Form a General Partnership in Idaho

Explore the dynamic landscape of general partnerships in Idaho, where collaborative business ventures thrive, as we guide you through essential insights and key considerations in our comprehensive overview below.

Excellent 4.8 out of 5 stars 15,616 reviews

If you’re in business with at least one partner and making a profit, you have an Idaho general partnership. You can formalize your partnership by filing paperwork with the Secretary of State’s Office, but the state doesn’t require it. While general partnerships offer many benefits for small business owners, there are some disadvantages, such as unlimited liability. 

In this guide, we’ll start by summarizing the pros and cons of general partnerships and then explain how to form a general partnership in Idaho. 

Step 1: Determine if you should start a general partnership

As we go over the pros and cons of forming a partnership in Idaho, think about how they apply to your business needs.  


A general partnership offers the following advantages:

  • Easy to form
  • Low maintenance
  • Not directly subject to federal income tax
  • Costs of running business are shared with partner(s)

For some business owners, the simplicity of a general partnership is all they want and need. 


Consider the following disadvantages of general partnerships: 

  • Shared decision-making
  • All partners have unlimited liability for the partnership’s legal and financial obligations
  • Can have stricter ownership transfer rules 
  • Partners may be liable for other partner’s actions
  • Not an attractive business structure for investors 

An Idaho general partnership may not be the best option if you want a long-term business. Compare other types of business structures before jumping into anything, and seek the help of a legal and financial professional. 

Step 2: Choose a business name

Unregistered general partnerships typically use the partners’ last names as the official business name. If later you want to use a different name for whatever reason, you can register a “doing business as” (DBA) name with the Secretary of State’s Office. You can check if your desired name is available as well.

Step 3: File a DBA Name (if needed)

To use a DBA name, or “assumed business name” (ABN), you must file a certificate with the Secretary of State’s Office and pay the filing fee. You can also apply to reserve your business name if you want to keep others from using it until you register your partnership. 

Step 4: Draft and sign Partnership Agreement

With an Idaho general partnership agreement, you can set the rules for how the business will run. A partnership agreement typically covers the following business matters:

  • Admitting a new partner
  • Sharing profits and losses
  • Dissolving the partnership
  • Handling internal conflicts
  • Rights and responsibilities of the partners

If you choose not to adopt a partnership agreement, then the Idaho Uniform Partnership Act is the default. Keep in mind that the rules set under Idaho law may not be what you or your partners want. This is why it’s so important to have your own partnership agreement. 

Step 5: Obtain licenses, permits, clearances

Your general partnership will likely need some combination of licenses, permits, and certificates to operate legally. All businesses must register with the Secretary of State’s Office to get the necessary permits. There’s no general state business license in Idaho; rather, the specific licenses you need depend on your business activity and location. Keep in mind that federal, state, and local agencies have their own licensing requirements.

Figuring out what permits and licenses you need takes a lot of time and research. Our partners at Business License, LLC can take care of this for you by providing a Business License Report.

Step 6: Get an Employer Identification Number (EIN)

Just about every business needs an EIN. The IRS assigns this unique nine-digit number as a way to identify your business. You need an EIN for tax purposes and also to open a bank account, hire employees, and get financing. You can apply for one online or let us get one for you with our Employer ID Number Service

Step 7: Get Idaho state tax identification numbers

Your general partnership may owe different state taxes. To file and pay your Idaho business taxes, register through the State Tax Commission’s Taxpayer Access Point (TAP). 

Forming a Business Partnership in Idaho: Next Steps

After you form your general partnership, there are a few more things to do that can get you started on the right foot. 

Open a business checking account. This helps keep your personal and business finances separate and makes filing taxes much easier. 

Get proper insurance coverage. Depending on what your business does, you may need general liability coverage, commercial property insurance, or commercial auto insurance. Speak with an insurance agent about what you need to protect yourself and your business. You will also want to keep up with your taxes.

How We Can Help

We want you to feel confident in choosing a business structure that’s right for you. Creating a general partnership in Idaho is simple and fast.

Regardless of how you structure your business, you’ll have certain filing requirements to maintain your company. That’s where we can help. With our Worry-Free Compliance Service, we’ll remind you of upcoming deadlines and reporting requirements so you can stay in good standing. Depending on your business needs and goals, an Idaho limited liability company (LLC) or corporation may be a better option. With our Idaho LLC Formation and Corporation Formation services, we can help you start your business today. 

Check out all our products and services and see what we can do for your business! 

Idaho General Partnership FAQs

  • General partnerships don’t need to register to form, but they can. However, if your business requires a license or permit, you have to register with the Secretary of State’s Office.

  • Idaho general partnerships may be subject to certain state taxes depending on the business’s activities and location. However, they’re not taxed directly on income. Rather, income tax passes through to the individual owners to pay at their own tax rate.

  • Partners are joint owners of a general partnership.

  • A general partnership is created by two or more people engaging in business for profit. The partners can choose how to structure and manage the partnership. They can either make their own rules with a partnership agreement or default to Idaho law.

  • In Idaho, all partners equally share the responsibility for the partnership’s debts.

Disclaimer: The content on this page is for information purposes only and does not constitute legal, tax, or accounting advice. If you have specific questions about any of these topics, seek the counsel of a licensed professional.

zenbusiness logo

Written by Team ZenBusiness

Form a General Partnership in These States

Start your [state] Business!