Among the list of administrative tasks you must complete to create a small business or startup is opening a business bank account. And to make things easier, you should organize your documents before going to the bank.

While every bank has its own requirements, there are certain documents you should have to help you get through the process quickly. Below are the three most common documents you’ll need to open your small business bank account in Kansas City (don’t forget that you’ll also need an ID for yourself too!).

Startup/Small Business Formation Documents

LLCs and Corporations are created by filing formation documents with your Secretary of State. Different states call them different things and many states have different names for different types of entities. For example, in Missouri and Kansas, you file Articles of Incorporation to create a corporation and Articles of Organization to create a LLC.

In a sense, these are the businesses’ birth certificates. And to open a startup or small business bank account, you’ll need a copy of your formation documents.

An IRS Employer Identification Number (EIN)

An EIN is kind of like a Social Security Number for a business. The IRS and some other jurisdictions use your EIN to identify your company for tax and filing purposes. And not surprisingly, your bank will require that you have an EIN (some banks will even require a physical copy of your EIN letter).

Obtaining an EIN is a fairly straight-forward process that can be done on the IRS website, but it is often best to have an accountant or small business attorney help you to make sure you don’t make mistakes when filling out the forms. (Note: you can only use the online EIN tool during normal business hours…. wait, what? Yea….).

Bylaws or Operating Agreement (and maybe meeting resolutions)

Depending on your bank, you might also need to supply a copy of your small businesses’ governing document (for a corporation, that means your Bylaws; for a LLC, that means your Operating Agreement).

Additionally, they may ask you to provide Meeting Minutes or Written Resolutions to show that you have the power to open the bank account on behalf of the startup or small business. This is especially true for businesses with more than one owner.

While you can create those documents on your own, you will almost always be best served using a startup or small business attorney to help you create them.

Bonus Tip: Do Your Research

We live in a digital era. But many banks still live in the 1990s. Do you research and ask for recommendations. Some banks have great online banking tools, others don’t. Some have great mobile apps, others don’t. And as always, every bank has their own minimum deposit requirements and fee structures.

That’s why you should always do your research to find a bank that fits the way you do business.

Free ebooks


Image: Adobe/Melpomene

*This article is very general in nature and does not constitute legal advice.