A corporation is an association of individuals that you create in accordance with Michigan law. When you form a corporation, it exists as its own separate entity with liabilities and rights that are separate from its members.  

Each state has its own requirements for forming a for-profit corporation. Here is what is necessary under Michigan laws.  

Decide on a name 

Your corporation must include one of the following words or abbreviations: 

  • Corporation (Corp.) 
  • Company (Co.) 
  • Incorporated (Inc.) 
  • Limited (Ltd.) 

When naming your corporation, it must be distinct from other businesses in the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs database. You can access the LARA database online. If you want to reserve a name, you can do so for six months by submitting an Application for Reservation of Name.  

Appoint a resident agent 

Your corporation must have an agent who agrees to accept legal correspondence on behalf of the corporation if it faces a lawsuit. The resident agent may be a resident of Michigan, Michigan corporation, Michigan LLC or foreign business with the authority to transact business in the state.  

File Articles of Incorporation 

You legally create a corporation by submitting Articles of Incorporation with LARA. This is a document that details the specifics of your corporation, including its name, purpose and address. It also outlines the class and number of shares. Additionally, the articles can include any written agreements between shareholders about the distribution of assets, terminations and dissolutions.  

Comply with regulatory requirements 

Operating a corporation requires you to submit annual reports and obtain an employer identification number. You may also need to get state and local business licenses. 

Do not interpret this information as legal advice – it is educational only.