How to Incorporate in Oregon (April 2024 Update)

Meow Technologies, Inc.

Meow Technologies, Inc.

Deciding to take the leap and formally incorporate your business is an exciting next step on your entrepreneurial journey. While incorporating comes with substantial benefits - like personal asset protection and tax savings - it also involves understanding Oregon state-specific laws and filing the necessary paperwork. This comprehensive guide breaks down everything you need to know to successfully get your business incorporated in Oregon.

Benefits of Becoming an Oregon Corporation

As an unofficial business operating as a sole proprietorship or general partnership, you remain personally liable for any legal or financial issues faced by the company. Incorporating creates a separate legal entity that shields your personal assets like your home, retirement accounts, or vehicles. Lawsuits and other claims are limited to the assets owned by the corporation.

Incorporating can also give your small business greater legitimacy and trust in the eyes of customers, partners, and future investors. The formality of becoming an Oregon corporation leads to an enhanced reputation and provides long-term flexibility if you ever wanted to expand via issuing stock or seeking outside funding.

There are potential tax advantages as well. Corporations can deduct a wider range of expenses, and income may be taxed at lower corporate rates versus your personal income tax rate. You also gain flexibility in how corporate profits are distributed to owners and when income taxes are paid.

Oregon Corporation Requirements

To incorporate in Oregon, you’ll need to file Articles of Incorporation with the Secretary of State. This main form establishes your corporation as a legal entity and must include:

  • Your business’ official name
  • Total number of shares your corporation can issue
  • The street address of your registered corporate agent
  • Names and addresses of your corporation’s incorporators

Your business name must include a corporate designation like "Inc." or "Corporation" to ensure it’s distinguished from other companies. You’ll also need to choose a registered agent, an individual or business that receives important legal documents on behalf of your company.

Before submitting a name, you can verify availability by searching Oregon’s business registry database online. You can even pre-reserve a corporate name for 120 days by filing a Name Reservation Request.

Filing an Incorporation Application in Oregon

To complete the application process, you must file your Articles of Incorporation and pay a $100 filing fee. This can be handled online via the Secretary of State’s website or by mailing your paperwork.

Online filing through the state’s streamlined digital portal is recommended, as the approval timeline is extremely quick - most applications are processed within 1-2 business days. You will receive immediate confirmation upon submission and can securely provide payment via debit/credit card. Those choosing to mail filings should be prepared for a longer review period.

LLCs vs. Corporations: Key Differences in Oregon

When starting a business, one of the first major decisions is choosing between forming a corporation or a limited liability company (LLC). On a basic level, both structures shield owners from personal liability and allow the business to open accounts, enter contracts, and retain earnings. However, there are some important distinctions:

  • Tax Implications: As pass-through entities, LLCs avoid double taxation - meaning profits pass directly to owners’ personal returns rather than being taxed at both corporate and individual rates. S-Corporations offer similar single layer taxation.
  • Investor Appeal: The shareholder stock structure of a corporation has greater attraction for potential investors and easier facilitation of ownership percentages.
  • Maintenance Needs: LLCs require less paperwork and need not adhere to corporate formalities like shareholder meetings and board of director votes. Corporations demand greater time investments for compliance filings.

Overall, LLCs are better suited to small businesses not seeking outside funding, while corporations make better long-term entities poised for growth. Assess your vision to determine the most fitting structure.

Meeting Annual Reporting Requirements

To remain legally compliant, Oregon corporations must submit an Annual Report along with a $100 fee each year by their anniversary incorporation date. This confirms your business remains active and allows updates to any officer changes over the past year. An annual tax return will also need to be filed – while this varies based on entity type, duration of tax year, etc. most commonly Form OR-20 or Form OR-20-INC is required.

Failure to meet annual reporting and tax requirements risks hefty penalties from the Secretary of State and Oregon Department of Revenue. This includes fines and the eventual administrative dissolution of your business if ongoing issues remain unresolved. Mark your calendar ahead of deadlines and budget for these yearly state costs.

Conclusion

As an entrepreneur ready to level up your business, learn all you can about the advantages of incorporating in Oregon. Follow the step-by-step application process, secure annual licensing, and don’t hesitate to bring in help navigating any clerical or legal intricacies. Taking these measures will successfully launch your company into its next chapter of growth and prosperity.


