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articles of incorporation.A governing document that sets forth the basic terms of a corporation’s existence, including the number and classes of shares and the purposes and duration of the corporation. • In most states, the articles of incorporation are filed with the secretary of state
as part of the process of forming the corporation. In some states, the articles serve as a certificate of incorporation and are the official recognition of the corporation’s existence. In other states, the government issues a certificate of incorporation after approving the articles and other required documents. — Also termed articles of association; articles of organization; certificate of incorporation. — Often shortened (informally) to articles. Cf. BYLAW(1); CHARTER(5). See governing document under DOCUMENT(1). [Cases: Corporations 18. C.J.S. Corporations §§
26, 33–35, 41, 559.]