1. Incorporation: Background
2. Incorporation Number: Introduction
3. Incorporation Number: Requirements
4. Incorporation Number: Application
5. Incorporation Number: Fee

Updated November 10, 2020:

Where do I find my incorporation number? This number is an important number associated with your business. The LLC (limited liability company) and the corporation (C or S, general or closed) are the most popular types of incorporated businesses. There are advantages to incorporating your company, such as having:

  • A professional image
  • A separate legal identity
  • More accessibility to capital
  • Limited personal liability for shareholders
  • Tax Benefits
  • An existence that doesn't end

Incorporation: Background

Your company should have a corporate seal since this may be a requirement from your bank, certain contracting parties, government agencies, or when signing on official documents and certain contracts. A professional who is qualified should be consulted before the incorporation is processed.

A registered agent is a company or individual who lives in the state where your company was incorporated. The registered agent forwards and receives certain items as the official representative of your company in the state. These items include:

  • Any legal proceedings or notice involving your company
  • Any notices or documents spread out from the corporate authorities (e.g. Franchise Tax Notice, Annual Report, etc.)

A registered agent in the state where a company is incorporated must represent the LLCs and corporations in that state. The corporation's name has to include one of the followings identifiers:

  • Foundation
  • Society
  • Corporation or Corp.
  • Limited or Ltd.
  • Fund
  • Incorporated or Inc.
  • Company or Co.
  • Association
  • Syndicate
  • Union
  • Institute
  • Club

Abbreviations can be used with or without a comma (e.g. CorpoMax, Inc. or CorpoMax Inc.).

Incorporation Number: Introduction

Several legal forms may be needed to structure a business. The business can exist as a nonprofit corporation, a cooperative, a corporation, limited partnership, sole proprietorship, partnership, or limited liability company. The federal tax requirements for filing each of these may differ.

When you own a business, it is very important to know if your company needs an incorporation number and to understand what that is. This number is commonly called an Employer Identification Number (EIN) or a Federal Tax Identification Number (TIN). This federal number is issued to all American businesses by the IRS (Internal Revenue Service), whether or not they are incorporated. All partnerships or corporations must have an incorporation number, according to the IRS. The federal government uses the incorporation number to recognize the business for purposes of tax reporting.

This number is also needed to open a checking account for the business, hiring employees, or getting business credit. An incorporation number is similar to a Social Security number because both numbers are used to identify only a specific business or person with its unique number.

Incorporation Number: Requirements

Partnerships and corporations must possess an incorporation number. Certain criteria must apply for any business to have an incorporation number, according to the IRS. An incorporation number must be obtained if the company has any number of employees. If the company participates in a tax-deferred pension (Keogh) plan, it has to have a number.

The company must get an incorporation number if it holds back taxes on income, besides wages, to a non-resident foreigner. A number must also be obtained if the company files excise, employment, or tobacco, alcohol, tax returns, or if the business is a particular kind of company, like a farmers' business or nonprofit.

Incorporation Number: Application

A business can apply for several incorporations through links on the IRS's website. The online application must be completed for the agency website to verify the information immediately and provide the number of incorporation. Filling out the application online is preferred by the agency, but there are different methods of application. The agency can be called directly by the business applying for an incorporation number. The agency also allows applications through mail or fax.

Incorporation Number: Fee

The application for a number of incorporation is free, and you are not bound to pay any money to the IRS. Other websites might demand a fee for an incorporation number, which the agency warns about. Additionally, the agency warns about a phishing email, supposedly from the IRS's Professional Responsibility Office, because the agency does not communicate with taxpayers through email.

The corporate number is a number which the Secretary of State gives to all businesses.

If you need help with understanding where you find your incorporation number, you can post your legal need on UpCounsel's marketplace. UpCounsel accepts only the top 5 percent of lawyers to its site. Lawyers on UpCounsel come from law schools such as Harvard Law and Yale Law and average 14 years of legal experience, including work with or on behalf of companies like Google, Menlo Ventures, and Airbnb.