Start a Business in Ohio

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 Ohio 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 Ohio, click here.
Structure Paperwork Cost Time

Ohio Limited Liability Company

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  • Form 533A: Articles of Organization for a Domestic Limited Liability Company
  • Operating Agreement
  • IRS Form SS-4: Obtain an EIN
  • Ohio Department of Taxation registration
  • Formation: $99 + optional $50 preclearance + optional $100-300 expedite service
  • Formation: ~3-7 business days. ~2 business days for $100 expedite fee. ~1 business day for $200 expedite fee. ~4 hours for $300 expedite fee and if delivered in-person by 1PM.

Ohio Corporation

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  • Form 532A: Initial Articles of Incorporation
  • Bylaws
  • IRS Form SS-4: Obtain an EIN
  • Form 2553: S-Corp Election, if desired
  • Ohio Department of Taxation registration
  • Incorporation: $99 + optional $50 preclearance + optional $100-300 expedite service
  • Incorporation: ~3-7 business days. ~2 business days for $100 expedite fee. ~1 business day for $200 expedite fee. ~4 hours for $300 expedite fee and if delivered in-person by 1PM.

Ohio Nonprofit

Click for step-by-step instructions
  • Form 532B: Initial Articles of Incorporation
  • Bylaws
  • IRS Form SS-4: Obtain an EIN
  • IRS Form 1023: 501(c) Tax Exempt Application
  • IRS Determination Letter
  • Ohio Business Gateway Tax Registration
  • Form STEC-B: Sales and Use Tax Blanket Exemption Certificate
  • URS Charitable Registration, if applicable
  • Ohio Charitable Organization Registration (online)
  • Incorporation: $99
  • 501(c): $275 or $600 IRS fee
  • Ohio Charitable Registration: $50 - $200
  • Incorporation: ~3-7 business days
  • 501(c): 2 weeks to 3 months

Top 5 Tips on Registering a Business in Ohio

  1. If you're in a rush to get started, the Ohio Secretary of State can help. They will process your formation documents in only 4 hours for a $300 expedite fee. Normal processing takes ~1 week.
  2. All business taxpayers must be registered with the Ohio Department of Taxation. You can register online for commercial activity tax (CAT), sales tax, employer withholding, unemployment compensation, workers' compensation, and municipal income taxes for nearly 500 cities and villages.
  3. You will undoubtedly come across the terms statutory agent and registered agent. These terms are used interchangeably. This person or business receives delivery of legal documents and government notices for a business.
  4. Your registered agent must sign the formation documents.
  5. Most Ohio businesses do not need to file a biennial report with the Ohio Secretary of State. Professional corporations and nonprofit corporations do.

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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