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I have an S-Corporation using which I used to do consulting work a few years back. Now, the revenues from that corporation has come down to zero. I hate to close it down in case I want to consult again. For the whole of 2011, I have been filing zero revenue tax returns to various government agencies. I would like to stop that as well but still keep the corp itself open with the option to restart everything in the future if so desired. How do I go about doing this? The S-corporation is registered in Illinois. I do not mind paying the yearly corporate filing fee of $100.00 to keep it open. Thanks.

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If you have no net income or loss, you can usually get away without filing a tax return. In Illinois, the standard is:

Filing Requirements
You must file Form IL-1120 if you are a corporation that has net income or loss as defined under the IITA; or is qualified to do business in the state of Illinois and is required to file a federal income tax return (regardless of net income or loss).

Just keep your filing fee and any business licenses up to date, paying those fees personally and not out of business money (that would make for a net loss and trigger needing a tax return). Frankly, with how easy it is to register a new corp, especially an LLC which has many simplicity advantages from an S-corp in certain cases, you might still be better off shutting it down until that time.

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I disagree: it's best to avoid mixing personal and corporate money. The corporation should pay its own fees. – bstpierre Jan 12 '12 at 14:02
Yes, completely agree, it is best to avoid whenever possible. But, in that event, his goal won't be achieved. That is why I state that shutting it down and then starting a new entity might be easier. Keeping a non-running corporation afloat provides little benefit and lots of silly little complications like the one that paying to keep it afloat will beget activity to require more reporting, etc. – Alex Opposite Jan 12 '12 at 16:47

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