Step 1. Pick a name
Ready to start a company? Step one seems like the most simple but can take the longest – pick a name for your corporate identity.
- Colorado naming guidelines state that your company entity name must contain the words Limited Liability Company or the abbreviation L.L.C. or LLC. Restricted words require additional paperwork (e.g. Banc, Bank, Banque, etc) and/or licensed individuals (e.g. Doctor, Engineer, etc). to be part of the LLC. Prohibited words are those that would confuse the name of your LLC with a federal or state agency e.g. FBI, Secret Service, Treasury etc. Learn more: Colorado State Website.
- Check availability and make sure your name is not already taken. Be sure to check the name search on the State of Colorado website.
Step 2. Choose a Registered Agent
You are required to choose a Registered Agent for your Colorado LLC. In most cases, this should be you.
A registered agent is a person or business nominated by your company to officially receive and send papers on your behalf including annual state filings. The registered agent must be a resident of Colorado or a corporation authorized to transact business in Colorado. You may elect an individual within the company including yourself.
Click here to find out why you may want to use a registered agent service.
Step 3. File the Articles of Incorporation
Everything you need to do to register your LLC with the State of Colorado can be done online for a cost of $50! Click here >>> Begin Online Application.
Follow the instructions on the form you choose.
Step 4. Create an Operating Agreement
What is an Operating Agreement? An operating agreement is a legal document outlining the ownership and operating procedures of your LLC. This agreement allows you to form financial/working relationships with co-owners into an established system suitable to your business. An Operation Agreement is not required to form an LLC in Colorado, but is good practice to have one. We do recommend consulting with a lawyer during this process of starting your company.
Step 5. Get a Federal Tax ID (EIN)
What is an EIN? The Employer Identification Number (EIN), or Federal Tax Identification Number, is used to identify a business entity. It is essentially a social security number for the company.
Why do I need an EIN? An EIN is required for the following:
- To open a business bank account for the company
- For Federal and State tax purposes
- To hire employees for the company
Where do I get an EIN? An EIN is obtained from the IRS (free of charge) by the business owner after forming the company. This can be done by one of two ways:
Important: An EIN is obtained after the LLC is formed. Obtaining an EIN registers the company for federal taxes.
Have questions? We’re here to help!