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Arkansas Corporation Service We’re Just Not Annoying®

How to Start a Corporation in Arkansas

To start an Arkansas corporation, you must file Articles of Incorporation with the Arkansas Secretary of State, pay a $45-50 filing fee, and obtain an EIN from the IRS. The complete steps to incorporating in Arkansas are as follows:

  1. File Arkansas Articles of Incorporation
  2. Pay the Arkansas Secretary of State $50 ($45 online)
  3. Wait about a week (2 days if filing online) and receive your approved Articles and a Certificate of Approval
  4. Get a Federal EIN tax ID for the corporation
  5. Create Arkansas corporate bylaws
  6. Take these documents to the bank and get an Arkansas corporate bank account
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Arkansas Articles of Incorporation free download. When you're done filling out the form, submit it to your state.

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Documents & Forms

How to File Arkansas Articles of Incorporation

To form an Arkansas corporation, you file the Articles of Incorporation in the following steps:
Step 1 Choose a name for your new corporation
Step 2 Choose how many shares you’d like to create and decide their par value
Step 3 Decide if you want to hire a registered agent service to minimize public disclosures
Step 4 Declare your corporation’s purpose
Step 5 File online and pay $45 with a credit card (fastest) or mail to the Arkansas Secretary of State at 1401 W Capitol, Suite 250, Little Rock AR 72201 with a check or money order for $50

How Long Does it Take to Start an Arkansas Corporation?

2

Fastest 2 days

File online yourself and receive your Certificate of Approval in a day or two.

2

Almost Fastest (and some might say better) 2 days

Hire Northwest to file your Articles online for you. Just answer a few brief questions about your business, sit back, and let our Corporate Guides file everything correctly the first time.

7+

Not Too Shabby 1-2 weeks

Want to pay more for a slower filing time? Mail your Articles of Incorporation! Mailed filings cost $5 more (plus whatever you’ll pay for printing and mailing costs), so there’s really no reason to mail your filing unless you have to pay with a check or money order.

What is the Cost of an Arkansas Corporation?

The online state filing fee for Arkansas Articles of Incorporation is $45. If you mail your Articles, the filing fee jumps to $50.

When you hire Northwest, your total, out-the-door cost is $270, including state filing fees.

 

How much does a corporation in Arkansas cost each year?

At least $150 a year. Corporations are subject to the state’s Annual Franchise Tax, which has a minimum tax of $150.

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What is the Arkansas Annual Franchise Tax?

While technically a tax, the Arkansas Annual Franchise Tax is more like an annual report, as you confirm or update your ownership and contact information at the same time. The franchise tax rate is 0.3% of the value of your corporation’s outstanding stock (minimum $150). This tax is due May 1st each year. Forget to file? You’ll have to fork over a $25 late fee plus DAILY interest penalties. Northwest can help make sure you don’t miss this deadline. When you sign up for our services, we’ll send you reminder notifications so you don’t get stuck with annoying late fees.

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What are the taxes for an Arkansas corporation?

The Arkansas corporate net income tax rates are:

1%: $0 to $2,999
2%: $3,000 to $5,999
3%: $6,000 to $10,999
5%: $11,000 to $24,999
6%: $25,000 to $99,999
6.5%: $100,000 +

State sales tax is 6.5%, but cities and counties can tack on their own sales taxes as well, making the average total sales tax in Arkansas 8.509%.

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Is a Registered Agent Required for an Arkansas Corporation?

Yes, you must list your Arkansas registered agent—and the address where the agent will be available—in your Articles of Incorporation. The Articles are a public document and become part of the permanent record of your corporation. So, if you opt to be your own registered agent and list your own address, your address will end up on a bunch of mailing lists, and you’ll be sifting through piles of junk mail. You’ll also have to actually be at the address during regular business hours. Business doesn’t always take place in the office though. So, in addition to losing privacy, you’ll be losing your availability as well.

A better option? Hire an expert registered agent service like Northwest. We’re in the business of being available. Our address will go on your public formation documents, and we’ll be there ready and waiting to accept your legal notifications. We’ll even scan and send them the same day, so you can run your business on your time.

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Arkansas Corporation Versus Arkansas LLC:

The state filing fees for Arkansas corporations and LLCs are pretty similar. To form either entity, you’ll pay a $50 fee ($45 online). Both corporations and LLCs are required to pay the Arkansas Annual Franchise Tax. The tax rate for LLCs is a flat $150. The corporate rate is 0.3% of outstanding capital stock (with a minimum of $150). In other words, corporations and LLCs typically pay the same franchise tax, but a corporation will pay more if it has over $50K in outstanding stock.

