The content on this website is offered as a public service to the entrepreneur community. This information should not be used as a substitute for legal or financial advice from an attorney or a certified public accountant.
Now that you're putting your dreams into action, you'll want to begin writing your business plan. It's really just a road map that defines your business, identifies your goals and how you will achieve those goals. There are basic components that every good plan should include, and plenty of resources available to help you craft a winning business plan.
For more information and assistance with writing a business plan, contact the Arkansas Small Business and Technology Development Center:
The old saying "it takes money to make money" holds true for any new business venture. Once you have capital, you can make your ideas become real. How you finance your business can affect your ability to hire staff, buy goods, acquire licenses, expand and grow.
For more information on business financing contact the Arkansas Small Business and Technology Development Center:
No matter what state you open a business in, there are requirements that must be met at the state level.
For assistance with Arkansas state business requirements contact:Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration (DFA)
Your county may require you to submit certain documents and registrations. Check with your County Clerk's Office to see whether your business name is similar to that of an existing business and file any necessary documents that are required:County Clerk
Most new businesses in Arkansas are required to register with the Secretary of State's Office. To see if your business is required to register, contact:Arkansas Secretary of State
You can also view:
Online registration forms:
"Domestic" means your business will operate in the state of Arkansas.
Be sure to submit the appropriate domestic - and not foreign - forms associated with your entity when you register with the Arkansas Secretary of State. Forms are available online here: https://www.ark.org/sos/ofs/docs/index.php, by visiting the Secretary of State's office, or by contacting a corporate representative. Most forms can be filled out and submitted online.
A business with a single owner with no formal or separate form of
business structure is known as a sole proprietorship. You have sole
control and responsibility of the business. A sole proprietorship is easily
formed, allows important decisions to be made quickly, and typically has
fewer legal restrictions. The owner and the business
The business has limited life and cannot be transferred (as an entity) to
others. Generally, paperwork for sole proprietorships is not filed with the
Secretary of State. Some is filed at the county level.
The Sole Proprietor's responsibilities include but are not limited to:
You may also need to complete the following documents and filings:
Register online with the Arkansas Secretary of State - https://www.ark.org/sos/ofs/docs/index.php
Depending on the type of business you're opening and the products and services you'll sell, it may be helpful to review Arkansas Municipal Code. The Municipal Code covers all aspects of City regulations, including zoning and development requirements.
To review Arkansas Municipal Code go to:
You may be required to apply for permits and licenses from your local government (e.g., city or county). Every place has different requirements. The following are common types of local permits and licenses:City Hall
State permits are obtained through:ABC (Alcoholic Beverage Control)
Depending on the nature of your business, you may need other types of licenses specific to your business. For a list of licensing agencies in the state of Arkansas go to: http://www.arkansas.gov/services/list/category/business-professional-licensing
Stay protected! As a business owner, you'll want to consider obtaining business insurance to protect your business and yourself. Though business insurance is an added expense, in many cases it is also tax deductible. There are many different types of insurance and the level of coverage needed can depend on many aspects of your business.
Go to the Small Business Administration website for more information:
In most states, even if you don't need it, you must fill out WCI forms anyway. If your business doesn't fall into the category that requires this insurance, you must still file a form saying that you do not provide WCI. So, be aware that you may need to file forms anyway, even if you don't need the insurance in Arkansas.
Go to the Arkansas Workers' Compensation Commission website for more information:
Businesses that operate within Arkansas are required to register for one or more tax-specific identification numbers, licenses or permits, including income tax withholding, sales and use tax (seller's permit), and unemployment insurance tax.
Some forms will ask for an NAICS number, which is a number associated with the type of business you have so that it can be categorized appropriately. The NAICS Association website has a list of NAICS numbers for reference.
Contact the Arkansas Department of Finance & Administration for more information about business registration and your tax obligations:Department of Finance and Administration
The Federal Employer ID Number (EIN) is used to report withholding taxes. Almost all businesses are required to obtain one.
Apply for a Federal Tax ID:
U.S. Internal Revenue Service:
Businesses with employees are required to file federal and state employee verification documents. Below is a list of links to help you get started. You should contact the state and IRS to make sure you've filed everything.
Department of Finance and Administration
1509 West 7th Street
Little Rock, AR 72201
United States Internal Revenue Service