How to Find a Company's State Registation or Incorporation

By Bailey Shoemaker Richards - Updated June 19, 2017
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Researching a company can require you to find information on where the business is incorporated. All corporations, limited liability companies and legal partnerships are required to register with a Secretary of State before beginning their business operations. Locating the state of incorporation can seem like a challenge, but there are numerous tools available to make the process simpler. Incorporated businesses and partnerships file either articles of incorporation or articles of organization. Most Secretary of State websites contain information on how to find these articles, and other tools are available through businesses and the internet.

Use the Federal Government

Go to sec.gov and search for the business you are researching. All corporations are required to file a yearly report with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The state of incorporation can be found on the first page of the report.

Read the Company Website

Another method is to visit the company's website. Corporations often include information online about where the company is incorporated. If not, find a phone number or email address for the business and contact it directly with your inquiry regarding the state of incorporation.

Research State Records

Once you know the state, you'll still have to find the right branch of government to search for incorporation records. Typically they're maintained by the state government's secretary of state department. If not, you can search the rest of the state's website, or google the state name plus "incorporation records." Once you find the right branch, find their corporate-search web page. Enter the name of the company you're looking for and see what results you get. Some states let you to search by other information, such as the names of officers or directors.

About the Author

Bailey Shoemaker Richards is a writer from Ohio. She has contributed to numerous online and print publications, including "The North Central Review." Shoemaker Richards also edits for several independent literary journals and the Pink Fish Press publishing company. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in creative writing from Ohio University.

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