How to Incorporate a Business in Illinois (IL)

There are three ways to incorporate your business in Illinois:
  1. Hire a lawyer to do the job for you (the most expensive option)
  2. Walk in to the Secretary of State office and do it by yourself
  3. Use a professional incorporation company, like Active Filings.
When you hire Active Filings to incorporate your business in Illinois, you’ll receive everything you need to track and maintain your company, including free expedited service, one year of registered agent service, and instant access to your online account where you can add additional services, track orders, maintenance requirements and digital notifications.
However, whatever method you choose, the section below will provide you the basic information you need to know about IL filings.

IL Articles of Incorporation Requirements

The Articles of Incorporation is the formation document you file with the Illinois Secretary of State to register your corporation with the state (LLCs file Articles of Organization). In Illinois, you can file Articles of Incorporation by mail, fax or in person (it will take the SOS 1 to 5 days to process your filing). If you hire Active Filings to incorporate your business, we are authorized to file online with the state, and we’ll form your LLC or corporation in 1 business day.
To complete your Illinois Articles of Incorporation, you’ll need to include the following information:
  • Company Name
    The name shall contain word “corporation”, “company”, “incorporated” or “limited” or an abbreviation thereof. The name shall not contain any word or phrase which indicates or implies that it is organized to conduct business of insurance, assurance, indemnity, acceptance of savings deposit, banking, or corporate fiduciary. The name shall be distinguishable from the name of any domestic or foreign corporation authorized to transact business or a name exclusive right to which is, at the time, reserved or registered.
  • Company Purpose
    List the reason for forming the corporation or the business/activity which the corporation will engage in.
  • Authorized Shares
    List the number of shares of corporate stock you are currently authorizing. Technically, this is when you “create” your stock (more can always be authorized later), and that stock will be issued to your shareholders at your first shareholder meeting.
  • Registered Agent Information
    In Illinois, a registered agent (also known as a resident agent) is an individual or business that serves as your company’s official point of contact for lawsuits and legal notices. As part of Active Filings’ incorporation service, we include a year of registered agent service when you hire us to incorporate your business in Illinois.
  • Names and Addresses of the Incorporators
    The incorporator is the person or company authorized to form the corporation. For example, if you hired us, we would list ourselves as the incorporator. The incorporator does not have any stake in or claim to the corporation being formed.

Director Information

* Minimum Number – One or more.

* Residence Requirements. – No provision.

* Age Requirements – None.

* Directors are not required to be listed in the articles of incorporation.

Officer Information

* The officers are not required to be listed in the articles of incorporation.

Stock Information

* An increase in the shares may cause an increase in the initial filing fee.

Yearly Requirements

* Annual Statements

* The annual franchise tax payable by each domestic or foreign corporation is computed at the rate of 0.1% of stated capital for the 12-month period beginning on the 1st day of the anniversary month. The tax cannot be less than $25 or more than $1 million per year.

* The annual report must be filed within 60 days immediately preceding the first day of the anniversary month of corporation each year (or in the case of a corporation which has established an extended filing month, the extended filing month of the corporation each year). Filing fee, $15.

Income Tax Rate

* 4.8% of the corporation’s net income.

Franchise Tax Rates

* The basis for an additional franchise tax payable by a domestic corporation is (1) the increased amount represented in Illinois of its paid-in capital, or (2) in the case of a merger or consolidation, the increased amount represented in Illinois of the paid-in capital of the surviving or new corporation.

* The basis for the annual franchise tax payable by a domestic corporation is the amount represented in Illinois of its paid-in capital on the last day of the 3rd month preceding the anniversary month. The “taxable period” is the 12-month period commencing with the first day of the second month preceding the corporation’s anniversary month in the preceding year and prior to the first day of the second month immediately preceding its anniversary month in the current year.

* The annual franchise tax payable by each domestic or foreign corporation is computed at the rate of 0.1% for the 12-month period beginning on the 1st day of the anniversary month. The tax cannot be less than $25 or more than $1 million per year.


Illinois Secretary of State

The Secretary of State, through the Department of Business Services is responsible for examining, processing, filing and maintaining documents related to the existence and structure of Illinois domestic corporations or LLC and foreign (out of state or country) corporations or LLC qualified to transact business in Illinois.

The department of Business Services is a centralized repository for business filings in six areas. Through fees and taxes, the department generates approximately 69 percent of the money deposited into the General Revenue Fund by the Secretary of State’s office. Available documents at both office locations include pamphlets, forms, Certificates of Good Standing and No record

Through their Business Portal, the State’s provides a central location for the filing of business entities, trade and service marks, judgment liens, and fictitious name registrations. In essence, the Departmentn provides a statewide registry and information resource for almost all business activity in Illinois..

Locations:

Springfield Office:

Michael J. Howlett Bldg.
501 S. 2nd St., Rm 328
Springfield, IL 62756

Phone: (217) 782-6961
Hours: Monday – Friday
8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Chicago Office:

69 W. Washington
Suite 1240
Chicago, IL 60602

Phone: (312) 793-3380
Hours: Monday – Friday
8:00 a.m.- 5:00 p.m.

More information about incorporating in Illinois:


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