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Companies Served Since 1981

The HBS Blog


The HBS Blog offers insight on Delaware corporations and LLCs as well as information about entrepreneurship, start-ups and general business topics.

Pay Both Annual Maintenance Fees In One Easy Step!
By Cortney Sharp Tuesday, February 28, 2012

FRANCHISE TAX DEADLINE: WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 29th For CORPORATIONS, NOT LLC’s

ACT TODAY TO AVOID THE $100 PENALTY!

For Your Convenience: Pay Both Annual Maintenance Fees In One Easy Step!

You can now submit your Delaware Franchise tax and Harvard Registered Agent payment with ONE easy transaction at www.delawareinc.com/payft/

You will be guided through the quick and easy steps on our online tax form and before you complete your order, our system will offer the option to include another year’s Registered Agent Fee. It’s just that simple.

Not sure when your Harvard Registered Agent Fee is due for your company?

If you formed your company through Harvard Business Services, Inc., the Registered Agent Fee is due each year on the 28th day of the anniversary month of the formation of your company. If you formed your company through another agent, and changed to Harvard along the way to take full advantage of our fixed $50 annual Registered Agent Fee, your anniversary is counted from the date you switched to Harvard. But don’t worry, once all the company details are provided and confirmed by you for the March 1st deadline, you will see a statement listing your next due date for our Registered Agent services. You will be provided options for one year, or the convenience and savings of two or three years of service. If the due date has passed, you will find that the late penalty will be waived if included with your current Franchise Tax balance.

Choose the option that suits you. Enter your payment details and you can be sure the rest will be taken care of by Harvard. Your confirmation receipt will be sent to the email address provided with your order.

We have received great reviews regarding this addition to our online Franchise Tax service. We hope you find it beneficial and will take advantage of the convenience. And you’ll leave our website knowing your annual fees have been taken care of…so that’s two fewer things on your desk and on your mind.

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Investing In Your Company versus the Stock Market
By Gregg Schoenberg Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Once you have achieved a certain level of success as an entrepreneur, you may find yourself weighing whether to put more money into your own business or to invest in the stock market. While Harvard Business Servcies, Inc. is not here to offer specific investment advice, we do suggest considering the following factors when facing this decision.

Begin by taking a look at your entire investment portfolio, including the value of your ownership stake in your business, to see if you are sufficiently diversified. While there are no hard and fast rules about what an entrepreneur’s portfolio should look like, a well-diversified portfolio usually includes investments in stocks/bonds and enough cash to meet projected needs, in addition to the stake in the business. If you feel  too much of your net worth is wrapped up in your company, then investing outside of it to realize the benefits of diversification (less risk, lower volatility) may make sense.

If you are sufficiently diversified but still weighing whether to invest inside or outside of your business, you’ll want to consider the rates of return that you can reasonably expect to receive from different investments. For investments within your own company, you’ll want to look at the internal rate of return (IRR) of various projects you could potentially take on. IRR calculations can get pretty complex, so be sure to involve your CFO or other in-house finanical expert, but in general terms you can think of a project’s IRR as the growth rate it is expected to generate.

For investments in the marketplace, you’ll want to look at the historic returns of the different asset classes (stocks, bonds, cash, etc.) over a long period of time and see how those compare to the IRR of investing in your own firm. If the gap between your IRR and external market returns is rather large, this can help you to invest your cash in the right direction. Keep in mind that past market returns are no guarantee of future performance, and the actual rate of return you earn from investing in your own company may differ from your projected IRR. Still, comparing your IRR with historical market returns can be a healthy and instructive exercise.

If you decide to invest in your own business, your options, of course, are not limited to taking on new projects. If your company is profitable but operating below capacity, then you may want to increase your marketing budget. In this case, you should take a look at the marketing channels you are currently using and the return on investment (ROI) of each one. ROI is a performance metric that can help you evaluate and compare the efficiency of different investments to help ensure you are funneling your dollars toward the strategies that generate the most profit.

Finally, you’ll want to consider the tax implications of the different investments that are available to you. A 7% return in the stock market versus a municipal bond with a 7% coupon versus a project with a 7% IRR can result in vastly different after-tax returns, so consult your accountant or tax advisor for help in determining which investments make the most sense for you and your company from both a state and federal tax standpoint.

Although diversification is a worthy goal, losing money in the stock market is disappointing, and you gain nothing from the experience; investing in your own company always brings you some value, even if your investment doesn’t pay off. Remember, entrepreneurs are famous for learning how to succeed by failing first.

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Change of Address for Delaware Division of Corporations
By Amy Fountain Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Due to the high volume of annual reports and payments that the State of Delaware receives throughout the year, they use a third party facility to accept all of these types of payments.  Recently they contracted this service to a new bank for processing.

 

Effective January 2012, the new lockbox mailing address is:

State of Delaware, Division of Corporations

PO Box 5509

Binghamton, NY 13902-5509

 

Courier/Overnight address is:

JP Morgan Chase

Attn:  State of Delaware, Division of Corporations-5509

33 Lewis Road

Binghamton, NY 13905

If you have been sending your franchise tax filing and payments to the old lockbox address in New Jersey, you will need to update your records accordingly.

 

Even better, why not let us take care of the franchise tax filing for you, so you do not have to worry about it.  We have been helping clients for over 30 years file their annual franchise taxes.  We have the experience and knowledge to make sure your franchise tax filing is completed with the state of Delaware accurately and efficiently. 

