How to Start a Wyoming LLC in 2024 (Step-by-Step Guide)

How to Start a Wyoming LLC in 2024 (Step-by-Step Guide)

While Wyoming is most known for its picturesque byways, national parks, and breathtaking vistas, it is also one of the top five states to register an LLC.

With its inexpensive LLC fees, favourable tax structures, and asset protection regulations, the Cowboy State has much more to offer than simply nice looks.

Starting an LLC in Wyoming entails the following steps:

  • Name Your LLC
  • Choose Your Registered Agent.
  • File your Articles of Organisation.
  • Keep your LLC active.

How to Start an LLC in Wyoming

Step 1: Name Your LLC in Wyoming

Coming up with a name for your business is one of the most creative (and consequential) parts of forming an LLC in Wyoming. The name of your company will be the first connection potential customers and business partners make with your business.

Wyoming Business Name Search

Before falling too hard for the name you want for your company, you should run a Wyoming LLC search to confirm your name is still available for use.

Not only should the name you choose be thoughtful and easy to remember, but it should also conform with the naming guidelines under Wyoming LLC laws, which are:

  • Your name must include the phrase “Limited Liability Company”; or its abbreviations “LLC, ” “L.L.C., ” “Limited Company, ” “LC, ” “L.C., ” “Ltd. Liability Company, ” “Ltd. Liability Co.” or “Limited Liability Co.”
  • It must be distinct from any other business entity’s name in Wyoming
  • Your name can’t have words that may confuse your LLC with a government entity (for example, FBI or NSA)

Check Domain Availability

Even if you don’t plan to open a website anytime soon, you should still check to see whether your name would be available as a domain name down the road. If it is, you can purchase the name now to use for when you’re ready.

You don’t need to sell items online to open a website. Just having a site for potential customers to visit and learn more about your company can promote your company and build your client base.

You should also check to see whether your name is available as a handle on popular social media platforms. Social media is a great way to advertise and build your brand.

Step 2: Choose Your Wyoming Registered Agent

One of the most underrated steps when forming an LLC in Wyoming is choosing a registered agent. A Wyoming registered agent is an individual or business entity responsible for accepting important documents on behalf of your company.

Whether the documents contain service of process or correspondence from the state, you want to make sure you LLC gets important communications.

You should choose an agent that is responsive and reliable. Many LLCs choose a member to serve as the registered agent, while others choose an attorney or a third-party registered agent service.

Either way, you’ll need consent from the registered agent to appoint them. The consent form is included in the articles of organization form.

Step 3: File Your Wyoming Articles of Organization

The most important step in forming an LLC in Wyoming is filing the articles of organization with the Wyoming Secretary of State. The articles contain all the information the state needs to verify your Wyoming LLC and to register it in the database. The articles include:

  • The name of your LLC
  • Name and address of registered agent
  • Mailing address of the LLC
  • Office address of the LLC
  • Signature of the LLC’s organizer
  • Name, phone number and email of contact for the LLC
  • Registered agent consent form (name signature and address of registered agent)

Wyoming uses its “New Business Entity Wizard” for electronic filing. There’s a $100 cost to file your articles with an additional $2 fee for doing so online.

Mailing Address

  • Wyoming Secretary of State
  • 2020 Carey Ave
  • Suite 700
  • Cheyenne, WY 82002

Step 4: Keep Your LLC Active

After forming an LLC in Wyoming you’ll want to keep it active and in compliance to continue doing business in Wyoming. While there are annual fees and filings required to keep your LLC in business, there are other tactics that are not mandatory, but if done will benefit your Wyoming LLC in the long run.

Create an Operating Agreement

While an operating agreement is not required when forming an LLC in Wyoming, it’s highly suggested that your LLC put one in place.

The operating agreement is a contract between all members of the LLC that includes details essential to keeping your business operations running smoothly. Some common details included in this agreement are:

  • Voting protocols
  • Member responsibilities
  • New member initiation
  • Daily operations
  • Company mission statement
  • Annual meeting dates
  • Dissolution requirements

This agreement also functions as a written record of verbal agreements and decisions between members. For example, a group of four friends from Utah decided that forming an LLC in Wyoming was the best way to start their brewery in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.

