We earn commissions if you shop through the links below. Read more

Cost to Start an LLC in Montana

Written by:

Coralee is a business writer with experience in administrative services, education, and software testing.

Edited by:

David has been writing and learning about business, finance and globalization for a quarter-century, starting with a small New York consulting firm in the 1990s.

Cost to Start an LLC in Montana

If you’re thinking of starting a limited liability company (LLC) in Montana, you’ll want to know in advance how much it’s going to cost. LLC formation fees vary by state, so it’s wise to do a bit of research and prepare yourself, and your new business, for the necessary steps. 

LLC Costs in Montana

Articles of Organization$70
Certified Copy – Articles of Organization$10
Certified Copy – Certificate of Existence$5
Name Reservation$10
Registered Agent Service$50 – $300
Operating Agreement$0 – $2500
Annual Report$20
Business Licenses and Renewalsvaries – check with state and local government

Montana Articles of Organization Cost

In Montana, you form an LLC by filing Montana articles of organization, which requires a $70 fee. It’s a simple process you can do online by logging into your Montana Account and accessing the form provided by the Secretary of State.

If you need a certified copy of the Articles of Organization, there is a $10 fee. If you need a Certificate of Existence, there is a $5 fee. If you’d like the state to hold your LLC name before you register, you can apply online here for $10 to reserve it for 120 days. 

Completed paper forms and their accompanying fee should be sent to:

Montana Secretary of State
Montana Capitol Building, Rm 260
P.O. Box 202801
Helena, MT 59620-2801

Montana Registered Agent Cost

In Montana, you are required to have a Montana registered agent, also known as an agent of service in process.  A registered agent is a person or business authorized to accept and respond to legal, tax, and financial documents on behalf of your business.   

In Montana, you can be your own registered agent, or it can be another member of the LLC. An individual who is not a member or a professional agency can also serve as the registered agent for your LLC. 

Costs for a registered agent service range from $50 a year up to $300 or more. Several online firms, such as ZenBusiness and Northwest Registered Agent, provide quality services at reasonable rates.

Montana Business Licenses and Permits Cost

Starting an LLC in Montana requires obtaining the required licenses and permits from local, state, and federal governments. Fees for these vary, but most costs are minimal.

Federal regulations, licenses, and permits associated with starting your business include doing business as, health licenses and permits from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), trademarks, copyrights, patents, and other intellectual properties, as well as industry-specific permits. 

You may also need state-level and local county or city-based licenses. The license requirements and how to obtain them vary, so check the websites of your state, city, and county governments to learn more. 

Business license fees depend on the type of business and the agency issuing the license or permit. On average, business licenses cost between $100 and $300+, plus renewal fees.

You could also check this SBA guide for your state’s requirements, but we recommend using MyCorporation’s Business License Compliance Package ($149 + state fees). They will research the exact forms you need for your business and state and provide them to ensure you’re fully compliant.

Montana Operating Agreement Cost

In Montana, your LLC is not required to have an operating agreement in place. But it’s highly recommended, as an effective operating agreement can help avoid disputes and lawsuits that could threaten the stability of your LLC. 

An LLC operating agreement is an important legal document that details who owns the business and provides essential information pertaining to member duties. An LLC operating agreement establishes the financial relationship between members and the basics of the working relationships between those members and the managers who oversee daily operations. 

The operating agreement is not filed with the state, but instead remains private. It’s advisable to hire an attorney to ensure your operating agreement is thorough and legally binding. 

Creating an operating agreement is free if you just draw it up yourself (here you can find free Montana LLC Operating Agreement template). Alternatively, you can pay around $100 for guidance from an online business advisory.

This is an extremely important document, so it’s recommended that you use the services of a specialist or legal firm. If you choose to hire an attorney, the price will be around $500 for a single-member LLC and $2,500 for a multi-member LLC.  

Montana LLC Formation Service Cost (Optional)

Forming an LLC in Montana tends to involve a lot of red tape and paperwork, so for many entrepreneurs just starting out it’s a good idea to hire an experienced service provider. 

Some of the best services for forming an LLC in Montana are ZenBusiness and Northwest Registered Agent. LLC Formation service will take care of all the key steps, keeping you updated while allowing you to focus on launching and growing your business.

The cost of professional services depends on your requirements and LLC formation plan. Most LLC service providers offer different plans/packages and there are many LLC services that offer free LLC formation.

Ongoing Montana LLC Costs

Every state has a different fee structure and timelines for LLC documents and licenses. It’s important to stay up-to-date or your business could face significant penalties. The fees and timelines for Montana are detailed below. 

Annual Fees

You’ll need to file a Montana LLC annual report with your state to keep your LLC in good standing. In Montana, you can file online through the Secretary of State’s Business Services. Utilize the search feature to find your business, fill out the form, and file for a fee of $20. 

Business License Renewal Fees 

Some business licenses and permits must be renewed periodically, which may have a small associated fee. In Montana, renewal fees depend on both state and county requirements.

For example, businesses in Montana with a nursery license must seek annual renewal with the state and pay the corresponding gross sales bracket fee outlined by the Department of Agriculture. In comparison, businesses with a catering license in Bozeman must annually apply for licensure renewal for $30.

It’s best to check with the state about renewal fees and deadlines so you can create calendar reminders to monitor when license expirations are coming up. This will ensure you have plenty of time to apply for renewal and can run your business without any interruption.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Cost to Start an LLC in Montana