How to File an LLC in Missouri

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Swyft Filings is committed to providing accurate, reliable information to help you make informed decisions for your business. That's why our content is written and edited by professional editors, writers, and subject matter experts. Learn more about how Swyft Filings works, our editorial team and standards, what our customers think of us, and more on our trust page.

Kevin McGrath
Written by Kevin McGrath
Written byKevin McGrath
Updated April 29, 2024
Edited by Catherine Cohen
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About 50% of small businesses are home-based.[1] While this is a smart place to begin your entrepreneurial journey, many small business owners are quickly looking for ways to take their operations to the next level. For many, the answer is forming an LLC. 

Creating an LLC gives an organization more trust and professionalism while giving the owner added tax benefits and personal liability protections. For a Missouri LLC, the process is straightforward and can usually be completed the same day for around $200 or less. 

If you own and operate a small business in Missouri and want to know how to make it official by filing for an LLC, keep reading. We will be breaking down everything you need to know to start. 

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Key Takeaways:

  • Starting an LLC gives an organization more trust and professionalism while giving the owner added tax benefits and personal liability protections. 

  • Missouri ranks well for sales tax, state fees, and its annual filing fee, and makes it easy for business owners to file anything from an LLC and DBA to an S Corp or C Corp.

  • To file an LLC in Missouri, you must choose a unique business name, file your articles of organization, and hire a Missouri registered agent.

What Is LLC Formation?

An LLC is short for a limited liability company. It is a type of business entity that is very popular in the United States among small business owners. 

The LLC business structure provides tax benefits and personal liability protections. Because you must form an LLC at the state level, business owners must select a state to incorporate their business, and it can be somewhere other than the state where the owner lives or works. 

You may choose the state you incorporate in for various reasons, including their sales taxes, state fees, and annual filing fee. Missouri ranks well for many of these, making it easy for business owners to file anything from an LLC and DBA to an S corp or C corp.

Step-By-Step Guide to Starting Your Missouri LLC

Are you thinking about Missouri for your LLC? Below, we will give you a step-by-step guide from selecting your name to paying the filing fee so you will feel empowered to make the right choice when you are ready to start your LLC in Missouri.  

Step 1: Choose a Business Name for Your Missouri LLC

Before you can file your articles of organization with the state of Missouri, you’ll need to select a business name. There are some naming guidelines set by the state of Missouri, including:[2]

  • Must be unique and different from any other existing business names filed with Missouri

  • Must contain “limited company,” “limited liability company,” “LC,” “LLC,” “L.C.,” or “L.L.C.”

  • Can not contain “corporation,” “incorporated,” “limited partnership,” “limited liability partnership,” “limited liability limited partnership,” or “Ltd.”

There are many ways to check if your preferred name is available, including using the business entity search tool provided by the Missouri Secretary of State or our free business name search

After you check that a name is not already in use, you can reserve the name with the Missouri Secretary of State office by submitting an Application for Reservation of Name and paying a $25 fee.[3] While reserving your desired name is not required to form your LLC, it will secure your name for 60 days, ensuring another business does not use it.

Trademark & Domain Registration

To further protect the name of your new business, consider filing for federal trademark protections. This will ensure that no one else can use the name of your new LLC on a national level. Likewise, you should consider registering for a domain URL with your LLC name so people can easily find your business online. 

Using A DBA Name in Missouri

If you will be conducting business in Missouri, the Secretary of State Office has strict requirements for the name you advertise and conduct business under. If you are a sole proprietor, it must be your name, while LLCs and corporations should use the name filed on their articles of organization. 

LLCs must include the name with the LLC abbreviation of their choice. To do business under an abbreviated name that drops the LLC part, you may file a DBA, which stands for “doing business as.” This lets the state know who’s connected to that business. A state DBA form must be completed and signed, and the business owner must pay a $7 state filing fee.[4]

Step 2: Fill Out Missouri Articles of Organization

Missouri requires all LLCs to file their articles of organization with the Corporations Division of the Secretary of State office. While each state has different requirements, you must include the following information for a Missouri LLC articles of organization.[5]

LLC Name

You’ll need to include your desired company name. Remember, your name must have “Limited Liability Company,” “Limited Company,” “LC,” “L.C.,” “L.L.C.,” or “LLC” in the name. If you reserved the name, you must attach your name reservation paperwork when you file.

Business Purpose

Missouri requires your company to include the purpose of your business. This can be as vague or specific as you wish. For a general purpose statement, consider the following: 

“The purpose of this limited liability company is to conduct any lawful business under the laws of the state of Missouri.”

Registered Agent Name & Address

You must include your agent’s name and office address in your articles of organization. In the following section, we will cover the ins and outs of what a registered agent is and how to use them. 

Management Type (Member vs. Manager)

A member or an appointed manager may manage an LLC. In either case, the appointed member(s) or manager(s) are vested with the authority to manage the affairs of the LLC. You will need to select which management type your LLC plans to adhere to on your articles of organization.

Span of Time

You will need to state the length of time your LLC plans to operate. This should be a specific number of years or perpetual. The form suggests consulting with your attorney or accountant because of the possible tax implications that this answer may cause your new business.

Organizers Names & Addresses

List the names and addresses of the organizers for your LLC. Organizers are those you are filing the paperwork with. This may be different for your members, depending on whether you are filing for yourself or using a third party.

LLC Series Type

A series LLC is a tiered organization where the top-tiered LLC will own the following companies in the tiered series. If your company is a series LLC or SLLC, you must select that option on the form and include the names and forms for all applicable LLCs in that series. 

