120 days.
Filing Trademarks and Doing a Corporate Name Search: Although the corporate name that you choose to reserve may be available in Arkansas, another company outside of the state could be using the same name. You should be aware that a company in another state could be using the name that you have chosen for your corporation in Arkansas and that you might encounter other restrictions on the name that you have chosen to use to incorporate your business. See the article on how to choose a name for your corporation.
Arkansas Corporate Name Requirements: When you incorporate a small business in the state of Arkansas, your corporation’s name must include the word “corporation,” “incorporated,” “company,” or “limited.” You could also use an abbreviation of one of these words in the name of your corporation.
2. Find a Registered Agent in Arkansas
To incorporate your small business, you need to have a registered agent in Arkansas to act as an agent for service of process. A registered agent is responsible for receiving legal and tax documents for your corporation. You may choose to use a company that provides registered agent services as your registered agent. These companies provide registered agent services and other corporate services for a fee.
3. File Articles of Incorporation with the Arkansas Secretary of State
Minimum Requirements: When you incorporate your small business as a normal stock corporation, you will be required to file Articles of Incorporation with the Arkansas Secretary of State. In the state of Arkansas, you can submit the Articles of Incorporation form online. You will be asked to provide the name of your corporation, the number of shares authorized and their value, the name and address of your registered agent, and the name and address of each incorporator. You will also need to state the purpose of your corporation.
Other Arkansas Legal Provisions: Besides the minimum requirements asked for on the Articles of Incorporation form online, your corporation’s Articles of Incorporation may include other legal provisions. You should consult an attorney when preparing the Articles of Incorporation document. An attorney will be able to advise you on the various additional legal provisions that may apply to your corporation.
Where to Submit Form: The completed Articles of Incorporation should be submitted online at Arkansas Articles of Incorporation. If you would prefer to submit your Articles of Incorporation document in person or by mail, contact the Arkansas Secretary of State Business and Commercial Services at Suite 250, Victory Building, 1401 West Capitol Avenue, Little Rock, AR 72201.
Filing Fee: The filing fee in Arkansas is $50.00.
4. Create Other Arkansas Incorporation Documents (Corporate Kits)
Once you have completed and submitted the Articles of Incorporation document, your corporation needs to take actions like appointing officers and directors, adopting corporation bylaws, issuing stock certificates, obtaining a tax ID number and preparing to pay taxes. The corporation also needs to obtain a business license.
You should consider creating other types of corporate documents such as buy-sell agreements, shareholders agreements to determine when stock can be sold, and documents that explain what will happen if an owner leaves the company, especially if your corporation has multiple owners. It is best to get an attorney to help you to draft these documents. An attorney can help you be sure that you are following all the legal requirements that apply to your corporation. There are also corporate service companies that can assist you in preparing many of these legal documents for a fee.
5. Qualify Your Arkansas Corporation to Do Business in Other States
If your main corporate office is not in the state of Arkansas, you need to find out if you need to register or qualify your corporation to do business in other states. In most other states, some kind of qualification is required, and you will most likely also be required to pay taxes in your home state. To learn more about how to qualify your corporation to do business in other states, go to Doing Business in other states.
6. Make Annual Filings and Pay Annual Fees and Taxes in Arkansas
All domestic corporations that are registered in the state of Arkansas must file an annual franchise tax report. You will be able to update officer, director and registered agent information for your corporation in this report. You can download the form or file online at Arkansas Corporation Tax Forms.
Your corporation will be subject to Arkansas Corporate Franchise Taxes. You are responsible for filing tax documents and paying an annual tax. You must submit your tax payments to the Secretary of State by May 1st each year. You should contact the Arkansas Secretary of State if you do not receive a Franchise Tax report before March 20th, either by e-mail at email@example.com or by phone at (501) 682-3409. You can also contact the Arkansas Secretary of State for more information on what tax laws apply to your corporation or you can visit the official state website at Arkansas Corporation Tax Laws.
You should probably consult an accountant when it is time to prepare tax documents for your corporation. An accountant can help you to avoid any mistakes while preparing your tax documents. Mistakes in your tax documents could end up costing you extra taxes.
It may be complicated to incorporate a small business, especially when there are multiple owners. However, if you consult an attorney and an accountant when you are forming your corporation you can be more confident that all your paperwork will be processed correctly.
This article is for informational purposes and does not constitute legal, financial or tax advice. This information is derived from various sources and should not be relied on as an official source of information. All information should be independently verified. You should consult a legal or accounting professional before incorporating your business.
Disclaimer: This site is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal, financial or tax advise. The information on this site should not be relied upon as an official source of information and should be independently verified.