Setting up an LLC in Wyoming is Easy, Just Follow the Steps
Wyoming is one of the best states to form an LLC because of the low formation costs and high levels of privacy. In this step-by-step review, we are going to walk through the process of LLC formation in Wyoming.
Forming an LLC in Wyoming is less difficult than you may think. To officially form your business you need to file the Articles of Organization and send it to the Wyoming Secretary of State. You can apply by mail or online and it costs just about $100.
#1 Name Your Wyoming LLC
Naming your limited liability company is one of the first and most exciting parts of legally establishing your business. Take the time to think of a few potential options, as there are LLC name guidelines in Wyoming there is a chance your first choice is taken.
Wyoming LLC Guidelines:
Take a second to look at the rules that must be followed when naming your Wyoming LLC.
- You must include the phrase ‘Limited Liability Company or any of its accepted abbreviations (Limited Liability Co., Limited Company, L.L.C, LC, Ltd,) to the end of your business name.
- You may not use markers that may cause people to confuse your LLC for another type of business structure. What this means is that you cannot add phrases or abbreviations like Corporation, Incorporated, Partnership, Inc., Corp., etc. to the end of your business name if you decide to form an LLC in Wyoming.
- You must not add terms that can make people mistake your LLC for a government agency or department. These are terms like State, Federal, Department, FBI, etc.
- You can’t add some special terms to your business name unless you’ve been given permission by law or have certain professionals like doctors, lawyers, engineers, etc. working in your LLC. These include terms like University, Bank, Hospital, etc.
All in all very logical guidelines, just make sure that you follow them.
Check Wyoming LLC Name Availablity:
Once you have a few valid options, it’s time to check and see if those LLC names are available in Wyoming. Ideas are a dime a dozen, and so are business names, so make sure you run a search on the Wyoming Secretary of State website to ensure that there isn’t another business using that exact name.
Check Domain Availability
On to the last step of finalizing your limited liability name, checking domain availability.
It’s no longer news that the best way to reach your clients is over the web and having a business website. One important part of choosing your LLC name is to check if you can get the domain name as your URL.
If the domain name has already been bought by someone, check if they’re willing to sell. If they’re not, you might just have to choose another name or find a variation closest to your business name.
#2 Appoint a Wyoming Registered Agent
One of the requirements of setting up an LLC in Wyoming is having a registered agent.
What is a Registered Agent?
A registered agent is a person or business entity whose job description is to receive emails and legal correspondence on behalf of your business.
A registered agent must be present every step of the way and will be responsible for sending and receiving needed information from state authorities.
Who can Be a Resident Agent for an LLC?
A registered agent can be the business owner, a family member, a partner of the LLC, or a commercial registered agent service.
Not anyone can be a registered agent, in fact, you must fit all of the criteria below:
- a resident in Wyoming and have a physical street address. Note that PO Boxes are not acceptable.
- If you’re using a resident agent service, they have to be licensed in Wyoming.
- Your registered agent must always be available during business hours and must at least be 18 years old.
Can I be a Registered Agent for my Wyoming LLC?
You absolutely can be your own registered agent if you are a Wyoming resident with a physical address and are over the age of 18.
The better question to ask is “do you want to be your own registered agent?” As mentioned before, this is an individual/business who is responsible to receive any service of process notices on behalf of your Wyoming business. If you do not hire a registered agent service, you will need to:
- Maintain normal business hours
- You will not be able to move easily
- Your address will be public record
And more. If you don’t mind those implications, then go for it!
#3 File Your Wyoming LLC Articles of Organization
To legally establish your LLC, you’ll need to file your Articles of Organization and send them to the Wyoming Secretary of State by mail or online. The filing fee for this form costs approximately $100.
The Articles of Organization is the document used to create the rights, powers, liabilities, etc. between the LLC and its members and also between the LLC and the state authorities.
Before you file I’m the form, make sure you decide the managing structure prior. If you’re unsure, take a second to read our member-managed LLCs Vs manager-managed LLCs post.
How to file the Articles of Organization
In order to file this crucial form, you will need to have a complete understanding of what your business does, how your business is run, and the legal requirements of your business’s operations. Below is a checklist of the main informational points necessary to complete the form:
- Business name
- Registered agent
- Business address
- Name of LLC organizers
- Additional articles (if necessary)
There may be a few more documents that you need depending on your business, but that covers the large majority.
Note: Once you’ve gotten approval, download your Certificate of Good Standing. This is a document that will most probably be asked for down the road and you can only obtain it once your LLC formation is complete.
Filing online is the fastest method of application. Your application will be approved immediately. All you have to do is fill the online form.
Filing online comes at an extra $2 convenience fee. Please note that you have only 30 minutes to fill the form so keep that in mind.
