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How Do I Start a Branch of My Business in the U.S.?

  • Oct 22 2020

If you are a business owner outside of the United States, you may have considered expanding business operations to the U.S. Foreign investors are welcome to expand operations to the U.S. and its territories and can do so through opening a branch by establishing a U.S. corporation. In order to successfully start a branch of your business in the U.S., there are several important steps you will need to follow.

How Do I Start a Branch of My Business in the U.S.?

Prior to expanding your business operations into the U.S., it is wise to develop a business plan. You will need to select a state where you want your business to be established in the U.S. Different states will have different sets of rules and regulations for business entities, so be sure to investigate which locale will best serve your business interests. You will also need to select which type of business entity you wish to form. It is commonly advised to establish an LLC in a state that does not impose state taxes. This means your business will only need to comply with federal taxes.

You will need to give your U.S. company a name that falls into compliance with state rules about business names. Additionally, you will need to hire a registered agent service. The majority of states require business entities to have a registered agent that can accept the service of process should the need arise. The registered agent must be a resident of the state in which the business is being established or it can be a corporation that is authorized to conduct business within that state.

Setting up a U.S. company will also require filing fairly extensive paperwork. For instance, if you are establishing a limited liability corporation (LLC), you will need to file your Articles of Organization. You will also need to file Articles of Association with regards to the foreign parent company. There will be fees associated with filing this paperwork. While many states do not require it, it can also be good practice to create an operating agreement that outlines the ownership as well as the operating procedures of the business.

You will also need to get an Employer Identification Number (EIN). This is a tax ID for your business. Your business will also need to set up a U.S. bank account. There may be several banks that offer accounts to foreign nationals.

To have the opportunity to come to the U.S. to set up the physical office space of the U.S. branch of your business, you will need to obtain a B-1 business visa. USCIS grants these visas to foreign nationals who wish to come to the U.S. to examine potential sites for their business and to lease property for the business.

You will also likely need to apply for an L-1A visa under the new office category. It is a one-year visa that can be extended further when appropriate and its purpose is to allow foreign companies to send representatives to the U.S. in order to open a new office. A new office is defined as one where the business organization has been doing business in the U.S. for less than one year.

Immigration Attorney

Expanding your business to the U.S. can be a great opportunity. Let the Talamantes Law Firm help set you up for success. Contact Talamantes Immigration Law Firm today.

Posted in: Employment Based Immigration