Ohio Secretary of State: The Roles and Responsibilities for Businesses



Individuals and Organizations

The Ohio Secretary of State is the chief election official for the state of Ohio. It has several responsibilities, including administering elections, maintaining voter registration records, overseeing campaign finance reporting requirements, conducting audits of political parties, and certifying candidates for office.

The Ohio Secretary’s Office also provides services to businesses, individuals, and organizations registered with the Secretary of State. These include information on registering to vote, obtaining driver’s licenses or identification cards, filing taxes, and obtaining other government documents.

The role of the Ohio secretary of state is to oversee elections in the state.

The office of the Ohio secretary of state is responsible for administering elections in the state. In addition, they have oversight over the registration of businesses in the state. Their duties include registering corporations, partnerships, LLCs, and sole proprietorships. Also, they oversee the issuance of licenses for various types of businesses, including liquor stores, car dealers, and funeral homes.

  •  Business Licenses

Business licenses are issued by the secretary of state’s office to allow individuals and companies to conduct their business legally. These licenses are necessary to operate any type of business in the state. Many different types of licenses are granted depending on what kind of business you want to run. A few examples of these licenses are food service license, barber license, cosmetology license, and auto dealer license.

  •  Registration of Corporations

The secretary of state’s office does corporation registrations. These registrations are necessary if you plan on starting a corporation in the state. You may need to register a corporation if you plan on selling products online, opening a bank account, or receiving tax refunds.

  • Registration of Partnerships

The secretary of state handles partnership registrations. If you own a partnership in the state, you will need to file paperwork at the secretary of state’s office. This includes filing articles of organization, filing annual reports, and paying fees.

  •  Registration of Sole Proprietorship
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Sole proprietorship registrations are handled by the office of the secretary of state. To start a sole proprietorship in the state, you must fill out forms and pay fees. Once registered, you can open a checking account, get a loan, receive tax refunds, and sell goods online.

  • Liquor License

The secretary of state only gives out liquor licenses to those who apply for them. If you plan on running a bar or restaurant, you will need to obtain a liquor license before you can serve alcohol.

  •  Car Dealer License

Car dealership licenses are only given out to those who meet specific requirements. Requirements include having enough capital to purchase cars, having a valid driver’s license, and showing proof of insurance.

You will need the documents to complete the filing of an LLC in the Ohio Secretary of State.

1. Filing Fees

The total fee for filing an LLC in Ohio is $200.00. You will need to pay $100.00 at the time of filing and then $100.00 after 6 months if you wish to renew your registration. There is no fee to file an S-Corp.

2. Operating Agreement

An operating agreement is not required for an LLC. However, it is recommended to have one. An operating agreement is a document where members agree upon how they will operate their business. It should outline who owns what percentage of the company, how profits will be shared, and any other agreements between the partners.

3. Articles of Organization

Articles of organization are filed with the state of Ohio. These documents set forth the name of the corporation, its purpose, and the terms of the officers. Each LLC member must sign these documents before the state officially recognizes them.

4. Certificate of Good Standing

A certificate of good standing is issued once the secretary has approved the articles of organization of the state. A certificate of a good place shows that the LLC has been properly formed and registered with the state.

5. Annual Report

Every year, each LLC member must submit an annual report to the secretary of state’s office. This report includes information about the company’s financial statements, including profit/loss statements, balance sheet, and cash flow statements.

6. Tax Identification Number (TIN)

Each LLC must obtain a tax identification number from the IRS. This number is used to identify the LLC on federal income taxes. You cannot use the LLC to file taxes if you do not receive a TIN.

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7. DBA Name

If you plan on using the LLC to conduct business under a different name than the LLC, you must register the DBA name with the secretary of state.


Create your LLC Corporation with just 3 easy steps


How to File for an LLC in the OH Secretary of State

An LLC cannot have any owners personally liable unless they actively participate in the company’s operation or actively take advantage of its profits.

Step 1: You’ll need your EIN — a number between 0001 and 9999 — and a Social Security Number based on your household income. If you do not know what your EIN is, please contact the IRS.

Step 2: File Form SS-4 IndividualMember Identification Card Application to get your EIN.

Step 3: On your member identification card application, enter your social security number and complete information about yourself. Any ownership interest purchased should be recorded on this card. All members should receive a copy of their card. A non-member representative may sign a card only if he or she is acting on behalf of a member; otherwise, the card must be signed by the member alone.

Step 4: After filing your application, wait until you receive confirmation from the IRS via email. Once you’ve received a message from the IRS, call the office of the secretary of state at (614) 466-5811 to confirm that your application was processed successfully.

The importance of maintaining good records with the OH Secretary of State

1. Know Your Business

Having a business license is not enough; you need to know what it means to operate legally under state law. You should understand how to file reports, pay taxes, and keep accurate records. You could face fines, penalties, and even jail time if you don’t.

2. Know What’s Required

You’ll need to register your business name and address with the Ohio secretary of state (OSSC). You may also need to get a federal Employer Identification Number (EIN) if you plan to hire employees.

3. Keep Records

Keep track of everything related to your business. Make sure you’re keeping copies of any documents you send out, including invoices, receipts, and contracts. Also make sure you’re tracking payments you receive, whether they’re cash or checks.

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4. File Reports

File quarterly reports with the OSSC. These reports include information about your business activities, sales, and income. You’ll also need to report changes in ownership and management.

5. Pay Taxes

If you do business in Ohio, you’ll need to pay annual franchise tax. And if you earn $100,000 or more in gross revenue, you’ll also need to pay corporate income tax.

6. Stay Informed

Stay informed about changes in laws and regulations affecting your business. Check the OSSC website regularly for updates.



Frequently Asked Questions

Do you have to renew your LLC in Ohio

Yes, if you want to do business in Ohio, you need to file an application with the Secretary of State’s office. If you don’t renew your LLC, then you won’t be able to operate under any name other than your own personal name. If you’re thinking about doing business in Ohio, I’d recommend filing an application right away!

Is entity number the same as EIN

The IRS requires businesses to file their federal income tax returns using Form 1040-ES (Employer’s Supplemental Information). You may use any name you want for your business, including the name of the person who owns the business. However, if you choose to do so, you must provide the following information about yourself:

• Your full legal name

• Your Social Security Number

• A street address where mail should be sent

• An email address where you can be reached electronically

• If you have employees, the names and Social Security numbers of those individuals.

You must complete Schedule C, Profit or Loss From Business, even if you don’t expect to make a profit from your business. If you’re not sure whether your business makes a profit, consult a professional accountant.

If you operate a sole proprietorship, partnership, corporation, or trust, you must report your net earnings from self-employment on line 2a of Form 1040-ES. Net earnings means gross receipts less deductions for ordinary and necessary expenses incurred in carrying on your trade or business.


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