Mail-in Articles of Organization
Filing by mail is very straightforward. Download the form, fill it and send it to the Wyoming Secretary of State mailing address which is:
Wyoming Secretary of State 2020 Carey Avenue, Suite 700 Cheyenne, WY 82002
Your LLC will be approved within 3-5 business days after application.
Cost to file Articles of Organization WY
It costs $100 to start your Wyoming LLC by mail and $102 online.
How Long Does it take to get Wyoming LLC Articles of Organization Approved?
It generally takes 3-5 business days after you mail in your application to be approved. If you are in a rush, file online and you will most probably be approved immediately.
If you’re having any issues or you just to focus on your business operations, hire a professional online incorporation service to do the heavy lifting for you.
#4 Prepare Your Wyoming LLC Operating Agreement
On to the Operating Agreement. This is a document that isn’t necessarily required to form an LLC, but it is absolutely important once your LLC is up and running.
What is a Wyoming LLC Operating Agreement?
An operating agreement is a legal document that outlines the management, operating system, and other essential principles of your business. Below are a few of the essential topics that should be in your operating agreement:
- Owners of the business
- Management of LLC
- Profit and loss sharing
- How to add members to the company
- Process of voting
- Management of company assets
- and more
The operating agreement is like a terms and conditions overview for your Wyoming limited liability company (LLC). Not only is your operating agreement ask for when setting up a bank account and other essential reports, but It also protects the LLC from internal issues.
#5 Get an EIN for your Wyoming LLC
The last setup is to get your Employer Identification Number (EIN).
Note: It is advised for business owners to wait for LLC approval before applying for an EIN. This is a safety precaution. If your LLC is disapproved, the EIN is useless and you’ll need to get another one after reapplying for LLC approval.
What is an EIN?
An EIN is an identification number issued by the Internal Revenue Service. Its major importance is for taxation purposes. It can also be used to open an official bank account for the business, hire employees, apply for loans, permits, or licenses amongst other things.
The EIN is also known as and is the same as the Federal Employer Identification Number or Federal Tax Number.
Do I Need an EIN?
You are going to need an EIN if you plan on opening a bank account, hiring employees, and operating with the IRS.
Where do I get my EIN?
You can get your EIN from the Internal Revenue Service online, by mail, or by sending in a fax.
Applying for an EIN online is the fastest method. If you fill out the form properly, you should get your EIN approved that same day!
The process of applying online is very straight forward and you must fill out the information in the following categories:
- Identifying your business Structure
- Additional details
- EIN Confirmation
How do I Apply for my EIN?
Applying for your EIN is quite easy, just make sure that you have all of the proper documentation with you.
- First off, only apply for your EIN once your LLC has been approved. If you receive your EIN before being approved, your tax ID won’t be connected to your new business.
- Keep your Articles of Organization (Form SS-4) nearby to ensure that you fill out the right information
- Apply online, fax, or by mail
- Send in the form
How much does an EIN Cost?
An EIN is completely free, all you need to do is apply with the IRS.
What is An EIN Responsible Party?
An EIN Responsible Party is a person designated to handle your EIN application. This person can be the business owner, family member, friend, LLC formation service, or member of the LLC.
How to Keep your Wyoming LLC Compliant
Now that your limited liability company (LLC) is formed, we need to make sure you stay compliant year after year. Failing to obtain the required licenses and filing yearly reports can result in an LLC dissolution.
Let’s go over the main points that you need to know to ensure that you keep your business in good standings.
Wyoming Business Licenses and Business Permits
Not all LLCs need business licenses and it very much depends on your company operations and it’s location. If you need a specific license or permit you may apply online with the Wyoming Internet Filing System or by mail at Wyoming Department of Revenue 122 W. 25th St. Cheyenne WY 82002-0110.
Who Needs a Wyoming business license?
If your LLC sells taxable goods or services you’ll need a sales permit.
There are three governmental levels that you may end up needing a Wyoming license or business permit which are:
Federal Business Licenses and Permits
If your business operations are regulated by the federal government, you will absolutely need to apply for a permit/license.
Below are the most common federal business licenses:
Firearms & explosives
Fish and wildlife
Mining & drilling
Radio & television
Transportation & logistics
Take a second to check out the SBA guide and apply for the permits that your business needs.
State of Wyoming Business Licensing
There are a few state permits that you may need, but the most common license is called a Wyoming sales tax license or a seller’s permit.
If you fit into the category below you must obtain a sales tax license:
- Are you engaged in business in Wyoming?
- Do you intend to sell or lease personal property, or services that are subject to tax?
If you answered YES to any of those questions, you most probably need a WA seller’s permit.
