Step 1) Name Your North Dakota LLC

Choose a Business NameNorth Dakota state law requires that businesses formed under limited liability company should include the following when naming their businesses:

Apart from these two requirements, your business name should not confuse the public. To check if your chosen business name is available you can use the North Dakota Secretary of State’s  business name research tool.

Reserve your business name for up to 12 straight months by filing for an application of  Reserve Name Application (SFN 13015) before the Secretary of State of North Dakota. You can use postal mail to apply or fax them at 701-328-2992 via credit card for your payment. Prepare a filing fee of $10.


Step 2) Appoint a Registered Agent

Choose a Registered AgentNorth Dakota LLC’s are required by state law to have a professional registered agent to receive process notices from the government of North Dakota. Your agent can be an individual or a business that agrees to receive legal documents and other mails and paperwork on your behalf.

Your North Dakota Registered Agent can be a resident of the state or a local and foreign company which is given full authorization to operate in North Dakota. A physical address is needed when hiring a registered agent. To take a closer look of available registered agents in North Dakota, here’s a list of registered agents provided by the Secretary of State of North Dakota.

You may also use a private registered agent service which can cost you $160 every year. If  start your LLC with IncFile you can take advantage of a free registered agent service for one full year.


Step 3) File Your Articles of Incorporation

Register an LLCFiling your Articles of Incorporation is one of the most important steps to complete your LLC. This is done through the application and filing of the Articles of Organization (SFN 58701) before the North Dakota Secretary of State. Some of the information that you may need to provide include the following:

You can submit your application through postal mail or fax to 701-328-2992.

LLC Filing Fee: $135


Step 4) Obtain an EIN

Get an EIN for Your LLCAn Employer Identification Number is required regardless if you intend to hire employees or not. Your North Dakota EIN is a 9-series identification number similar to the social security number for individuals.

The EIN serves a lot of purpose so it is important that you obtain this requirement. Get this requirement at the IRS website for free.


Step 5) Open a Business Bank Account

Best Business Bank AccountSeparating your business and personal finances should be your top priority upon starting a business. To do this, you must open a business bank account that will enable you to keep track of your business finances better.

You can take a closer look at your expenses and be able to spot inconsistencies better if you have a business bank account.

Recommended Resource: Check out this roundup to help you decided which type of business banking accounts is best for you.


To-Do After Forming a North Dakota LLC

After you’ve completed the requirements mentioned above, you are now legally and officially considered a North Dakota LLC. Apart from the five state guidelines, there are supplementary steps that you need to get done.

1) Make a Solid Business Plan

Write a Business PlanA North Dakota business plan is not mandatory requirement when starting a business in the state, however, it’s highly recommended that you write one.

A business plan is not only a guide that will help you build your dream business, it also helps you obtain funding and working capital for your business. Use these credible resources to start drafting a solid business plan.

Writing a Business Plan Quick-Links


2) Stay on Top of Your North Dakota Taxes and Finances

Small Business TaxesComplying with North Dakota business taxes is a mandatory requirement and staying on top of your finances is essential.

If your North Dakota LLC has employees or you intend to sell products with sales taxes, you must register at the North Dakota Office of the State Tax Commissioner otherwise known as the Tax Department. Your other option is to register manually through paper (Form SFN 59507) or register online.

Recommended Resource: Xero is one of the most trusted accounting software that will assist you in financial management the easy way. You can Try Xero free for 30 days.


3) Get Your North Dakota Business Licenses

Business LicensesApart from your business taxes, you also need to obtain all required business licenses to operate in North Dakota. You have to know the business licenses and permits applicable to the type and nature of the business you’re starting. Visit your local county or city hall for this.

Recommended Resource: If you need the assistance of professionals to compile a list of business licenses required for your North Dakota business, here is a great package. You can also check out  this resource roundup  provided by the SBA.


4) Make an LLC Operating Agreement

Create an Operating AgreementBecause of the flexibility of an LLC, you need to create an operating agreement that will protect your LLC status. An Operating Agreement is not a mandatory requirement but it is highly recommended.

This document will outline your ownership status, financial and operational relationships and corporate rules so everything is clear with your co-owners or shareholders.  Use this template Operating Agreement and reformat this according to your specific needs.


5) Build a Business Website

Build a Business WebsiteA business website is essential when conducting any type of business these days. It enables you to market your products better and reach the widest market population. If you need a professional business website, you can use WordPress which will allow you to start and customize a website in a matter of minutes.

Aside from WordPress, you can also use Bluehost which is a credible software that has a one-click automatic WordPress installation and has a 24/7 customer support services.

Resource for Getting Started: You can use this step-by-step guide to help you.

Please take note that this guide is only an informational article meant to help you when starting an LLC in North Dakota. It is not a replacement for legal advice. For the legalities of starting a business in North Dakota, consult your lawyer. The state of North Dakota also requires businesses to file annual reports which you can check out at the Secretary of State’s Business Records Search page.

Need Help Forming Your LLC?

Have a reliable LLC filing service like IncFile or LegalZoom do the work for you. Just answer a few questions about your business and they’ll take care of the paperwork.

Although both offer virtually the same service, IncFile is $100 less and our top pick. Enjoy!

Visit IncFile Or Visit LegalZoom