Under Oklahoma law, a business may incorporate. If it chooses to do so, it is thereafter identified as its own legal entity. This means that the business can buy or sell property, offer and accept contracts and exercise legal rights in its own name. The Oklahoma Secretary of State receives and processes applications for incorporation, which must be submitted in compliance with local guidelines.
Benefits of Incorporation in Oklahoma
Certain advantages inure to a business in Oklahoma 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. Without incorporation, the personal property of business owners is at stake should the company become unable to fulfill its debts. Furthermore, a business that has not incorporated puts the unnecessary burden on creditors in the Stillwater area to evaluate the credit worthiness of individual owners rather than that of the business, making loans more difficult. Lastly, ownership of a corporation is divided into equal portions or "shares" of stock, which may be bought and sold much more easily than the ownership of an unincorporated business.
Costs of Incorporation
Incorporation can be costly. First, a modest filing fee might be charged in Oklahoma for any business that wants to incorporate. Also, a corporation is taxed as its own entity. The incomes of owners as individuals are also taxed of course, meaning that income to the corporation might be subject to double taxation. However, this disadvantage can be avoided with proper planning and help from a local Stillwater lawyer.