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Checklist: Starting a Sole Proprietorship

If you are thinking of starting a business as a sole proprietor, below is a checklist of steps to take before you open for business. Keep in mind that your sole proprietorship's start-up requirements might vary from the list below, depending on the specific type of business you are in, and where your business is located.    

  1. Decide on a business name for your sole proprietorship.(Learn more: Pick a Winning Name for Your Business)


  2. Search availability of your sole proprietorship's chosen business name, and for similarity to existing names. (Learn more: Make Sure Your Proposed Business Name is Available)


  3. Register your sole proprietorship's name (including as a "fictitious business name," if applicable).(Learn more: Registering Your Business Name)  


  4. Obtain business licenses and permits for your sole proprietorship from:

A sole proprietorship offers the least amount of complication in terms of start-up requirements for the different business organizations (i.e. corporation, partnership, etc.) But, to ensure that your new sole proprietorship covers all legal bases and has the best chance for success before opening for business, you may wish to consult an experienced business attorney. Click here to learn more.

Next Steps
Contact a qualified business organizations attorney to help you
choose the best formation for your business.
(e.g., Chicago, IL or 60611)

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