Meow Technologies is a financial technology company, not a bank or FDIC-depository insured institution. Likewise, Meow Technologies is not an investment adviser and none of the information presented herein should be relied upon as financial advice or a recommendation to make any financial decision nor should it be considered to be tax or legal advice. The information is the opinion of Meow Technologies for educational purposes and may not be suitable for all companies. Products, like the one described herein, are offered through Meow Technologies and are not advisory services which are only offered through Meow Advisory, LLC.** The FDICs deposit insurance coverage only protects against the failure of an FDIC-insured bank.**

Get started with Meow

*Disclaimer: Meow Advisory LLC is a registered investment adviser. Registration as an investment adviser does not imply any level of skill or training.
For accounts opened through Atomic Brokerage LLC: Meow Advisory LLC has an engagement with Atomic Brokerage LLC (“Atomic Brokerage”), a registered broker-dealer and member of FINRA and SIPC , to bring you the opportunity to open a brokerage account. Brokerage services for customers of Meow Advisory LLC are provided by Atomic Brokerage. For more details about Atomic Brokerage, please see the Form CRS, General Disclosures, and the Privacy Policy. Check the background of Atomic Brokerage on FINRA’s BrokerCheck.
For subadvisory services for accounts opened through Atomic Invest LLC: Meow Advisory LLC has an engagement with Atomic Invest, LLC (“Atomic Invest”), an SEC-registered investment adviser, to bring you the opportunity to open an investment advisory account. Investment advisory services are provided by Atomic Invest. Companies which are engaged by Atomic Invest receive compensation of 0% to 0.85% annualized, payable monthly, based upon assets under management for each referred client who establishes an account with Atomic Invest (i.e., exact payment will differ). Atomic Invest also shares a percentage of compensation received from margin interest and free cash interest earned by customers with Meow Advisory LLC. Meow Advisory LLC is not a client of Atomic Invest, but our engagement with Atomic invest gives us an incentive to refer you to Atomic Invest instead of another investment adviser. This conflict of interest affects our ability to provide you with unbiased, objective information about the services of Atomic Invest. This could mean that the services of another investment adviser with whom we are not engaged could be more appropriate for you than Atomic invest. Advisory services through Atomic Invest are designed to assist clients in achieving a favorable outcome in their investment portfolio. They are not intended to provide tax advice or financial planning with respect to every aspect of a client’s financial situation and do not include investments that clients may hold outside of Atomic Invest. For more details about Atomic Invest, please see the Form CRS, Form ADV Part 2A, the Privacy Policy, and other disclosures. Brokerage services for Atomic Invest are provided by Pershing Advisor Solutions LLC (“PAS”), a registered broker-dealer and member of FINRA and SIPC.
Neither Atomic Invest nor Atomic Brokerage, nor any of their affiliates, is a bank. Investments in securities are Not FDIC insured, Not Bank Guaranteed, and May Lose Value. Investing involves risk, including the possible loss of principal. Before investing, consider your investment objectives and the fees and expenses charged by Atomic Brokerage and/or Atomic Invest.
See the Legal Section within the Meow website for additional agreements.

U.K. Gilt pricing quoted net of fees. ~5% U.K. Gilt yield is sourced from Investing.com December 2023 6-month United Kingdom 6-Month Bond Yield. ~5% Treasury Bill yield is sourced from treasurydirect.gov December 2023 12-week U.S. Treasury Bill auction.

**Disclaimer: Meow Technologies is a financial technology company, not a depository, bank or credit union, and your account at Meow is not, itself, an FDIC-insured product.

Meow currently partners with three banking providers. Banking services are provided by Third Coast Bank SSB; Member FDIC, Grasshopper Bank, N.A; Member FDIC, and FirstBank, a Tennessee corporation; Member FDIC.

