Illinois Corp

To start an Illinois Corp, or Illinois based Corporation, you'll need to complete a few important steps. Once you have determined your company name, you will need to complete a few steps to file your corporation with the office of the Illinois Secretary of State.

There are several useful links on the official Illinois government website that provide information regarding:

  • Services the state provides
  • State agencies
  • Helpful links for your new company

Naming Your Corporation

Before filing a Registered Agent and Articles of Incorporation, you must first name your company. You will need to check the availability of your company name on the Secretary of State's website or by contacting the business services department. Once you have decided on a name for your business, it can be reserved for up to 90 days by contacting the office of the Secretary of State.

Guidelines for the Registered Agent and Registered Office

Every corporation, whether foreign or domestic, is required to have a registered agent with an office registered within the state. 

  • The registered office address may change but must always be within the state of Illinois.
  • A registered agent does not necessarily have to be a person. It may also be a foreign or domestic entity, such as an LLP, LP, LLC, or Corporation. However, the registered agent, whether a natural person or an artificial legal entity, must be licensed to conduct business in Illinois.
  • A P.O. box is not sufficient for a Registered Office address. The Registered Office must have a street address located in Illinois.

Fees for the Registered Agent and Registered Office

  • There is a total of $75 in fees required to form a Foreign or Domestic corporation. These fees include:
    • A $25 filing fee
    • And a $50 expedited fee
  • There will be a total of $30 in fees required to form a Foreign or Domestic NFP corporation. These fees include:
    • A $5 filing fee
    • And a $25 expedited fee
  • Any applicable expedited fees will be charged by the Department of Business Services within 24 hours of filing. This excludes weekends and holidays
  • All payments must be made using a major credit card, such as American Express, MasterCard, or Visa. All credit card payments will incur an additional transaction fee at 2.35%, with a $1.00 minimum.

Guidelines for Articles of Incorporation

  • When considering the name for your new business, keep in mind the title must include one of the following words:
    • Corporation (or Corp.)
    • Company (or Co.)
    • Incorporated (or Inc.)
    • Limited (or Ltd.)
  • The company must have a Registered Agent with a business address located within the state.
    • A P.O. box cannot be used.
    • The address must be a street address located within the state of Illinois.
  • If you file your corporation online, it will automatically be given Common Stock. This cannot be changed.
    • The number of authorized shares of Common Stock should be indicated, as well as the proposed number of shares, at this time.
    • This does not require additional reporting to the Secretary of State.
    • Any monetary considerations to be received by the company when exchanging shares of Common Stock should also be outlined at this time.
  • All new companies filed online must agree and adhere to the following purpose, according to the office of the Illinois Secretary of State:
    • "The transaction of any or all lawful purposes for which corporations may be incorporated under the Illinois Business Corporation Act."
    • Professional, medical, close, or business corporations with a specific purpose cannot be filed online.
  • The person filing for incorporation must be an actual person, at least 18 years old.
  • The Articles of Incorporation must include:
    • The company name
    • Statement of purpose
    • Stock structure
    • The name of the Registered Agent
    • Street address for the Registered Office
    • The names and addresses of all incorporators
  • Non-profit corporations and organizations cannot be filed online.

Fees for Articles of Incorporation

  • There will be a total of $275 in fees associated with filing Articles of Incorporation. These fees include:
    • A $25 franchise tax fee
    • A $150 filing fee
    • And a $100 expedited fee

The $100 expedited fee is incurred because all Articles of Incorporation are reviewed by the office of the Secretary of State within 24 hours of filing, with the exception of weekends and holidays.

  • All payments must be made using a major credit card, such as American Express, MasterCard, or Visa. All credit card payments will incur an additional transaction fee at 2.35%, with a $1.00 minimum.

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