your one-stop resource for everything related to starting a small business in colorado.

Where To Register

Secretary of State

If you are a sole proprietor or general partnership and will be doing business under a name other than your own legal name(s), you must register your trade name(s) with the Colorado Secretary of State online at www.sos.state.co.us. Registration of the trade name does not grant exclusive rights to the use of the trade name. Sole proprietors and general partnerships gain exclusive rights to their name through the use of the name over a period of time or by filing a trademark in addition to registering with the Secretary of State. If you want to find out if a name is already being used, visit the Secretary of State’s website at www.sos.state.co.us. Under “Business Center” you will see “Search Business Database”. By searching this database you can find out whether or not a name is currently in use. If your business will be a Limited Partnership, Limited Liability Company, Corporation, Registered Limited Liability Partnership, Registered Limited Liability Limited Partnership or a Limited Partnership Association, you must file with the Secretary of State, online at www.sos.state.co.us. If you do business under an additional name, you must file a “Statement of Trade Name” with the Secretary of State. Corporations, limited partnerships, limited liability companies and limited liability partnerships organized outside Colorado must file for authority to do business in Colorado as a foreign entity. The Secretary of State will not accept paperwork from a business if another business is already using the same name under the same legal structure. Secretary of State 1700 Broadway, Suite 200 Denver, CO 80202 www.sos.state.co.us

Internal Revenue service

All forms of legal structure, except sole proprietors with no employees, must obtain a Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN). The FEIN is your federal tax ID number.

You can obtain your FEIN by:

  • Filing a completed form SS-4 with the IRS EIN Operation unit for your state Philadelphia, PA 19255 & you’ll receive your FEIN within four weeks;
  • Faxing your SS-4 to FAX-TIN number (215) 516-3990. FAX-TIN is available 24 hours a Day 7 days a week. Be sure to include a cover sheet showing your FAX number and you should receive your FEIN within four business days. The form can be obtained from the IRS, 1-800-829-3676 or through their website www. irs.gov under forms.

Sole proprietorship owners with no employees may use their social security number as a federal tax ID number or may file form SS-4 to receive a FEIN. The SS-4 and many other federal tax forms may be obtained from the IRS website located at www.irs.gov.

Department of Revenue

Registering for a Sales tax License/Employees

If you will have sales and/or employees, you must use form CR0100, “Colorado Business Registration.” The CR0100 will open your sales tax license, state wage withholding and unemployment insurance accounts. You can download the form at www.taxcolorado.com. Completed forms may be sent by mail to the Colorado Department of Revenue, 1375 Sherman Street, Denver, CO 80261 or delivered in person at one of the local service centers:

Colorado Springs

2447 North Union Blvd. Colorado Springs, CO 80909

Denver

1375 Sherman St. Room 160 Denver, CO 80261

Fort Collins

3030 South College Ave. Fort Collins, CO 80525

Grand Junction

222 S. Sixth St., Room 208 Grand Junction, CO 81501

Pueblo

827 West 4th St., Ste. A Pueblo CO, 81003

Forms are also available through the Colorado Department of Revenue website located at www.taxcolorado.com. NOTE: Via mail, you will receive confirmation of your accounts in approximately 3-4 weeks. Local service centers will establish accounts while you wait.

HOW TO DO A NAME SEARCH

To search for all businesses registered in Colorado, it is necessary to do a name search with Secretary of State. The Secretary of State has an online service where you can check to see if a name is being used. Visit the Secretary of State by going to www.sos.state.co.us. Then Click on Business Center when the page changes the left hand column will have Search Business Database. The Secretary of State will provide information on trade names, corporations, limited partnerships, limited liability companies, limited liability partnerships or trademarks filed in the State of Colorado. Most forms can be completed and paid for with a credit card online.