How to Form a Company in Oregon


Starting a company in Oregon is not only easy, but it’s a great way to protect your assets and grow your business. Whether you own a startup or have worked for years to build up an existing business, forming an LLC or corporation can help you get the most out of what you’ve built. There are several steps involved with forming a company in Oregon, but this guide makes it simple!

Choose a company name.

Your company name is how you will be known to the state and others. Your business’ name must be unique, memorable, and not offensive or confusing to your customers. If there is already a registered company in Oregon with the same or similar name as yours, then you can’t use that company name.

Draft a company formation document.

Draft a company formation document.

In Oregon, you can form a limited liability company (LLC) or a corporation by filing what’s called an Articles of Organization with the state. In order for your LLC to be recognized as a legal entity, you must draft and submit this document. The article should include:

  • The name of your new business and its address
  • The names and addresses of members who are responsible for running it
  • Any other information required by Oregon law, such as how much money each member contributes

File with the Secretary of State.

Filing with the Oregon Secretary of State is a simple and straightforward process. First, you will need to fill out an application form that can be found on the Secretary of State website. This form includes all of your company information, including how many initial directors you have elected and which state agency you would like to be taxed by. You will also need to provide proof of your company’s existence through its articles of incorporation or bylaws, as well as some financial statements (if applicable). Once submitted, the Oregon secretary will review your application within 48 hours and notify you if there are any issues with it before filing it on their end.

Once filed, your new business entity will receive an official certificate from the state confirming its formation!

Get an EIN number.

The EIN number is the IRS tax identification number of your business. You will need it if you want to open a bank account, apply for a business credit card or pay taxes.

You can apply for an EIN online through the IRS website or by faxing your request to 1-800-829-3676. If you choose to mail in your application, be sure to include all required information (letter of incorporation and tax return or proof of legal existence).

It typically takes five days from the time you apply before you receive an answer from the IRS. However, if it’s been over six weeks since you applied and still haven’t received an EIN number, contact them at 866-699-4096.

Open a bank account.

In addition to your business checking account, you’ll also need to open a business savings account. You can use this to save money for the company’s future expenses and keep it separate from your personal funds.

If you plan on accepting credit card payments, you will need to apply for a merchant credit card. This is used as a standard form of payment when customers use their cards at checkout.

Get business insurance.

After you’ve formed your company, you’ll need to get business insurance. This is necessary for protecting the company from liabilities and any costs that are associated with accidents on the job. As with many other aspects of starting a new business, it’s best to consult an attorney about the specific type of insurance required for your company. If you’re unsure about what kind of coverage is necessary for your business, consult an agent or broker who can help guide you through this process. It’s also possible (and often recommended) that owners carry personal policies in addition to those offered by their companies; this can help protect them in case of personal injury while working at their jobs.

File for permits and licenses.

Once you’ve determined the type of business entity that best fits your needs, it’s time to start the process of filing for permits and licenses. These are necessary for any company in any state. They include:

  • Tax identification numbers: a tax ID number is not required for LLCs or sole proprietorships, but they are mandatory for corporations and partnerships. This can be obtained online through the Oregon Department of Revenue with a small fee ($100).
  • Business license: this one applies specifically to businesses operating in Portland (where we live), so you’ll want to check out their website before proceeding with your application. There are three types of licenses available—the basic business license ($50), which includes some criminal background checks; an enhanced license ($300), which includes credit history checks as well; and an annual renewal application ($250). The basic or enhanced license may take up to 20 days from submission date until approval by city officials; however, we had ours processed within two weeks after submitting our application online! It’s also worth noting that there is no requirement in Oregon law stating that you must get a specific type of business license before beginning operations; however, most municipalities do require them before issuing occupancy permits or collecting sales taxes from customers on behalf thereof.”


Following these steps will allow you to form a company in Oregon that is compliant with the state’s rules and regulations. You can also find out more about doing business in Oregon by visiting the Secretary of State’s website.

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