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Question added to topic Legal Basics For StartupsJuly 2, 2008

How do I register a company in the U.S., where I am a citizen, to export products from India to West Africa (Ghana)?

I plan to start an export company. The goods would be manufactured in India and shipped to Ghana. For paperwork-related issues, such as an opening letter of credit, I may use a U.S.-based bank. Also, I would like to put a U.S. address on the product stating that XYZ company is registered in the U.S. What forms do I need and what steps should I take?
Registering a company in the United States involves the same process as registering a company that has a domestic purpose. First, you’ll want to speak with an attorney and an accountant who specialize in import-export companies to help choose the right form of business for you (e.g., corporation, limited liability company, other).

Then, with their help, you’ll decide where the company should be headquartered (your state of residence? Delaware? Nevada?) for the best tax advantage.

Once you have that, you can open your U.S. bank account. Then--and this is not a business formation issue, but rather a licensing issue--you’ll need to work with your attorney to secure the appropriate permits and licenses you may need to import and export goods, pay tariffs, etc.

Nina L. Kaufman, Esq. is an award-winning New York City attorney, edutainer and author. Under her Ask The Business Lawyer brand, she reaches thousands of entrepreneurs and small business owners with her legal services, professional speaking, information products, and LexAppeal weekly ezine. She also writes the Making It Legal blog.

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