South Dakota Articles of Incorporation

How to File Articles of Incorporation in South Dakota

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Have you been dreaming about starting your own incorporated business in South Dakota? One of the essential steps you’ll need to take is completing your Articles of Incorporation and filing it with the South Dakota Secretary of State’s office.

The South Dakota Business Corporation Act, Chapter 47-1A lists the applicable rules and regulations for completing and filing the document. Let’s walk through the form and take a look at the submission process. Remember that the information you provide will be available to the public.

How to Complete the South Dakota Articles of Incorporation Form

Domestic Corporations

Domestic (in-state) corporations can file their Articles of Incorporation online or by mail. Online submissions can be done through the Secretary of State’s Business Registration page.

Articles of Incorporation will require the following information:

  • Company Name: The name must include the term “corporation,” “incorporated,” “company,” or “limited” or the abbreviations “corp.,” “inc.,” “co.,” or “ltd.” It also can’t be the same as or too similar to an existing business name, though there are some exceptions. Use the state website’s business entity search tool to confirm if your preferred name is available. If so, ZenBusiness’s name reservation service can secure it for you so no one else can snap it up.
  • Company Purpose (optional): List the purpose or purposes for forming the business.
  • Number of Shares: Provide the number of shares your corporation is allowed to issue.
  • Principal Office Address: Provide the address for your main place of business.
  • Registered Agent Information: A registered agent is your organization’s official point of contact for government and legal correspondence. Consider partnering with ZenBusiness’s registered agent services: In addition to receiving your official documents, we’ll store them on your dashboard so you can access them whenever you need to.
  • Incorporator Name and Address: An incorporator is the person who organizes and submits your organization’s Articles of Incorporation. You’ll need at least one incorporator but can have more.

There are also several optional provisions you can include, such as the names and addresses of initial directors.

Foreign Corporations

Instead of Articles of Incorporation, foreign (out-of-state) corporations need to obtain a Certificate of Authority from the Secretary of State before they’re allowed to do business (there are some exceptions) in South Dakota.

An Application for a Certificate of Authority can be requested online through the Secretary of State’s Business Registration. The following information is required for the application:

  • Corporation Name: The name must include the term “corporation,” “incorporated,” “company,” or “limited” or the abbreviations “corp.,” “inc.,” “co.,” or “ltd.” If it’s not available for use in South Dakota, you can use a fictitious name, but it can’t be the same as or too similar to an existing business name (there are a few exceptions). Check if your preferred name is already taken using the business entity search tool. If it’s still available, you may want to reserve this name so it’s not taken by another business — our name reservation service can help you with this.
  • Incorporation Location: List the state or country where your organization was originally incorporated.
  • Duration Period of Incorporation: List the date of incorporation and the length of time your corporation will be in business.
  • Principal Office Address: Provide the address for your company’s executive offices.
  • South Dakota Registered Agent: This is the official contact for your business’s important documents (e.g., legal, government, etc.). ZenBusiness’s registered agent providers can fulfill this role and upload received documents to your dashboard so you can view and/or print them at any time.
  • Names and Addresses of Principal Officers and Directors: List the names and main business addresses for your business’s officers (e.g., President, Secretary) and directors.

Supplemental Form

Foreign corporations will also need to submit a Certificate of Good Standing (CGS) issued by their state or country of incorporation along with their Certificate of Authority application. Depending on the original incorporation location, a CGS may be called a Certificate of Fact or a Certificate of Existence.

How to Submit the Form

Domestic Corporations

You can submit your Articles of Incorporation using the state’s Business Registration site. You can also choose to submit by mail.

Processing Timelines

The state typically processes these documents within three business days of receipt. Expedited service is available for an additional fee; however, there’s no specific timeline provided.

Conclusion

Ready to get the process going? Let us help you. Give us a call to select a business formation plan, and we can help you complete your Articles of Incorporation today.

South Carolina Articles of Incorporation FAQs

  • What does it cost to incorporate in South Dakota?

    Check the South Dakota Secretary of State website to see the most current information on fees and methods of payment available.

  • How long does the incorporation process take in South Dakota?

    Incorporation documents are usually processed within three business days of receipt if all required information is provided.

  • Who processes the South Dakota Articles of Incorporation?

    Articles of Incorporation are processed by the Secretary of State’s office.

  • What South Dakota statute governs the South Dakota Articles of Incorporation?

    The South Dakota Business Corporation Act, Chapter 47-1A contains the rules for South Dakota Articles of Incorporation.

  • Do I need an attorney to file the South Dakota Articles of Incorporation?

    No, you don’t need an attorney to file South Dakota Articles of Incorporation, though you may feel more comfortable having a lawyer review the document.

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