For businesses seeking identification as separate legal entities, Ohio law allows them to undergo the process of incorporation. An incorporated business acts in its own name, whether buying and selling property, agreeing to contracts or exercising legal rights. In Ohio, the process of incorporation is begun by filing with the Secretary of State in accordance with particular guidelines.

Benefits of Incorporation in Ohio

A corporation enjoys advantages that unincorporated companies do not. Primarily, it cannot be held accountable for an amount of debt greater than the value of the assets that the owners have invested in it. Without incorporation, the personal property of business owners is at stake should the company become unable to satisfy its debts. A corporation might also find it easier to finance itself through loans, allowing creditors in the Bellaire area to evaluate their investment by assessing the corporation rather than the individual credit-worthiness of its owners. Finally, a corporations charter requires that ownership be divided into stakes or "shares" of stock, all of equal size. This makes the process of transferring control much more practical.

Costs of Incorporation

These benefits come at a price. First, incorporation in Ohio may require a filing fee. Second, a corporation pays taxes just like any other entity. In other words, the profits a corporation makes are now taxed separately, while any disbursements to shareholders are taxed as individual income. This is called double taxation. However, a business might avoid this disadvantage with proper planning and assistance from a local Bellaire lawyer.