STEP 1: Name your LLC

Choosing a company name is the first and most important step in starting your LLC. Be sure to choose a name that complies with Arizona naming requirements and is easily searchable by potential clients.

1. Follow the naming guidelines:

  • Your name must include the phrase “limited liability company,” or one of its abbreviations (LLC or L.L.C.).
  • Your name cannot include words that could confuse your LLC with a government agency (FBI, Treasury, State Department, etc.).
  • Restricted words (e.g. Bank, Attorney, University) may require additional paperwork and a licensed individual, such as a doctor or lawyer, to be part of your LLC.
  • For more information, check out Arizona's Corporation Commission.

2. Is the name available in Arizona? Make sure the name you want isn't already taken by doing a name search on the Arizona website.

3. Is the URL available? We recommend that you check to see if your business name is available as a web domain. Even if you don't plan to make a business website today, you may want to buy the URL in order to prevent others from acquiring it.

After registering a domain name, consider setting up a professional email account (@yourcompany.com). Google's G Suite offers a business email service that comes with other useful tools, including word processing, spreadsheets, and more. Try it for free

FAQ: Naming an LLC

What is an LLC?

LLC is short for Limited Liability Company. It is a simple business structure that offers much more flexibility than a traditional corporation, while at the same time providing many of the same benefits. Learn more here.

Or you can watch our 2 minute video, What is an LLC?

Do I need to get a DBA or Trade Name for my business?

Most LLCs do not need a DBA. The name of the LLC can serve as company’s brand name, and you can accept checks and other payments under that name as well. However, you may wish to register a DBA if you would like to conduct business under a name other than that of your LLC. Learn more here.

STEP 2: Choose a Statutory Agent

You are required to nominate a Statutory Agent for your Arizona LLC. a Statutory Agent is more commonly known as a Registered Agent in other states.

What is a Statutory Agent? a Statutory Agent is a person or business that agrees to send and receive legal papers on behalf of your LLC. Such papers include service of process of legal action (if you are sued) and state filings.

Who can be a Statutory Agent? a Statutory Agent must be a resident of Arizona or a corporation authorized to transact business in Arizona. You may elect an individual within the company including yourself.

Learn more about the role of a statutory agent and why you should consider hiring a professional service.

TIP

Recommended: Incfile provides the first year of registered agent service free with LLC formation ($49 + State Fees)

STEP 3: File the Articles of Organization

To register your LLC, you will need to file the Articles of Organization with the State of Arizona. This can be done online, by mail, or in-person.

When filing, you will need to state whether your LLC will be member-managed or manager-managed. We recommend learning more about these two options before you file.

File the Articles of Organization

File Online with the State of Arizona

File Online


OR


File by Mail or In-Person

Download all four PDFs to get started:

  1. Articles of Organization - Domestic LLC Arizona
  2. Statutory Agent Acceptance - Arizona LLC
  3. Manager - or - Member Structure Attachment - Arizona LLC
  4. Cover Sheet - Arizona LLC

State Filing Cost: $50 (Nonrefundable)

Mail to:

Arizona Corporation Commission Corporate Filings Section

1300 W. Washington St.

Phoenix, AZ 85007

Submit In-Person:

Arizona Corporation Commission Corporate Filings Section

1300 W. Washington St.

Phoenix, AZ 85007

Fax: 602-542-4100

If you’re expanding your existing LLC to the State of Arizona, you need to form a Foreign LLC.

STEP 4: Complete Publication Requirements

What is Arizona's LLC publication requirement? Arizona requires newly formed LLCs to publish a Notice of LLC Formation for three consecutive weeks in an approved newspaper in the county of the LLC’s principal office. This must be done within 60 days of formation.

Exceptions: Businesses whose principal address is in either Maricopa or Pima counties do not have to publish a Notice of LLC Formation.

What does my Notice of LLC Formation need to include? You will need to publish the following information:

  • Your LLC's name
  • The name and street address of your Statutory Agent
  • The address of the LLC's principal place of business (if different from that of the Statutory Agent)
  • Whether your LLC is member-managed or manager-managed
  • The name(s) and address(es) of either your LLC manager or each member of your LLC

Read our full guide for Arizona publication requirements to learn how many small businesses handle them.

Approved Newspapers

Get the full list of newspapers organized by county, courtesy of the Arizona Corporation Commission, Corporations Division.

DOWNLOAD PDF


Fee: Fees vary by county. Costs range from $30-$300. (Nonrefundable)

STEP 5: Create an Operating Agreement

An operating agreement is not required in Arizona, but it's a good practice to have one.

What is an operating agreement? An operating agreement is a legal document outlining the ownership and operating procedures of an LLC.

Why are operating agreements important? An operating agreement is an important document because it ensures that all business owners are on the same page and reduces the risk of future conflict.

For more information on operating agreements, read our Arizona LLC operating agreement guide.

Recommended: Use our free Operating Agreement Tool to draft a customized operating agreement for your LLC.

FAQ: Creating an Operating Agreement

Do I need to file my operating agreement with the state?

No. The operating agreement is an internal document that you should keep on file for future reference. However, many states do legally require LLCs to have an operating agreement in place.

STEP 6: Obtain an EIN

What is an EIN? The Employer Identification Number (EIN), or Federal Tax Identification Number, is used to identify a business entity. It is essentially a social security number for the company.

Why do I need an EIN? An EIN is required for the following:

  • To open a business bank account for the company
  • For Federal and State tax purposes
  • To hire employees for the company

Where do I get an EIN? An EIN is obtained from the IRS (free of charge) by the business owner after forming the company. This can be done online or by mail.

NOTE

FOR INTERNATIONAL APPLICANTS: You do not need an SSN to obtain an EIN. Learn more here.

Get an EIN

Option 1: Request an EIN from the IRS

Apply Online


OR


Option 2: Apply for an EIN by Mail or Fax

Download Form

Mail to:
Internal Revenue Service
Attn: EIN Operation
Cincinnati, OH 45999

Fax:

(855) 641-6935


Fee: Free

FAQ: Getting an EIN

How do I get an EIN if I don’t have a social security number?

An SSN is not required to get an EIN. You can simply fill out IRS Form SS-4 and leave section 7b blank. Then call the IRS at 267-941-1099 to complete your application. Learn more here.

What tax structure should I choose for my LLC?

When you get an EIN, you will be informed of the different tax classification options that are available. Most LLCs elect the default tax status.

However, some LLCs can reduce their federal tax obligation by choosing S corporation status. We recommend consulting with a local accountant to find out which option is best for you.