Begin a Corporation in Maryland
Incorporating in Maryland begins with submitting Articles of Incorporation to Maryland’s Department of Assessments & Taxation. Corporations are also required to get an EIN, apply for any necessary licenses or permits and hold an organization meeting. Many corporations also open a corporate bank account.
Steps to Forming a Maryland Corporation
- Create and file your Maryland Articles of Incorporation
- Get an EIN from the IRS
- Apply for state and county permits and licenses
- Hold your Maryland corporation’s organization meeting
- Open a corporate bank account
For a no-hassle incorporation, choose our formation services, and we’ll provide you with everything you need to incorporate today!
Incorporate with us! We are:
We understand Maryland business. We form Maryland corporations daily.
We don’t just file your formation documents—we provide you with everything you need, including custom documents and a full year of resident agent service.
For just $325, you get a ready-in-hand Maryland corporation, including state filing fees.
Maryland Articles of Incorporation Requirements
Maryland Articles of Incorporation are submitted to legally form your corporation. The Articles include important information about your business, such as your corporation’s name, purpose, and resident agent. The information below is requested on the form for Maryland’s Articles of Incorporation for a Stock Corporation.
- Incorporators: Incorporators file and form your Maryland Articles of Incorporation. Incorporators must include their address and signature. Incorporators don’t have to be a part of the business or have any ownership rights. If you hire us, we’ll be your incorporator.
- Corporation Name: You can’t choose a name that’s already in use in Maryland. To check availability, you can use Maryland Business Express’s Business Entity Search. Also, you must include one of the following in your Maryland corporation’s name: Corporation, Corp., Incorporation, Inc., Limited, or Ltd.
- Purpose: Most corporations write a general purpose, indicating they are incorporated for the lawful pursuit of business in Maryland. Your purpose only needs to be one or two sentences but can be longer if necessary.
- Principal Office: The principal office is a corporation’s main business office. It’s often where the executives maintain offices and where corporate books and records are kept. The principal office must be a physical office in Maryland, not a P.O. Box.
- Resident Agent: Corporations are required to appoint a Maryland resident agent. A resident agent accepts service of process, legal documents and official notifications for your Maryland corporation. Maryland corporations can’t act as their own resident agent. In our formation services package, we include a full year of resident agent service, providing you with privacy and peace of mind. Our address can be listed on public records instead of yours, saving you from spam. Our expert filers sort and scan documents daily, ensuring you never miss an important notice.
- Shares: You’ll need to decide how many shares you would like to create and what their par value will be. Par value is the initial price (and the minimum price) of each share. Depending on your answers in this section of the form, you may have to pay an additional variable filing fee. The fee is required if the prices of all these shares together (the aggregate par value) is over $100,000. Also, you’ll need to pay the fee if over 5,000 shares of stock have $0 for par value.
- Directors: You’ll choose how many directors your corporation will have and who will serve as acting director(s) until the organization meeting.
How Do I File Maryland Articles of Incorporation?
You can file online, by mail, or in person.
Maryland Business Express is the portal used for online filings.
- Create a Maryland Business Express Account
In the portal, select “Register Your Business” and “Create Account.” Enter your name, phone number and email, and choose a username and password. You’ll then be redirected to your Account Home.
- Answer Questions About Your Company
Click “Create a New Business Filing” and select “Stock Corporation.” You can use the online forms or upload your own documents. If using the online forms, answer the questions and provide the required information.
- Pay the Fee
All online filings are considered expedited. The filing fee is $150 plus service fees of either $3 or 3%. PayPal or credit cards (Visa, MasterCard, Discover or American Express) are charged 3% and eChecks are charged $3.
Filings are processed within 7 business days, with an average processing time of 1-3 days.
The Maryland Articles of Incorporation form can be mailed or submitted in person. Standard processing takes over a month (4-6 weeks!) and costs $120. Expedited filings are usually processed within a week and cost an extra $50, payable by credit card, check or money order.
Same-day processing is only available for filings hand-delivered during business hours (8:30am-4:30pm) and costs an extra $50.
Maryland Formation Services
Beyond creating and submitting your Maryland Articles of Incorporation, we offer a fast, affordable formation package that gives you everything you need to get your corporation in business!
