Ten Steps to Starting a Business

Get Assistance and Training
An abundance of resources are available to help you through the process of starting a business.

Conduct Research and Develop a Business Plan
A well-written business plan is critical to starting and running a business.  Business plans are generally required when applying for business loans and seeking investors, but are also essential in estimating costs and evaluating the strengths and weaknesses of your proposal.  

Finance Your Business
Find out which financing options are best for you – business loans, research and development grants, venture capital, or other options!  

Determine Your Business Location

Determine the Legal Structure of Your Business

Decide whether you are going to form a sole proprietorship, partnership, LLC, corporation, non-profit or cooperative. SBA’s guide on determining business structure is a good resource.

Name Your Business
If you will be using a fictitious name for your business (a name other than your personal legal name), you will need to check with the County Clerk to be sure no one else is using that name before completing a Fictitious Business Name Statement.

Get Your Federal and State Identification Numbers
All new businesses employing one or more persons must apply for a State Employer's Identification Number. Contact your State's Employment Development Department .

You'll also need a Federal Identification Number if you're employing one or more persons. Contact the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Business Tax Line at (800) 829-1040,

Obtain a Business Tax Certificate and Necessary Permits
Whether you're operating from home or a storefront, office or industrial park, you'll need a Business Tax Certificate (sometimes referred to as a "Business License")

Find Out What Your Employer Responsibilities Are

There are a number of legal steps you will need to follow before your business hires employees.  Here is a guide to this process.

Get Connected With Local Infrastructure and Support Networks

SCORE is also a great resource to use.

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