Connecticut Incorporation Services
To start a corporation in Connecticut, you must file a Certificate of Incorporation with the Connecticut Secretary of State. You can file the document online, by mail or in person. The Certificate of Incorporation costs $250 to file. Once filed with the state, this document formally creates your Connecticut corporation. However, to actually ready the corporation to do business, you must complete several additional steps.
Starting a Connecticut Corporation Guide:
Connecticut Corporation Filing Options
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Connecticut Certificate of Incorporation free download. When you're done filling out the form, submit it to your state.
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2 Day Connecticut Corporation
Includes registered agent service, bylaws & more.$475 Total
Connecticut Certificate of Incorporation Requirements
To form a Connecticut corporation, you must complete and file the Certificate of Incorporation with the Connecticut Secretary of State. See the document below and click on any number to see what information is required in the corresponding section.
Your name must include “Corporation,” “Incorporated,” “Company,” “Limited,” an abbreviation of one these words, or a designation of similar meaning in another language, such as the Italian “Societa per Azioni.” Tip: Most businesses keep it short and sweet with “Inc” or “Corp.”
List the number of shares you’d like to create. You have to authorize at least one. If you authorize more than 20,000, your franchise tax fee will increase. If you have more than one class of shares, you’ll also have to include the details (rights, limitations, etc.) about each class.
You can either list an individual (such as yourself) or a business that provides registered agent service (such as Northwest). Personally, we’re fans of Northwest.
The address where your agent will be available must be a Connecticut street address and will become part of the permanent record of your corporation. Tip: When you hire Northwest, our address will go here.
If you file with a paper form, your registered agent will have to sign the form, which can really slow things down if your agent doesn’t happen to be in the same room when your filling out your Certificate of Incorporation. If you file online, your registered agent still has to confirm their acceptance, but the process is easier. The agent will get an email with an acceptance link they have to click within 48 hours. Hire us, and we’ll take care of this within minutes.
If you’re a benefit corporation, you’ll have to note this on your Certificate. A benefit corporation is a corporation created for general public benefit (much like a non-profit except that you can still make a bit of money). These corporations are subject to the rules of the Benefit Corporation Act. Tip: Most corporations aren’t benefit corporations.
The Secretary of State sends Annual Report reminders via email. Remember that your Certificate of Incorporation is a public document, meaning any email you list will likely end up in the hands of data sellers. Don’t want an inbox clogged with spam? We allow our clients to list our email address. We’ll send you reminder notifications for your Annual Reports, and you won’t have to ruin your own email or create a business email you’ll never check.
Your incorporator is just the person who signs and submits your Certificate of Incorporation. Incorporators have to include their name, address, and signature. Your incorporator doesn’t have to be a director, officer, or anyone in your corporation—we’ll be your incorporator when you hire Northwest.
How much does it cost to start a Connecticut corporation?
Starting a Connecticut corporation will set you back $250 in initial state fees. While the base filing fee for your Certificate of Incorporation is $100, there’s a minimum $150 franchise fee that must be paid at the same time. (Corporations with more than 20,000 shares pay an additional 1/5 to 1/2 cent per share). Expediting is available, but it won’t significantly speed up an online filing. If you file by mail, however, you might consider paying the $50 fee for 24-hour processing.
Hire Northwest and your total, out-the-door cost is $475, including state filing fees.
Note: Within 30 days, you’ll also have to shell out $150 to file your Organization and First Report Form.
How long does it take to start a Connecticut corporation?
File online and your Connecticut Certificate of Incorporation will be processed in about two days. Have some time to kill? Mail your filing to the Connecticut Secretary of State and wait for someone to enter all of your data in by hand. Maybe you can finally take off and go fishing for a few days. Even if you pay the $50 for 24-hour expediting, mailing time isn’t included, so you’ll still get your corporation faster (and cheaper) if you file online.
If you hire Northwest to start your corporation, we file online and typically have your Connecticut corporation formed within 2 business days.
Does a Connecticut corporation need a registered agent?
Yes, every Connecticut corporation needs a Connecticut registered agent. Some people try to save a few bucks by being their own registered agent—after all, you don’t get rich wasting money. However, the headache you gain and the privacy you lose are something to carefully consider. If you’re your own registered agent, you’ll have to publicly list a physical address that will become a part of the permanent record of your Connecticut corporation. Unfortunately, publicly-listed addresses are common targets for data-sellers and spammers. You would also have to be regularly available at the registered address in case a process server drops by. Missing legal notifications could cost your corporation much, much more than a registered agent fee.
A wiser investment? Hire Northwest. We’ll list our address throughout your Certificate of Incorporation. We’ll be ready and waiting to accept your notices, and we’ll scan and send them to you the same day, so you can run your business from wherever you want to be.
Create Bylaws for Your Connecticut Corporation
Do I need bylaws?
