How to Set Up a Partnership in Tennessee

by Michael Keenan
In Tennessee, a partnership can be formed with just a handshake.

In Tennessee, a partnership can be formed with just a handshake.

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Like many other states, Tennessee does not require partnerships to officially register as a partnership. The agreement of two or more people to go into business together is sufficient to form a partnership, although having a written agreement in place is recommended. In Pennsylvania, the partnership may be required to file registration for a fictitious name. Under Tennessee state law, a general partnership has the option to voluntarily submit a Statement of Partnership authority with the Department of State, which must be filed by at least two partners. This statement describes which partners have the power to act on behalf of the partnership and gives other businesses greater confidence in the partnership.

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Step 1

Agree to go into business together with your other partners. The agreement should include the details of the partnership, such as each partner's share of the business, how profits and expenses will be divided and the responsibilities of each partner. At this point, the partnership is legally formed. Download the Statement of Partnership Authority from the Tennessee Department of State's website.

Step 2

Complete the Statement of Partnership authority. The statement must include all of the information required by the Revised Uniform Partnership Act of 2001, which means you must include the name of the partnership, the address of the partnership's CEO, the address of the partnership's office in Tennessee, if it has one, and the names of the partners authorized to act on behalf of the partnership. The partnership can still file a statement of partnership authority in Tennessee if you don't have a Tennessee address. For example, you may want to do so if your partnership does business in the state and you want to publicly record who is able to act on behalf of the partnership.

Step 3

Complete the form in English. The document can be either typewritten or printed legibly. It must be completed in ink and on one side of 8 1/2-by 14-inch or 8 1/2- by 11-inch paper. You can also authorize or limit the authority of specific partners to engage in certain transactions on behalf of the partnership. You might want only two of the partners to have the authority to make draws on the partnership bank account. Similarly, you might want only certain partners to be able to enter into binding purchase contracts.

Step 4

File the Statement of Partnership Authority, along with the filing fee, with the Tennessee Department of State. You can mail the form or submit it in person.