Your chosen business name should have one of the following words or abbreviations: Corporation, Incorporated, Company, Limited, Corp., Inc., Co. and Ltd. It should also be available for use. To check for its availability, you can use the Virginia business name search tool.
Reserve your chosen business name for 120 days by submitting an Application for Reservation or Renewal of a Corporate Name before the Virginia State Corporation Commission. This form is filed online with a $10 filing fee.
To form your Virginia Corporation, you need to file your Articles of Incorporation at the Virginia State Corporation Commission. Your Articles of Organization should have the following information:
Your form can be filed through postal mail or online. The filing fee will depend on the shares of the corporation it is allowed to issue. The minimum filing fee is $75 for 25,000 shares of stock with a maximum fee of $2,525 if the shares is over $1 million. Here’s a more detailed view of the fee schedule which can be found at the Division of Corporations.
All Virginia Corporations are required to maintain and designate a Virginia Registered Agent to accept service of process notices from the state government. A registered agent is an individual or a business entity legally given permission by the state to conduct business.
Your agent must meet three basic requirements: residency in Virginia, must be an individual, a corporation, a limited liability company itself and a physical address in the state of Virginia. Your registered agent should also willingly accept the responsibility of representing your business.
It is required that you set up a corporate records binder before anything else because this is where you’ll keep important documents and paperwork.
Some of these documents include your minutes of meetings, stock certificates and your stubs. You can buy your Corporate Records Book at the local office supply store or you can order it from Amazon for direct shipping.
As the incorporator of your business, you are given the responsibility of appointing the initial corporate directors of your business. These initial directors will serve as the board during the initial or first annual meeting.
To appoint your initial board of directors, you have to create an “Incorporator’s Statement” bearing the name and address of each initial director. After that, you have to sign it and keep it in your Corporate Records Book for safekeeping.
The first board of directors meeting is very important because this is where the following agenda will be discussed: appointment of corporate officers, adoption of corporate bylaws, choosing a corporate bank, authorization to the issuance of stocks, adoption of stock certificate and corporate seal and discussion of the corporation’s fiscal year.
Everything should be recorded and the corporate minutes must be signed by the incorporator and the board of directors. If the Virginia Corporation is to be formed as an S-Corporation, you also need to include this during the meeting.
There are other requirements which are applicable to your Virginia Corporation and this includes your business taxes and license requirements.
A business bank account is essential if you want to avoid mix ups between your business and personal finances.
You will also be able to accept checks and other forms of payments. Business transactions are recorded in real time so you can keep track of your business finances efficiently. All these promotes healthy financial management.
Recommended Resource: Read this roundup to learn about the different kinds of business bank accounts that you can use.
You can now give yourself a pat in the back for a job well done. Even if you’re already considered a Virginia Corporation, your responsibility doesn’t just end here. You still have to comply with this supplementary requirements before you can start operating. These are not mandatory requirements, but they’ll help you a great deal in the future.
A business plan is a powerful tool that will be able to help you when building a new venture. It’s a blueprint that details every step and procedure that you have to do inorder to start a business with a strong foundation.
Starting a business with the right capital is also important and a business plan can assist you find the right funding. To help you get started on writing a funding-ready business plan, below are some credible resources that you can use.
Building a business website has now become a mandatory requirement for the majority of entrepreneurs. Every business feels the need to have an online presence because it enables them to connect with customers and reach a wider market.
If you want to build your business website, you don’t have to worry anymore because there are effective and affordable ways to do so. This is through the use of web building tools like WordPress and Bluehost. WordPress gives you the ability to build and customize your business in just seconds.
Bluehost on the otherhand is an excellent tool which has a one-click WordPress installation tool and a customer support service.
Your Virginia Corporate Bylaws is your internal rulebook.
In this document, your daily operations, corporate rules, ownership status and management structure will be outlined and explained clearly so that every member or shareholder of the corporation is informed. In the state of Virginia, it’s not a mandatory requirement.
Please note that this article is informational and instructional in nature and should not be considered a replacement of legal advice. This guide is also not a legal document. For inquiries or specific questions, you can ask for professional advice from a Virginia attorney.