How to Start a Business in Indiana


The state of Indiana has a low cost of living, a highly skilled workforce, and top-notch universities and research facilities. It’s also one of the nation’s fastest-growing states. But what does that mean for you as an entrepreneur? Well, it means there’s never been a better time to get started! If you’ve got a business idea brewing in your head but haven’t yet taken action on it, now is the time to act. This article will help guide you through the steps involved in starting a business in Indiana.

Register a Business Name and Structure

It’s important to register your business with your city and county clerk before you open up shop, so they can write it down somewhere official that you’re actually in business here and not just passing through town on vacation.

Register for State and Local Taxes

If you plan to sell goods in Indiana, the state’s sales tax is 6%. You can register with your county treasurer’s office or online through Taxpayer Access Point (TAP).

If you plan to hire employees, the state requires that you withhold Social Security and Medicare taxes from each employee’s paycheck. The first $9,600 of annual income is exempt from these taxes.

State law requires businesses with gross receipts over $5 million dollars per year to pay an excise tax equal to 1% of corporate income or net worth, or 2% if both are above $10 million but less than $100 million. If both exceed that amount, 3% must be paid on any excess over $100 million.

Indiana also has a corporate income tax which ranges from 6% for businesses earning up to $50k annually to 9% for those taking in more than $10 million annually.

Create Employer Accounts

To start a business in Indiana, you must register with the state and federal governments. You’ll also need to register with the IRS, your state unemployment office, and the state labor department. In addition to these administrative tasks, you’ll want to create account profiles with internet service providers (ISPs) like Comcast or Time Warner Cable that provide high-speed internet access so customers can view your products or services online.

Choose a Location and Register with the City, County and State

Once you’ve chosen a location, it’s time to register with the city, county, and state. This process may seem daunting at first, but don’t worry—we’re here to help!

First up, choose your location. You’ll want to pick a spot that is accessible for customers and employees alike while also being near any competitors that exist in your industry. After all, if they’re close enough to compete with, they may be close enough to put unneeded pressure on your business. You should also check for zoning restrictions and parking restrictions before settling on an address or building out anything permanent at all. If you are setting up shop in an area where food is served or sold (like Chicago), there are additional things you need to know about zoning laws regarding where cooking can take place within proximity of other businesses selling food items (like beer).

Additionally, if there is a local business license required by law in order for you start operating legally as a company then make sure this gets taken care of before opening day! Indiana does require these licenses so check beforehand just how much one will cost & how long it takes before deciding whether getting one makes sense financially speaking based on projected revenue versus costs associated with getting licensed including potential fines if too late when caught without one 🙂

Prepare to File an Annual Report

An annual report is a record of your company’s financial status. It includes items like the amount of money you made or lost, how much was spent on advertising, and how many employees you had. You’ll also have to provide information about your corporation, like its name and address.

To file an annual report in Indiana, you’ll need to follow these steps:

  • Complete a form called “Annual Report.”
  • Pay any applicable fees (see below).

Annual reports are due each year by March 1st; however, if this date falls on a weekend or holiday then filings are due the first business day following the weekend or holiday. If this filing deadline falls on a Saturday or Sunday then filings are due Monday, March 3rd for all corporations except banks which have until Tuesday, March 4th to file their Annual Reports.


You will need to register with the Secretary of State’s office. You also need to register with your local city and county. In addition, you must register with all relevant state, federal and international government agencies that apply to your business type; this includes the IRS (Internal Revenue Service).


Starting a new business is a big undertaking, and the process can be daunting. However, by following these steps and taking advantage of free resources like the Indiana Small Business Development Center (SBDC) at Purdue University or the Small Business Administration’s SCORE program, you’ll be well on your way to success.

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