The differences in how corporations and LLCs operate can also appeal to different kinds of businesses. Large businesses (or those that hope to scale quickly) often opt for corporations. The familiar formal structure makes managing a big business easier—no need to reinvent the wheel. Corporations are also practically synonymous with big business—when you think of a successful company, you picture CEOs, shareholders, stock prices, board meetings and Wall Street. The flexibility of stocks also gives corporations more options. For example, corporations can offer preferred stock to woo more cautious investors. Small businesses often start out with LLCs because they don’t have the same formal requirements, making an LLC a little simpler (particularly if you’re the only one in your business). Considering an Arkansas LLC? Here’s information on starting an LLC in Arkansas.

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Do I Need a Tax ID Number (EIN) for an Arkansas Corporation?

Yes, corporations are required by the IRS to obtain an EIN. This tax ID will be used to identify your business on federal tax filings. EINs also come in handy when you open a corporate bank account, file local taxes and apply for licenses and permits. In many cases, you could hand over your personal social security number instead, but why put your personal info at risk when you don’t have to? To get an EIN, you can apply directly from the IRS website for free. Or, skip this extra application and hire us to get your EIN for you when you sign up for our services. Just add EIN service to your cart when you check out.

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Does an Arkansas Corporation Need a Business License?

Arkansas doesn’t have a statewide general business license. Some cities and counties have their own licensing requirements though. For example, if you engage in any business in Hot Springs, you’ll need to get a business license there, but if you’re just a little further south in Arkadelphia, there’s no general business license required.

Does an Arkansas Corporation Need Bylaws?

Absolutely. Bylaws aren’t like the public documents you have to submit to the state (and if you try to submit bylaws, the state will just ignore them or return them to you). Instead, you adopt bylaws at your organizational meeting and keep them as part of the internal records of your Arkansas corporation. But just because they’re private records doesn’t mean they’re not essential. Your bylaws are the most important internal document of your Arkansas corporation.

In your corporation, how will decisions be made? Who will be on the board of directors? How long do they keep that position? How will they be replaced? How many members will you need to pass a resolution? Who will be your officers? What will their powers and duties be? What classes of stock will you have? Which stock will have voting shares? All these sorts of details—who has the power and how your business actually works—will be spelled out in your bylaws.

The decisions you make in your bylaws will have a significant effect on your Arkansas corporation. But you don’t have to start your bylaws from scratch. When you hire Northwest to form your Arkansas corporation, we give you free corporate bylaws. We also give you resolutions, and other free business forms and templates. Starting your corporation off on the right foot is critical. That’s why we’ve spent years refining and improving our docs. Check out the free corporate forms we provide to help corporations form and maintain their businesses.

Arkansas Articles of Incorporation Requirements

Business Name

Your name must include “Corporation,” “Incorporated,” “Company,” “Limited,” or an abbreviation for one of these words, like “Inc.”

Shares and Par Value

List the number of shares you’d like to create. You have to create at least one. Some or all of these shares can be distributed later on at your organizational meeting. You’ll also need to list the par value (initial price) of each share. If you decide to have different classes or series of shares, you can include this information here as well.

Registered Agent

You can list an individual Arkansas resident (such as yourself) or a business that provides registered agent service (like Northwest). Clearly, we’re fans of Northwest.

Registered Agent Address

You’ll also have to list the street address where your agent will be available. The address you list will become part of the permanent public record of your corporation. When you hire Northwest, our address will go here.

Arkansas Incorporator

Your incorporator is the person you authorize to sign and submit your Arkansas Articles of Incorporation. It doesn’t have to be a director, officer, or anyone in the corporation—but they will need to include their name, address and signature. We’ll be your incorporator when you hire Northwest.

Purpose

Don’t worry; it’s not as existential as it sounds. Your “purpose” is really just your business activities. This section already includes a general business purpose, so a few words describing what your business does (art restoration, cement manufacturing, etc.) is sufficient.

Franchise Tax Contact Name, Address and Phone Number

The state really wants to ensure your corporation will receive your franchise tax form, so they request a bunch of contact information. You’re only required to put your entity name, address and phone number. The phone number requirement is particularly annoying though because this section of the form is still part of the public record. Don’t want to be hassled by telemarketers? At Northwest, we allow our clients to put our phone number and information in this section.

Corporate Compliance
by Local Corporate Guides®