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The Cost Of Incorporating A Startup Business

Jacob Scott



By Richard Harroch

There are a number of steps that must be taken to incorporate a business, most with associated fees … [+] or costs. getty

Incorporating a startup business provides a number of benefits to entrepreneurs—primarily protection of their personal assets from the debts and liabilities of the business. But there are a variety of steps that must be taken to incorporate, most with associated fees or costs.

This article provides an overview of the costs of incorporating a startup business, including any fees that may be involved in related activities. 

1. Incorporation filing fee with Secretary of State

Corporations are formed under state law, and an “Articles of Incorporation” or “Certificate of Incorporation” must be filed with the Secretary of State to officially organize the corporation. Filing fees vary by state. For California, the filing fee paid to the Secretary of State is $100. For Delaware, the fee is $89. If you want the filing to be expedited, additional fees are charged.

2. Incorporation service fees

There are a number of incorporation services that will take care of the paperwork and filing to form your corporation, such as ZenBusinessLegalZoomMyCorporation, and CorpNet. They offer different packages for their services, ranging from $200 to $1,000, excluding the filing fees charged by the state. The fees typically cover preparation of resolutions of the board of directors, the charter documents, and the bylaws.

3. Attorney’s fees

For more complicated incorporations with multiple founders, investors, or special intellectual property or contract issues, it will make sense to hire an experienced startup lawyer. They will typically charge by the hour, typically anywhere from $250 to $600 an hour. Some law firms will offer a package “fixed fee” for basic services, such as preparing the charter and other corporate formation documents. Experienced startup lawyers will help you avoid the mistakes often made by startups.

4. Registered agent fees

When your corporation is formed, it must have a “registered agent,” also known as an “agent for service of process.” The registered agent is a person or business entity authorized to do business in your state of incorporation who receives official legal and tax correspondence on behalf of the corporation. The registered agent can be an officer of the company, a shareholder, a director, another person who resides in state, or a dedicated registered agent service company.

Many of the online incorporation services (ZenBusiness, CorpNet, MyCorporation, etc.) will provide registered agent services for an annual fee of $100 to $300, connected with their incorporation services. Using an outside registered agent can protect your privacy as the registered agent’s address is listed in public records, and not your physical address.

5. Tax ID fee (none)

In most instances, you will need to get a tax ID from the IRS for your company. This is also known as an “Employer Identification Number” (EIN), and it’s similar to a Social Security number, but for businesses. Banks will ask for your EIN when you open a company bank account and you need it when filing tax returns. You can get an EIN online through the IRS website. There is no fee for obtaining the EIN from the IRS.

6. Minimum Franchise Tax

A number of states will impose a minimum annual franchise tax on corporations (although some will waive it for the first year of the corporation). In California the minimum annual franchise tax is $800.

7. DBA filing fee

If you are going to operate your company under a name different than the official name filed with the Secretary of State, you need to file a “DBA” or “doing business as” certificate. The fee is typically small, around $25 to $50. It’s a onetime fee.

8. Permit, license or registration fees

Depending on the nature of your business, you may need the following permits, licenses, or regulations, which will add to the costs of incorporating a startup business:

Permits need for regulated businesses (aviation, agriculture, marijuana dispensaries, bars, etc.) Sales tax license or permit Home-based business permits City and county business permits or licenses Zoning permit Seller’s permit Health department permits (such as for a restaurant) Federal and state tax/employer IDs

Also, check out the CalGold website, which assists California businesses in finding appropriate permit information and contact information for the various California agencies that administer and issue these permits. Depending on your business, there may be permits or licenses necessary on the federal level as well. Check out the SBA site here for guidance on federal permits and licenses. The fees for any of these will vary by the nature of the permit or license and the state involved.

9. Annual filing with the Secretary of State

Some states, such as California, require an initial and then annual filing from the corporation containing basic information about the company (address, name of officers, registered agent, etc.). In California, this is called a “Statement of Information” and the filing fee for corporations is $25.

10. Stock sales exemption filing

When you issue stock in your corporation, you are subject to the registration requirements of federal and state securities laws. But many startups can qualify for an exemption from those registration requirements, but the state may require you to file an exemption request and pay a fee, typically between $25 to $50.

