Wisconsin LLC Articles of Organization

Getting started with Wisconsin LLC Articles of Organization is not a difficult process, but it is necessary if you want to ensure your LLC is recognized by your state. An LLC is one of the easiest business structures that offers a variety of benefits to the business owner, most importantly liability protection. Should your business get sued by another business or an individual, your personal assets are protected. Ensuring you have followed all the necessary steps to forming an LLC is essential to gaining this protection.

How to Start an LLC in Wisconsin

Forming an LLC in Wisconsin is inexpensive and simple. Like other states, there are some state-specific requirements that you have to follow. You will need to register with the Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions, Division of Corporate and Consumer Services. You will need to fill out a few forms and pay fees, along with meeting all additional requirements.

The specific requirements to form an LLC in Wisconsin include the following:

1.     File the Articles of Organization with the Department of Financial Institutions. You will need to file them in duplicates and they must include:

  • The name of the LLC
  • The registered agent’s name and address
  • The method of management, such as member or manager
  • The name and address of the organizer, as well as a dated signature

2.     Pay the necessary filing fees. This will vary depending on if you pay online or by mail. Once you pay the fees, they are non-refundable.

3.     Allow for processing time. It typically takes five business days after the documents are received. During high volume times, there could be delays. You could opt to expedite your service for a fee.

4.     Include LLC naming requirements. The best way to ensure the LLC is approved is to distinguish it from the name of other LLCs. Many states will have a list of words that LLCs have to have included in the name. You can choose to have your preferred name checked to make sure it is available.

5.     Though not required, it is highly recommended that you have an LLC operating agreement with all the members. You will also need to obtain any specific licenses or permits if your business requires it.

Steps in the LLC Registration Process at Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions

The following are the steps that will help you establish an LLC in Wisconsin:

1.     Decide on a bushiness name. you can choose any name you like as long as it has “LLC,” “Limited Liability Company,” “Limited Liability Co.,” or the like at the end of it. The name needs to be different from other businesses that are already on file with the state. Your name can be reserved for up to 120 days by filing a Name Reservation form. You need to include the name you want to reserve, your name, address, and your signature.

2.     Name an agent. All LLCs in Wisconsin need to have an agent on file with the state. This is a person or a business that will agree to accept legal documents on behalf of the LLC if it gets sued. The agent can be a resident of the state or a business that is allowed to do business in Wisconsin. The agent also must have a physical street address in the state.

3.     Obtain an Employer Identification Number from the IRS. If you form a single-member LLC, you will need an EIN only if you have employees or choose to have it taxed like a corporation. If your LLC has two or more members, the company must have the EIN regardless.

4.     Create and sign an operating agreement. While they are not required by law, it is best to have one in place if there is more than one member in your LLC. You do not need to file it with your Articles of Organization.

5.     Research the legal obligations for LLCs, especially those pertaining to annual reports, as they are required by Wisconsin law. You can file your report online or by mail.

If you need help with understanding how to file Wisconsin LLC Articles of Organization, you can post your legal need on UpCounsel’s marketplace. UpCounsel accepts only the top 5 percent of lawyers to its site. Lawyers on UpCounsel come from law schools such as Harvard Law and Yale Law, and average 14 years of legal experience, including work with or on behalf of companies like Google, Menlo Ventures, and Airbnb.