business organizations

Articles of Incorporation


The highest governing document in a corporation. Also known as the corporate charter, it generally includes the purpose of the corporation, the type and number of shares, and the process of electing a board of directors. The articles of...

Articles of Organization


Document required to be filed with a designated official, usually the Secretary of State, to legally register a Limited Liability Company (LLC). Since LLCs are governed by state law, the information required to be in the Articles of...

Artificial Person

An entity established by law and given at least some legal rights and duties of a human being. Corporations are the most common types of artificial persons.

See [[legal person]]; cf. natural person.


1. An organization of people that is not incorporated. In general, an association is not a separate entity from the persons who compose it. However, some laws may require associations to pay taxes, particularly if they have certain features that...


An audit (noun) is a formal examination and verification of an individual’s or organization’s records and accounts, finances, or compliance with a set of standards.

To audit (verb) is the act of conducting the formal...


An auditor is one who conducts an audit. Specifically, an auditor is a person or firm (usually an accountant or accounting firm) that conducts a formal examination and verification of an individual’s or organization’s records and accounts,...


Authority is the official permission or right to act, often on behalf of another. Authority may also be a person or institution that has power over another person.

Authority as agency is the power to act on behalf of another...


To authorize means to grant authority; to empower. It may also mean to formally or officially approve.

[Last updated in June of 2021 by the Wex Definitions Team]

balance sheet

A financial statement that consists of a three-part summary of a company's assets, liabilities, and ownership equity at a particular instance in time. It is intended to show the financial condition of a company at that time.

The balance sheet...

Board of Directors

In a corporation, the board of directors is a groups of people, selected by the shareholders, who make the major decisions for the company. The exact responsibilities of the board are governed by the company’s articles of...