We file your Maryland Articles of Incorporation online, so they’re processed in an average of 1-3 days (not 4-6 weeks). Our fees are simple. Besides the state fees, we charge just $100 for formation services and $49 for our premium resident agent service. No hidden fees or mystery charges.
Maryland Filing Fees
Our Formation Service Fee
1 Year Resident Agent Service
In addition to resident agent service and formation paperwork, we provide you the custom documents you need for your organization meeting and for opening a corporate bank account. All of this comes with speed, security and exceptional customer service.
- 1-Year Resident Agent Service (Renewals at the Same Low Rate!)
- Instant Access to Services Through Our Secure Online Portal
- Electronic Delivery of Your Documents
- Expert Customer Service Support
- Annual Report Reminders and Compliance Notifications
- Address Privacy—Our Address on Public Records (Not Yours)
- Custom Documents: Bylaws, Initial Resolutions and More!
Next Steps for Maryland Corporations
After incorporation, your Maryland corporation will need to contact a variety of state and federal agencies to ensure compliance with regulations and mandates.
An Employer Identification Number (EIN) is a federal tax ID issued by the IRS. Corporations are required to obtain an EIN. Applications can be made via the IRS website for no cost. Or, if you’d rather save a step, you can add this service to our formation package for the cost of our time: $50.
Maryland Permits and Licenses
Maryland requires state and county licenses for certain business activities. A list of licenses and permits, organized by business type, is available at Maryland Business Licenses.
Maryland Corporation Organization Meeting
Maryland Statute §2–109 requires the directors of a corporation to hold an organization meeting. All directors must be notified of the meeting’s time and place at least three days before the meeting is held. At the meeting, the board of directors can elect officers, adopt bylaws and issue stock. We can help make your organization meeting a breeze with our custom corporate bylaws, included free as part of our formation package.
Maryland Annual Report
An annual report is how Maryland keeps up-to-date on your corporation’s ownership and contact information.
How do I submit my Maryland Annual Report?
You can use Maryland Business Express to file online, or you can submit a paper form by mail or in person. You can download a Maryland Annual Report form from the Department of Assessments & Taxation.
When is my Maryland Annual Report due?
April 15th each year.
How much does it cost?
$300. If filing online, remember that there’s either an additional $3 fee for eChecks or a 3% fee for credit card or PayPal payments.
Maryland Personal Property Return
Maryland requires a second report, the Personal Property Tax Return (PPR), filed together with your Maryland Annual Report. On this return, you report all personal property used, owned, or leased by your business in the previous calendar year.
Does every corporation have to file a PPR?
No. Only businesses that own, lease or use personal property located in Maryland or that maintain a Maryland Trader’s License (required to sell goods in Maryland) have to file a PPR.
What is personal property?
Personal property doesn’t refer to real estate or land, but it covers most other things your business has or uses, such as computers, phones, books, supplies, machines and furniture. Inventory must be included as well. Registered vehicles and intellectual property, however are not considered personal property.
Advantages of Maryland Corporations
We’ve seen the negotiations of shrewd CEOs play out in boardrooms again and again in Hollywood movies. Directors, shareholders, board meetings, Wall Street—corporate elements are what we imagine when we dream of esteemed and powerful businesses.
Investing in a corporation is typically an easy, comfortable process. Even novice investors are usually more familiar with buying and selling stocks than they are with transferring ownership in an LLC.
Corporations have been around much longer than other business structures like LLCs, and with age comes trust and predictability. Corporations have long had formal organizational roles, with director, officers and shareholders, as well as formal processes like annual meetings, so investors and lenders know just what to expect. Corporations’ long legal history also makes it easier to predict the outcome of any legal issues that could arise.
Corporations can also offer investors financial security that LLCs can’t. For example, corporations can issue stock with guaranteed dividends. LLCs, on the other hand, can only distribute profits if the company makes a profit—no guaranteed paydays.
Experience. Speed. Privacy. Security. We have it all at an affordable price. Sign up for our formation services and get everything you need: formed and filed Articles of Incorporation, a year of expert resident agent service, and all the custom documents you’ll need to open a bank account and host your organization meeting. Let us form your Maryland corporation today!