Starting a Business

Quick-start for your business header

1. First, register with the Ohio Secretary of State.

Registration information as well as forms are available online or at (877) SOS-FILE.

2. Obtain a federal Employer Identification Number (EIN).

Contact the Internal Revenue Service to learn additional information and an online application at - search "EIN."

3. Open a Bank Account.

You will need your EIN to open a bank account.

4. Register with the Ohio Department of Taxation at

Obtain information regarding Ohio taxes, including registration requirements, filing requirements and filing due dates. They also offer the Ohio Small Business Tax Training Program to help you acquire a broader understanding of Ohio’s tax requirements.

5. Report newly-hired and re-hired employees to the Ohio New Hire Reporting Center.

Report employee information at More information can be obtained by contacting the Ohio New Hire Reporting Center at 888.872.1490.

6. Determine what may be required of your business by the Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation.

If your business or organization has one or more employees visit and select "Employers."

7. Identify requirements of the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services.

Employers may be required to establish an Unemployment Compensation Tax Account with the Ohio Department of Job & Family Services. Visit and search for “Employers.”

8. Obtain the proper licenses and permits.

The Ohio Business Gateway ( Licenses and Permits page provides a list of professional licenses and business permits necessary to do business in Ohio. Contact your county and local government to determine if any special requirements exist for your type of business.

9. Report Unclaimed Funds Every Year.

By law, all businesses are required to report and remit any unclaimed funds to the Ohio Department of Commerce, Division of Unclaimed Funds, even if there are none to report. You can file the report on the Ohio Business Gateway or at Check out for complete details.

10. Discover growth opportunities for your new business.

The Ohio Secretary of State’s office hosts the Ohio Business Resource Connection located at The Resource Connection is a directory of services for all Ohio businesses and includes specific services for woman, minority, disability and military or veteran owned businesses. Additionally, the Small Business Administration provides resources to grow your business at

Special Considerations for Nonprofit Organizations

Apply for tax exemption.
Visit to apply to become a tax-exempt organization. Also, contact the Ohio Department of Taxation and your county and local governments to determine how to apply for applicable exemptions.

Register with the Ohio Attorney General's Office if entity is a charitable organization.
Ohio requires charitable organizations located in Ohio and groups that ask Ohioans for contributions to register and file annual reports. Go to for more information.

Apply for a nonprofit postal permit.
Apply for a nonprofit mailing permit from the United States Postal Service at

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Business Publications from the Secretary of State's Office: