Start a Business in Hawaii

Incorporation Service

Your specialist works with you 1-on-1 to form your LLC, corporation, or other business structure. We prepare and file most formations in just one business day!

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This guide on starting your business in Hawaii provides step-by-step instructions on the paperwork to file formation documents, obtain tax IDs, and set up company records.

how to start a business

Step-By-Step Startup

Below is an overview of the paperwork, cost, and time to form each of the most popular business structures. Simply click on the link for your desired structure to view detailed step-by-step instructions.

  • If you have not decided whether you want to form an LLC, corporation, or other business structure, click here.
  • If wish to form your business in a different state than Hawaii, click here.
Structure Paperwork Cost Time

Hawaii Limited Liability Company

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  • Form LLC-1: Articles of Organization for Limited Liability Company
  • Operating Agreement
  • IRS Form SS-4: Obtain an EIN
  • Form BB-1: State of Hawaii Basic Business Application
  • Formation: $51 + optional $25 expedite fee
  • Form BB-1: $20
  • Formation: ~7-14 business days by mail. ~3-5 business days by fax, in-person, or online. ~1-3 business days if you file online and pay the $25 expedite fee.

Hawaii Corporation

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  • Form DC-1: Articles of Incorporation
  • Bylaws
  • IRS Form SS-4: Obtain an EIN
  • Form 2553: S-Corp Election, if desired
  • Form BB-1: State of Hawaii Basic Business Application
  • Incorporation: $51 + optional $25 expedite fee
  • Form BB-1: $20
  • Incorporation: ~7-14 business days by mail. ~3-5 business days by fax, in-person, or online. ~1-3 business days if you file online and pay the $25 expedite fee.

Hawaii Nonprofit

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  • Form DNP-1: Articles of Incorporation
  • Bylaws
  • IRS Form SS-4: Obtain an EIN
  • IRS Form 1023: 501(c) Tax Exempt Application
  • IRS Determination Letter
  • Form BB-1: State of Hawaii Basic Business Application
  • Form G-6: Application for Exemption from General Excise Tax
  • URS Charitable Registration, if applicable
  • Hawaii Charitable Organization Registration or Exemption Application
  • Incorporation: $26 + optional $25 expedite fee
  • 501(c): $275 or $600 IRS fee
  • Form BB-1: $20
  • Incorporation: ~7-14 business days by mail. ~3-5 business days by fax, in-person, or online. ~1-3 business days if you file online and pay the $25 expedite fee.
  • 501(c): 2 weeks to 3 months

Top 5 Tips on Registering a Business in Hawaii

  1. The main registration authority has a long name - State of Hawaii - Department of Commerce & Consumer Affairs (DCCA) - Business Registration Division. You'll hear the acronym DCCA for the department and BREG for their online system.
  2. Hawaii requires the use of a corporate designator such as "LLC" or "Corporation". We will provide the short list of acceptable designators for your business structure.
  3. Formation can take from 1 business day to 2 weeks, depending on the method of filing and whether you are willing to pay the state fee for expedited processing.
  4. Corporate records must be stored at the principal office unless the board of directors specifically resolve they are held at an alternate location. Hawaii has a specific list of the required records for corporations.
  5. Hawaii is a friendly state in which to register - the process, forms, and instructions are helpful. The fees are reasonable. If your business one day expands to another state (called foreign registration), anticipate the process may be more challenging.

Incorporation Service

Your specialist works with you 1-on-1 to form your LLC, corporation, or other business structure. We prepare and file most formations in just one business day!

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