What are the Articles of Incorporation?
When establishing a Delaware entity, the organizational document filed with the Delaware Secretary of State is called a Certificate of Incorporation (Corporate entities) or Certificate of Formation (LLC, Partnerships). Please note that in this article we will only use the term Certificate of Incorporation but all details also apply to the Certificate of Formation.
Each paragraph of the document sets forth certain information required to establish a Delaware business charter. Each paragraph of that document is called an Article, thus the term, “Articles of Incorporation/Formation”.
When you form your company or corporation with The Incorporators, we create the articles document and submit it to the state to be confirmed and finalized. We then send this document to you as a part of your formation package.
If you ordered an e-kit from us, you will receive a PDF version of this document to the email address you included on your order form. If you ordered one of our packages that includes hard copies, you will receive a hard copy in the mail (with all accessories included in your package) a few days later. We are always able to email you a copy if you'd like one sooner.
Think of it this way: the Articles of Incorporation (for a corporation) or the Articles of Formation (for an LLC or partnership) is essentially your company's birth certificate.
The Most Common Reason You Need Your Articles of Incorporation
The most common reason that customers request a copy of their Articles of Incorporation is because their bank requires it during funding.
Financial institutions need this because they require proof that your company or corporation actually exists. It is the same reason that many will ask for a Certificate of Good Standing (more about Certificates of Good Standing here and to order one, click here). Before conducting business with you, most financial institutions want to know that your corporation has paid all owed taxes and filed annual reports (if required) and most importantly, that they are doing business with a legitimate and legal entity.
Who Can Order a Copy of the Articles of Incorporation
You do not have to order a copy of the Articles of Incorporation from your current registered agent or from the registered agent who originally formed your corporation.
Any Delaware registered agent can pull a copy of your Articles of Incorporation from the state.
How to Order a Copy of Your Delaware Articles of Incorporation
The Incorporators Ltd. has a simple online ordering process to retrieve a copy of your Articles of Incorporation for you. You can order a certified copy here or a plain copy here. Your financial institution (or whoever is requesting a copy) will determine whether a plain or certified copy is required. If your Articles of Incorporation is more than one page, additional fees may apply.
Turnaround time for a copy of the Articles of Incorporation is same day, generally within an hour, during normal business hours (M-F; 9:00am to 5:00pm EST). If ordered after hours, the document will be delivered the next morning. If you have any questions about ordering a copy of your Articles of Incorporation, please call us at 800-223-3928 or contact us here.