How to Form an LLC in Montana

By Anna Assad

A limited liability corportion, or LLC, is a business entity that includes aspects of both a corporation and a partnership. The owners of an LLC are referred to as "members," and Montana laws allow one or more persons to form an LLC. The personal assets of the members are usually protected from creditors as in a corporation, but the formation of an LLC is simpler. You can form a limited liability company in Montana by submitting the required documents to the secretary of state.

Choose a name for your LLC. Go to the official website of the Montana secretary of state and use the "Business Entity Search" to check if the name you want is available. You cannot use a name that is close to or already in use by another business in the state. Your name must include the words "limited liability company" or an acceptable abbreviation, like "LLC," indicating the business type.

Decide the terms of your operating agreement. The operating agreement specifies the rules, procedures and regulations for your company's internal business affairs, such as the policy for distributions to and admission of other members. The agreement may be oral, but state law requires it to be in writing if you set out standards for record-keeping or policies for member admissions and distribution rights. The agreement is not required to be filed with the articles of organization, but a written agreement may offer protection if questions arise about your LLC's procedures.

Choose a management type for your LLC. The company may be managed by members or outside employees. An outside employee is a person who can legally work in Montana and who is hired based on business needs and personal qualifications, but who is not a member of the LLC.

Designate a registered agent. You must have an agent to accept legal notices for your LLC on file with the Montana Secretary of State. An individual with a street address in Montana or a business authorized to conduct business in the state can serve as your agent, as well as the LLC itself or one of the company's members.

Fill out the Montana articles of organization form, which is found at the official website of the Montana secretary of state's office. Information required on this form includes: the company's name and principal location address; the name, address and signature of the registered agent; whether or not the company's duration is perpetual or for a specific length of time; the management type; and the name and addresses of the managers. The organizer must sign and date the form. The filing fee for the articles in Montana is $70 as of 2010.

About the Author

Anna Assad began writing professionally in 1999 and has published several legal articles for various websites. She has an extensive real estate and criminal legal background. She also tutored in English for nearly eight years, attended Buffalo State College for paralegal studies and accounting, and minored in English literature, receiving a Bachelor of Arts.

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