Wyoming Incorporation Benefits

by Terry Masters

A corporation formed in any state will offer its shareholders certain benefits that are specific to this type of entity. All corporations benefit shareholders by providing limited liability and protection for personal assets against business claims, for example. However, the business environment in certain states offers additional benefits that can influence a business owner's decision to use that state as its home base. Wyoming offers a number of additional advantages to incorporating in that state that makes it one of the best states in which to form a corporation.

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Wyoming corporations law does not require incorporating entities to disclose the identity of shareholders. This makes it very difficult for creditors, competitors, the media, or anyone else interested in the identity and assets of the people behind the corporation to find out anything at all. Wyoming is also one of the few states that does not have an information sharing agreement with the Internal Revenue Service, so it is difficult even for federal agencies to connect the corporation with its owners. (Refs. 2, 3)

Tax Benefits

Wyoming does not assess state income taxes on corporations. Incorporating in the state means that your business will not have to worry about filing a state corporate income tax return every year. Wyoming also does not impose a franchise tax on corporations, which is a tax on the privilege of existing and doing business in a certain jurisdiction. In fact, Wyoming is regularly at the top of the list of states with the lowest corporate tax burden in annual surveys. (Refs. 1, 3)

Management Flexibility

Wyoming allows for sole ownership of a corporation. A single person can be the incorporator, stockholder, director, president, secretary and treasurer. Many states require corporations to maintain at least two officers and three directors. A person who wants to be the sole owner and operator of a corporation achieves a significant amount of management flexibility and efficiency by incorporating in Wyoming.

Unlimited Authorized Shares

Wyoming allows incorporation with unlimited authorized shares. You don't need to specify a specific number of authorized shares in the articles of incorporation, like in many other states. This means that you don't have to amend the articles if you want to issue additional shares in the future. Wyoming also does not charge a fee for issuing shares or on the number of outstanding shares as some states do.

Low Maintenance Fees

Incorporating in Wyoming also offers the benefit of low annual maintenance fees. Wyoming does not charge an annual business license fee or officer filing fee. It charges a nominal annual renewal fee that is one of the lowest annual business registration fees in the country.