Start an LLC in Oregon

How to Start an LLC in Oregon

Starting an LLC in Oregon is a straightforward process that requires you to complete several key steps. These steps will ensure that your business adheres to the legal requirements in Oregon, and that you have taken the necessary measures to register your LLC, file necessary paperwork, and pay taxes.

Here is a guide to help you through the process of forming an LLC in Oregon.

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1. Choose a Name for Your LLC

The first step in forming an LLC in Oregon is to choose a name that adheres to the state's naming requirements. Your LLC's name must include the words "Limited Liability Company" or the abbreviations "LLC" or "L.L.C." It must also be distinguishable from other business entities that are already on file with the Oregon Secretary of State. You can check the availability of your desired name by searching the Oregon Secretary of State business name database.

If you want to secure a DBA name for your LLC, you'll need to go through the name search process again to ensure that the name you choose is available. After that, you'll need to fill out an Assumed Name Registration form and pay a filing fee. A DBA name is an alternate name you can use for your business and it is valid for two years.

Additionally, it's advisable to check the United States Patent and Trademark Office website to make sure your LLC's name or logo isn't already trademarked. You may also want to check for state-level trademarks by visiting the Oregon Secretary of State website.

2. Appoint a Registered Agent

Every LLC in Oregon must appoint an agent for service of process, which is an individual or business entity that agrees to accept legal papers on the LLC's behalf if it is sued. The registered agent must be an Oregon resident or a business entity authorized to do business in Oregon and must have a physical street address in the state.

Many LLCs opt to hire professional registered agent services to fulfill this requirement. This allows the LLC's owners to have the freedom to leave the office, as the registered agent must be present during normal business hours. Utilizing a professional registered agent service also eliminates the need to refile forms and pay additional fees if the LLC's office address changes.

3. File Articles of Organization

The next step in forming an LLC in Oregon is to file the Articles of Organization-Limited Liability Company with the Secretary of State. The articles must include information such as the LLC's name, duration, address of the principal office, registered agent, mailing address for notices, and the names and addresses of each organizer and member or manager with knowledge of the LLC's operations.

The Articles of Organization can be filed online or by mail, and the filing fee is $100.

Once the Oregon Secretary of State approves your LLC, you'll receive an acknowledgment letter that confirms the LLC's formal existence. This certificate will allow the LLC to obtain an Employer Identification Number (EIN), business licenses, and a business bank account.

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4. Prepare an Operating Agreement

An operating agreement is not a legal requirement in Oregon, but it is highly advisable to have one. This is an internal document that outlines how the LLC will be run, including the rights and responsibilities of the members and managers. The operating agreement should be kept with the LLC's important paperwork and can be updated as needed.

5. Tax and Regulatory Requirements

In Oregon, forming an LLC requires compliance with various tax and regulatory requirements, including obtaining an EIN, obtaining business licenses, registering with the Oregon Department of Revenue (if necessary), and filing annual reports.

An EIN, or employer identification number, is a unique identifier for your LLC used by the IRS. You can apply for an EIN for free either online or via a paper form.

Your LLC may need to obtain business licenses, depending on its type of business and location. Check the Oregon License Directory for more information.

In some cases, such as if you have employees, you'll need to register with the Oregon Department of Revenue.

6. File Annual Reports

All Oregon LLCs and foreign LLCs authorized to do business in the state must file an Annual Report with the Oregon Secretary of State. The annual report must be received before your LLC's anniversary date to avoid penalties and must be filed online through the Oregon Secretary of State Business Registry Web Renewal webpage. The fee for domestic LLCs is $100 and for foreign LLCs is $275.

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