Articles of incorporation will vary from one state to another, but all will contain many of the same types of information. If you want a sample articles of incorporation for your state, or the state you choose to set up your corporation in, you can simply do a search online for the incorporating body for your state. They will have all the forms as well as a lot of helpful general information available right on their website.
If you prefer you can always contact a lawyer in your area to help walk you through the process. Please keep in mind that the information in this article is only for informational purposes and it is not intended to be legal advice.
Here are the basic categories you will need to fill in when you are filling out the forms. Again, this will vary somewhat from state to state as well as from one corporate type to another, but the basics will be similar and it can provide you with a good place to start.
The first thing you will need to provide is the name you want for your corporation. Make sure that you check with your state first to make sure the name you want is available. Don’t go out and buy things with the corporate name on it until you’re sure you can actually get the name you want. If you don’t check to see if the name you want is still available you will have to start the process all over again if it has already been taken. That is a huge waste of time and money so do yourself a favor and make sure that the name you want isn’t yet taken by another corporation.
The next part you will have to fill in will be regarding your business. You will need to describe the main focus of your business. Don’t worry about getting too specific here, most states will allow some latitude, and it’s possible the focus of your business may shift over time, just give a broad overview of the main focus of your business right now. You will also need to include the time frame your business will be operating. For a business that is intended to last forever you can put something like ‘perpetual duration’.
Next you will need to detail how many shares of stock will be sold as well as what price they will be sold for. The exact number of shares that can be sold may be dictated by the state you are incorporating in but in most cases you will need to have at least one share sold.
Next on your to do list is listing the address of your place of business. If you don’t have a location picked out yet, don’t worry, at this point you can just list the address of one of the officers of the corporation. This is necessary because the state wants to know who to contact if there is any type of litigation.
You will need to list at least one director and one incorporator, it can be the same person, and their physical addresses.
Make sure you sign all the articles and all the directors and incorporators also have to sign. You will need to include the filing fee when you send in your form. These are the basic components you will need and a good example of sample articles of incorporation.