Your first step is to file some paperwork with the California Secretary of State that “creates” an entity eligible to use the “S corporation” tax accounting rules. This entity can be either a traditional corporation or a limited liability company by the way. But usually, an LLC works better just so you know… (Check out this article from our S Corporations Explained website if you want more information about why we say this.)
Your second step is to file some paperwork with the Internal Revenue Service that sets you up to file your business income tax return using the 1120S “S Corporation income tax return.” Principally, this means timely filing a Form 2553 with the Internal Revenue Service service center in Odgen UT.
Lots of business owners, by the way, outsource the work of setting up an S corporation or an attorney or to a document preparation service like www.legalzoom.com. But no kidding: The process is actually very easy and straightforward.
Accordingly, you might want to consider setting up your S corporation yourself. And if do take this route, you might want to use one of our do-it-yourself California incorporation kits.
How to Purchase and Download Kits
We actually have two California S corporation kits. One kit uses an LLC as the foundation of your S corporation, and one kit uses a traditional corporation as the foundation of your S corporation.
Both kits provide the same basic recipes, however. Each provides detailed instructions for forming the entity you’ll need. Each walks you through the steps for obtaining an employer identification number from the Internal Revenue Service. And each explains and illustrates how you correctly and safely prepare the Subchapter S election form (the 2553).
If you’re interested in a do-it-yourself S corporation for the state of California, you can purchase and download the LLC-based S corporation kits by clicking the button below.
Or you can purchase and download the corporation-based S corporation kit for California by clicking the button below:
Note: Both kits come with appropriate boilerplate governing documents. An LLC based S corporation, for example, needs an LLC operating agreement and the LLC version of the California S corporation kit includes that agreement. A corporation based S corporation, for another example, needs corporate bylaws and the corporation version of the California S corporation kit includes those by-laws.