North Dakota Franchise Laws
How to Open a Small Business in North Dakota (including Franchises)
There are various state and local requirements that businesses will have to meet in order to lawfully operate a business in North Dakota.
The fundamental elements needed to start a business have been established and standardized by the Small Business Administration (SBA). North Dakota businesses are to follow this same protocol; however, there will be various state and local requirements that businesses will have to meet in order to lawfully operate a business in North Dakota. After you have decided a name and created a business plan per the SBA guidelines, then you will be ready to work with the state and local governments.
1. Acquire an required licensing for your business type. If you are going to open a auto dealership, managed care facility, insurance agency, mortgage company, bail bonding agencies, restaurants or catering ser vices, it will be necessary to obtain licensing from the appropriate office. Visit the North Dakota state government website and/or the local clerk of your city or town for licensing details.
2. Obtain a "sales and use tax permit" from the North Dakota Tax Commissioner. If your intentions are to provide tangible merchandise, rentals, fabrication or other particular service, you are required to file for a permit. You may contact the North Dakota Tax Commissioner's office at (701) 328-7088.
3. Register your business name in the state. If you are incorporating, starting a limited liabilty company, proprietorship or partnership, you will need to register your business name (with a DBA or "doing business as" filing) with the North Dakota Secretary of State. You may contact this office at (800) 352-0867 for further details.
4. File for an employer identification number (EIN) by filing the IRS form SS-4. If you were required to file for the DBA in an earlier step, then you will need to file the SS-4 before taking on any employees. You are also required to keep the W-4 withholding certification forms and I-9 employment eligibility verification forms for all employees on file. These forms can be obtained from the IRS and the Department of Immi gration and Naturalization respectively.
5. Insure your business. Depending on the structure of your business the insurance needs of your company will vary. Nearly all business will require some form of liability insurance. You will want to evaluate the needs of your company and see if it would be better to obtain an "umbrella" policy that will cover a vari able of areas like theft, fire, liability, and medical, and bundle them into one package. Be sure to consult with a North Dakota state licensed insurance agent, to determine what policy will best cater to your needs.
6. Seek out the North Dakota Small Business Development Center if you are having any trouble with any of the steps in the development process. This is a government agency that specializes in assisting new businesses that need developmental assistance. This office can be reached by calling (701) 328-5865.
Tips & Warnings
Marketing is one of the key factors in the success of any business. So make sure to spend sufficient time struc turing your business plan. Know your demographic.
Be sure to evaluate you effectiveness often and early. You should know when strategies are not working before they become costly problems, and not be afraid to change courses to avoid loss.