How to Incorporate in Illinois


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Incorporating in Illinois is relatively easy.  This article should give you resources to understand how the incorporation process works in Illinois, and to use the legal forms from the Illinois Secretary of State to incorporate in Illinois.


While not required, it is advised that you reserve your company name prior to filing any paperwork. You can conduct a preliminary search of the Corporation/LLC Database ( to check name availability. Afterwards you can fill out your name reservation form. To do this, you can fill out form BCA-4.10 ( and submit it, with your $25 filing fee to: Secretary of State, Department of Business Services, 510 S. Second St., Rm. 350, Springfield, IL 62756. Once received, the company name will be reserved for a period of 90 days. There is an additioanl $50 charge if you wish to expedite your application.

Illinois offers two ways to file your articles of incorporation - online or via mail.

To file via mail, you must fill out form BCA 2.0 (rev. Dec 2003) ( and submit the forms, and your $150 filing fee to: Jesse White, Secretary of State, Department of Business Services, 501 S. Second St. Rm. 350, Springfield, IL 62756. Please note, a franchise tax is also due upon filing, which is assessed at the ate of 15/100 of 1 percent on the paid-in capital represented in Illinois. The minimum intial tax is $25. If you choose to expedite your articles of incorporation, there is a $100 expedite fee.

To file online, simply visit the Online Articles of Incorporation ( and follow the step-by-step process that is available. The online fee schedule is available on the first page you visit, outlining the fees you can expect to pay upon completion of your online articles of incorporation.

Annual reports can be filed online if specific requirements are met. More information about online annual filing is available on the Corporate Annual Report Filings Web site: If you meet the specified requirements, simply follow the link at the bottom of the page and the easy step-by-step process offered.

There are many companies that offer the service of filing these articles on your behalf, such as FileOnline  or LegalZoom.