Principal Office Address

You can include your principal office address, but it is not required. However, you may not use a P.O. box address to complete this section.

Effective Date

If you leave this field blank, the effective date will be when your articles of organization are filed with the Secretary of State. You may also write a date that is 90 days or less in the future. Backdates will not be accepted.

Organizer Signatures

Organizers responsible for the paperwork must sign and date the form before filing.

Articles of Organization Filing Fees

Filing costs for Articles of Organization in the state of Missouri can vary. 

  • Online filing fee: $105

  • By mail filing fee: $50

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Step 3: Hire a Missouri Registered Agent

Missouri requires all LLCs to have a registered agent on file with the state, including their name and address. The registered agent will receive and forward critical legal documents that may be sent to your company, including tax information, legal notices, and other official communications. 

While the registered agent does not need to be a member of the LLC, they will need to have a registered office in Missouri to qualify. They will need to be available during business hours to accept service of process, which alerts a business entity when they are involved in a lawsuit.

While being your own registered agent is possible, many advise against it. Because this function is critical to the long-term success of any business, choosing the wrong registered agent could cause far-reaching legal and financial consequences. 

Many LLCs, especially small businesses, use a trusted registered agent service, whichMissouri law allows. Hiring a registered agent to act on your behalf will ensure you are up to date on all required notices and can free up time and energy to focus on the big picture of your business. At Swyft Filings, our trusted and reliable registered agent services are available in all 50 states and start at just $149/quarterly.

Step 4: Create an LLC Operating Agreement

While you will not need to include a copy of your LLC’s operating agreement when you file for your LLC in Missouri, you still need one. Creating a written operating agreement for your business entity will help keep your business protected in the long run by outlining exactly how your LLC will run and operate and what the rights and responsibilities of each member are. 

Your operating agreement should state whether or not your LLC will be member-managed or manager-managed and include the following provisions:

  • Voting rights of each member

  • Member compensation rights

  • How disputes will be resolved

  • How new members will be added 

  • Annual meeting requirements

  • What to do if a member dies or leaves the business

Like any formal business document, it may be best to consult your attorney before finalizing your operating agreement. However, when they start, most LLCs rely on templates or professional services to help inform their agreement details. We offer easy-to-use operating agreement services to complete yours in minutes that start at just $35. 

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Step 5: File for an Employer Identification Number

You must apply for an Employer Identification Number or EIN to establish your business’s credit and open a bank account. An EIN acts similarly to a social security number for a business and will help file your state and federal tax returns. 

We’ll obtain your EIN for you today for a small fee. You can also apply for your EIN by following the instructions and submitting an application on the IRS website.[6]

Let Us Handle Your LLC Paperwork

At Swift Filings, we were founded by busy entrepreneurs just like you. Our process to form an LLC is fast, easy to understand, and affordable. For most states, including Missouri, forming an LLC can take as few as 10 minutes. Try our online LLC registration today to start your LLC in Missouri. 

Unlock Your Business’s Potential With an LLC:

Tax advantages: Enjoy pass-through taxation for your business

Operational flexibility: Choose a management structure that fits your specific needs

Asset protection: Separate personal and business finances, safeguarding your personal assets

Launch My Missouri LLC Today


How much does it cost to set up an LLC in Missouri?

At a minimum, incorporating your business as a limited liability company in Missouri will require you to file articles of organization. This includes a filing fee of $50 when submitted by mail or a $105 fee when applying online with the Secretary of State. 

Other costs, while optional to the process, should be considered when setting up a Missouri-based LLC. These include the following:

  • $25 fee to reserve a business name

  • $7 fee to request a doing business as (DBA) name

  • $250-750 to trademark your business name

  • $35-650 to draft an operating agreement

  • $100-300 annually to hire a registered agent

How is an LLC taxed in Missouri?

There are many types of LLCs, and the taxes your LLC pays will depend on how your business entity is structured. In most cases, single-member and partnership LLCs will have their income pass through to the members and, therefore, not be taxed at the business level. 

What are the benefits of a Missouri LLC?

The decision of which state to incorporate weighs heavily on the mind of many small business owners. Each should carefully study the tax and other legal ramifications each state’s laws or regulations could have on their business. 

For Missouri, there are many potential benefits, including:

  • Easy filing with minimal requirements

  • One filing options

  • Minimum and affordable filing fees 

  • Liability protections for the personal assets of LLC members

  • Potential tax savings

  • No annual filling or fee requirements

How do you dissolve an LLC in Missouri?

In many ways, dissolving your LLC in Missouri is similar to creating one. To dissolve a Missouri LLC, you must file an articles of termination and pay a $25 filing fee.[7]


  1. U.S. Small Business Administration Office of Advocacy. “Frequently Asked Questions About Small Business.” Accessed January 6, 2023

  2. Missouri Secretary of State. “Starting a Business - Entity Names: Availability & Requirements.” Accessed January 6, 2023

  3. Missouri Secretary of State. “Application for Reservation of Name.” Accessed January 6, 2023

  4. Missouri Secretary of State. “Fictitious Name Registration FAQ.” Accessed January 6, 2023

  5. Missouri Secretary of State. “Articles of Organization.” Accessed January 6, 2023

  6. Internal Revenue Service. “Apply for an Employer Identification Number (EIN) Online.” Accessed January 6, 2023

Originally published on December 20, 2022, and last edited on April 29, 2024.
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