Other costs of incorporating a startup

While strictly not incorporation costs, startups need to factor in and budget for other ongoing operating costs, such as for taxes, insurance, accounting, bookkeeping, software, contractors, employees, and other service providers. 

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Copyright © by Richard D. Harroch. All Rights Reserved.

About the Author

Richard D. Harroch is a Managing Director and Global Head of M&A at VantagePoint Capital Partners, a venture capital fund in the San Francisco area. See all his articles and full bio on

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‘Moon Knight’ Took Marvel in a Different Orbit, but It Didn’t Rise to the Occasion

Jacob Scott



Before anyone writes that off as an anomaly, “Eternals” tackled a similar introduction of a dense mythology on the bigger screen, with equally mixed results. It’s a reminder that while film-goers have had more than a decade to get to know characters like Iron Man, Captain America and Thor, introducing some of these lesser-known heroes can pose a more formidable challenge beyond catering to the most ardent fans.
For Marvel, there are warning signs in that, since “Moon Knight” will be followed by several series based on second-tier characters, although the next two on the horizon, “Ms. Marvel” (which is due in June) and “She-Hulk,” at least have the benefit of sharing franchises and name recognition with existing Avengers.
Ultimately, “Moon Knight’s” murky storytelling appeared to squander its principal assets, which included the cool look of the character — a costume that was too seldom used — and the presence of Isaac, who possesses additional genre credentials via the “Star Wars” sequels.

Taking its time in peeling back the layers of the character’s complicated backstory, “Moon Knight” took a weird plunge into the Egyptian mythology behind it, in ways that became increasingly confounding and surreal.

By the time the protagonist’s two halves, Steven Grant and Marc Spector, wound up in a psychiatric hospital talking to an anthropomorphic hippo in the penultimate chapter, the question wasn’t so much being able to keep up with the story as whether bothering to do so was worth the effort.

The sixth and final episode brought the plot to a messy close, seeking to stop the goddess Ammit from proceeding to “purify the souls of Cairo, and then the world.” In the customary credit sequence, the producers capped that off by introducing a third personality, Jake Lockley, also rooted in the comics. While that seemingly spelled the end for the show’s villain (Ethan Hawke), the finish — giving the god Khonshu the protégé he sought — paved the way for further adventures should Marvel so choose.

That last twist might be cause for celebration in narrower confines of the Marvel fan universe, but “Moon Knight” too often felt like it was one long Easter-egg sequence, conspicuously preaching to that choir.

Granted, Marvel has made clear that Disney+ offers the chance to explore different kinds of stories, but “Moon Knight” feels at best like a quirky showcase for Isaac and at worst a failed experiment in terms of execution and tone.

That doesn’t mean this “Moon” won’t somehow rise again, if the closely held streaming data justifies it. But the promise that surrounded this property has faded, providing further evidence that even Marvel isn’t immune from setbacks as it moves into its next phase.

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Start-up says it’s the first self-driving company to get a taxi license in China

Jacob Scott



Autonomous driving start-up can collect fares for robotaxi rides in parts of two major Chinese cities as of Sunday. handout

BEIJING — Self-driving start-up announced Sunday it received a taxi license, the first of its kind in China.

The license allows to operate 100 self-driving cars as traditional taxis in the Nansha district of the southern city of Guangzhou, the company said.

The Chinese start-up, which is backed by Toyota, received approval from Beijing city late last year to charge fees to operate a commercial robotaxi business in a suburban district of the city. It is not the same as a taxi licence.

Baidu’s Apollo Go also received approval in the same Beijing district last year. was valued at $8.5 billion in early March. The company said its Nansha taxi license required 24 months of autonomous driving testing in China and/or other countries, and no involvement in any active liability traffic accidents, among other factors.

The start-up said it plans to launch commercial robotaxi businesses in two other large Chinese cities next year. The company is already testing self-driving cars in those cities and in California. 

Robotaxis in China currently have a human driver present for safety.

— CNBC’s Arjun Kharpal contributed to this report.

