How to Start an LLC in Utah
To start an LLC in Utah, you must file a Certificate of Organization with the Utah Division of Corporations & Commercial Code. You can file the document online, by mail or in person. The Certificate of Organization costs $70 to file ($75 to receive a faxed confirmation of your filing). Once filed with the state, this document formally creates your Utah LLC. However, to actually ready the LLC to do business, you must complete several additional steps.
Utah LLC Filing Options
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Utah LLC Certificate of Organization free download. When you're done filling out the form, submit it to your state.
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Utah Certificate of Organization Requirements
To form a Utah LLC, you must complete and file the Certificate of Organization with the Utah Division of Corporations & Commercial Code. See the document below and click on any number to see what information is required in the corresponding section.
Your name must include “Limited Liability Company,” “Limited Company,” or an abbreviation. Most businesses keep it simple with “LLC.”
This is the official street address of the the LLC. Hire Northwest as your registered agent and you can use our Utah address as your principal address.
You can list a noncommercial agent (like yourself) or a commercial agent (like Northwest Registered Agent). We recommend Northwest.
If you have a noncommercial agent, you must list a street address where the agent will be available—and which will become a part of the permanent public record of your Utah LLC. If you have a commercial agent, just write the name. Our name is Northwest Registered Agent LLC.
This is just the person filing your Certificate of Organization. It doesn’t have to be anyone in the LLC. We’ll be your organizer when you hire Northwest.
You can add the names and addresses of members and managers if you want, but this section is entirely optional. Any information listed here is public, so many businesses with privacy concerns opt to skip over this section.
Want to put a self-destruct timer on your business? Enter an end date in this section. If you’d prefer to continue indefinitely, skip this section. Tip: Most businesses skip this section.
This section is optional as well. While you probably started your LLC to make money, this isn’t the kind of purpose the state is looking for—they want to know what kind of business activities your business was created to engage in. You could put a general purpose stating that your LLC is organized for any lawful purpose in the State of Utah, or you could do what most businesses do and skip this part.
How much does it cost to start a Utah LLC?
The Utah Division of Corporations & Commercial Code charges a $70 fee to file a Certificate of Organization, plus an optional $5 to receive a faxed confirmation that your filing went through. For $75, the state offers expedited processing as well.
Hire Northwest and your total, out-the-door cost is $300 ($375 expedited), including state fees, the $5 fax confirmation fee, registered agent service, and useful forms and resources to help get your Utah LLC up and running.
How long does it take to start a Utah LLC?
Either mail your filing and pay for expediting or file online yourself. Either way, you’ll have your Certificate of Organization processed in about 2 business days. Or, wait around 14 business days if you mail your unexpedited filing.
When you hire Northwest to start your LLC, we offer both 14-day and 2-day filing options.
Does a Utah LLC need a registered agent?
Yes, you’re required to have a Utah LLC registered agent. This doesn’t necessarily mean you have to hire someone. Some people try to save a few bucks and appoint themselves as their LLC’s registered agent. This strategy can backfire, however—being your own registered agent can mean giving up a big chunk of privacy and flexibility. You’d have to list the street address where you’d be available to accept legal notifications. This address becomes part of the permanent public record of your LLC—leaving you with a mailbox full of junk and unwanted visitors on your doorstep. You’d also have to actually be at the address listed during business hours. Not running errands. Not meeting with investors. Not traveling for business.
A better option? Hire a commercial registered agent like Northwest. Our address is already on file with the state (and we don’t mind sorting through spam). And, we’re in the business of being available. We are ready and waiting to accept your legal notices, and we’ll scan and send them to you the same day. Let us sit behind a desk all day so you don’t have to.
Create the Utah LLC Operating Agreement
Do I need an Operating Agreement?
Yes. While officers aren’t going to come knocking on your door if you don’t have an operating agreement, that’s because it’s not a public filing like your Certificate of Organization. Operating agreements are private documents—and the most essential internal documents of your LLC.
Why is an Operating Agreement important?
All that your state and local filings really do is help officials keep tabs on you. What does an operating agreement do? Set the terms for your business. It puts in writing who owns the business and how much each person invested. It spells out how profits and losses are allocated and what happens if there’s a dispute. It even explains what happens if (worst case scenario) the whole business falls apart.
The State of Utah isn’t concerned with the ins and outs of your business as long as you’re paying your fees and following laws. Who is concerned about your business operations? You. Members and managers. Lenders, investors and partners. Even just to open a bank account for your Utah LLC, your bank will almost certainly request your operating agreement. Anyone with $70 can start a Utah LLC. People need to know you’re serious before they choose to work with you—and your operating agreement is one of your strongest resources.
Do I have to write the Operating Agreement?
Starting a business is one of the biggest risks many people ever take, and the last thing you want to do is skip writing an operating agreement (or hurriedly rush to throw one together when you find that you need one). That’s why we give you a free operating agreement—specific to your management style—when you hire Northwest to form your Utah LLC. We give you other free forms as well: membership certificates, resolutions and more. We’ve spent years refining our forms and guides, and we’re pretty proud—over a million LLCs have used our free LLC forms to help form and maintain their businesses. Take a look:
Get a Utah LLC EIN
Do I have to get a tax ID number (EIN)?
Your Utah LLC will need a federal tax ID if you want to hire employees, be taxed as an S corporation with the IRS, or file certain federal excise taxes. Plan to open a business bank account? Just about every bank will require you to have an EIN for your new Utah LLC. EINs are free and you can apply online through the IRS website.
Or, you can hire Northwest Registered Agent to get you an EIN for your Utah LLC. Even if you don’t think you need it right now, it’s a good idea to get an EIN. If it’s requested on a local business registration or tax form, then you have it. If you run into a situation where a vendor asks for it, you have it. And best of all? Using your EIN instead of your personal social security number helps keep your personal data safe.
Open a Bank Account for Your Utah LLC
To open a bank account for your Utah LLC, you will need to bring the following with you to the bank:
- A copy of the Utah LLC Certificate of Organization
- The LLC operating agreement
- The Utah LLC’s EIN
If there are multiple members in the LLC, you may also want to bring an LLC resolution to open a bank account that states that the person going to the bank is authorized by the members to open the account in the name of the LLC.
We recommend calling your bank ahead of time before going in and asking what their requirements are. Most banks don’t open business accounts nearly as frequently as personal accounts, so some bankers may be unfamiliar with their own bank’s requirements. As frustrating as that may be for you, calling ahead will help save you from being super annoyed when you walk into the bank.
Obtain a Business License
Does a Utah LLC need a business license?
Yes, every Utah LLC needs a business license—just not from the state of Utah. Business licenses are managed on the municipal level. This means you’ll have to get a business license from the city or town where your principal office is located.
File Utah LLC Reports
What is a Utah LLC Annual Renewal?
Your Utah LLC Annual Renewal is a form you pay twenty bucks to file each year with the Utah Division of Corporations & Commercial Code. This form renews your business, confirming your ownership and contact information. (If you want to actually update your information, you’ll need to include a free Registration Information Change Form with your filing.) Forget to file? There’s a $10 late fee. No worries there though—when you sign up for services with Northwest, we’ll help you remember to file by sending you reminder notifications. Better yet, you can hire Northwest to file your Annual Renewal for you each year.
How much does an LLC in Utah cost each year?
There’s a $20 fee to submit your Utah Annual Renewal.