How to Go From a Sole Proprietor to a Corporation in Nevada

By Jeff Franco J.D./M.A./M.B.A.

If you run a business in Nevada as a sole proprietor, you weren't required to file any formation documents with the state to start or operate the business. However, if you want to convert from a sole proprietorship to a corporation, you must file articles of incorporation with the Nevada Secretary of State. After your corporate entity is approved, you'll likely be required to file other documents with state and federal agencies.

Step 1

Choose a name for the new corporation. You can use the same business name that you currently use for your sole proprietorship as long as no other business entity in Nevada is using it. If you operate your sole proprietorship under your own name, you can continue using your name for the corporation, but you must add the required identifier such as “Inc.” or “Corp.” at the end to identify the business as a corporation. You are not required to file any documents to close your sole proprietorship since it isn’t considered a distinct legal entity.

Step 2

Draft articles of incorporation. The Nevada Secretary of State website (see link in Resources) provides a standard form that you can fill out and save to your computer. Alternately, online companies such as LegalZoom can handle the entire Nevada incorporation process for you.

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Step 3

Prepare a list of your initial corporate officers and a state business license application, which you can download from the Nevada Secretary of State website. Nevada requires that you file the officers' list by the last day of the month following the date you filed the articles. This filing and the state business license application require payment of two separate fees.

Step 4

File both documents with the Nevada Secretary of State. You can deliver the documents in person or mail them to the Carson City or the Las Vegas office. All fees are due at the time of filing.

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