Incorporating Myself

Today TaxMama hears from Bob in Los Angeles who wants to know, “Can only lawyers and paralegals provide incorporation services in the state of California?”

Hi Bob,
There’s no reason you can’t do it yourself. Paralegals don’t have any special licenses that I know of. There are a couple of trade associations encouraging voluntary certifications. You can find them through the California Alliance of Paralegal Associations
All right, If you want to set up corporations, LLCs, etc, for your clients – here’s the first thing I would do. Learn the pros and cons of each entity and which works best for the particular business situation. That’s the toughest part. My book provides some advice – but it’s mostly an overview. So if you want to do this well, team up with a good tax pro or attorney who can help your clients with the decision.
Oh, I just remembered! Earlier this year, I helped Wayne Davies’ update his books on how to select an entity and exactly what do to incorporate in each state. His series of three books includes contacts for all the states’ Secretary of States, etc. If you’ve never really done anything like this before, consider signing up for his whole package – the e-books AND the reviews of your entity and tax returns and several hours of advice that Wayne offers.
In fact, he’d be a good person to team up with if you don’t already have a good tax pro or attorney who can advise you.
If you don’t want to do the actual set-up and filings yourself, go to The Company Corporation×600.gif&p=accounting . This is one of the companies attorneys have been using, for over a hundred years, to set up their clients and to produce the complete set of by laws, articles, stock certificates and the printed corporate binder.
If you want to do everything, or most of it yourself, like produce your own articles and bylaws, drop by Nolo press. Pick up one of their how to incorporate books that include the CDs containing all the forms that you can customize and print out.

If you do that, then consider using Hubco to do your filings with the Secretaries of State and to produce the printed kit and seal. You can do your own articles and bylaws and send them to Hubco. They happen to be the best place to get supplies – like the printed minutes book, stock certificates, corporate seals, etc. Very reasonable.

Even if you don’t want to go into business setting up corporations or LLCs, this same information will work if you just want to do your own.

And remember, you can find answers to questions about incorporating and all kinds of other tax issues, free. Where? Where else? At

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