Most of us think of corporations as companies — Amazon is one, Kellogg another, Disney a third. In reality, a corporation has a very particular legal meaning: it's a company that registers with a state government such that it has the same rights and responsibilities as a person.

Know the word corpse? It means a dead body, and comes from the Latin corpus, "body." One way to remember corporation is that it turns a company into a body — a body that is considered a person in many respects in the eyes of the law. Corporations must pay taxes and follow laws. Because it is a separate entity, when a corporation fails, its employees and managers are not responsible for its debts.

Primary Meanings of corporation

a business firm whose articles of incorporation have been approved in some state
slang for a paunch
Full Definitions of corporation

n a business firm whose articles of incorporation have been approved in some state

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conglomerate, empire
a group of diverse companies under common ownership and run as a single organization
large cap
a corporation with a large capitalization
small cap
a corporation with a small capitalization
close corporation, closed corporation, private corporation, privately held corporation
a corporation owned by a few people; shares have no public market
closely held corporation
stock is publicly traded but most is held by a few shareholders who have no plans to sell
shell corporation, shell entity
a company that is incorporated but has no assets or operations
FDIC, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation
a federally sponsored corporation that insures accounts in national banks and other qualified institutions
FHLMC, Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation, Freddie Mac
a corporation authorized by Congress to provide a secondary market for residential mortgages
FNMA, Fannie Mae, Federal National Mortgage Association
a federally chartered corporation that purchases mortgages
Boy Scouts of America
a corporation that operates through a national council that charters local councils all over the United States; the purpose is character building and citizenship training
publishing conglomerate, publishing empire
a conglomerate of publishing companies
family business
a corporation that is entirely owned by the members of a single family
Type of:
business firm, firm, house
the members of a business organization that owns or operates one or more establishments

n slang for a paunch

bay window, pot, potbelly, tummy
Type of:
belly, paunch
a protruding abdomen

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