You can file for a sales tax license check out the Wyoming Filing System for Business.
Local Wyoming Business Licensing
Whether or not you need a local business license depends on your business’s activity, and more so your location and zoning requirements.
Make sure you check in with your local government office for more information.
Do I Need to Renew My Wyoming Business License?
Most Wyoming business licenses and permits do not need to be renewed. Be sure to check with your municipality in relation to renewal requirements for any license/permit your LLC may have.
How much does a Wyoming business license cost?
The cost of a Wyoming business license varies on the specific license that you need but a Wyoming sales tax license which is the most common costs $60 for the registration fee.
Tax Filing Requirements for your Wyoming LLC
Below are the most common tax filing requirements.
Wyoming Sales Tax – 4%
If your business sells goods or services to customers in Wyoming you’ll need to collect sales tax. This isn’t money in your pocket, so don’t get mistaken. One of your responsibilities is to collect sales tax and pay it to the Wyoming Department of Revenue.
Before you can start collecting sales tax, you’ll need to obtain a sales permit. You can register your business with the ETS Form 001.1 which is available on the WDR online site. Once you receive your license you will need to submit sales tax returns on a monthly or quarterly basis.
If you’re looking for an accountant for your LLC, now would be the time. They can take care of this chore for you if you feel uncomfortable filing specific tax reports.
Wyoming Employer Taxes
If you’ve hired an employee, you go need to pay employer tax. In addition to paying Wyoming’s Department of Workforce Services, you will need to notify and pay the IRS as well (For the IRS, use your LLC EIN).
You will need to sign up and pay for state unemployment insurance with the Department of Workforce Services. To register you will need to file Form WY1C1WC, also known as the Joint Business Registration Form.
You must keep up with your unemployment insurance taxes quarterly.
Wyoming Foreign LLC
If you are doing business in other states then you will have to file that business as a foreign LLC. Each state has its own regulation for what is recognized as “doing business”. Generally speaking, activities such as having a physical presence in a different state, hiring employees in a different state, or doing business in another state would require registration in another state.
Wyoming Annual Report
Wyoming annual reports are required filings to maintain an LLC’s good standings with the Wyoming secretary of state. Normally annual reports are not complicated, as they contain the general information of an entity such as:
- Registered agent
- Managing directors
Why do I need to file a Wyoming Annual Report?
In almost every state annual reports are required. They are in place to update state agencies if changes happened in your business. Your LLC is required to file an annual report you must make sure that the report is filed on time in order to keep your LLC in good standing with the Wyoming secretary of state
Wyoming Annual Report Filing Fees
Your LLC will fall into one of the two buckets:
- Having less than 250,000 in assets in your Wyoming LLC
- Having more than 250,000 in assets in your Wyoming LLC
General Filing Fee
If you have less than 250K in assets tied up in your Wyoming LLC you will need to pay a $60 filing fee. This is the filing fee for the majority of businesses in Wyoming.
Higher Filing Fee
If you have more than 250K in assets tied up in your LLC then your filing fee will be a bit higher. The formula is simple, multiply $0.0002 by the total value of your LLC’s assets.
For example, if your business has $500,000 of assets, then the annual report fee will be $100 (500,000 x 0.0002).
When Is a Wyoming Annual Report Due?
Your Wyoming LLC annual report is due every year. You must make sure to file the report before the first day of the month that you formed your LLC. Your first annual report will be due the year after you formed your LLC in Wyoming.
For example, if your business in Wyoming was set up on February 18, 2022, your first annual report will be due before the 1st of February 2023. Following your annual report will be due every year before February 1st.
Wyoming LLC FAQ
How to Form an LLC in Wyoming?
To start an LLC in Wyoming follow the 5 steps:
- Name your LLC
- Appoint a Registered Agent
- File the Articles of Organization
- Prepare an Operating Agreement
- Obtain your EIN
Make sure to follow along with the detailed steps above as we guide you through LLC formation.
What are Wyoming LLC Benefits?
The 6 main advantages of forming a Wyoming LLC are:
- No state income tax
- Limited liability
- Members and managers are not listed with the state
- You don’t need to be a US citizen to start an LLC
- Asset protection
- Minimum paperwork
Can I Form an Anonymous LLC in Wyoming?
One of the many benefits of forming a business in Wyoming is that you can set up an anonymous LLC. If you decide to hire a registered agent service for your business you can entirely hide from the Public and State Government.
This does not give you a green light to operate in a shady niche or engage in illegal business operations, but if you want an added layer of privacy, an anonymous LLC could be for you.
How Much Does it Cost to Form an LLC in Wyoming?
The cost to form a Wyoming LLC online costs $102 and by mail $100. The funds must be paid to the Wyoming Secretary of State.