Commonwealth of Massachusetts
Citizens' Guide to State Services

Published by
William Francis Galvin
Secretary of the Commonwealth
Citizen Information Service

Business/Economic Development: Business Registration & Regulations

A17 Business Registration Regulations

A18 Corporation Registration

A19 Department of Revenue

A20 Employer Contribution Division

A17 Business Registration Regulations

Roughly translated, and not meant as a legal interpretation, Massachusetts General Law Chapter 110, Section 5: Any individual who is conducting business under a name other than his or her own given name must file a business certificate (sole proprietorship or general partnership) with the Clerks’ office in the city or town hall where the business is located, or by incorporating with the Corporation Division. DBA’s (Doing Business As) for individuals, corporations, LLC, LP, or LLP’s register at the city or town hall as well. If you wish to form a new corporation, LLC LP LLP, or register one already formed in another state or country please contact the Corporation Division (see A20 below). Generally, out of state or out of country corporate entities are required to register if they have a physical location here in Massachusetts, or if they wish to conduct business with a Massachusetts state agency, or bid on a state project here in the Commonwealth. Some professions require further state licensure, see section K for further information.

A18 Corporations Division
Office of the Secretary of the Commonwealth
One Ashburton Place, 17th floor
Boston, MA 02108
Tel: 617-727-9640

See the Corporations Division entry for the complete listing of corporate information and services.

A19 Department of Revenue
Compliance Bureau
Audit Division
200 Arlington Street Room 4300
Chelsea, MA 02150
Tel: 617-887-6367, option 2

Generally, corporations conducting business in the Commonwealth pay a corporate excise tax. This division enforces the tax laws as they apply to corporations, nonprofit corporations, exempt corporations operating in Massachusetts.

A20 Employer Contribution Division
Department of Unemployment Assistance
19 Stanifor Street
Boston, MA 02114
Tel: 617-626-5075
Claims: 617-626-6800
Problems: 617-626-5400

Most employers who employ one or more permanent, temporary or part-time workers in Massachusetts must pay unemployment insurance taxes. A new employer, or any employer who has not done business in Massachusetts before, must notify DUA immediately by filing an Employer Status Report enabling them to establish an employer account and receive a DUA number.

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