Starting a sole proprietorship is relatively
easy, but you want to make sure you do it both properly and effectively. The
following checklist highlights the main steps in starting a sole
proprietorship. Keep in mind that your own start-up requirements might vary
from the list below, depending on the specific type of business you are in,
where your business is located, and other factors.
Decide on a Business Name
Your business name can have a significant
impact on branding and marketing, although many sole proprietors simply do
business as themselves. The name of your business can be your own personal name
or a “fictitious” business name (also called a “DBA,” which
stands for “doing business as.”
There’s no need to rush the process, and it’s
suggested that you choose more than one possible business names and then think
about them for a few days before deciding. As a rule of thumb, you want your
name to somewhat unique and memorable, but not at the risk of confusing
potential customers. You also will want a name that is available.
Search Availability of Name
You will want to ensure that your chosen
business name is not trademarked or used as an Internet domain name by another
entity. If you choose to do business as your legal name, this shouldn’t be a
problem. Check to see whether your ideas are already on the list of fictitious
or assumed business names on record with your county clerk or Secretary of
There are multiple sources for searching the
availability of a business name, including the U.S. Patent and Trademark
Office’s trademark search tool, but you may want to start with just a simple
Internet search. Even if the name is not taken by another business, your
general search may reveal that the chosen name already has associations that
would be detrimental to your business or confusing to customers.
Register Your Name
If you are registering as a sole proprietor
but doing business under another name, you will need to register any such
fictitious business names (or “DBAs”) along with your legal business
name (typically your full legal name).
Registering not only your legal business name
but also your “DBA” provides certain advantages. For instance, once
your name is registered it can’t be registered by another company; and if
another entity uses this name, your registration will make it easier to file a
Obtain Business Licenses and Permits
You will need to obtain all necessary
licenses and permits from the federal government, your state government, and
your local government. Different businesses require different types of permits
and licenses. For example, a sole proprietor opening a hot dog cart in New York
City probably won’t need any federal licenses, but will need to apply for a
Mobile Food Vendor Personal License, schedule a health inspection, and pay a
fee for a two-year license.
Get a Legal Review
A sole proprietorship offers the least amount
of complication in terms of start-up requirements when compared with other
types of business organizations (i.e. corporation, partnership, etc.). But at the same time, sole proprietors are exposed to personal liability for debts and court judgments. To ensure that your new sole proprietorship covers all legal bases and has the best chance for success before opening for business, contact Ascent Law to make sure that the structure for your type of business is being used and guide you through the process.
Free Consultation with a Utah Business Lawyer
If you are here, you probably have a business law issue you need help with, call Ascent Law for your free business law consultation (801) 676-5506. We want to help you.
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States
Telephone: (801) 676-5506
from Michael Anderson https://www.ascentlawfirm.com/sole-proprietor/