There is an array of tasks you must complete before you can officially open your business. Some of these tasks are purely functional, such as securing a physical store and buying inventory, while others are legal requirements. It is essential that you carefully assess the legal requirements because you could face penalties if you fail to do something the law requires you to do.
According to the South Carolina Secretary of State, state law requires that you register your business with the secretary’s office.
When to register
The law explicitly requires you to register your business prior to advertising your business in any way to consumers. You cannot offer products for sale or do anything to move your business forward without registering, so you should do it as soon as possible in the life of your business. You must also keep your registration current by renewing it every two years.
If you have material changes in your business, then you must alert the office of these changes. Material changes may include things like changing your business name or the ownership of the business.
How to register
To register, you will need to provide a financial statement for your business. It must have an audit or you must swear under penalty that the financial statement is accurate. Also, it cannot be older than 13 months, so try to make it as current as possible to avoid issues. You also must pay a $100 fee to submit your registration paperwork.
If you must secure a trust or surety bond under state law for your specific business, then you need to submit a copy of that paperwork with your registration.