Illinois law allows a business to incorporate and be recognized as its own legal entity. An incorporated business acts in its own name, whether buying and selling property, assenting to contracts or exercising legal rights. The office of the Secretary of State is the agency that receives applications for incorporation in Illinois, and they must be completed in conformity with certain guidelines.
Benefits of Incorporation in Illinois
Certain benefits inure to a business in Illinois that has incorporated over one that has not. First, a corporation's liabilities can never go beyond the amount invested in the business by the owners. With unincorporated businesses, personal property of owners can be liquidated in order to satisfy the liabilities of the business. Furthermore, banks in the Berkeley area prefer to evaluate the credit worthiness of a business as a whole rather than that of individual owners. This makes the process of acquiring corporate loans simpler. Finally, the ownership of a corporation is divided into an abundance of equal portions or "shares" of stock. Without this mechanism, transferring ownership of a business would be impractical.
Costs of Incorporation
These advantages come at a price. First, incorporation in Illinois may require a filing fee. Second, a corporation pays taxes just like any other entity. The incomes of owners as individuals are also taxed of course, meaning that income to the corporation may be subject to double taxation. However, this disadvantage can be avoided with proper planning and help from a local Berkeley lawyer.