corporation

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.

Definitions of corporation
  1. noun
    a business firm whose articles of incorporation have been approved in some state
    synonyms: corp
    see moresee less
    types:
    show 12 types...
    hide 12 types...
    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
  2. noun
    slang for a paunch
    synonyms: bay window, pot, potbelly, tummy
    see moresee less
    type of:
    belly, paunch
    a protruding abdomen
Word Family