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How to Get a Certificate of Existence in Montana

Written by:

Edited by:

Reviewed by: Daniel Javor

Published on June 26, 2022

Updated on November 17, 2022

How to Get a Certificate of Existence in Montana

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How to Get a Certificate of Existence in Montana

In Montana, potential creditors or investors might request a certificate of existence for your LLC, and you’ll need to provide one or risk losing crucial financing. Thankfully, this guide provides all the information you need to get this certificate in Montana. 

What is a Certificate of Existence for Montana? 

In Montana, a certificate of existence, known as a certificate of good standing in most other states, verifies that you’re a legally registered business entity that is up to date on all filings and fees and permitted to do business in Montana. You do not have to obtain this certificate to do business in Montana, or in any state. It is simply used to verify your strong status to third parties such as banks.

montana map on american flag background concept

Why Do I Need a Certificate of Existence?

Your LLC only needs a certificate of existence if another party requests one. For instance, a bank might request one if you’re opening a bank account or applying for a loan. A credit firm might request one if you apply for a business credit card, or if you set up credit card processing for customer payments.

If you’re registering as a foreign LLC in another state, you will probably be asked for a certificate of existence. 

A foreign entity is simply a business entity doing business in a state other than the one in which it’s registered. For example, if your business is registered in Montana but you also do business in Georgia, you’ll need to register a foreign entity in Georgia.

Where to Get a Certificate of Existence in Montana?

In Montana, the Secretary of State issues certificates of existence. Just go to the Business Services online portal and submit an online request. Note that you will need to create an account if you don’t already have one. The cost is $5 and you can download a copy of your certificate immediately after payment. 

Requirements for a Certificate of Existence

You must be registered as a business entity in that state. Operating as a sole proprietorship or a partnership does not require registration in Montana, so those entities are not able to obtain a certificate of existence. 

Corporations and LLCs, like your business, must be registered with the state, so they are able to obtain the certificate. 

How Much Does a Montana Certificate of Existence? 

Again, the fee to obtain a certificate of existence in Montana is $5. But it’s well worth it because this is an official document that proves your business’ financial accountability and could open the door to greater investment and expansion.