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Massachusetts Law About Corporations

Massachusetts Laws


Massachusetts Corporation Forms

Selected Case Law

Varney Enterprises, Inc. v. WMF, Inc., 402 Mass. 79 (1988) . "In this case, we hold that, except for small claim matters, a corporation may not be represented in judicial proceedings by a corporate officer who is not an attorney licensed to practice law in the Commonwealth." The case interprets MGL c.221 s.46, Practice of law by corporations; prohibition; exception.

Citizens United v. Federal Elections Commission, 558 US 310 (2010). Campaign Finance. The ruling concerns 2 UCS 441(b), contributions by banks, corporations and unions. The decision removes limits on independent expenditures that are not coordinated with candidates' campaigns. It leaves in place a prohibition on direct contributions to candidates from corporations and unions. Disclaimer and disclosure requirements were held to be valid restrictions.

Other Web Sources

In General

About Service of Process, Mass. Secretary of State. Describes how to serve both domestic and foreign corporations.

Business USA, U.S. Small Business Administration. Great site for business planning and management. Includes resources for starting a business, paying taxes, managing employees and much more. Also provides guidance for particular types of business owners, such as women, veterans and minorities. Extremely broad and deep coverage of small business issues.

Corporate Records Handbook, Nolo, 2013. When records are required and how to keep them. Requires Library Card for access.

"Corporations Book," provides a listing of for-profit corporations doing business in Massachusetts, Mass. Department of Revenue.

Corporations Division, Mass. Secretary of State. Online access to file forms and requirements to do so.

Doing Business in Massachusetts: A Guide to U.S. and Massachusetts Law for Non-U.S. Businesses, Foley Hoag, LLP, 2011 . Covers everything from forms of business to employment, real estate, financing, taxation, antitrust, immigration and more.

Forming a Corporation in Massachusetts, Digital Media Law Project. A great step-by-step guide to forming a Mass. corporation, with links to forms and key publications.

Incorporate Your Business: A Legal Guide to Forming a Corporation in Your State, Nolo, 2013. Includes information on how corporations work, corporate taxes, dealing with lawyers and accountants and more. Requires Library Card for access.

Benefit Corporations

Benefit Corporation Information Center. Clearinghouse of information, with links to many sources of information on the Massachusetts law.

Benefit Corporations: New Legislation: Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 156E Effective December 1, 2012, Mass. Secretary of State. Explains the law in a question and answer format.

Benefit Corporations: Overview, Background and Massachusetts Legislation, New England School of Law, November 2012. 8-page paper on benefit corporations.

Calling All Social Entrepreneurs: Who Will be Massachusetts' First Benefit Corporation?, MassInno, August 2012.

Massachusetts Passes Legislation Recognizing Benefit Corporations, Foley Hoag, August, 2012. Explains the basics of the law.

Virtue, Inc.: Can the New Benefit Corporation Charters Give Companies a Conscience?, November 2012. Details the law and its purpose and uses.

Nonprofit Corporations

Every Nonprofit's Tax Guide, Nolo, 2013. "Turn to this book whenever you have a question about IRS rules or nonprofit compliance issues." Requires Library Card for access.

Forming a Nonprofit Corporation in Massachusetts, Digital Media Law Project. Outlines the steps to forming a nonprofit corporation in Massachusetts.

How to Form a Nonprofit Corporation, Nolo, 2013. How to structure your nonprofit, get tax exempt status and organize your corporation. Requires Library Card for access.

Starting and Building a Nonprofit, Nolo, 2013. Naming and structuring your nonprofit -- Developing your strategic plan -- Developing your initial budget -- Your board of directors -- Your workforce: staff and volunteers -- Fundraising -- Risk management and insurance -- Understanding contracts and agreements -- Marketing your nonprofit -- Publishing informational materials -- Spreading the word online about your nonprofit -- Managing your finances -- Getting professional help. Requires Library Card for access.

Print Sources

Massachusetts Corporation Law and Practice, Aspen, loose-leaf.

Massachusetts Practice v. 13, Business Corporations, with Forms, West Group, annual.