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Register a Business

How do I register my business?

Prospective business owners register their businesses in at least two, and possibly three ways. Both a legal structure (business entity form) and a name (DBA) must be registered. You may want to consult with an attorney before choosing a legal structure, particularly if more than one person will own the business. (The information on this site does not replace legal advice provided by an attorney.) The legal entity form affects the taxes paid and when and how they are reported, so the assistance of an accountant may also be needed.

Business names and entity types are registered with the Idaho Secretary of State’s office before engaging in business activities. If the business will be an LLC or corporation, the name is registered as part of the entity registration. Sole proprietorships and partnerships file an Assumed Business Name, also called a DBA. Be aware that business registrations are public records. Any information included on the registration form, including your name and address, will be available for public view. You must be 18 to register a business.

If the business will have employees or make retail sales, it must also register with the Idaho State Tax Commission, Idaho Industrial Commission, and Idaho Department of Labor by filing Form IBR-1. You must do this in addition to registering the business name and legal structure. If you will not have employees or make retail sales, do not complete this form. For details see Idaho Business Registration.

Submitting form IBR-1 does not register your business name and entity type, nor is it a business license. Before completing the form, you need to register your business with the Idaho Secretary of State’s office. For information on the entity types recognized in Idaho visit the Legal Structure page on this site. Business licenses are issued by local city clerk’s offices.

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