A Vermont business owner has a busy schedule. From managing employees to handling building maintenance, you’re familiar with juggling many different tasks. One of the tasks on that to-do list for limited liability companies (LLCs) and corporations is to file a Vermont annual report with the state.
The Vermont Secretary of State’s office is responsible for all business filings, and the annual report is no different. The report, as the name suggests, is due each year and provides a way for state officials to stay informed about your business.
Annual report filing plays a role in staying legally compliant to do business in the state, and Vermont will terminate a business that neglects the deadline. To keep you in the loop, our step-by-step guide will answer any questions you may have about Vermont’s annual report.
What is a Vermont annual report?
A Vermont annual report is a yearly document that Vermont LLCs and corporations must submit to the Vermont Secretary of State. The report gives the state contact information for your company, which the state can use if there’s a need to reach out with important legal or tax notices.
Filing the report is what keeps LLCs, nonprofits, and corporations in good standing with the state. However, nonprofits only file a report every two years (called a biennial report), beginning the first year following registration and every other year after. A full list of entities who must file a report (and when) can be found here.
Vermont Annual Report for Corporations vs LLCs
In Vermont, both corporations and LLCs must file an annual report. The form is similar for both business entities. However, the fees and due dates are different.
For LLCs, the filing fee is $35. For corporations the fee is $45.
Corporations must file an annual report within two and a half months of the end of the fiscal year, and LLCs must file within three months of the end of the fiscal year.
Where do I file my Vermont annual report?
To file an annual report in Vermont, you must set up an account through the Secretary of State website. If you filed business formation documents online, you may already have an account. If so, you can log back in to file your annual report.
In your account dashboard, click on Vermont Secretary of State Online Services and then click File Annual Report. You’ll follow the prompts to provide the state with the necessary information. You’ll need to provide basic business information and the names of important business members. Keep reading for a specific list of required information.
Anyone can view a company’s annual report once it’s filed. The report is considered public record and can be found by conducting a business search on the Vermont Secretary of State website.
The state does not allow businesses to mail in or deliver reports in person. However, business owners can send a paper check to pay the filing fee. To select this option, check the “I want to mail a check” box after completing the form online.
When is the Vermont annual report due?
The Vermont annual report is due at different times for LLCs and corporations.
For an LLC, the report is due three months after the end of the company’s fiscal year. And for most LLCs, the fiscal year follows the calendar year. The end of the year is Dec. 31, which means the annual report is due between Jan. 1 and March 31.
For a corporation, the filing window is shorter. A Vermont corporation must file the report within two and a half months of the fiscal year end. If the company follows a regular calendar year, the report is due between Jan. 1 and March 15.
For nonprofits, the due dates are different. Nonprofits file a report every other year. In the year the report is due, it must be submitted between Jan. 1 and April 1.
The Vermont Secretary of State will email a reminder to business owners when the report is due, but don’t rely on these reminders. It’s important to set up your own reminder or work with an annual reporting service to have the document filed for you.
You can also search for your business through the Secretary of State’s website to access your company profile. On the profile, you’ll see the “Next Filing Due Date” that can provide a concrete due date for your LLC or corporation.
If you miss the deadline to file, the state does give owners a short grace period, but it will terminate a business if the report goes unfiled. Your company will then be classified as “terminated.” To revive the business, a company must submit reinstatement paperwork, pay a fine, file all missing reports, and pay outstanding fees.
How much does the Vermont annual report cost?
The cost to file a Vermont annual report is $35 for LLCs, $45 for corporations, and $20 for nonprofits. When you file online, you will be asked to pay with a credit card before submitting your report to the Secretary of State.
You can also pay by check. The Secretary of State’s office address is:
Vermont Secretary of State
128 State Street
Montpelier, VT 05633-1104
What information do I need to file the Vermont annual report?
The Vermont annual report asks for basic business and contact information. The following pieces of information are required when filling out a report:
- The business address
- The owner’s name
- The registered agent’s name and address
The report will have pre-populated fields with existing information listed. For example, the name of the owner who’s on file with the state will be listed on the online form. If it’s still correct, you’ll confirm the info. If it has changed, you’ll update it.
The form is short and takes just minutes to fill out. Once you’ve done so, you can pay the filing fee online to complete the online filing.
What happens after you file your Vermont annual report?
The Vermont Secretary of State will send an email confirmation to your business email after the report is submitted. It’s a good idea to print the confirmation and keep it for your records. If you don’t receive a confirmation, something may have gone wrong with your filing. If that’s the case, consider calling the Secretary of State’s office at (802) 828-2386. You may need to refile your report online.
Reports are usually processed within 24 hours of filing.
What if you miss the deadline to file your Vermont annual report?
Report due dates can seem a little tricky, but the general rule is that they are due at the end of the business’s fiscal year. For many businesses, the end of the fiscal year is Dec. 31. This means the report is due between Jan. 1 and March 31 for LLCs, and between Jan. 1 and March 15 for corporations. If for some reason your fiscal year ends on another date (and is confirmed by your Articles of Organization or Incorporation), the report must be filed on that date.
The state gives businesses a grace period, but if a report isn’t filed by the end of it, they will terminate your business. The state gives LLCs a three-month filing window and corporations a two-and-a-half-month filing window.
If a business slides into “terminated” status, the only way to revive the business and regain its good standing is to file for reinstatement. In addition to filing, the business owner must pay a $25 fee, file all missing annual reports, and pay all outstanding filing fees. A corporation or LLC that’s no longer in good standing loses its liability protection, which puts your personal assets at risk.
Who do I contact if I have issues filing my Vermont annual report?
For questions related to filing an annual report, contact the Corporations and Business Services at (802) 828-2386 or send an email to SOS.CorporationsSupport@vermont.gov.
Filing Your Vermont Annual Report FAQs
- How much does it cost to file an annual report in Vermont?
The cost to file a Vermont annual report is $35 for LLCs, $45 for corporations, and $20 for nonprofits.
- Are there any fees or penalties if I don’t file my Vermont annual report?
The state of Vermont does not charge any late fees for missing deadlines, but officials will terminate your business if the report isn’t filed three months (for LLCs) or two and a half months (for corporations) past its due date.
- What happens if I don’t file my annual report at all in Vermont?
If your report still isn’t filed after its grace period, the state will terminate your business. When a business is terminated, it loses its good standing with the state, along with its personal liability protection and tax status. To reinstate the company’s good standing, reinstatement documents must be filed along with a $25 penalty fee. Any missing reports and filing fees must be brought up to date as well.
- If my business is closed, do I still need to file the annual report?
As long as you end your registration with the Vermont Secretary of State’s office when your business closes, you do not need to file annual reports anymore. However, if your business shuts down and you fail to file the necessary paperwork, the business is still required to submit an annual report and pay the filing fee.
- How long does the Vermont annual report process take?
The time needed to fill out an annual report is about 10 minutes. Since the state of Vermont prefers online business filings, processing times usually take around 24 hours.
- Do Vermont annual reports need original signatures?
Vermont does not require original signatures. The state will accept digital signatures submitted online through the Secretary of State’s website.
- Who must file a Vermont annual report?
The Vermont annual report must be filed by any authorized party, which is commonly the business owner, a corporate officer, or an LLC member. Many companies also authorize a registered agent/business compliance service to file on their behalf.
- Are new businesses in Vermont required to file an initial report?
Vermont does not require new businesses to file an initial report.