Step 1) Name Your Louisiana Corporation

Choose a Business NameAs you take the first steps to starting a business in Louisiana, you should name your Corporation. As per the state’s requirement, the name should be uniquely inherent to your Corporation and it should have any of the following words in the actual name: ‘Corporation’, ‘Company’, ‘Incorporated’, or ‘Limited’. Any of the abbreviations of the words above can also be used.

As soon as you have a Corporation name, you can ensure its uniqueness by checking the Louisiana business name search tool. If the name is not yet taken, you can file a name reservation with the Louisiana Secretary of State for 60 days. The mail application filing fee is $25.


Step 2) File the Articles of Incorporation

Register an LLCWhen incorporating in Louisiana, you need to file the Articles of Incorporation to the Secretary of State to become a legal entity.

To accompany this form when filing a Corporation in Louisiana is the Domestic Business Corporation Initial Report. This form contains details about your Corporate Registered Agent, including the complete name, address, and the signature.

Filing fee: $60


Step 3) Choose a Louisiana Registered Agent

Choose a Registered AgentTo act in behalf of your Corporation, a Louisiana Registered Agent should be chosen as it is state mandated.

The following qualify for the Registered Agent position: an individual who resides in the state; an individual attorney or a partnership law firm in Louisiana; and a domestic or foreign business legally authorized to act as a Registered Agent.

This Registered Agent in Louisiana should also provide a physical street address. That said, you can hire a Registered Agent service and pay up to $160/year, or get a Registered Agent in Louisiana free of charge when you form your Corporation with IncFile – which is $100 less than other online incorporation services.


Step 4) Start a Corporate Records Book

File Annual Reports & Publication RequirementsA Corporate Records Book is necessary for of all your corporate paperwork from your Louisiana Corporation registration documents to the minutes of your Corporation’s future meetings. Everything should be kept organized.

This organizer should be kept in the corporate office for easier access of documents as well. A Corporate Records Book can be purchased at your local school and office supply shop or via direct order via Amazon.


Step 5) Appoint the Initial Directors for Your Louisiana Corporation

Choose the Initial DirectorsWhen forming a Corporation in Louisiana, one of the primary responsibilities of the Incorporator is to elect the initial directors. Once the directors are appointed, you should file an Incorporator’s Statement for your Louisiana Corporation.

The Incorporator’s Statement lists the name and address of each of the directors. This document should then be placed in the Corporate Records Book.


Step 6) Conduct an Initial Meeting with Your Initial Directors

Hold a Meeting with Your Board of DirectorsWith the elected initial directors when starting a Louisiana Corporation, have an initial meeting to decide on some important matters:

As soon as the meeting is completed, the minutes should also be signed by all the participants.


Step 7) Take Care of Your Louisiana Business Tax and Corporate Licensing Requirements

Business LicensesAs a component of your Louisiana Corporation maintenance requisites, you must complete all Louisiana business taxes and licenses and permits before operations.

Follow the steps below to get your business taxes sorted:

  1. Obtain an Employer Identification Number at the IRS website.
  2. Have a clear grasp of each requirement you must fulfill when it comes to Louisiana business taxes. (Check our Louisiana Tax Guide for more information)
  3. Should your Corporation take on an S Corp status, you can do so by filing Form 2553 to be signed by all the shareholders (Optional).

For Louisiana business licenses, a solid grasp of license and permit requirements that apply to your specific business is instrumental in helping you complete state regulations regarding this task. You can refer to our Louisiana Business Licenses and Regulations guide.


Step 8) Open a Business Bank Account

Best Business Bank AccountTo monitor the ins and outs of your Louisiana Corporation finances, put the profits and assets where they belong. The best way to do this is to open a separate account from your personal bank account.

For a quick look at some of our favorite places to bank with, see this review. Keep in mind that you can also use the bank you keep your personal account with, just be sure all transactions separate.


To-Do After Starting a Louisiana Corporation

Now that you have followed the steps above, you are officially a Louisiana Corporation. Other than those 8 steps that are based on state guidelines, here are a few additional steps based on best practices for starting a successful Corporation. Not required, but highly recommended.

1) Create a Financing-Ready Business Plan

Write a Business PlanAlthough not a state requirement, creating a financing-ready business ready paves the way for faster business formation.

Investors look into your business idea’s viability through your business plan, and the faster you can get an investor to fund the necessary capital, the faster you can get started.

Quick Links on How to Write a Business Plan


2) Build a Business Website

Build a Business WebsiteNowadays, it is important to build trust through a professional website. Since you are likely more focused on building your business and have no time to learn code, I recommend building a website on WordPress.

WordPress is free, easy to use, and customizable. No need to hire a custom web developer. See how to start your business website through this free step-by-step guide.


3) Create Corporate Bylaws

Prepare Corporate BylawsLouisiana Corporation bylaws should be created to govern the day-to-day operations of your business.

Although this is not a state-mandated requirement, it is important to create corporate bylaws because it provides order and organization in the internal affairs of your Corporation. Plus it proves your business’ legitimacy.

Please understand that this article is for informational purposes only and is not legal advice. If you have specific questions, please speak with a local professional.

Need Help Forming Your Corporation?

Have a reliable incorporation service like IncFile or LegalZoom do the work for you. Just answer a few questions about your business and they’ll take care of the paperwork.

Although both offer virtually the same service, IncFile is $100 less and our top pick. Enjoy!

Visit IncFile Or Visit LegalZoom