Getting started, particularly the first time, can be dizzying. A lot of factors come into play when you are considering whether to form your own business. There are a lot of resources online and within your community to help you. For example, the Small Business Administration provides a list of tasks that can help you get your business off the ground. Developing a solid business plan, doing market research, and securing financing for your business are all essential tasks. Help with picking the right business entity, and forming it properly are also important, and where an attorney, such as Faith At Law, can help you.
For getting started in Maryland, SDAT (the State Department of Assessments and Taxation) has a checklist for business formation. Recently, Maryland established a website for filing certain types of documents with the State, Maryland Business Express. We can help you with preparing the documents you need for filing with Maryland to get started.
Maryland requires that a business entity’s name be unique, and contain certain words or letters based on the business form. Maryland also requires that business entities file an annual personal property tax return, and there may be other tax forms that you will need to complete depending on what your business does and whether you will have employees working for the business. A competent accountant can help you with many of these sorts of issues.
And, depending on the county where you decide to operate, there are local business resources. For example, the Howard County Economic Development Authority’s Center for Business and Technology Development holds regular seminars for people getting started with a new business. Other counties also have similar organizations, such as chambers of commerce, that can help you get in the right direction with counseling and seminars.
Once you have a business idea, plan, name, location, financing and your tax accounts, you may want to consider purchasing a general liability insurance policy from an insurance agent. These policies will provide you with legal representation and coverage up to a certain amount in the event that you get sued because of an injury or breach of a contract.
You may also need to obtain a license to operate your business, or pay fees to your state or local government for sales of certain kinds of goods and services. There may be other considerations to starting your business. Need help getting started? Call or email us to setup an appointment and discuss your questions. You can also read a bit more about forming an LLC here on our website.