This webpage has been created to guide filers through the registration process for domestic corporations in Iowa. All information and instruction necessary to file with the Secretary of State has been provided below. When attempting to file a new corporation in this state, there are a few steps you must take. First, you must select which corporate type you wish to file under. You will then be required to submit your filing information into a PDF application, or draft your own document pursuant to state guidelines. The following corporation types are available for incorporation in Iowa (fees listed):

Secondly, cross-reference the business database to ensure that your desired operating name is available. Submitting a registration application with a business name that is already in use will likely be rejected. Additionally, you can reserve the desired name for 120 days ($10) if you would like.

How to File a Cooperative Corporation

Step 1- If you are attempting to form a cooperative corporation you will need to download the form-drafting guideline (501.202) supplied by the Secretary of State.

Step 2- Once downloaded, draft a form according to the guidelines, making sure not to miss the following information:

  • Name, address and occupation of each organizer
  • Name/address of initial director(s)
  • Registered agent office/address
  • Operating name
  • Organizing statement
  • Duration
  • Classes of interests and authorized number of interests of each class
  • Quorum required for each member meeting
  • Member voting rules

ia-c-corporation-form-1Step 3- Once the form has been completed, you may proceed by submitting your document either online or through the mail. Review our filing instructions to learn about each process.

How to File a Non-Profit Corporation

Step 1- If you intend to incorporate as a non-profit in Iowa you will need to download the form-drafting guideline (504.202) supplied by the Secretary of State.

Step 2- You will be required to draft your own document which must contain the information specified in the drafting guideline as well as the following details:

  • Corporate name
  • Registered agent name/address
  • Name and address of each incorporator
  • Member status

ia-np-corporation-form-1Step 3- Once your document has been drafted, you may proceed by sending it to the Secretary of State either through the mail or online. Take a moment to review our filing tutorial to learn about each process.

How to File a Professional or Profit Corporation

Step 1- Filers of standard profit or professional corporations must download the form-drafting guideline (490.202) supplied by the Secretary of State for these specific corporate types.

Step 2- With the guidelines at hand, you may continue by drafting your application. Make sure to include the following information:

  • Corporate name
  • Number of shares to be issued
  • Name/address of registered agent
  • Name and address of each incorporator

ia-p:s-corporation-form-1Step 3- Lastly, you will need to submit your drafted application to the Secretary of State either online or through the mail. We have provided instructions on both applications methods in our filing tutorial.

How to File (Online | Mail)

Step 1- In order to file for the registration of a new domestic corporation, you will need to have completed a filing form. For more information on the creation of this essential form please follow the link below which corresponds with your corporation type.

Step 2- Individuals filings through the mail should skip to Step 4. Online filers will need to now navigate to the online form filing portal and indicate the type of filing being made and the method of payment. Next, the following information must be supplied:

  • Filing party
  • Address
  • Phone number
  • Email address

ia-online-file-1Individuals paying by credit card will have to enter the following data:

  • Company
  • Full name
  • Address
  • Card type
  • Expiration date
  • Card number

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Individuals paying via a pre-existing account with the Secretary of State must input their account number, PIN, and invoice reference to complete the payment.

ia-online-file-2b

Step 3- You must now upload the aforementioned filing form and, after supplying the CAPTCHA, select SEND to complete the filing.

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Step 4- To file by mail, attach either a check for $20 (non-profit/cooperative) or $50 (professional/profit) made out to the Secretary of State or a completed credit card authorization form to your filing and submit it to the following address:

Secretary of State

Business Services Division Lucas Building, 1st Floor

Des Moines, Iowa 50319

Tips

EIN– New domestic corporations will be required to acquire an EIN, or Employer Identification Number, from the IRS in order to operate financially. The number, which essentially makes your corporation a taxable entity, can be acquired Online or through the mail (Form SS-4). Any and all financial transactions on the behalf of your business will require the acquisition of a valid EIN. For more information, please follow the link to the left.

Corporate Bylaws– Corporations are not required to draft a corporate bylaws document in the state of Iowa. We recommend, however, that all corporations draft this document as it will be one of the only internal documents delineating specifically the rules and regulations your corporation will run by. For more information on corporate bylaws, and to access our PDF and MS Word formatted templates, please follow the link to the left.

Renewal– To keep your new corporation in good standing in the eyes of the state you must file a biennial renewal either online ($30) or through the mail ($45) with the Secretary of State. Mail filers will have to draft their own biennial renewal by following the guidelines laid out in the 488.210 PDF form. Once the form has been completed, you will need to send it to the address below along with a check made out to the Secretary of State. If you’d prefer, you may pay with the credit card authorization form.

Secretary of State

Business Services Division Lucas Building, 1st Floor

Des Moines, Iowa 50319