If you are an entrepreneur in Florida, making sure you follow the state’s rules for starting a business may help you avoid mistakes that cost money and time. Before you begin offering your products and services, it is essential to create a business plan, choose a legal structure and file the paperwork for your company’s name. 

You may find the Florida government’s guide to starting a business on the state’s official website. According to the guide, a business plan should cover your goals for the first three to five years of operation. Your plan may include a description of your company, its products and services, your target market and financial projections. 

Another step in starting a business is choosing a legal structure. You may decide to operate as a sole proprietor to start out, directly linking your personal and business finances. To protect your personal assets from business liability, you could form a limited liability company on your own or with other members. Other options include partnerships and corporations. Each business structure has unique requirements, benefits and challenges. 

After creating a business plan and deciding on a structure, the next step is choosing and filing your business name. If you choose to set up a sole proprietorship, you may operate under your own name or choose a different business name. If you want to use a business title, you must file this “Doing Business As” name with the state. Generally, you may not use a business name that someone else has already registered.