 

By filing through Harvard Business Services, Inc., you will not have to worry if your filing will be lost in the mail due to an invalid address. You also will not have to be concerned that your payment is potentially being improperly handled at a separate processing facility.

 

Filing and payment arrangements for your franchise taxes can be made on our secure website at www.delawareinc.com/payft/.  We accept all types of credit cards, as well as PayPal, for you to take care of this annual obligation.

 

We are always available if there are any questions regarding the annual franchise taxes.  Please contact us via email at payments@delawareinc.com or via telephone at 1-800-345-2677 or 302-645-7400, Ext. 6904, to speak with a helpful customer service representative.

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Forming a Company Is Just the First Step To Owning It
By Michael Bell Monday, February 20, 2012

So you and a friend one day start collaborating on different business ideas. You both shake hands and come to the conclusion that you have a great business idea and you want to go into business and own it 50 – 50. You believe it will all fall into place as you expect regarding who is going to do what, who’s who in the company, and what each partner is going to contribute. You dream up a business plan and form a Delaware LLC or Corporation through Harvard Business Services taking advantage of Delaware’s preeminent corporate law.

Well, that all sounds great, however as everyone knows not every collaboration works out as expected. In this article we're going to explain the importance of why  every company should have specific documents on file internally within the company at all times with regards to this specific possibility.

Many of our clients feel when the company is formed that everything is complete and they can go on their way running the business. They neglect to sign an LLC Operating Agreement or draft corporate minutes and bylaws. However, every now and then there is a snag where one person feels differently than the other business partner and it leads to a break up in the business. The question is, who takes the business with them and who leaves without it? Sometimes BOTH want to continue owning the business, only without the other.

That usually leads to both parties calling our office separately wanting to know who actually owns the business. Sometimes, one party will call and try to change the address to their own, or try to change the name of the company, or even try to dissolve the company without the other person knowing about it.

Now there is a problem. One partner says one thing and the other partner says another, in essence it is one of those “he said, she said” situations. At Harvard Business Services we have a specific policy in place when a case like this arises.

Delaware law provides that every Delaware Company, regardless of the type of company, must have one “Contact Person”. That person must be a real person, and cannot be another company. As a Delaware Professional Registered Agent we are required by law to maintain a contact person’s name and address for each one of our 30,000 clients. When you form a company through HBS, you tell us who your Contact Person will be. We place this person’s name in our files and on our computer record.

Here at Harvard Business our policy is that we  only speak to the official “contact person” of record about the company, and we accept instructions from the “Contact Person” only. It doesn’t matter who called us first, or whose credit card paid for it, or who says they own the company. The contact person must verify certain information on file for us to speak with them on behalf of the company. Many clients feel because they provided their name as the Member or Director at the time of filing that they own the company. This is not always the case and this is where an Operating Agreement for an LLC or Minutes and Bylaws for a Corporation come in very handy, to say the least. We find that some of our clients never get around to these essential matters.

That’s why we recommend our STANDARD SERVICE which includes a deluxe company binder with all the formation documents you need to establish who is who and what each party contributes and what ownership each party gets for their contribution. Even though it costs more than the bare-bones service, it can be well worth it in the end.

If you formed your company with our mini-service and haven’t executed the documents you should, you can order a corporate kit now, and get it done, before a situation arises. Call us now.

For more information on why you should obtain a Deluxe Kit click HERE to read this great article written by Harvard’s Paul Sponaugle called How Thin is your Veil?

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We Can File Your Delaware Franchise Tax!
By Amy Fountain Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Even if your Delaware Company is currently with another registered agent, Harvard Business Services can save you time and money by filing the annual franchise tax report for you.  We can file the Delaware annual franchise tax report for any Delaware company.

Make sure you have your company name and Delaware State file number ready, and visit our secure website at:

https://www.delawareinc.com/payft/

If you do not know your Delaware State file number, just contact us by phone, email or live chat and we will be glad to obtain it for you.

If you have your file number, all you have to do is enter some basic details about the company, as required by the State of Delaware. We are online with the Secretary of State’s Office and can quickly determine how much franchise tax is due for your company.  We can file your annual Franchise Tax report with payment arrangements and process it with the State of Delaware Franchise Tax Department on your behalf.  You will receive an email confirmation receipt that the franchise tax filing is complete and everything is in order.  It’s that simple!

Now that you have seen how easy it is to file the annual franchise taxes through Harvard Business Services, why not have us be the official registered agent for your company?  We offer a wide variety of useful business services and can help make sure your company fulfills its annual obligations with the State of Delaware.

In order to be a customer of Harvard Business Services, a Change of Agent Certificate will need to be filed with the Secretary of State.  The Secretary of State charges a one-time fee of $50 to file the “Certificate of Change of Registered Agent”. Harvard Business Services will discount the first year registered agent fee from $50 to only $39!  Thus, the total cost to change t o HBS will be only $89. To initiate this change, go on our website:

https://www.delawareinc.com/ourservices/change-agent/

Want an extra bonus?  Just enter the promotional code “CHANGE” in the appropriate field on the online worksheet and you will receive an additional $10 off your change of agent filing.  That is a deal you won’t find anywhere else! (This offer expires March 1, 2012)

We are always available to answer any questions you may have regarding your Franchise Tax and/or your company’s status in Delaware.  Give us a call at 1-800-345-2677 or 1-302-645-7400, or visit us at www.delawareinc.com.  If you prefer, you can also send an email at info@delawareinc.com.

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