One of the most important decisions the LLC makes after formation is that each member will move to Wyoming within five years of opening the brewery to take turns as acting manager.

After three of the four members purchase homes and relocate to Jackson Hole, one member decides to remain in Oregon and denies ever making the agreement. Without a document in place recording this decision, the other members have no recourse to resolve the issue.

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File Your LLC’s Annual Report

Each year on the first day of the month in which you formed your LLC, you must file your annual report and pay the corresponding license tax. For example, if you form your LLC on Dec. 15, 2023, your first annual report is due Dec. 1, 2024.

The annual license tax is $60 or 0.0002% of the value of all LLC assets, whichever is greater. If your LLC holds $300,000 or less in assets, your license tax is $60.

There is a convenience fee for filing online that varies based on the total tax amount. If your total amount due is greater than $500, you cannot file online.

Wyoming LLC Tax Filing Requirements

Wyoming doesn’t have state income taxes, but LLCs are still required to report their income to the IRS. Single member LLCs will file a Form 1040 (personal income tax form).

Multi-member LLCs will file a Form 1065 on behalf of the company and each member will file a Schedule K-1 reporting their individual share of the income.

In addition to the license tax that’s due with the annual report, there are additional taxes for LLCs that sell physical products or hire employees.

If you sell a product, you’ll need to apply for a sales/use tax license and pay the $60 fee using Wyoming’s online portal or by sending a paper application. This will allow your LLC to collect sales taxes on eligible items.

If your LLC has employees within the state, you’ll also need to register your business with the Wyoming Department of Workforce Services and pay unemployment taxes.

This helps the state provide unemployment insurance to qualifying individuals. The tax rate varies each year and is discounted for new businesses. To get your exact rate, you’ll need to call the Unemployment Tax Helpline at 307-235-3217.

Local Resources

The Wyoming Business Council offers many opportunities for networking and connecting with government initiatives and other businesses.

Which makes Wyoming one of the best places to start an LLC. Some helpful resources include:

  • Manufacturing Works helps manufacturers with tasks ranging from workforce development to cybersecurity
  • Wyoming Women’s Business Center offers loans and subscriptions to promote small business expansion
  • Although the Wyoming Business Council can’t offer loans or grants directly, there are several funds available by application through the State Small Business Credit Initiative

How Much Does it Cost to Start an LLC in Wyoming?

The filing fee to register an LLC with the Wyoming Secretary of State is $100. That is the minimum amount it costs to start a Wyoming LLC, though you may need to budget for additional expenses, such as hiring an attorney, getting a business license and leasing office space.

The main cost to be aware of when it comes to maintaining your LLC is the annual report fee, which starts at $60. Though Wyoming does not have state income tax, you may need to pay certain local taxes.

You may have renewals for licenses, leases and legal services as well. In total, business owners can expect to spend a few hundred dollars annually to operate a fully compliant LLC in Wyoming.

Wyoming LLC Annual Fee

In Wyoming, LLCs are required to pay an annual report fee, which serves as a continuation of their good standing with the state. The minimum fee is $60 for LLCs with less than $300,000 of assets located in Wyoming.

The fee increases if the LLC has more assets located within the state.

This annual report fee is due on the first day of the anniversary month of the LLC’s formation each year. Payment can be made online through the Wyoming Secretary of State’s website, by mail or in person.

It’s important to meet this deadline, as failing to do so can result in penalties or even the administrative dissolution of the LLC by the state.

Pros and Cons of Forming an LLC in Wyoming

Pros

  • LLCs are pass-through tax entities, meaning their owners get taxed once on their personal taxes instead of at both the entity and personal level.
  • Wyoming doesn’t have state income tax.
  • Wyoming sometimes registers your LLC immediately if you correctly file your articles of organization online.

Cons

  • Wyoming charges extra for online filing.
  • Wyoming’s annual report fee can get expensive since it’s based on the value of your LLC’s assets.

What Are The Different Types of Wyoming LLCs?

Wyoming offers a variety of LLC structures to accommodate the diverse needs of businesses, allowing entrepreneurs to select the type of LLC that best fits their specific situation and goals.

