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Northwest Missouri State University


Starting a Business

Checklist For Starting A Business

  • Develop a BUSINESS PLAN and FINANCIAL PLAN (determine capital requirements; equipment and inventory needs).
  • Establish a banking relationship. (Set-up checking account after obtaining a Federal Employer Identification Number from the IRS, form SS-4.)
  • Select an accountant and attorney.
  • Determine the legal structure of your business, choose a business name, and register with the appropriate agencies.
  • Negotiate leases and other contracts. MUST BE WRITTEN!
  • If your business will have employees, open federal, state and local wage withholding and payroll tax accounts.
  • Obtain the appropriate state/local licenses and permits for your type of business, including business and occupational licenses and occupancy permits, and sales tax licenses.
  • Obtain information about state and federal unemployment tax and file appropriate forms. File a "Report to Determine Liability Status" with the Missouri Department of Labor.
  • Obtain information on wage withholding and payroll taxes, including social security, Medicare and income taxes.
  • Keep in all employees' personnel files a completed and signed W-4 Form and I-9 Form.
  • Obtain worker's compensation insurance for your employees.
  • Establish clear personnel policies to address such issues as working hours, compensation and fringe benefits.