For many people the idea of incorporating their business in any state other than the state they live in or have their business in may seem odd, but there are many advantages to using Deleware incorporation as I will explain in this article. Please remember that I’m not an attorney, nor do I play one on t.v., so I’m not giving you legal advice, that is your lawyers job, I’m just giving you some facts so you can talk things over and get your lawyers input on it. OK? Good, make sure you talk to your own attorney when it comes to legal advice.
It’s estimated that over half of all companies, and up to 60% of all Fortune 500 companies, are incorporated in Delaware. There are many very good reasons for that. Even though you don’t need to live in the state, or even do business in the state, you will need to find a resident of Delaware who can act as your resident agent. That really isn’t a problem as most attorneys offices or incorporators can help you and act as your agent.
If you are trying to decide if it makes sense for you to incorporate in Delaware, here are some points you need to keep in mind:
1. Filing fees for incorporation are very low in Delaware. When you compare the fees to other states such as Texas ($300) or California ($115) the low rate of only $89 makes Delaware a very attractive option.
2. Delaware further extends it’s business friendly reputation by having a more business friendly court system dedicated to only handling business matters. The Delaware Court of Chancery is unique in that the judges of the court are more familiar with business law and tend to take the side of companies more often (as opposed to jury systems where jurors tend to dislike big business and find for the plaintiff more often).
3. In Delaware the Directors and Shareholders can remain anonymous which can be a benefit for many reasons and help them maintain their privacy.
4. If you incorporate in Delaware, but don’t do business there, you don’t have to pay any state income taxes or inheritance taxes for your shares in the company, as long as you’re not a resident of the state.
5. Incorporating as a corporation or LLC will protect your personal assets. Business debt will be kept separate from personal debt so you will not be held personally liable for company debts.
6. You can be the director, shareholder or officer of your own corporation, you can have multiple titles so you don’t have to bring others into your corporate structure if you don’t want to.
7. You don’t have to deal with all the ins and outs of most corporations such as face to face shareholder meetings. Many of these traditional corporate responsibilities aren’t necessary with a Delaware corporation.
When it comes time for you to incorporate your business having a Deleware incorporationhas many advantages especially for the small business owner. Talk with your lawyer and ask them whether or not incorporating in this wonderfully business friendly state makes sense for you and your company.