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Steps to Forming a California Corporation

Information We Need From You to Start Your Corporation

1: Select a Name: Your company name must include one of the following: Corporation, Company, Incorporated, Incorporation, Limited, Corp., Co., Inc., Ltd., PC or Professional Corporation.

2: Authorize Shares: The owners of a corporation are known as shareholders because they own shares of stock in the company. California requires you to determine a total number of shares of stock you are authorizing. Typically, a corporation will authorize a small number of shares (100, for example). In most cases, you’d then issue yourself 51% of those shares at your first shareholder meeting, thus giving yourself control. The remaining 49% of shares can be saved for future business partners.

3: Choose Management: Corporations are controlled by their Directors, who set major policy, hire and fire corporate officers, set salaries and bonuses, and issue stock. In most situations, you would appoint yourself Director and take on the roles of the corporate officers (President, Treasurer, Secretary).

4: Remaining Info Needed to File:

  • Corporate address: this is your main business office in California, the location where you keep your corporate records and financial books.

  • Service of Process: a legal agent for service of process (also known as a registered or resident agent) must have a physical street address in the state of California. This is known as a registered office (cannot be a PO box). When you file with Speedy, you receive one free year of California Agent of Service of Process service by Northwest Registered Agent. Their service will keep your private home address and office address off the public record.

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Steps to Forming a California LLC

Information We Need From You to Start Your LLC

1: Select a Name: The company name must include one of the following: LLC, L.L.C., Limited Liability Company, Limited Liability Co., Ltd. Liability Co. or Ltd. Liability Company. It cannot include the words: Bank, Trust, Trustee, Incorporated, Inc., Corporation, Corp., Insurer, or Insurance Company. You can do a California business name search to see if your name is available.

2: Membership: Owners of an LLC are known as members. LLCs don’t issue stock. Instead, members are simply assigned an ownership percentage, usually based upon the amount they have contributed to the company.

3: Choose Management: Generally, the members of an LLC manage the company themselves. An LLC does not have officers or a board of directors. Members can, however, opt to appoint a manager to oversee the day to day business activities. This manager can be a member or an outside party.

4: Remaining Info Needed to File:

  • LLC address: this is the address of your business office in California, the place where you keep your company’s financial books.

  • Service of Process: an agent for service of process (also called registered or residents agents) maintain a physical street address in the state. This address is called a registered office. All our Speedy filings come with one free year of California Agent of Service of Process service by Northwest Registered Agent. This service keeps your private home and office address off public records for the registered agent, mailing and principal office requirements.

  • Management: you must indicate how your LLC will be managed (Manager, More Than One Manager, All Members).

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Testimonials

Awesome work. I’ll be recommending you to friends the next time someone asks about forming an LLC. Thanks for a great service.” - Carlos M., Los Angeles, California

I really thought this was going to be a huge hassle. I’m glad you proved me wrong. I only wish I had known and incorporated sooner.” - Justin J., San Francisco, California

I decided to incorporate on my own and had two choices – pay a fortune for an accountant to do it or do it myself. I’m so glad that in my research, I came upon a third, and great choice. Thanks again for everything.” - Ted R., San Diego, California