Choose a business type
Choosing how your business will be structured is one of the first and most fundamental decisions that you will make. Consider the options available in Minnesota. You may wish to consult with an attorney, accountant, or business technical assistance adviser before making a determination about which business structure is right for you.
Choose a business name
You'll want a name that clearly tells people what your business does, and isn't too similar to any other businesses already in operation. Check online see whether your business name is available: go to the Business Filings search page and type your business name into the search box. If no results come up, your name is available.
Register your business with the Minnesota Secretary of State
All LLCs, Corporations, Nonprofits, and Limited Partnerships in Minnesota must register with the Office of the Minnesota Secretary of State.
File a Certificate of Assumed Name
If you will be a sole proprietorship or you are using a name other than your given name, the names of your partners, or the officially registered name of your LLC or corporation, you must file an assumed name with the Minnesota Secretary of State.
Register for Tax ID Numbers
You will need one or more tax identification numbers to legally operate your business. You can find out what numbers you are required to have by visiting the Minnesota Employment and Economic Development webpage on taxes.
A business needs to obtain a Minnesota tax identification number if it is required to file information returns for income tax purposes, has employees, makes taxable sales, or owes use tax on its purchases. Most businesses need a Minnesota tax identification number. However, a sole proprietorship or single member limited liability company which does not have any of these tax obligations does not need a Minnesota tax identification number.
If you hire employees, you must apply for a Federal Employer Identification Number. If your business is a sole proprietorship, a FEIN may be helpful, but is not necessary.