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Discussion Starter #1
Hi,
I am about to get a reseller license and register a DBA (state of TX) in preparation for starting a T-shirt business.
My question is, can I get away with using a UPS box address as my "physical address" when registering my business? I read in a previous post that this gives you a physical address. I know you are not supposed to do this but has anybody done it?
Or can anybody recommend a cheap virtual office service that will give me a physical address which can receive mail? The ones I have found run to around $125 a month which seems real steep just for receiving mail.

I have various reasons for not wanting to use my home address including my lease which forbids running a business out of my house, also last time I registered a DBA I got a ton of junk mail to my home address.
Thanks!
 

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I don't know the ins and outs of how it works in the US, but here in the UK, I know that corporate service companies offer a 'registered office' service whereby for a fee, you can register your business to their office address and have your mail forwarded to you. This is offered to those who do not own or rent business premises (which is a legal requirement to registering a business here and much more expensive that residential premises!).
 

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This is exactly what I have done (I'm in TN).

I have a resale license, RN#, Tax id#, and am Incorporated. I did all of this using a box from the UPS store. Yes, it is an actual physical address, and can be used as such.
 

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A long time ago I remember something about having to end your address from one of these places with PMB for Private Mail Box. I don't know if this is by statute or not.

$125 seems real high unless you are renting a box that would hold all your mail for a year. I would expect rates in the $25-$45/month area or about 12-24 times what the post office wants for a PO box.
 

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You want to check with your local UPS store. They will provide you with a physical address, thus the reason why is more money than the USPS po box. The mailbox from what I was told when I signed up is not a PO BOX. If the person is well versed at the store, they will go through the legality with you and why is NOT consider a PO Box. Hope this helps.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for all the advice - that was what I wanted to know. I am going to UPS now to set up a mailbox...
 

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Import,
you should be okay in the state of texas registering your DBA using a USPS or UPS box. Now the problem occurs when you file for your Texas sales tax permit and corporate charter (LLC or for profit corporation). According to the rules of the Texas comptroller office and the secretary of state corporation sections the applicant must use a physical address as the place of business. Why? Because if your business was to get sued, or you forget to file your local sales taxes, someone from the biz has to sign for important docs i.e. lawsuits, liens filed by the state, i.r.s. liens etc. The texas comptroller office also sends out officers to your place of busines if you were to ever be investigated. Fortunatley I have been in bizness in the state of texas for over 11 years and i've had my share of ups and down with the local, state and federal levels of government. Now remember a DBA is nothing but a "doing business as" filing in the county were your sales taxes will be collected. It also informs the local government (county clerk) that you are engage in business, doing business under the filed name. A corp can file a dba or a sole prop (you) can file one. Also remember a SOLE PROP filing a dba DOES NOT PROTECT YOU OR YOUR ASSETS FROM ANY LAWSUITS. When you file for a Texas business charter (llc, c-corp, s-corp, that's where the protection comes into play. All legal Texas businesses once chartered protects all owners from any lawsuits. THE BUSINESS IS SUED NOT YOU. WHAT THE BUSINESS OWNS BECOMES LIABLE, NOT YOUR PERSONAL ASSETS.

Import, where about in texas do you live?
 

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Discussion Starter #8
TshirtKing said:
Import,
you should be okay in the state of texas registering your DBA using a USPS or UPS box. Now the problem occurs when you file for your Texas sales tax permit and corporate charter (LLC or for profit corporation). According to the rules of the Texas comptroller office and the secretary of state corporation sections the applicant must use a physical address as the place of business. Why? Because if your business was to get sued, or you forget to file your local sales taxes, someone from the biz has to sign for important docs i.e. lawsuits, liens filed by the state, i.r.s. liens etc. The texas comptroller office also sends out officers to your place of busines if you were to ever be investigated. Fortunatley I have been in bizness in the state of texas for over 11 years and i've had my share of ups and down with the local, state and federal levels of government. Now remember a DBA is nothing but a "doing business as" filing in the county were your sales taxes will be collected. It also informs the local government (county clerk) that you are engage in business, doing business under the filed name. A corp can file a dba or a sole prop (you) can file one. Also remember a SOLE PROP filing a dba DOES NOT PROTECT YOU OR YOUR ASSETS FROM ANY LAWSUITS. When you file for a Texas business charter (llc, c-corp, s-corp, that's where the protection comes into play. All legal Texas businesses once chartered protects all owners from any lawsuits. THE BUSINESS IS SUED NOT YOU. WHAT THE BUSINESS OWNS BECOMES LIABLE, NOT YOUR PERSONAL ASSETS.

Import, where about in texas do you live?
Hi,
Thanks for the information - I have thought carefully about the company structure and decided to start as a sole proprietor at this time. It makes sense what you say so I will give my real address when it comes to registering for sales tax - I think it was registering for the DBA which got me all the junk mail last time.
 

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Im also in Texas. I rented a PO Box and that was acceptable for my physical address other than deliveries of course. Good Luck!
 

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TshirtKing said:
WHAT THE BUSINESS OWNS BECOMES LIABLE, NOT YOUR PERSONAL ASSETS.
From what I understand, regardless of what business entity you have, there is always a way for your personal assets to be siezed. For example, say that you are the sole owner of an LLC that has not elected to be taxed as a corporation... well, if you don't pay payroll taxes, most states (if not all) consider the business owner personally liable. Don't think that just because you started a business that you can make piss poor tax decisions and get away without the IRS coming after you personally.

But anyways, I do this in Ohio and it works just fine. When I write my address on anything I change the PMB to Ste. Just so people think it is a suite number and that I have an actual office. Works well for me.
 

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How much do the UPS boxes run? I haven't priced them yet, but I was considering getting one if it is reasonable.
 

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I don't know if they are the same everywhere, but where I am (TN) they are $25/month for the medium size. They make you get at least the medium if you're going to be doing business.

You also must pay for at least 3 months in advance, then at least 3 month renewals.
 

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That's not bad. I'm in Tn. right now too, your home away from home, the Smokies to be exact! But I will be needing the boxes in Florida. It shouldn't be too different though, I wouldn't think.
 
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