Massachusetts law about corporations

Laws, regulations, cases, and web sources on corporations law.

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Table of Contents

Massachusetts laws

MGL c.55, § 8 Political contributions by corporations; penalties

MGL Title XXII Corporations (Chapters 155-182)
Links to 100 chapters in the subdivision of the Code called Title XXII Corporations. Includes:

MGL c.221, § 46 Practice of law by corporations; prohibition; exception

Massachusetts regulations

950 CMR 102.00-113.00 Secretary of the Commonwealth, Corporations Division.


Selected cases

1A Auto, Inc. v. Director of the Office of Campaign and Political Finance, 480 Mass. 423 (2018)
Under MGL c.55, § 8, corporations may not make contributions to political candidates or their campaigns.

Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, 558 U.S. 310 (2010)
"The Government may not suppress political speech on the basis of the speaker's corporate identity. No sufficient governmental interest justifies limits on the political speech of nonprofit or for-profit corporations."

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, § 46, Practice of law by corporations; prohibition; exception.

Web sources

Closing your Massachusetts business registration, Mass. Dept. of Revenue. 
Outlines the steps to close a Massachusetts business registration with the DOR and other state and federal agencies

The Corporations book, Mass. Dept. of Revenue. Division of Local Services.
A list of corporations subject to taxation in Massachusetts.

Corporations, Secretary of the Commonwealth.
Has general Information, services offered by the Secretary, filing information, a link to searching the Corporate Database in a number of different ways, and how to request certified copies. The Corporate Database includes records for thousands of corporations, LLCs, and other business entities organized or registered to do business in the Commonwealth, including profit, non-profit, and professional corporations and foreign entities.

Do corporations have standing?, Mass. Trial Court Law Libraries, 2019.
"Corporations may enter into contracts, and sue or be sued in court, in the same way as natural persons or unincorporated associations of persons."

"Forming a corporation in Massachusetts," Digital Media Law Project.
"Outline of the steps you need in order to form a corporation. Part of Digital Media Law Project's "Creating a Business."

Researching Massachusetts corporations, State Library of Mass.
Provides a timeline of the statutory oversight of corporation filings to help researchers find historical articles of organization and other filings. Download the file to click on hyperlinks.

"Why incorporate in Delaware? Benefits and considerations," Forbes Advisor.

Print sources

Business corporations, with forms, (Mass. Practice v. 13) West Group, annual.

The corporate records handbook : meetings, minutes & resolutions by Anthony Mancuso, Nolo, 2022. (eBook available at link with library card).

Incorporate your business by Anthony Mancuso, Nolo, 2021. (eBook available here with library card).

The law of corporations, 3rd ed., James D. Cox, Thomson/West.

The law of corporations in a nutshell, 8th ed., West Academic, 2020.

Massachusetts corporation law and practice, Wolters Kluwer, loose-leaf.

Massachusetts corporations and other business entities, Lexis, with supplement.

Principles of corporate governance: analysis and recommendations, American Law Institute.

Securities litigation and enforcement in a nutshell, 2nd ed., West Academic Publishing, 2021.


Last updated: May 22, 2023

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