  • Wyoming Series LLC: A Series LLC in Wyoming allows for the creation of multiple independent series within a single LLC. Each series can hold its own assets, have its own members and operate independently while still being shielded from the liabilities of other series within the same LLC.
  • Wyoming Restricted LLC: This unique form of LLC is designed to limit the ability of members to make distributions from the company for a specific period of up to 30 years, offering potential tax benefits. It’s often used for estate planning purposes.
  • Wyoming Foreign LLC: If your LLC is formed in another state but wishes to do business in Wyoming, it must register as a Foreign LLC. This involves obtaining a certificate of authority to transact business in Wyoming.

Wyoming Anonymous LLC: Wyoming allows the formation of Anonymous LLCs, where the identities of the members or managers are not required to be listed on the public record. This can provide an additional layer of privacy for the business owners.

Can You Start a Wyoming LLC as a Non-Resident?

Non-residents can indeed start an LLC in Wyoming. The state is known for its business-friendly climate, and there is no requirement for LLC owners to be Wyoming residents.

Non-resident owners must appoint a registered agent with a physical address in Wyoming to comply with legal and state requirements. 

Apart from that, the process for non-residents is similar to that for residents: filing the Articles of Organization with the Wyoming Secretary of State and paying the associated fee.

It’s recommended for non-residents to familiarize themselves with Wyoming’s specific business laws to ensure compliance and to consider local legal or financial counsel to assist with the process.

What Are the Wyoming LLC Requirements?

To form an LLC in Wyoming, you must file the Articles of Organization with the Wyoming Secretary of State.

This document officially registers your business and includes key information about your LLC, such as its name, principal address, mailing address and the name and physical address of your registered agent in Wyoming.

The state requires that the LLC name be distinguishable from other business entities already on file and must include an LLC identifier, such as “LLC,” “L.L.C.” or “Limited Liability Company.” 

Wyoming does not require LLCs to have a written operating agreement, but it is highly recommended to create one to outline the structure and operating procedures of your business.

Before you start a Wyoming LLC, ensure you have the following information ready:

  • LLC name: The unique name you’ve selected for your LLC, including the required LLC designation
  • Registered agent information: The name and physical address in Wyoming of your registered agent (cannot be a P.O. Box)
  • Mailing address: The address where your business will receive mail, if different from the principal address
  • Principal office address: The primary location where your business activities are conducted
  • Organizer’s signature: The signature of the person or entity forming the LLC, known as the organizer
  • Optional provisions: Any other provisions you wish to include, such as the LLC’s duration, business purpose or management structure, although these are not mandatory for the Articles of Organization

Once these requirements are met and the filing fee is paid, the state will typically process the formation documents, granting legal recognition to the LLC as a business entity in Wyoming.

Ready to Form Your Wyoming LLC?

With its wonderful tax benefits and gorgeous scenery, Wyoming is a fantastic place to get your company up and running. To start forming an LLC in Wyoming quicker and easier than ever before try a reliable online service that will do all the hard work for you.

Legal Disclaimer: This article contains general legal information but does not constitute professional legal advice for your particular situation and should not be interpreted as creating an attorney-client relationship. If you have legal questions, you should seek the advice of an attorney licensed in your jurisdiction.

The Bottom Line: Forming an LLC in Wyoming

Forming an LLC in Wyoming is a simple procedure that can be done in a few stages. The state offers several tools, such as step-by-step guidelines and template forms, to help with paperwork. Additionally, researching top LLC creation services might help to speed the process.

Frequently Asked Questions: Wyoming LLC Formation

What are the requirements to form an LLC in Wyoming?

The primary requirement is to file articles of organization with the Secretary of State. These articles must include the LLC’s name, address and registered agent.

What are the costs to form an LLC in Wyoming?

It costs $100 to file your articles of organization in Wyoming, which is the document that forms your LLC. If you hire an attorney to draft your articles and operating agreement, it can cost you several hundred to several thousand dollars. Other potential costs include business licenses and office space.

Does Wyoming require an operating agreement for an LLC?

No, Wyoming does not require an LLC to have an operating agreement but it is highly recommended to outline financial structure, voting rights, profit/loss distribution and member responsibilities.

How long does it take to form an LLC in Wyoming?

The formation process usually takes 1-3 business days if you submit online. The Secretary of State reviews the articles of organization and if approved, provides a certificate of organization showing the LLC exists.

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