Welcome to the official StartaBusiness.org portal for entity filing in Montana. This page has been created to provide insight into the filing procedures demanded by the Secretary of State. The state of Montana, though not the most accessible as far as online filing is concerned, is surely one of the simplest and least expensive states to register an entity within. The filing fees range from $20 to $70 and require only the filling-in of a short PDF form to complete. Expedited filing options are likewise available for individuals looking to file as quickly as possible.
Select an Entity Type
Search for a Name
There are several reasons why an individual would be interested in searching the Montana business entity database. For one, if you intend to file for a new entity it is an easy way to check for a given name’s availability. Secondly, if you need to obtain a Certificate of Fact for a given entity, you must go through the business search to do so. For more information on the business search procedure please see our step-by-step tutorial.
How to File in Montana
Step 1- Regardless of the type of entity you wish to form, filing in Montana is quite simple. First, you must make sure the operating name for your entity is both available and legal (cross-reference the business database to check for availability). You may also reserve a name for 120 days by filing a Name Reservation application ($10).
Step 2- Continue by downloading and completing the PDF application associated with your business type. Click on the link below that correlates with your business to learn more about the exact filing requirements.
- Domestic Profit Corporation
- Domestic Non-Profit Corporation
- Foreign Profit Corporation
- Foreign Non-Profit Corporation
- Domestic Limited Liability Company
- Domestic Series Limited Liability Company
- Foreign Limited Liability Company
- Foreign Series Limited Liability Company
- Domestic Limited Partnership
- Foreign Limited Partnership
- Domestic Limited Liability Partnership
- Foreign Limited Liability Partnership
Step 3- You must now write a check to the Secretary of State for the appropriate fee amount. The fees listed below represent the minimum payment one can make for each entity type. Keep in mind that Montana offers expedited filing at $20 for 24-hour processing and $100 for 1-hour processing.
- Domestic Profit Corporation- $70
- Domestic Non-Profit Corporation- $20
- Foreign Profit Corporation- $70
- Foreign Non-Profit Corporation- $20
Limited Liability Company
- Domestic Limited Liability Company- $70
- Domestic Series Limited Liability Company- $70 + $50 per series member
- Foreign Limited Liability Company- $70
- Foreign Series Limited Liability Company- $70 + $50 per series member
- Domestic Limited Partnership- $20
- Foreign Limited Partnership- $20
- Domestic Limited Liability Partnership- $20
- Foreign Limited Liability Partnership- $20
Step 4- Finally, attach the check to your completed filing form and submit it to the following address:
Secretary of State
P.O. Box 202801
Helena, MT 59620
Reserving a name in Montana is a simple procedure. For the fee of $10 ($30 for 24 processing, $110 for 1 hour processing) one can reserve an entity name for 120 days by filing a PDF form with the Secretary of State. A name reservation may be useful to your filing process if you have concerns about the ongoing availability of your desired operating name. For more information please see our step-by-step name reservation tutorial.
Certificate of Fact
A Certificate of Fact, known in some states as a certificate of good standing, a certificate of status, or the like, is a document issued by the state government which officially states the standing of a given entity in the eyes of the state. In Montana, acquiring this type of certification is a simple process which is completed online via the business search portal. These documents are usually required for extending an entity into another state or country, and likewise banks and other institutions sometimes require a certificate in order to make a loan to an entity. For more information please see our step-by-step tutorial.
All entities have the opportunity to shore up organizational deficits by drafting one of the following documents, depending on entity type:
Corporations are required by law to generate a corporate bylaw, however we recommend that all entities draft some form of agreement as they are documents which lay out, officially, the rules and regulations the entity wishes to operate by. These documents are internal and thus never filed with the government, but that doesn’t prevent them from being signifiers of legitimacy in the eyes of not only the government but also financial institutions and competitors. Draft your own agreement today with the help of our free PDF and MS Word formatted templates, available in the links above.
Employer Identification Number
Many newly formed entities will need to register with the IRS in order to operate financially. To do so, entities may apply via the IRS website or through the mail with the submission of the SS-4 Form for an EIN, or Employer Identification Number. This number, essentially a Social Security Number for an entity, makes the entity taxable and thus able to perform any and all financial maneuvers. It is required for paying employees, applying for credit cards, and the like. For more information on EINs, their purpose, and the acquiring of one, please see our in-depth guide here.