1. 1 Entity Type
  2. 2 Entity Structure
  3. 3 Entity Location
  4. 4 Tax ID
  5. 5 Employees

Success!

You are on your way to starting your new business.

Based on your answers, we've put together some information to help you along the way.
The following information should be used as a guideline and for reference as you begin your journey.

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.

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Resources for Starting Your Business

Business Plan

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:

Financing

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:

State Obligations

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)
1509 West 7th Street
Little Rock, AR 72201
501-324-9316
County Obligations

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:

Find your County Clerk

Open Your Business

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
Business & Commercial Services
Victory Building, 1401 W. Capitol Ave, Ste. 250
Little Rock, AR 72201
888-233-0325 or 501-682-3409

You can also view:

Online registration forms:

Domestic Entities

"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.

Limited Liability Company

A limited liability company (LLC) combines many characteristics
of corporations and partnerships. The LLC provides limited liability to its members.

Responsibilities include but are not limited to the following:

  • Articles of Incorporation
  • Bylaws
  • Organizational Board Resolutions
  • Stock Certificates
  • Stock Ledger
  • IRS & State S Corporation election

Register online with the Arkansas Secretary of State - https://www.ark.org/sos/ofs/docs/index.php

Operate Your Business

Municipal Code

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:

Permits:

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:

Find your City Hall

  • Business Licenses / Tax Permits - from your city or county clerk or revenue department. Many jurisdictions require a trader's license or tax certificate in order to operate.
  • Building Permit - from your city or county building and planning department. This permit is generally required if you are constructing or modifying your place of business.
  • Health Permit - from your city or county health department.
  • Occupational Permit - from your city or county building and planning development department. This permit is required for home-based business in some jurisdictions.
  • Signage Permit - from your city or county building and planning department. Some jurisdictions require a permit before you can erect a sign for your business.
  • Alarm Permit - from your city or county police or fire department. If you have installed a burglar or fire alarm, you will likely need an alarm permit.
  • Zoning Permit - from your city or county building and planning department. This permit is generally required if you are developing land for specific commercial use.
  • Alcohol & Tobacco Permit - Any business selling alcohol and/or tobacco must obtain both city and state permits.

State permits are obtained through:

ABC (Alcoholic Beverage Control)
1515 West 7th Street
Suite 503
Little Rock, AR 72201
501-682-1105
Tobacco Control Board
101 East Capitol Avenue
Suite 204
Little Rock, AR 72201
501-682-9756

Licensing:

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

Business Insurance

Insurance

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:

Workers Compensation Insurance (WCI)

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:

File Your Business Taxes

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
1509 West 7th Street
Little Rock, AR 72201
501-324-9316
www.dfa.arkansas.gov

Federal Employer ID Number

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:
1-800-829-4933

http://www.irs.gov/Businesses/Small-Businesses-&-Self-Employed/Apply-for-an-Employer-Identification-Number-%28EIN%29-Online

Employees

Employee Verification

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
501-324-9316

United States Internal Revenue Service
1-800-829-4933
http://www.irs.gov/Businesses/Small-Businesses-&-Self-Employed/Businesses-with-Employees

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