The state of Kentucky allows individuals to start up three different kinds of corporations: nonprofit, business and professional service corporations. Individuals may file for a corporation by using the services of the Kentucky Secretary of State. The secretary provides filing forms and accepts registrations upon the payment of a corporate filing fee. Business startups or charities can obtain the forms online and submit them in the mail to form a Kentucky corporation.
Visit the Kentucky “Business Filing Forms” page at Sos.ky.gov/business/filings/forms/. On this page, you will see links to the three separate kinds of corporations. Some individuals or groups of licensed professionals may start a professional service corporation. Non-professional Kentucky businesses can form the standard “domestic corporation.” Additionally, charities and organizations like schools and churches may start a Kentucky nonprofit.
Click on the various links to see the “Articles of Incorporation” for your chosen business type. You report your chosen corporation name and other details on this filing form. Read the instructions on your specific form to determine the requirements for a Kentucky corporation name. Each corporate business name must have “corporation” or another related corporate identifier in the official name.
In the case of a nonprofit corporation, no state forms ever suffice to grant tax-exempt status to the business. You should study IRS Publication 557 to determine how to apply for federal tax exemptions. The IRS.gov website has a search feature on each page that allows you to find this publication. You must read that first because your Kentucky incorporation documents must contain certain articles to qualify for these federal tax exemptions.
Fill out your chosen “Articles of Incorporation.” Note that these forms only provide the legal minimum necessary to form a Kentucky corporation. If you have specific business ideas or are inexperienced in corporate law, you should contact a Kentucky business attorney for advice.
Prepare the corporation filing fees. In Kentucky, there is a $40 basic fee plus a $10 fee on the first 1000 shares (business and professional service corporations). If issuing more shares, contact the Kentucky Secretary of State with the “Contact the Filings Branch” form at Sos.ky.gov/business/filings/filingscontact.htm. However, the fee for a Kentucky nonprofit is only $8. Make checks payable to the “Kentucky State Treasurer.”
Mail or deliver the form and fee to the appropriate address below:
Office of the Secretary of State
P.O. Box 718
Frankfort, KY 40602-0718
Room 154, Capitol Building
700 Capital Avenue
Frankfort, KY 40601
Hours of Operation: 8 to 4:30 p.m. local time
Kentucky Business Filing Forms
Filings Branch Contact Form