California: How to incorporate
Incorporating in California involves one of three steps:
- Hiring a lawyer
- do it by yourself or
- use an incorporation company
We can incorporate your California Company business or form your limited
liability company for a fraction of the fee most other lawyers or so
called incorporation services claim they can. Since, Mr.
licensed attorney, it is reasonable to conclude that he can incorporate your
business at least a little better than the other self proclaimed incorporation
Incorporating your California incorporation involves the following steps:
California Corporate Requirements
The name of a California corporation must be unique.
California Corporation Director Information
Minimum Number must be - Three. However, if the company has less than
three shareholders, the number of directors may be less than three, but not less
than the number of shareholders.
Residence Requirements - No provision.
Age Requirements - None.
Directors are not required to be listed in the articles of incorporation.
The officers are not required to be listed in the articles of incorporation.
An increase in shares or par value does not effect initial filing fees.
An original or a copy of bylaws must be kept at the principal executive
office or principal business office in state of California. The minutes of
directors' and shareholders' meetings must be kept at the principal office.
Taxes and Fees
Domestic corporations must file with the secretary of state within 90 days
after filing the articles or incorporation. A statement of domestic stock
corporation must be filed annually by the end of the calendar month during which
the original articles of incorporation were filed. The cost is $20.
Income Tax Rate
California imposes a franchise tax on both California corporations (domestic)
and non-California corporations (foreign) for the privilege of doing business in
the state. The franchise tax is actually a tax of net income; the rate is
8.84% of net income for corporations. S corporations still must pay the
franchise tax; the rate is 1.5% of net income.
California imposes a minimum franchise tax of $800. So, even if your
corporation does not have net income, it still must pay this minimum tax. The
minimum tax does not have to paid during the corporation's first year; however,
taxes based on income must be paid during this first year.
S Corporation status is recognized by the State of California, however, the
corporation is still required to pay franchise tax at a rate of 1.5% of net
income. A separate state election is required.
California may require that you obtain a business license and pay a licensing
fee based on your business type or profession. Please check with the state to
make sure your business is complying with the license requirements for your
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