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How To Fill Out The Montana LLC Articles of Organization

How To Fill Out The Montana LLC Articles of Organization

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How To Fill Out The Montana LLC Articles of Organization

Are you looking to start a business in Montana and need help understanding how to create your LLC?

You’ve come to the right place! Starting a business can be a complicated process, but with the right information and guidance, it doesn’t have to be. So, to help, I’ll go over how to fill out the Montana LLC Articles of Organization so you can start your LLC.

Related: Guide to starting a business in Montana

Anyone can learn how to form their own LLC, but using an entity formation service like Zenbusiness, Northwest, and Bizee guide you through the LLC formation process, so you will save time and know everything was done right.

Zenbusiness and IncFile are running a special where you only pay state fees for your LLC formation!

Steps To Fill Out The Montana LLC Articles Of Organization

To get started, log on to ePass Montana, which is the Montana Secretary of State’s website, and create an account.

Then select Articles of Organization for Domestic Limited Liability Company.

How to Form a Montana LLC

Step 1: Select Processing Options and the Effective Filing Date

Step 1 Montana LLC Effective Date

In step 1, you will select the LLC’s processing time and effective filing date.

Some will delay the LLC start date if they aren’t ready to go but want to get the filing out of the way or if they are close to the end of a calendar year and want to delay until the following year so they won’t have to file business taxes.

Choosing “when filled with the Secretary of State” is the most common option, and upon the state’s approval, the LLC will start immediately. Otherwise, you can enter a date 90 days or less in the future to have it start.

Step 2: Choose the Business Structure Type and Name

Step 2 Montana LLC Name

If forming a regular Montana LLC (that’s what most businesses will choose), select “Limited Liability Company.”

If your business activities require a professional license from the state, you will want to select “Professional Limited Liability Company.” A PLLC is an LLC that provides services that require state licensing. Common licenses for professionals include accountants, attorneys, and veterinarians. For more information on what businesses need professional licensing, see what licenses and permits are needed in Montana.

A “Series Limited Liability Company” provides liability protection across multiple asset groups or businesses, each of which would be protected from liabilities from the other series. The Series LLC is not a common choice and is typically most common with real estate investment companies. 

An out-of-state LLC wanting to do business in Montana will have to register as a foreign LLC by filing the Application for Certificate of Authority with the Montana Secretary of State.

Next, you want to make sure the name you want is available. 

You are first asked whether the name has previously been filed. This isn’t common, so most will select “No.” However, if you previously reserved the name, select “Yes.”

It’s critical to do a name search before registering an LLC name, as the name of each LLC must be distinguishable from other entity names registered in the state of Montana. The Montana Secretary of State makes it easy to search and verify if your LLC name is available.  Here is more information on how to do a Montana LLC name search.

In addition to the name being unique, the entity designator (identifier used at the end of the business name) must be either:
– Limited Company
– Limited Liability Co
– Limited Liability Co.
– Limited Liability Company,
– L C
– L L C
– L. C.
– L. L. C.
– L.C.
– L.L.C.
– LC
– Ltd Co
– Ltd Co.
– Ltd. Co
– Ltd. Co.

Step 3: Enter Entity Details

Step 3 Montana LLC Address

Next, information about the entity will be entered.

In the first box, the duration of the LLC is asked, which is how long it will remain in existence.  Most LLCs will choose “Perpetual / Ongoing” as there is no predetermined close date.  Some businesses (usually investment-related) will have a specific closure date and would choose “Future Date.”

Next, in the business purpose box, you will provide some basic information about what the business does. 

Read more about answering the business purpose.

Last, enter the mailing address of the Principal Office. This can be the address of where the business will operate,

Additionally, if there is a physical address, such as an office or storefront, that is different from the mailing address, it can be added as well.

Step 4: Appoint a Registered Agent

Step 4 Montana LLC Registered Agent

Every LLC in Montana is required to have a Registered Agent. A Registered Agent is the central point of contact to receive legal documents, tax notices, summons, subpoenas, etc., on behalf of the LLC.

The registered agent can either be an individual or an organization, though the business entity being formed can’t be its own registered agent.

The basic requirements to be a Registered Agent in Montana include:
– The agent must be a Montana resident at least 18 years of age or a commercial Registered Agent service with a registered office in the state.
– The agent must have a physical address in the state (PO Boxes aren’t allowed).
– The agent must generally be available during normal business hours at the address provided to receive service of process.

Learn more about the requirements for a registered agent in Montana.

It is required that the registered agent has consented to be the registered agent of the LLC. While there isn’t a form to file, it’s recommended to have something in writing.

Step 5: Add the Members or Managers of the LLC

Step 5 Montana LLC Members

This section first asks if the LLC is managed by the managers or members.
Member-Managed LLCs have an active involvement in the day-to-day operations of the business.  Most LLCs are Member-Managed.
Manager-Managed LLCs have managers hired by the members to run the LLC, similar to a CEO of a corporation.

The next question asks if the members are liable for the LLC’s debts. While you can select no, if the LLC needs a loan, the bank will require the member to personally guarantee the loan, which means they will still be liable for the LLC’s debts.

Last, enter the name and address of the members. At least one member must be entered.

Step 6: Add any Additional Provisions

If you wish to include additional items regarding the formation of the LLC (not common), attach them to this section.

Step 7: Review the Articles of Organization

In step 7, you will review the Articles of Organization to ensure the information is correct. If so, click “Next Step” to finish the filing.

Step 8: Sign & Submit the Articles of Organization

To finish the filing, read and agree to the declarations, and then an organizer or someone authorized to file the paperwork will sign the Articles of Organization.

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Montana LLC FAQs

How much does a Montana LLC cost?

The state filing fee to create a Montanta LLC is $35.

Does a Montana LLC need any business licenses?

The requirements for business licenses and registrations in Montana vary depending on what the business does and where it’s located.

Here is a list of common business licenses in Montana.

How long does it take to form a Montana LLC?

The LLC paperwork in Montana is normally processed in 7-10 business days. Expedited processing is available for an additional fee.

Does Montana require an operating agreement for an LLC?

Under Montana law, statute  § 35-8-109, a Montana LLC operating agreement is optional, regardless of the number of members. 

Although it isn’t required, it is recommended that most LLCs have one, as it can help prevent disputes among members and better protect the LLC’s legal status.

Related: How to create a Montana operating agreement

Do Montana LLCs need an EIN?

Only Montana LLCs that either have more than one member, will hire employees, or elect to be taxed as a partnership or corporation are required to get an Employer Identification Number (EIN).

The EIN or Employer Identification Number (also called a Federal Employer Identification Number or FEIN) is a unique 9-digit tax identification number that is assigned by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

If the LLC isn’t required to get an EIN (though you can still get one), the LLC will use the social security number of the business owner.

Related: How to apply for an EIN

How much does it cost to file an annual report in Montana

Each year, Montana LLCs will need to file a Montana LLC annual report and pay the $20 state filing fee with the Montana Secretary of State.

How To Fill Out The Montana LLC Articles of Organization

How To Fill Out The Montana LLC Articles of Organization

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