New York Incorporation Services
To start a corporation in New York, you must file a Certificate of Incorporation with the Division of Corporations, State Records and Uniform Commercial Code. You can file the document online or by mail. The Certificate of Incorporation costs $125 to file. Once filed with the state, this document formally creates your New York corporation. However, to actually ready the corporation to do business, you must complete several additional steps.
Starting a New York Corporation Guide:
New York Corporation Filing Options
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New York Certificate of Incorporation free download. When you're done filling out the form, submit it to your state.
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1 Day New York Corporation
Includes registered agent service, bylaws & more.$350 Total
New York Certificate of Incorporation Requirements
To form a New York corporation, you must complete and file the Certificate of Incorporation with the Division of Corporations, State Records and Uniform Commercial Code. See the document below and click on any number to see what information is required in the corresponding section.
You must include “Corporation,” “Incorporated,” “Limited” or an abbreviation for one of these words. Tip: Most corporations keep it short and sweet with “Corp” or “Inc.”
The state form already includes a general corporate purpose, so most corporations can skip this section. If your corporation is created for health or educational purposes, however, you’ll need to get the consent or approval from the appropriate state department and include a more specific purpose.
List the county in the state where your corporation is located.
The standard form authorizes 200 shares of stock at no par value. You can edit the number of shares if you’d like to authorize a different number, but you must authorize at least one. You can also include par value if you’d prefer—but be aware that in New York, shares with a stated par value can’t be issued or sold at a lower value.
The New York Secretary of State is automatically designated as an agent for your corporation. However, you can (and should) list an additional address where copies of legal notifications can be sent, so you can know of any legal issues right away. Tip: Hire Northwest as your registered agent and get loads of benefits, including same-day document scans.
An incorporator is the person who signs your Certificate of Incorporation. You must have at least one incorporator, but it doesn’t have to be a director or officer—just someone you authorize to submit your Certificate. Incorporators must include their names and addresses. Tip: We’ll be your incorporator when you hire us to form your New York corporation.
How much does it cost to start a New York corporation?
The state fee to submit a Certificate of Incorporation is $125.
Hire Northwest to form your New York corporation and your total, out-the-door cost is $350. This includes state filing fees, a full year of registered agent service, and all the business forms you need to open a corporate bank account.
How long does it take to start a New York corporation?
Online filings are processed immediately. Paper filings can take as a long as month without expediting. Expediting is an extra $150 for 2-hour processing or $25 for 24-hour processing.
If you hire Northwest to start your corporation, we file online and typically have your New York corporation formed within 24 hours.
Does a New York corporation need a registered agent?
Yes, a New York registered agent is required. The state automatically designates the Secretary of State as your agent. While this meets the minimum legal requirement for appointing a registered agent in New York, it’s not ideal. With every incorporated business in the state as it’s client, the Secretary of State ends up processing mountains of documents each year and can move slowly.
You should be the first to know of any legal issues, and you should be able to get your notifications ASAP. That’s why Northwest Registered Agent LLC offers real time document scans. We also have free tools to help you maintain your New York corporation, and we’ll send you free compliance reminders so you don’t forget key business filings. For a long list of all our benefits, check out our New York registered agent page. As our client, you’re our priority—not just a number.
Create Bylaws for Your New York Corporation
Do I need bylaws?
Yes—after you legally form your New York corporation, it’s time to lay down the law. Your bylaws are where you institute the policies and procedures for how your corporation actually works.
Why are corporate bylaws important?
Your bylaws answer key questions about your internal operations. For instance, who will be on the board of directors? How long will they stay, and how will you choose new board members? How many board members are needed to pass a resolution? How are officers chosen? What authority and duties do they have? The decisions you make in your bylaws are essential for your directors, officers, shareholders, and even the people your corporation works with. Want to sign a contract or open a corporate bank account on behalf of your business? Your bylaws can show whether or not you have the authority to engage in these activities.
How do I begin writing bylaws?
Creating bylaws is critical, but it’s not always easy. That’s why Northwest gives you free corporate bylaws when you hire us to form your New York corporation. We know what kinds of topics and questions corporations need to address, and we’ve spent years refining and improving our forms. We give you other free corporate forms as well, including resolutions and meeting minute templates. Let us help you start out on the right foot. Check out the free corporate forms we provide to help corporations form and maintain their businesses.
Get an EIN for Your New York Corporation
Do I have to get a tax ID number (EIN)?
Yes, corporations must obtain an EIN for their federal tax filings. Your EIN will be useful in plenty of other situations too, from opening a corporate bank account to applying for local licenses and permits.
How do you get an EIN? You can fill out the IRS’s application yourself for no fee. Better yet, skip this extra application and hire Northwest to get your EIN for you—just add on EIN service during checkout when you sign up for our New York incorporation services.
Open a Bank Account for Your New York Corporation
To open a corporate bank account, you will need to bring the following to the bank:
- A copy of the New York corporation’s Certificate of Incorporation
- The New York corporation’s bylaws
- The New York 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 New York corporation need a business license?
New York doesn’t require a general business license. However, local areas often have their own licensing requirements. For instance, NYC and Buffalo both license dozens of specific business activities, from arcades to tow trucks.
Also note that professional corporations will need to include a Certificate of Authority from the state education department’s Division of Professional Licensing Services with their formation paperwork. (Attorneys must include a Certificate of Good Standing from their Appellate Division.) To learn how to apply for these certificates, see our page on New York Professional Service Corporations.
File New York Corporation Reports
What is a New York Biennial Report?
Your New York Biennial Report is a form you file every other year to update your ownership and contact information with the state. The filing fee is $9. If you forget to file (which is easy to do since the report is only due every couple years), your business status will be changed to “delinquent.”
Northwest can help ensure you stay in compliance with the state. When you hire us as your registered agent, we’ll send you reminders to file your report. If you’d rather not worry about the report at all, you can even hire us to submit your Biennial Report on behalf of your corporation.
How much does a corporation in New York cost each year?
Not much—your corporation will pay $9 every two years to submit a New York Biennial Report.
Pay Corporate Taxes
What are the taxes for a New York corporation?
Instead of a standard corporate net income tax, New York has a corporate franchise tax. Your tax base is one of the following (whichever yields the highest tax):
- business income (6.5%)
- business capital (0.1%)
- New York receipts (fixed dollar rate—for example, $25 for up to $100K in receipts)
These rates apply to most corporations, but there are lower rates for qualified New York manufacturers and emerging technology companies.
Some corporations also have to pay a Metropolitan Transportation Business Tax. This tax surcharge is added onto your franchise tax if you operate in one of the following counties: New York, Bronx, Kings, Queens, Richmond, Rockland, Nassau, Suffolk, Orange, Putnam, Dutchess or Westchester.
Have an S corporation? S corps don’t pay the surcharge, but they are subject to the franchise tax. However, they only have one tax base—New York receipts. So, a typical S corp with under $100K in state receipts will pay a $25 franchise tax. Also, note that a federal S election isn’t sufficient for S corp tax status in New York—you’ll also have to fill out S election Form CT-6 with the state’s Department of Taxation and Finance.
The state sales tax rate is fairly low at 4%, but customers can easily pay double that amount or more, thanks to local sales taxes. For instance, the total sales tax rate is 8.75% in Buffalo and 8% in NYC, Rochester and Syracuse.