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Are you thinking about starting a new limited liability company (LLC) in Michigan? If so, you must file State of Michigan Articles of Organization with Michigan’s Licensing and Regulatory Affairs Bureau (LARA) to turn your LLC into an official business entity. The State of Michigan will look to your Articles of Organization for specific information about your LLC. More importantly, the information you provide about your Michigan LLC Articles of Organization assures that your business remains legally compliant.
First, choose a great business name. Just remember that Michigan has strict rules regulating business names that you’ll need to follow. First and foremost, your business’s proposed name must be distinct from the names of other corporate names, limited partnerships, or limited liability companies. You can check your proposed name by performing a preliminary name search using Michigan’s Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) Search For a Business Entity page.
For more information about LLC names, visit LARA’s Naming a Limited Liability Company page. Michigan also offers a handy guide that can help you better understand Michigan’s LLC naming guidelines before choosing the perfect LLC name.
Once you’re ready to reserve a business name, you’ll need to fill out an Application for Reservation of Name and submit an original copy to the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs, Corporations, Securities, and Commercial Licensing Bureau, Corporations Division, P.O. Box 30054, Lansing, MI 48909 along with the appropriate filing fee.
You may also file your reservation document online at or drop it off in person at 2407 N. Grand River Ave. Lansing MI, 48906. Applicants may also file by email (CDfilings@michigan.gov) or fax 517-241-0538. If you encounter questions while filling your form out, call 517-241-6470.
After choosing a business name, you’ll want to select a registered agent for your LLC. A registered agent is a person or business entity assigned to act as a go-between for your business regarding all communications with the State of Michigan. A registered agent also receives all service of process for your business regarding lawsuits.
Think about whom you want as your registered agent. Picking the right registered agent can be integral to assuring that your LLC is legally compliant. Many companies choose to elect an LLC member or even a friend of a member as a registered agent. But keep in mind that your agent needs to be available during regular business hours, and that may not be something one of your members can commit to. You can also use our Registered Agent Service and let us help you find the best registered agent for your LLC.
Under Michigan law, an LLC needs just a single member to file State of Michigan Articles of Organization. Once you’ve decided on your LLC members, you’ll need to certify that your LLC has at least one member to proceed with. When you fill out your Articles of Organization Michigan form, verifying your member count will be part of the process.
There are several types of limited liability companies. The kind of LLC you choose will influence your business name and structure. LLC types include Domestic LLC, Professional LLC, and Foreign LLC. Visit LARA’s limited liability company page to learn more about LLC distinctions and find their accompanying formation documents.
The Articles of Organization you file for an LLC in Michigan are effective on the date endorsed “filed” by LARA. A later effective date, no more than 90 days after the date of delivery, may be stated as an additional article.
Once you’re ready to file, you can find Michigan’s LLC Articles of Organization form online. After you’ve gathered all your information and filled out your Articles of Organization form, you can mail it with all required filing fees to the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs, Corporations, Securities, and Commercial Licensing Bureau, Corporations Division, P.O. Box 30054, Lansing, MI 48909.
You may also submit your formation documents in person to 2407 N. Grand River Ave. Lansing MI, 48906. If you encounter questions while filling your form out, call 517-241-6470. Or, if you prefer, you can file Articles of Organization online through Michigan’s Corporations Online Filing System (COFS).
After filing your Michigan Secretary of State articles of organization for your LLC, remember to take the following steps to ensure you’ve set up your business correctly.
If your LLC has more than one member, and you haven’t done it already, it’s a good idea for you and other LLC members to enter into a limited liability company agreement. Many states call this an operating agreement.
Your operating agreement should provide clear rules about the relationships between LLC members and the new company and its members. It’s a good idea to write up a detailed agreement that spells out as much about your company’s rules and member roles as possible. For instance, you’ll want to discuss member voting rights and how the LLC will share and distribute profits.
If you’d like help writing your LLC’s operating agreement, we have a handy Operating Agreement Template you can use for guidance.
An EIN is the identification number the IRS provides your LLC to use on federal tax returns. The IRS requires multiple-member LLCs to have an EIN. Single-member LLCs aren’t required to use an EIN, but it’s often a good idea. An EIN will allow you to file your LLC’s federal tax returns and open insurance policies and business bank accounts without sharing sensitive information like your social security number.
Don’t want to hassle with IRS forms? If you’d prefer, we can obtain an EIN for you with our Employer ID Number Service. Let us take care of your EIN so you can focus on getting your new business noticed.
Filling out and filing paperwork can be a confusing process. But with our Michigan LLC Formation Service, it doesn’t have to be. We can assist you in completing and filing your legal documents without hassle.
Our varied business formation and maintenance services can make starting and running your enterprise easier, allowing you more time to focus on your company! We can assist with keeping track of your invoices, expenses, and income with ZB Money. Are you stressed about compliance? We can also help ensure that your business is on the legal up-and-up using our Worry-Free Compliance Service.
Disclaimer: The content on this page is for informational 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.
If you discover you need or want to change your Articles of Organization, you’ll need to file a Certificate of Amendment with LARA. Or you can use our Michigan Amendment Filing Service and let us do your busy work while you focus on more pressing business matters.
If your business has run its course, fear not. You can file Articles of Dissolution in Michigan to dissolve your company. Articles of Dissolution may be mailed to the state or filed online for a non-refundable filing fee. They can even be expedited. If you have questions about dissolution, LARA can answer them. Call 517-241-6470.
Contact LARA if you’d like to start a corporation in Michigan but don’t want to form an LLC. Michigan even has a concise guide that makes gathering your required legal documents easier. You’ll also need to file Michigan’s Articles of Incorporation with LARA. The Articles of Incorporation are effective on the date filed unless you state otherwise on the document.
Michigan doesn’t require an operating agreement. However, it’s generally a good idea to have one. An operating agreement can spell out relationships between the LLC’s owners and avoid company conflict and organizational instability.
You don’t need a lawyer to form an LLC in Michigan. However, an attorney can help you determine if an LLC is the best business structure for you. An attorney can also help you write your operating agreement should you choose to do so.