Absolutely. While there’s no state agency or office awaiting your bylaws, this document is where you make some of the most critical organizational decisions for your Connecticut corporation.
Why are corporate bylaws important?
Bylaws are the internal rules of your corporation. They define the roles of board members—who they are, how long they last, how they’re replaced, and how they pass resolutions. They also define the roles of officers—how they’re elected, what their duties are, and how long they serve. They spell out rules for essential practices—approval of contracts or stock certificates, procedures for meetings, and requirements for record-keeping. Basically, your bylaws determine how your business actually operates (and more importantly, what kind of authority each person has). Your bylaws are crucial for those inside your business, but they’re also useful for people outside your business. You’ll likely need your bylaws to open a corporate bank account. Potential investors, lenders and partners will want to check out your bylaws before signing on to work with you.
Do I have to write bylaws?
Not from scratch. When you hire Northwest to form your Connecticut corporation, we give you free corporate bylaws. At Northwest, our business is helping corporations start and maintain their businesses. To help our clients succeed, we’ve spent years refining our free corporate bylaws. We’ve also developed loads of other free corporate forms, from resolutions to meeting minute templates.
Get an EIN for Your Connecticut Corporation
Do I have to get a tax ID number (EIN)?
Yes—the IRS requires corporations to get a federal tax ID (also known as an EIN or FEIN). The IRS uses this number to identity your corporation on federal tax filings. Your EIN is useful for more than just federal filings though—you’ll likely need your EIN to open a bank account, apply for local licenses or permits, or even register for a sales tax license from the Department of Revenue Services. In some cases, you can use your personal social security number instead—but in the age of data mismanagement and identity theft, why risk your personal information?
Getting an EIN is fairly simple. You can fill out a free application directly with the IRS. Or, save yourself a step and hire Northwest. Just add on EIN service during checkout when you sign up for our services.
Open a Bank Account for Your CT Corporation
To open a corporate bank account, you will need to bring the following to the bank:
- A copy of the Connecticut corporation’s Certificate of Incorporation
- The Connecticut corporation’s bylaws
- The Connecticut corporation’s EIN
If your bylaws don’t specifically assign the power to open a bank account, you may also want to bring a corporate resolution to open a bank account that states that the person going to the bank is authorized by the business to open the account in the name of the corporation.
We recommend calling your bank ahead of time before going in and asking what their requirements are. Most banks don’t open corporate accounts nearly as frequently as personal accounts, so some bankers may be unfamiliar with their own bank’s requirements. As frustrating as that may be for you, calling ahead will help save you from being super annoyed when you walk into the bank.
Obtain a Business License
Does a Connecticut corporation need a business license?
Connecticut doesn’t have a general, statewide business license, but if you plan to engage in any sales, you’ll need to register with the Connecticut Department of Revenue Services.
Note that your corporation may be subject to local business licensing requirements. For example, if you engage in any business in the City of Norwalk, you’ll have to get an annual business license.
File Connecticut Corporation Reports
What is an Organization and First Report Form?
Within 30 days of forming your business, your Connecticut corporation is required to submit an Organization and First Report Form. This form is basically an initial report—you confirm your contact info and list organizational information (directors, officers, and the date of your organizational meeting). This form comes with a $150 filing fee and can be filed online.
What is a Connecticut Annual Report?
Your Connecticut Annual Report is a form your corporation files each year to update the state on your corporation’s contact and ownership information. The report and $150 fee are due at the end of your anniversary month (the month you started your business). While there’s no late fee, you’ll lose your good standing if you file late. And if your report remains unfiled, the state will eventually dissolve your corporation. No worries though—Northwest will help ensure your corporation stays in compliance. We’ll send you reminder notifications for your reports. We can even take this annoying task off your plate entirely when you hire us to file your Annual Reports for you each year.
How much does a corporation in Connecticut cost each year?
Every year, Connecticut corporations have to shell out $150 to file an Annual Report.
Pay Corporate Taxes
What are the taxes for a Connecticut corporation?
Technically, Connecticut doesn’t have just a plain corporate income tax. Instead, the state has its “Connecticut Business Tax” for C corporations. This tax is the greater of either your corporation’s net income base (taxed at 7.5%) or capital base (taxed at 0.31%). There is a minimum tax of $250. Also, if you’re really rolling dough, note that businesses with $100 million or more in annual gross income also pay a 10% “surtax.”
Have an S corporation? You won’t pay the Connecticut Business Tax, but you will be subject to the state’s Business Entity Tax (BET), which has a flat rate of $250 a year, and the Pass-Through Entity Tax, which is typically 6.99% of Connecticut income.
The state sales tax rate is 6.35% across the state. There are a handful of goods and services that have specialty tax rates though, such as a 9.35% rate for short-term vehicle rentals.