By opening a Maximum Checking account through Meow and if you choose to receive banking services provided by Grasshopper Bank, N.A, you deposit your funds into a deposit account at Grasshopper Bank, N.A. which sweeps those funds into deposit accounts across a network of Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (“FDIC”)-insured banks, for up to the current standard maximum deposit insurance amount (“SMDIA”) of $250,000 per eligible depositor, per destination institution, for each ownership capacity or category, subject to applicable terms and conditions, including Grasshopper's ICS Deposit Placement Agreement. Grasshopper Bank, N.A. uses a third-party vendor and agent to help administer this sweep process. Visit https://www.intrafi.com/network-banks/ for a list of the banks and savings associations with which we/Grasshopper, N.A. have a business relationship for the placement of deposits at destination institutions, and into which your deposits may be placed (subject to applicable terms with you, and any opt-outs by Grasshopper, N.A. or you). The current maximum deposit insurance amount for your funds is up to $125 million in FDIC insurance through the sweep network of Grasshopper Bank, N.A, subject to change at any time with notice from Meow and/or pursuant to applicable law. Terms and restrictions apply. Subject to applicable rate sheet. Interest rate on checking products quoted in Annual Percentage Yield (APY). Interest rates and yields are effective as per the date on the applicable rate sheet. See applicable terms and restrictions and refer to the applicable rate sheets for additional information.

By opening a Maximum Checking account through Meow and if you choose to receive banking services provided by Third Coast Bank SSB, you deposit your funds into a deposit account at Third Coast Bank SSB. If you also hold funds in a sweep program with Third Coast Bank SSB, Third Coast Bank SSB sweeps those funds into deposit accounts across a network of FDIC-insured banks, for up to the current SMDIA of $250,000 per eligible depositor, per receiving bank, for each ownership capacity or category, including any other balances you may hold at that receiving bank directly or indirectly through other intermediaries, including broker-dealers. Third Coast Bank SSB uses a third-party vendor and agent to help administer this sweep process. Visit Third Coast Bank SSB for a list of the banks and savings associations with which we/Third Coast Bank SSB have a business relationship for the placement of deposits at receiving banks, and into which your deposits may be placed (subject to applicable terms with you, and any opt-outs by Third Coast Bank or you). The current maximum deposit insurance amount for your funds is up to $50 Million in FDIC insurance through the sweep network of Third Coast Bank, subject to change at any time with notice from Meow and/or pursuant to applicable law. Terms and restrictions apply. Subject to applicable rate sheet. Interest rate on checking products quoted in Annual Percentage Yield (APY). Interest rates and yields are effective as per the date on the applicable rate sheet. See applicable terms and conditions and refer to the applicable rate sheet for additional information.

By opening a Maximum Checking account through Meow and if you choose to receive banking services provided by FirstBank, a Tennessee corporation, you deposit your funds into a deposit account at FirstBank, which sweeps those funds into deposit accounts across a network of FDIC-insured banks, for up to the current SMDIA of $250,000 per eligible depositor, per destination institution, for each ownership capacity or category, subject to applicable terms and conditions, including FirstBank's ICS Deposit Placement Agreement. FirstBank uses a third-party vendor and agent to help administer this sweep process. Visit IntraFi for a list of the banks and savings associations with which FirstBank has a business relationship for the placement of deposits at destination institutions, and into which your deposits may be placed (subject to applicable terms with you, and any opt-outs by FirstBank or you). The current maximum deposit insurance amount for your funds is up to $125 million in FDIC insurance through the sweep network of FirstBank, subject to change at any time with notice from Meow and/or pursuant to applicable law. Terms and restrictions apply. Subject to applicable rate sheet. Interest rate on checking products quoted in Annual Percentage Yield (APY). Interest rates and yields are effective as per the date on the applicable rate sheet. See applicable terms and restrictions and refer to the applicable rate sheet for additional information.

***FDIC insurance coverage is only available to protect you against the failure of an FDIC-insured bank that holds your deposits (and does not protect you against the failure of Meow or other third party). Your account with Meow and all services provided to you are subject to the Meow Terms of Service (“Account Agreements”) and other applicable terms and no other representations or warranties, express or implied, are provided to you except as expressly set forth in those written Account Agreements. If you have any questions regarding your account, please contact team@meow.com.

FirstBank Funds Availability Notice

FirstBanks general policy is to allow you to withdraw funds deposited in your account on the first business day after the day we receive your deposit. Funds from electronic deposits will be available on the day we receive the deposit. In some cases, we may delay your ability to withdraw funds beyond the first business day. Then, the funds will generally be available by the SECOND business day after the day of deposit.