Sole Proprietor Business: Start-Up Guide

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Sometimes when a single person is beginning a small company of their own, they will form a Sole Proprietorship.  For instance, some examples of sole proprietorships could be a bakery, a small service shop for vehicles, etc.  In Oklahoma it is relatively simple to establish a Sole Proprietor business.  This is a good way for many people to take advantage of being a business owner, while not having to run a corporation.  This article will provide you with some steps to begin.

Starting a Sole Proprietor Business

To begin a Sole Proprietor business, you must follow a series of steps to complete the process.

  1. Choose a Name. You must choose a name for your business.  In most cases, if you wish to use your actual name you can.  This is because there are no distinctions between an owner and the business entity.  However, if you choose to use a different name for your business there are some forms you need.  First, you will need to check with the Secretary of State’s website to make sure the name you want is available.
  2. File a Trade Name Report. Next, you should fill out a Trade Name Report.  This will ask for basic information about your business such as addresses and more.  Plus, the form costs about $25 for registration.  Also, you should get a Certificate of Fictitious Name form from your county clerk.  This form will provide you with the lawful ability to be “doing business as”, or a DBA designation.  Having this form will make opening bank accounts for your business easier.
  3. Obtain Licenses, Permits, and/or Zoning Clearances. In some cases, where you are going to have a shop open, then you must receive zoning permits and clearances.  However, if you do not have a specific place of business this may not be necessary.  Further, you will need to obtain any professional licenses and permits your profession requires.
  4. Obtain an Employer Identification Number (EIN). This is not required unless you are employing other people, as well as yourself.  An EIN is the identity of your Sole Proprietorship for tax purposes.  This will also help to reduce the possibility of identity theft.  This is because if you do not use an EIN to report your taxes, then you must use your social security number to do so.
  5. Buy General Liability Insurance. Obtaining this insurance is optional, but highly encouraged.  An owner of a sole proprietorship is liable for all aspects of the business.  This means that you must ensure your accounting practices are above board, as well as any medical expenses for customers or other workers.

Advantages of a Sole Proprietorship

There are several advantages to owning this type of business.  First, you will be the sole beneficiary of all your profits.  If you are the only employee, you will not be subject to corporate taxes since you will be reporting the profits personally.  Thus, you can avoid double taxation.  Second, you are directly in control of all the business elements.  Therefore, you can run the business exactly how you would prefer.  Many other benefits exist as well.

Tulsa Sole Proprietor Business Attorneys

Our Business Attorneys are familiar with creating and running Sole Proprietor establishments.  We can walk you through the process to ensure all of your paperwork is complete and correct.  Your initial consultation with our offices is free.

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