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How to watch Timberwolves vs. Grizzlies: TV channel, NBA live stream info, start time

Jacob Scott



Who’s Playing

Memphis @ Minnesota

Current Records: Memphis 2-1; Minnesota 1-2

What to Know

The Memphis Grizzlies’ road trip will continue as they head to Target Center at 10 p.m. ET this past Saturday to face off against the Minnesota Timberwolves. Memphis will be strutting in after a win while Minnesota will be stumbling in from a loss.

The Grizzlies are hoping for another victory. They beat the Timberwolves 104-95 this past Thursday. The victory came about thanks to a strong surge after the first quarter to overcome a 39-21 deficit. Memphis’ success was spearheaded by the efforts of power forward Brandon Clarke, who had 20 points in addition to eight rebounds, and shooting guard Desmond Bane, who shot 7-for-15 from beyond the arc and finished with 26 points and six boards.

Barring any buzzer beaters, Memphis is expected to win a tight contest. They might be worth taking a chance on against the spread as they are currently on a two-game streak of ATS wins.

Memphis’ win brought them up to 2-1 while the Timberwolves’ defeat pulled them down to a reciprocal 1-2. A couple offensive stats to keep in the back of your head while watching: The Grizzlies come into the game boasting the second most points per game in the league at 115.6. But Minnesota is even better: they rank first in the league when it comes to points per game, with 115.9 on average. Tune in for what’s sure to be a high-scoring contest.

How To Watch

When: Saturday at 10 p.m. ET Where: Target Center — Minneapolis, Minnesota TV: ESPN Online streaming: fuboTV (Try for free. Regional restrictions may apply.) Follow: CBS Sports App Ticket Cost: $76.96


The Grizzlies are a slight 2.5-point favorite against the Timberwolves, according to the latest NBA odds.

The oddsmakers had a good feel for the line for this one, as the game opened with the Grizzlies as a 3-point favorite.

Over/Under: -110

See NBA picks for every single game, including this one, from SportsLine’s advanced computer model. Get picks now.

Series History

Memphis have won 19 out of their last 28 games against Minnesota.

Apr 21, 2022 – Memphis 104 vs. Minnesota 95 Apr 19, 2022 – Memphis 124 vs. Minnesota 96 Apr 16, 2022 – Minnesota 130 vs. Memphis 117 Feb 24, 2022 – Minnesota 119 vs. Memphis 114 Jan 13, 2022 – Memphis 116 vs. Minnesota 108 Nov 20, 2021 – Minnesota 138 vs. Memphis 95 Nov 08, 2021 – Memphis 125 vs. Minnesota 118 May 05, 2021 – Memphis 139 vs. Minnesota 135 Apr 02, 2021 – Memphis 120 vs. Minnesota 108 Jan 13, 2021 – Memphis 118 vs. Minnesota 107 Jan 07, 2020 – Memphis 119 vs. Minnesota 112 Dec 01, 2019 – Memphis 115 vs. Minnesota 107 Nov 06, 2019 – Memphis 137 vs. Minnesota 121 Mar 23, 2019 – Minnesota 112 vs. Memphis 99 Feb 05, 2019 – Memphis 108 vs. Minnesota 106 Jan 30, 2019 – Minnesota 99 vs. Memphis 97 Nov 18, 2018 – Memphis 100 vs. Minnesota 87 Apr 09, 2018 – Minnesota 113 vs. Memphis 94 Mar 26, 2018 – Memphis 101 vs. Minnesota 93 Dec 04, 2017 – Memphis 95 vs. Minnesota 92 Feb 04, 2017 – Memphis 107 vs. Minnesota 99 Nov 19, 2016 – Memphis 93 vs. Minnesota 71 Nov 01, 2016 – Minnesota 116 vs. Memphis 80 Oct 26, 2016 – Memphis 102 vs. Minnesota 98 Mar 16, 2016 – Minnesota 114 vs. Memphis 108 Feb 19, 2016 – Memphis 109 vs. Minnesota 104 Jan 23, 2016 – Minnesota 106 vs. Memphis 101 Nov 15, 2015 – Memphis 114 vs. Minnesota 106

Injury Report for Minnesota

No Injury Information

Injury Report for Memphis

Dillon Brooks: Game-Time Decision (Foot) Santi Aldama: Out (Knee) Killian Tillie: Out (Knee)

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